• Home
  • Parashah Insights
  • Ask the Rabbi
  • Festivals & Fasts
  • Articles
  • Books
  • About
  •  

    What was wrong with Joseph? – Mikketz

    Joseph's dream, from the Holman Bible, 1890

    Joseph’s dream, from the Holman Bible, 1890

    Things did not prove easy for Joseph. The lad who embodied so much potential, who dreamt such visions of the future, was degraded and sold as a slave by his own brothers.

    Whether they were justified in taking offence at what he dreamt and said is another question, as is their choice of what to do about him. But Joseph ended up lonely, misunderstood, and hardly able to see daylight at the end of the tunnel.

    He almost lost all his self-confidence and generally feared the worst. Even when he succeeded in explaining the dreams of Pharaoh’s servants, he could only ask, probably quite plaintively, that they should not forget him but try and get him freed from prison.

    A question – where was his faith in God?

    One answer is that even if he did not realise it, God really was guiding the events that came upon Joseph.

    One of the worst features of his youthful years was his self-pride and arrogance. He had dreams, but they all showed him as the one who came out on top. Everyone else had to bow down to him. He was the giant and they were the pygmies. An impossible show-off!

    Life (i.e. God) needed to take him down a peg or two, to teach him humility, to learn to appreciate other people.

    Only after he had become a nicer, more modest human being was he beginning to fit himself for the role of leadership.

    Comments are closed.