Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Genesis 37:5-8 Non-diplomatic Dreamer

"Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more.  He said to them, 'Listen to this dream I had:  We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.'

His brothers said to him, 'Do you intend to reign over us?  Will you actually rule us?'  And they hated him all the more because of his dream and what he had said." (Genesis 37:5-8 NIV)

Joseph shares his dream with his brothers, either not realizing their hatred toward him or too intrigued by the dream and what it implied to even think how they might react to this news.  There may be a bit of gloating involved here, too -- after all, Joseph is  a teenager relaying this dream to his brothers!

The brothers immediately understand the gist of the revelation:  Joseph, the one they already dislike because of their father's favoritism, is portrayed as ruling over all of the sons of Jacob.  It seems that they are uncomfortably aware that this scenario is all too likely.  I think it is interesting that this account says: "...they hated him all the more because of the dream and what he had said."  It is as though the two things are separate:  they hate him for telling them about it, but they also hate the very fact of the dream itself.  They do not stop to consider whether the dream may be of God or not -- they just don't like the ideas it contains, period.

Obviously the brothers managed to contain themselves, for Joseph lives to have another dream.

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