Tears of angels


When, why, what? Emotions? In What Form are we made? Different from animals? “So God created Man in His own Image, in the image of God created He Man; Male and Female created He them.”

We will note that I have shared Man as Masculine and Woman as feminine. In actuality “Man” is both Male and Female! Man is a ‘term’ of description of hu’Man’ity. My sincerest apologies. That was brought to my understanding with this share. I am touched to know that each time you study The Word, layers of understanding are gained!

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://www.gotquestions.org/amp/why-read-Bible.html&ved=2ahUKEwibzv6y44vhAhVrh-AKHW0GDCcQFjAFegQIBRAB&usg=AOvVaw3FtFw2StTUuoV2n34QVAx_&ampcf=1

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://www.focusonthefamily.com/faith/the-study-of-god/why-study-the-bible/why-study-the-bible&ved=2ahUKEwibzv6y44vhAhVrh-AKHW0GDCcQFjACegQIBhAB&usg=AOvVaw12AwsgnpvscJCC3XAVj5gk

https://blog.logos.com/2017/10/10-quotes-challenge-way-study-bible/

http://www.intothyword.org/pages.asp?pageid=53487

At The ‘birth’ of Jesus, they celebrated!

In the days when Herod was king of Judea, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth in Galilee to announce to a virgin named Mary, who was betrothed to a man named Joseph, that a child would be born to her and she was to name him Jesus, for he would be the son of God and rule over Israel forever.

The angels said to the shepherds, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger” (Luke 2:10–12). The next verse tells us that the angels praised God saying, “Glory to God in the highest” (Luke 2:13).

The shepherds decided to go to Bethlehem to see what had caused the angels to rejoice. Luke recorded their response (and Mary’s response as well).

And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger. Now when they had seen Him, they made widely known the saying which was told them concerning this Child. And all those who heard it marveled at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them. (Luke 2:16–20)

The angels rejoiced and praised God when Christ was born. The shepherds did the same. And while we may not know the precise day on which He was born, like the angels and shepherds, Christians can praise God for sending His Son into the world to save us from our sins. When we think about these truths, how can we do anything but rejoice?

Do angel’s who celebrated with joy, not cry too?

Emotion? We are of God, Created in His likeness! Do we not ‘feel’? Celebrate and/or Mourn?

God has emotions. Of course, when we say that God has emotions, we are saying that He has emotions like we do. We have to understand that what we are seeing in Scripture is God relating to us in terms we can understand – and this includes God having emotions. This is anthropomorphism – God manifesting to us in ways that we can understand. So, we can say yes, God has emotions. He has revealed them to us in the Bible.

But, the emotions that God has our perfect and without fault, without sin, and are always appropriate. Since we are made in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-28), then we to have emotions. However, because we are affected by sin, our emotional expression is often accompanied by improper motives. Therefore, we very often misuse our emotional ability. For example, we could be unrighteously angry with someone. We could desire to have what someone else has and so covet. Emotions are good because they’re created by God. But our emotions are touched by sin, where God’s emotions are not.

Let’s take a look at some of the emotions that God displays.God gets angry“Therefore the anger of the LORD was kindled against His people And He abhorred His inheritance,” (Psalm 106:40).On this account the anger of the LORD has burned against His people, And He has stretched out His hand against them and struck them down. And the mountains quaked, and their corpses lay like refuse in the middle of the streets. For all this His anger is not spent, But His hand is still stretched out,” (Isaiah 5:25).

God loves“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life,” (John 3:16).”But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us,” (Romans 5:8).

God hates“The boastful shall not stand before Your eyes; You hate all who do iniquity.” (Psalm 5:5).“The LORD tests the righteous and the wicked, and the one who loves violence His soul hates,” (Psalm 11:5).

God has compassion “But he hesitated. So the men seized his hand and the hand of his wife and the hands of his two daughters, for the compassion of the LORD was upon him; and they brought him out, and put him outside the city,” (Genesis 19:16).

“And He said, “I Myself will make all My goodness pass before you, and will proclaim the name of the LORD before you; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show compassion on whom I will show compassion,” (Exodus 33:19).

God grieves“And the LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart,” (Genesis 6:6).”But they rebelled And grieved His Holy Spirit; Therefore He turned Himself to become their enemy, He fought against them,” (Isaiah 63:10).

God expresses joy“…Do not be grieved, for the joy of the LORD is your strength,” (Nehemiah 8:10).“The LORD your God is in your midst, A victorious warrior. He will exult over you with joy, He will be quiet in His love, He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy,” (Zephaniah 3:17).

God rejoices“For as a young man marries a virgin, so your sons will marry you. And as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so your God will rejoice over you,” (Isaiah 62:5).“I will also rejoice in Jerusalem and be glad in My people; And there will no longer be heard in her The voice of weeping and the sound of crying,” (Isaiah 65:19).

So, does God have emotions? Absolutely, yes He does.

Impassibility of God

The impassibility of God deals with whether or not He is emotionally affected by our actions? In other words, does God experience pain-and-suffering based on what we do, right and wrong? Christian theologians have debated this for many years. But from the above Scriptures, we can state, for example, in Genesis 6:6 that God was sorry that He had made man that He was grieved. Why would God be grieved? It is because of the sinful actions of people.

But we have to be careful and not just assume that God is grieved in the same way we are. God is completely different from us and His emotions, that are revealed in Scripture, are perfect and holy. They are tied to His glorious nature. But since God knows all things from all eternity, how then can He grieve over something He always knew would happen? Or, since He grieves can we say that it is painful for God? Or, is God’s grief different from ours?  Questions like this and others are the fodder of many discussions.

Many times I have thought of The wrath of God, at what Satan would instill in Man to do!

At the fleshly death of Christ the were ordered to turn away! Are we aware of what the heavenly response was?

The atmosphere was affected!

They crucified Him” (John 19:1). He wasn’t the first to die on a cross—it’s been estimated that by the time of Christ the Romans had crucified 30,000 men in Palestine alone. Nor would He be the last. Jesus was, however, the only One who could and did die on a cross for the sins of a lost world, “the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring you to God” (1 Pet. 3:18).

To attest to the uniqueness of Jesus’ death, Matthew records four phenomenal events that took place when Jesus died. The Gospel writer doesn’t explain their meaning; he simply records them. John MacArthur has called these events God’s own commentary on the cross.

THE DARKNESS

What happened:

Jesus was placed on the cross at 9 a.m. (Mark 15:25), then “from noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over the whole land” (Matt. 27:45).

The significance: 

In the Old Testament, darkness is frequently a sign of judgment (see Amos 5:18; 8:9). Recall that the ninth plague of the exodus event was darkness over the land of Egypt for a period of three days—a darkness that could be felt (Ex. 10:21-22). After the plague of darkness came the death of the firstborn sons (Ex. 11:4-5). Darkness preceded death.

Likewise, on the cross darkness preceded the death of God’s Son. The significance? On the cross, our sins were placed vicariously on the sinless Son and God poured out His judgment on Christ, our Substitute. Darkness as a sign of divine judgment highlights the substitutionary nature of Christ’s death. On the cross, Jesus endured the judgment of God upon our sin (see Gal. 3:13; 2 Cor. 5:21; 1 Pet. 2:24).

THE CURTAIN 

What happened: 

“The curtain of the sanctuary was torn in two from top to bottom” (Matt. 27:51). 

The significance: 

Some Bible scholars have suggested this was the curtain that separated the court of the Jews from the court of the Gentiles. This would make sense in light of Ephesians 2:14, where Paul said Christ has torn down the dividing wall between Jew and Gentile. Other Bible scholars, however, believe this was the curtain that separated the holy of holies from the other parts of the temple. The holy of holies was associated with God’s presence. Worshipers could never enter the holy of holies—only the high priest once a year (Lev. 16).

The tearing of the temple curtain signifies that the way to God has been opened for all people through Christ. That the curtain was torn from top to bottom signifies this was the work of God, not of human effort (see Heb. 9:12; 10:19-20).

THE EARTHQUAKE 

What happened: 

“The earth quaked, and the rocks were split” (Matt. 27:51).

The significance: 

Earthquakes were common in Palestine, though there was nothing common about this one. The timing and accompanying events suggest this was a supernatural event.

Earthquakes in the Bible often accompanied divine revelation or a unique act of God. When God appeared to Moses on Sinai to give His law, “the whole mountain shook violently” (Ex. 19:18). Warren Wiersbe connects the earthquake at Jesus’ death to the Sinai event, suggesting that the earthquake at Calvary signified that the demands of the law were fulfilled in Christ.

Other scholars have noted the connection between the rock-splitting earthquake at Jesus’ death and the splitting of the temple curtain. Stuart Weber wrote, the earthquake reflected “the immensity of the ‘earth-shaking’ revolution that had just taken place with the splitting of the curtain.” (Holman New Testament Commentary)

THE DEAD RAISED 

What happened: 

“The tombs were also opened and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised” (Matt. 27:52).

The significance: 

The opening of the tombs would likely have occurred as a result of the earthquake. The miracle was the raising of many saints from the dead. These would have been Old Testament saints.

These resurrections demonstrate Jesus’ victory over death. They are a foretaste of what will come at the end of time, the final resurrection of which Paul wrote in 1 Thessalonians 4:16: “the dead in Christ will rise” (see also 1 Cor. 15:20-23). Thus, they symbolize the hope all believers have because of the death and resurrection of Christ.

How do these four phenomenal events at the cross rule out the possibility of a works-based salvation?

So much occurred! It was Known before ‘time’, yet it’s occurences were profound – Earth changing!

We have a choice to make:

Many Christian churches and denominations have different views on free will. While it’s easy to become confused on how God’s control and our own free will interact, we can trust the Word of God and know that what He has told us in the Bible is true. These Bible verses about free will show us that we have the ability to choose and have faith in God, being secure in our eternal life in heaven, or we can choose to turn from God and live apart from Him. Use these Scriptures to help you make wise choices! 

https://www.biblestudytools.com/topical-verses/bible-verses-about-free-will/

We face choices on a personal level daily:

These are just some samples of choices that we face. We also face temptations that we must resist with the Word of God. The consequences of some choices are more deadly than others. When we rebel against God and choose our own way, we are choosing a path of destruction that will ultimately end in hell. Because of God’s love and mercy to humanity, most of our choices do not have immediate results. We are all given a time to repent and find the Lord and His ways. We may all get away with sinning for a while; however in time we will reap what we have sown.

Wrong Choices Cause Soul Sickness

Many people are sick in their souls because they have not known the ways of the Lord, and therefore have made wrong decisions. God wants to heal us in every area of our souls and bodies, as well as give us a new life in the spirit. To receive healing of the soul, however, we must understand it and why it needs to be healed, restored, and renewed.

The Greek word psuche (pronounced “sue-kay”) is the word Bible writers used when talking about things of the natural man, which in English is called “the soul.” The soul of man is comprised of the mind, the will, and the emotions. Our emotional patterns tend to formulate our personalities.

The soul, or personality, is formed through a person’s reactions to the information the mind takes in. The way each person chooses to react to the things he hears, the things that happen to him, and the things he chooses to receive as truth causes each soul to become what he, or she, is. However, when a person is born again, he becomes a new creature in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17, Galatians 6:15), and the soul can be changed and renewed through the Holy Spirit.

As Christians we are to develop the attributes of Christ and become like Him. Because much of our personalities are formed through our choices, we have to make new choices to let go of the old nature and receive the new. Our new natures are formed by the truths from the Word of God. The healing of the soul, which is a cleansing process, takes place as we learn to study the Word and develop a close fellowship with the Lord through prayer.

The Mind, Will and Emotions

We might look upon human beings in this way: each of us is a spirit who has a soul and lives in a body.

The will is how we exercise our freedom of choices. God gave man this freedom when He created Adam. God will not violate our free wills and make us do the right thing, nor will He make choices for us. We can choose His way, “the law of the Spirit of life in Christ” (Romans 8:22: For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.”), or we can choose the way of self — which really is the devil’s way or “the law of sin and death.”

There are only two ways: God’s or the devil’s. What man thinks is his own way is really Satan’s way and puts him under the authority of the enemy. If someone is not for God, he automatically is against Him (Matthew 12:30). There is no possible way man can just do his own thing and think he is not making a choice. That choice is choosing Satan’s way. Even “no choice” on man’s part is a choice, because when we refuse to choose, others will make our choices for us. Satan causes men to follow him by encouraging apathy, laziness, or lack of responsibility.

The mind is the intellect, with reasoning being the “voice” of the mind. If the mind remains unrenewed, not “healed,” it will continue to think carnal thoughts, believe false information, and result in fleshly speaking and living.

The emotions were designed by God to express His characteristics, which are placed in our spirits when we become born again. Those are the “fruits” written about in Galatians 5:22, 23 and other places. If we do not yield to the renewal process, we continue to act like our “old father,” the devil.

Put On the Nature of Jesus

Much of the Church considers sanctification or “conforming to the image of Jesus” (Romans 8:29) to be optional. It is not taught or preached as much as it was in former generations. Many Christians born since World War II are as much a part of the “Me Generation” as the world. Self-will and rebellion are more a part of society today than at any time previously in the history of the United States. It is no surprise that much of today’s American Church operates in carnality, and it should be no surprise to us that God has finally set out to expose this evil and clean up His Church.

When Paul wrote to the Ephesians about “crucifying” the old man, this is exactly what he meant (Ephesians 4:18-24). When something is crucified, it is put to death. Every Christian needs the things of his old nature (which are part of his unregerated soul), to be put to death in order for the life of God to permeate the whole person. We have been given the power through the Holy Spirit to overcome sin in our lives.  We can choose to obey God and He will empower us to overcome every sin.

Instead of pursuing holiness, many Christians have just allowed Christ to dwell in their spirits, but have not allowed Him to renew their souls and heal their bodies. As soon as a person is born again, he should begin to make the choices that will put to death his old ways of thinking, talking, and acting, and allow the Holy Spirit to replace them with God’s ways.

Overcoming Through Faith

Renewing the soul will cause negative habits and emotions to change. The key to that change is faith. Through our wills we must choose to change. However, it is only the work of the Holy Spirit who can actually bring permanent change in us. We cannot do it in ourselves. We choose to let go of the negative and that allows the Holy Spirit to do the changing. But doubt and unbelief can keep a person from receiving this kind of healing as much as it does healing of the body. A Christian must make the choices for God’s way and against his own way in absolute faith that the Holy Spirit will do His part and make the needed changes in us.

If we allow our bodies to be lazy and undisciplined, they will suffer the consequences. Bad physical habits can hinder God’s work in us. The Holy Spirit wants to help us overcome these ungodly ways. In the soul, if we choose to be resentful, hateful, angry, unkind, discouraged, worried, fearful, impatient, lustful, greedy, etc., we will allow these things to rule us instead of calling on the strength of Christ to help us to overcome these negative attitudes.

Many habits or addictions of the soul and body can be broken with a three-day fast. Certain desires or feelings of the body are perfectly legitimate, such as hunger, sleep, and so forth. Through the five senses, the body is the receiver of information from the world around it. The senses were given to us by God to protect us, and under the direction of the Holy Spirit, they work perfectly to serve us. However, under Satan’s influence, or self-will, the senses are perverted to fulfill the lusts of the flesh which can bring destruction.

Changing Old Habits

Every sinful habit in our lives gained its foothold through our thoughts and choices. We can gain victory over those habits by thinking God’s thoughts. A person who feels unworthy and unacceptable can replace those negative feelings with the truth that through Jesus, he or she has become worthy and acceptable. The process of conforming to the image of Jesus will be successful as we choose to replace negative thoughts with positive ones.

The way to change a habit of negative thinking is to choose to change that negative thought for its opposite. The Bible calls that “overcoming evil with good” (Romans 12:19-21). For example, if a Christian finds himself ready to repeat some negative gossip about a brother or sister, he should choose to say something nice about that person instead. Very quickly, the habit of repeating negative things about other people will be broken.

The Lord wants to save us from tragedy, sickness, fear, anxiety, and the turmoil of this world. These things come upon us because of our bad choices or through ignorance or chains of iniquity. Instead, God wants us to walk in the Spirit of life so we may have His love, joy, peace, and victory (2 Corinthians 7:1) over every trial and temptation.

Bible Choice Bring Blessings

Our future is determined by all the choices we are making today.  Let us bring God into helping us make our decisions. In doing that it will determine whether our future will be secure and will have God’s blessing on it. Let us be as Joshua was and declare: “As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” God promised Joshua good success if he obeyed the words of the Bible and chose to follow Him. Joshua and his family were blessed because he made the right choices; even though he went through many battles, God was with him.  He was an overcomer!

There are so many references, what we share is literally eons old! All we do is realize it on a personal level. It is a blessing to have this placed on my heart and share. Prior to my experience, I ‘thought’ I knew what actually occurred! I was so very wrong!

Again, it is unending! in my ‘dream’ not realizing where or when I was, choice was presented to me. Thinking it was merely a nights dream, I ‘spoke’ in my dream stating that I would ‘share’ when I woke up. To be brief there is so much that occurred that I have shared, thinking it was a dream, I ‘dreamt’ I said that I would share my experience. Thinking that I had operative cases on the morrow, not realizing that I was in the non-medically induced coma for weeks! I have shared of my ‘condition’ upon awaking. Again, we have shared, so I will stop here.

I heard a song titled Ten Thousand Angels Cried, sung by LeAnn Rimes. I could picture heaven the day our Savior was crucified. Those angels were looking at the torture He endured for the salvation of mankind. They must have pondered this senseless way to die. They saw people mocking Him and spitting on Him, lashing at Him with a whip repeatedly, until He was disfigured beyond recognition.

Why would He choose to leave Heaven’s splendor to die in our place when we were the sinful ones? We cannot understand this. The fact remains that He chose to lay aside His crown and royalty to take on the form of humanity for you and me.

On Maundy Thursday and Good Friday, people will attend services in churches around the world. There will be the celebration of Resurrection Sunday, better known as Easter.

We rejoice that Jesus was raised from the tomb and lives, forever making intercession for us. He did this so that one day those who have accepted his death, burial, and resurrection will live in Heaven with Him. For those who have invited the Lord into their hearts, these special services will remind us of His supreme sacrifice. We will rejoice that Jesus loves us so much He went to the cross, as painful and humiliating as it was for Him. When we think about how the sky became pitch black and the curtain in the sanctuary immediately tore in two that day (Mark 15:33-37, Luke 23:44-46), the song about the ten thousand angels crying will seem very real. I imagine there may have been a huge display of lightning, thunder, and a downpour of rain. It will be as if those angels were weeping so profusely that their tears resonated heaven’s intense response.

Sometimes I still weep and I am so thankful He did not come down from the cross, because I know He purchased eternal life for me. It helps me know that my tears are a language God understands. The angels must have wondered if there could have been another way. It is in those moments it makes me appreciate that although He was God, He removed His divinity to put on the flesh of man.

Now, whenever thunder roars, the wind blows, and the lightning flashes across the sky, I look out my window. As the raindrops become stronger and louder on the rooftop, I think about the day my Savior was crucified and how the angels cried!

Copyright © Cathy Irvin. Used by permission.

We can imagine all the events that are shared in The Word! There is no way to document worldwide events especially that long ago, but there are worldwide changes that occurred! The original ‘family’ of God, The nation of Israel, was set apart! Yet, they continually ‘forgot’ The Essence of God.

A young lad dreamed about an occurrence:

Dreams play a major role in Joseph’s story. There are three pairs of dreams: Joseph’s dreams, the dreams of Pharaoh’s ministers, and Pharaoh’s dreams. In each pair, the links between the two dreams are very strong. From the literary standpoint, the dreams constitute a central axis around which the plot develops. Joseph’s story can be seen as a “dream and its meaning” tale that opens with a depiction of Joseph’s dreams (the bundles of grain in the field and the stars in the sky bowing down to him) and which continues as the narrative unfolds until the realization of these dreams (the brothers bowing down to Joseph as Pharaoh’s chief minister and as the architect of the Egyptian economy).

One can also see each of the three pairs of dreams as a turning-point that drives the narrative forward. Joseph’s dreams turn his brothers against him and lead to his being sold into bondage. The ministers’ dreams help him to achieve fame and fortune: his accurate interpretations of their dreams turn him from a nameless prisoner to a successful interpreter of dreams whose skills are recommended before Pharaoh’s throne and who is thus summoned to the royal court. Pharaoh’s dreams provide Joseph with the opportunity to prove his abilities as an interpreter of dreams and as an adviser; in addition, these dreams bring about Joseph’s appointment as ruler of all Egypt and as the chief provider of food to the nation, an appointment that ultimately cause Jacob and his entire family to take up residence in Egypt.

The dreams are related in the first person and, through the excitement and amazement of the dreamer, express the authentic experiences of the dreamer as well as providing an accurate picture of the dream’s events. In each dream, there is an unusual, unnatural event that inspires wonder; this fact offers the key to the dream’s interpretation. The alien, unreal quality of dreams in general is expressed here in personification, in the activation of things, in the acceleration of events, in the omission of certain stages in natural processes, and so forth. The dreamers in Joseph’s story experience dreams that are highly relevant to their own future: Joseph’s dreams prophesy that he will one day have dominion over his own brothers, the ministers have dreams about their immediate fate, and Pharaoh, who, as ruler, identifies himself with both his people and his land, has a dream about the fate of Egypt.

The dream as a divine message

The motif of the dream is closely related to the substance and essential nature of our narrative. In Joseph’s story, we encounter the concept that a dreams is a divine message that reveals to us, through various allusions, what will happen to us in the future. This point is presented in the clearest possible manner through the explicit explanation Joseph gives to Pharaoh: “God’s intentions have been conveyed to Pharaoh” (Genesis xli: 25).

This element can be seen throughout the narrative. As we can see from the reactions of both the dreamers and those who hear the dreams, dreams are not taken lightly in Joseph’s story. Joseph relates every detail of his dreams and calls upon his brothers and his father to note their future significance. The brothers and Jacob relate in two ways to Joseph’s dream. On the one hand, there is fear regarding what will take place in the future. On the other hand, there is protest against Joseph’s audacity because the brothers and Jacob assume that his dreams are either an indication of future events or the reflection of his desires and ambitions; the phrase “his father kept the matter in mind (Gen. xxxvii:11) [1] perhaps shows that both Jacob and his sons tended towards the first assumption in their reaction to Joseph’s dreams. Both Pharaoh and his ministers are very upset and very nervous because of the dreams they have had, and make strenuous efforts to enlist an interpreter. 

Not only do the dreams reveal the future, they sometimes have an impact on future events. Joseph’s dreams and Pharaoh’s dreams are warnings of what will happen in the future. Because of his dreams, Joseph’s brothers try to prevent their realization; at first, the brothers try to kill him, but, a short while later, they decide to sell him as a slave instead. By means of Joseph’s interpretation, Pharaoh understands that his dreams were warnings; furthermore, Pharaoh accepts Joseph’s counsel that an individual be appointed to gather produce for the years of famine to come. The divine message revealed in Pharaoh’s dreams is not direct, but is rather a camouflaged communication that is concealed within a strange dream narrative requiring a special interpretation.

With regard to the special skills needed to interpret dreams, various approaches are offered in Joseph’s dreams. His brothers and his father interpret his dreams by themselves, in a simple and natural manner. From their immediate reaction, it is clear that, according to Joseph’s brothers and Jacob, Joseph’s dreams have a clear message. Furthermore, Jacob and his other sons believe that this message can be easily understood and that no special skills are required to decode it. In contrast with Joseph’s dreams, Pharaoh’s imprisoned ministers do not regard that their dreams contain an easily understandable message; the two individuals are worried and confused, as can be sensed in their statement, “we have each had a dream, but we do not know what it means” (Gen. xl:8). Thus, the ministers seek an individual capable of interpreting their dreams. In Pharaoh’s view, dream interpretation requires special skills, and he therefore calls upon his mystics and counselors to provide him with answers (Gen. xli:8). Joseph has a different view: the ability to interpret dreams is derived from God. This difference in viewpoint between the ministers, Pharaoh and Joseph is expressed in the following dialogues:

The ministers: We have each had a dream, but we do not know what it means.

Joseph: Only God can provide the answers. Please tell your dreams to me 

(Gen. xl:8).

*****

Pharaoh: I have had a dream, but I do not know what it means. But I have heard that, once you hear a dream, you can interpret it (Gen. xli:15).

Joseph: You need not rely on my interpretation. God Himself will answer your majesty (Gen. xli:16).

*****

In the course of the narrative, we note a significant change in the way Pharaoh perceives the source of dream interpretation, as he asks his slaves: “Is there anyone here who has the spirit of God?” (Gen. xli:38) Addressing Joseph, Pharaoh says, “After God has made all this known to you, there is no one else in the kingdom as wise and as intelligent as you are” (Gen. xli:39).

If we see dreams as riddles offered to us by God, it is natural to assume that the only truly accurate interpretation of a dream will be one provided by God. Thus, according to what we read in his story, Joseph, who receives his answers directly from God, is the ideal dream interpreter. 

Joseph, the Master of Dreams

Dreams have a critical impact on the course of Joseph’s life, and he becomes increasingly involved with dreams as the narrative unfolds. At first, he himself is a dreamer, then he interprets the dreams of others, and, finally, he provides counsel on the basis of the dreams he interprets, thereby determining the fate of both his family and Egypt as a whole. As demonstrated above, Joseph believes that dreams contain a divine message: God conveys that message to the dreamer, while the interpreter conveys to the dreamer what God informs the interpreter (Gen. xl:8; xli:16; xxv:28). 

It is interesting to consider Joseph’s mode of interpreting dreams. When Joseph listens to the dreamer’s depiction of the dream, Joseph relates to two elements in that dream: the objects and the events. He interprets the objects as symbols and the dream narrative as an allusion to a future event. Since Joseph’s basic assumption is that the dream conveys a divine message about a future event, he interprets the number of units per object in the dream as the number of time units until the occurrence of the event: thus, the three branches in the grapevine and the three baskets symbolize three days, and the seven cows and the seven ears of wheat represent seven days. Joseph converts the dimensions of space in the dream into dimensions of time in reality. 

Joseph is not the only one to use such a method. It can be assumed that Joseph’s brothers and father try to understand his dreams by regarding the objects as symbols and the dream narrative as an allusion to a future event. In contrast with Joseph’s dream, which appears quite transparent and quite easy to interpret in the eyes of Jacob and his other sons, the dreams of Pharaoh and the ministers are much more opaque. 

We might well ask from where does Joseph derive his reading of the branches as days and the ears of wheat as years. This reading sounds arbitrary and is perhaps meant to demonstrate that not everything can be interpreted in a dream without divine assistance. [2] 

Another point should be raised here with regard to symbols and events. At times, the symbol represents more than one element in the world of reality: the grapevine branches symbolize both the profession of the chief-cupbearer and the number of days remaining until his pardon; the number of baked goods in the upper basket symbolize both the profession of the chief baker and his flesh, while the number of these baked goods represents the number of days remaining until his execution; the cows and the ears of wheat are allusions to the produce of Egypt, while their number alludes to the number of years of plenty and famine respectively. Although they are allusions to future events, the dream narrative is camouflaged in various ways: the squeezing of the grapes into Pharaoh’s cup alludes to the fact that the chief-cupbearer will resume his former position, while the birds eating the baked goods in the upper basket on the chief baker’s head symbolizes how the birds will consume the flesh of the chief baker after he has been executed.

Joseph also makes use of verbal hints provided by the dreamer. When the baker describes how the birds eat the baked goods in the basket he holds on his head, Joseph interprets the dream by switching the words in the Hebrew phrase uttered by the baker, “above my head” (Gen. xl:17) and by creating a new phrase, “[lifting off] your head from your body” (Gen. xl:19). Thus, Joseph arrives at the idea that, within three days, Pharaoh will lift off the baker’s head from his body, that is, execute him by decapitation, and will then hang him from the branch of a tree. Pharaoh describes his dream to Joseph, adding, “Looking at the cows, you could not possibly know that anything had been consumed by them” (Gen. xli:21). Joseph uses this comment as an important element in the interpretation: “Observing the effect of the famine when it comes, you could not possibly know that years of plenty had been experienced in the land previously” (Gen. xli:31). 

Joseph also relates to the fact that Pharaoh experiences two consecutive dreams: “the repetition of Pharaoh’s dream signifies that God’s decision is final and that God will carry out his will without delay” (Gen. xli:32). This line of interpretation can be applied to the other pairs of dreams.

To sum up, in his method of interpretation, Joseph uses the following rules:

1. Objects are regarded as symbols and, sometimes, also as time units.

2. The dream narrative is read as an allusion to a future event.

3. The words used by the dreamer in the depiction of the dream are significant and the interpretation of the dream is based, in part, on these words.

4. The repetition of the dream indicates that God is firmly resolved to carry out his will without delay.

When we speak of Joseph as the Master of Dreams, we should distinguish between Joseph the dreamer and Joseph the interpreter of dreams. The Joseph we encounter in Egypt is vastly different from the Joseph whom we encountered in the Land of Canaan and who “would tend the flocks of sheep with his brothers”. Before he reaches Dotan, Joseph is an innocent young boy who has never experienced fear, who is concerned chiefly with himself, and who displays a considerable degree of insensitivity regarding the feelings of his brothers (as we can see when he tells his dreams to his brothers and when he again recounts his dreams to his brothers and his father). The horrendous event at Dotan quickly transforms Joseph into a responsible, careful, reliable, successful adult who is sensitive to the fate and feelings of others (as we can see from the functions he fulfills in Potiphar’s home). Thanks to these qualities of maturity, Joseph becomes a popular figure in Egyptian society, gains the confidence of those surrounding him, and develops his skills as an interpreter of dreams. The depiction of Joseph’s success in interpersonal relationships is paralleled in the depiction of his relationship with God. God protects him (Gen. xxxix:2, 3, 5, 21, 23) and he is protected by God. The name of God is constantly on Joseph’s lips (Gen. xxxix:9; xl:8; xl:16; xxxii:18; xliii:23, 29; xlv:5, 7, 8; l:20, 24, 25). Joseph acknowledges God as ruler of the world and recognizes the total dependence of mortal beings on God. Joseph’s beliefs are articulated most dramatically in his noble behavior towards his astonished and frightened brothers, who have discovered his true identity and whom he seeks to comfort: “You need not be in the least bit frightened nor should you feel any sorrow over the fact of your selling me. As you can see, God has appointed me to provide for your physical wellbeing” (Gen. lv:5). Joseph emphasizes a central point: “You were not the ones who sent me here; God sent me here . . . .” (Gen. lv:8)

As a dreamer, Joseph is an egocentric individual who arouses the anger and hatred of his brothers. However, as an interpreter of dreams, Joseph shows deep concern for others and is loved by all. For the sake of accuracy, it should be mentioned here that the term, “Master of Dreams” (Gen. xxxvii:19), assigned him by his brothers, signifies the beginning of Joseph’s involvement with dreams, although the term itself, as uttered by the lips of Joseph’s brothers, expresses contempt and disgust. In contrast, at a later stage in his life, Joseph receives another title, one that articulates Pharaoh’s deep admiration: “Is there anyone here who has the spirit of God?” (Gen. xli:38).

We have taken a stroll off of the beaten path, but for good reason! All is connected, have you read a good novel? No matter how ‘disjointed’ it may appear, it all comes together in the end. I have often wondered about how The Bible came to be. It is known as The Word of God; it does demonstrate history (His-Story) and how things will be!

https://www.biblestudytools.com/bible-study/topical-studies/the-old-testament-is-filled-with-fulfilled-prophecy-11652232.html

https://www.blueletterbible.org/faq/don_stewart/don_stewart_1349.cfm

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Published by Fellowship of Praise

To God be The glory. Let us praise God together for His ALL in our lives, Amen.

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  1. “The tears of angels are oftentimes felt, but hard to put into words. Such tears are all the people, places, and things in our lives that are like strangers we pass and see, and wonder at, but somehow never really get to know. If we could only see with angels eyes how it is that God cares for us; maybe then we’d realize how it all was meant to be.” Timothy Baugh.

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