Joseph is taken away to Egypt and sold as a slave to Potiphar, a court dignitary of the pharaoh. After being falsely accused by Potiphar’s wife, who claims she has been violated, he is imprisoned.
In prison he meets the pharaoh’s cupbearer and baker, who had been put into custody as well. Joseph is made their servant.
One day both the cupbearer and the baker wake up after having dreamt mysterious dreams. Joseph offers to interpret their dreams. The interpretation, which belonged to God, afterwards proves to be accurate.
After three days, the cupbearer is restored to his position at the pharaoh’s court, whereas the baker is hanged.
The number 3, indicated by Joseph’s hand gesture in the painting, appears to be crucial in the interpretation.
Parallels with the life of Jesus:
Jesus too resisted temptations
Genesis 39 verse 9, compared with Matthew 4 verse 1 to 12.
Jesus too was falsely accused. Genesis 39 verse 13 to 18, compared with Matthew 26 verse 59 to 65.
Jesus too was deeply humiliated, before being exalted as King.
Genesis 41 verse 14 and further compared with
Ephisians 2 verse 20 and 21. Hebrews 2 verse 9.
Philippians 2 verse 8 and 9.
Through the interpretation of dreams a prophetic element becomes apparent in the life of Joseph. Jesus is the great Prophet:
Isaiah 11 verse 2:
The Spirit of the LORD will rest on Him,
the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding,
the Spirit of counsel and of might,
the Spirit of the knowledge and fear of the LORD.
Isaiah 9 verse 5.
Daniel 5 verse 12.
Luke 4 verse 18 to 22.