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Joseph Interprets Pharaoh’s Dream

41 Now it happened at the end of two full years that Pharaoh had a dream, and behold, he was standing by the Nile. And behold, from the Nile there came up seven cows, sleek and [a]fat; and they grazed in the (A)reeds. Then behold, seven other cows came up after them from the Nile, [b]ugly and [c]thin, and they stood by the other cows on the bank of the Nile. And the ugly and [d]thin cows ate up the seven sleek and fat cows. Then Pharaoh awoke. He again fell asleep and dreamed a second time; and behold, seven ears of grain came up on a single stalk, plump and good. And behold, seven ears, thin and scorched by the east wind, sprouted up after them. And the thin ears swallowed up the seven plump and full ears. Then Pharaoh awoke, and behold, it was a dream. Now it happened that in the morning (B)his spirit was troubled, so he sent and called for all the [e](C)magicians of Egypt and all its (D)wise men. And Pharaoh recounted to them his dream, but (E)there was no one who could interpret them to Pharaoh.

Then the chief cupbearer spoke to Pharaoh, saying, “I would bring to remembrance today (F)my own [f]offenses. 10 Pharaoh was (G)furious with his servants, and (H)he put me in confinement in the house of the captain of the bodyguard, both me and the chief baker. 11 (I)And we had a dream [g]on the same night, [h]he and I; each of us dreamed according to the interpretation of his own dream. 12 Now there was with us a Hebrew youth, a (J)slave of the captain of the bodyguard, and we recounted them to him, and (K)he interpreted our dreams for us. To each one he interpreted according to his own dream. 13 And just (L)as he interpreted for us, so it happened; he restored me in my [i]office, but he hanged him.”

14 Then Pharaoh sent and (M)called for Joseph, and they (N)rushed him out of the pit; and he shaved himself and changed his clothes, and he came to Pharaoh. 15 And Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I have had a dream, (O)but no one can interpret it; yet (P)I have heard [j]it said about you, that [k]you hear a dream and that you can interpret it.” 16 Joseph then answered Pharaoh, saying, “[l](Q)It is not in me; (R)God will [m]answer concerning the welfare of Pharaoh.” 17 So Pharaoh spoke to Joseph, “In my dream, behold, I was standing on the bank of the Nile; 18 and behold, seven cows, [n]fat and sleek came up out of the Nile, and they grazed in the reeds. 19 And behold, seven other cows came up after them, poor and very ugly and lean, such as I had never seen in all the land of Egypt, in regard to [o]ugliness; 20 and the lean and ugly cows ate up the first seven fat cows. 21 But they [p]devoured them, and yet it could not be known that they had [q]devoured them. [r]For they were just as ugly as [s]before. Then I awoke. 22 Then I saw also in my dream, and behold, seven ears, full and good, came up on a single stalk; 23 and behold, seven ears, withered, thin, and scorched by the east wind, sprouted up after them; 24 and the thin ears swallowed the seven good ears. So (S)I told it to the [t]magicians, but there was no one who could declare it to me.”

25 Then Joseph said to Pharaoh, “Pharaoh’s [u]dreams are one and the same; (T)God has declared to Pharaoh what He is about to do. 26 The seven good cows are seven years; and the seven good ears are seven years; the [v]dreams are one and the same. 27 And the seven lean and ugly cows that came up after them are seven years, and the seven lean ears scorched by the east wind (U)will be seven years of famine. 28 [w]It is as I have spoken to Pharaoh: (V)God has shown to Pharaoh what He is about to do. 29 Behold, (W)seven years of great abundance are coming in all the land of Egypt; 30 and after them (X)seven years of famine will arise, and all the abundance will be forgotten in the land of Egypt, and the famine will [x]ravage the land, 31 so that the abundance will be unknown in the land because of that subsequent famine; for it will be very heavy. 32 Now as for the repeating of the dream to Pharaoh twice, it means that (Y)the matter is confirmed by God, and God will quickly bring it about. 33 So now let Pharaoh look for a man (Z)understanding and wise, and set him over the land of Egypt. 34 Let Pharaoh take action and appoint overseers over the land, and let him exact a fifth of the produce of the land of Egypt in the seven years of abundance. 35 Then let them (AA)gather all the food of these good years that are coming, and let them store up the grain for food in the cities under Pharaoh’s authority, and let them keep watch over it. 36 And let the food be appointed for the land for the seven years of famine which will happen in the land of Egypt, so that the land will not be cut off during the famine.”

Joseph Is Set over Egypt

37 And the [y]proposal seemed good [z]to Pharaoh and [aa]to all his servants. 38 Then Pharaoh said to his servants, “Can we find a man like this, (AB)in whom is a divine spirit?” 39 So Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has made you know all of this, there is no one so (AC)understanding and wise as you are. 40 (AD)You shall be over my house, and according to your [ab]command all my people shall [ac]do homage; only in the throne I will be greater than you.” 41 And Pharaoh said to Joseph, “See, I have set you (AE)over all the land of Egypt.” 42 Then Pharaoh (AF)removed his signet ring from his hand and put it on Joseph’s hand and clothed him in garments of fine linen and (AG)put the gold necklace around his neck. 43 And he had him ride in [ad]his second chariot; and they called out before him, “[ae]Bow the knee!” And he set him over all the land of Egypt. 44 Moreover, Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Though I am Pharaoh, yet (AH)without [af]your permission no one shall raise his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt.” 45 Then Pharaoh named Joseph [ag]Zaphenath-paneah; and he gave him Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera priest of [ah](AI)On, as a wife. And Joseph went forth over the land of Egypt.

46 Now Joseph was (AJ)thirty years old when he [ai]stood before Pharaoh, king of Egypt. And Joseph went out from the presence of Pharaoh and passed through all the land of Egypt. 47 And during the seven years of plenty the land brought forth [aj]abundantly. 48 So he gathered all the food of these seven years which happened in the land of Egypt and placed the food in the cities; he placed in every city the food from its own surrounding fields. 49 Thus Joseph stored up grain [ak]in great abundance like the sand of the sea, until he stopped [al]measuring it, for it was [am]beyond measure.

The Sons of Joseph

50 Now before the year of famine came, (AK)two sons were born to Joseph, whom Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera priest of [an]On, bore to him. 51 And Joseph named the firstborn [ao]Manasseh, “For,” he said, “God has made me forget all my trouble and all my father’s household.” 52 And he named the second [ap]Ephraim, “For,” he said, “(AL)God has made me fruitful in the land of my affliction.”

53 Then the seven years of plenty which had been in the land of Egypt came to an end, 54 and (AM)the seven years of famine began to come, just as Joseph had said. So there was famine in all the lands, but in all the land of Egypt there was bread. 55 Then all the land of Egypt was famished, and the people cried out to Pharaoh for bread; and Pharaoh said to all the Egyptians, “Go to Joseph; (AN)whatever he says to you, you shall do.” 56 Now the famine was over all the face of the land. And Joseph opened all [aq]the storehouses and sold to the Egyptians; and the famine was severe in the land of Egypt. 57 Now all the earth also came to Egypt to buy grain from Joseph because (AO)the famine was severe in all the earth.


  1. Genesis 41:2 Lit fat of flesh
  2. Genesis 41:3 Lit bad, so in ch
  3. Genesis 41:3 Lit lean of flesh
  4. Genesis 41:4 Lit lean of flesh
  5. Genesis 41:8 Or soothsayer priests
  6. Genesis 41:9 Or sins
  7. Genesis 41:11 Lit one night
  8. Genesis 41:11 Lit I and he
  9. Genesis 41:13 Lit place
  10. Genesis 41:15 Lit about you, saying
  11. Genesis 41:15 Lit you hear a dream to interpret it
  12. Genesis 41:16 Lit Apart from me
  13. Genesis 41:16 Lit answer the peace of Pharaoh
  14. Genesis 41:18 Lit fat of flesh
  15. Genesis 41:19 Lit badness
  16. Genesis 41:21 Lit entered their inward parts
  17. Genesis 41:21 Lit entered their inward parts
  18. Genesis 41:21 Lit And
  19. Genesis 41:21 Lit in the beginning
  20. Genesis 41:24 Or soothsayer priests
  21. Genesis 41:25 Lit dream is
  22. Genesis 41:26 Lit dream is
  23. Genesis 41:28 Lit That is the thing which I spoke
  24. Genesis 41:30 Lit destroy
  25. Genesis 41:37 Lit word
  26. Genesis 41:37 Lit in the sight of
  27. Genesis 41:37 Lit in the sight of
  28. Genesis 41:40 Lit mouth
  29. Genesis 41:40 Lit kiss
  30. Genesis 41:43 Lit the second...which was his
  31. Genesis 41:43 Or Attention, Make way; Heb Abreck
  32. Genesis 41:44 Lit you no one
  33. Genesis 41:45 Probably Egyptian for “God speaks; he lives”
  34. Genesis 41:45 Or Heliopolis
  35. Genesis 41:46 Or entered the service of
  36. Genesis 41:47 Lit by handfuls
  37. Genesis 41:49 Lit very much
  38. Genesis 41:49 Lit numbering
  39. Genesis 41:49 Or without number
  40. Genesis 41:50 Or Heliopolis
  41. Genesis 41:51 Lit making to forget
  42. Genesis 41:52 Lit fruitfulness
  43. Genesis 41:56 Lit that which was in them