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  • Writer's pictureTonya Jewel Blessing


For the past couple of weeks, I have been studying the life of Joseph. The several chapters in Genesis devoted to Joseph are very enlightening and intriguing. I have disregarded my Bible reading plan and stayed steadfast in pondering Joseph’s complex story. I have also been praying about how his spiritual journey applies to my own life.

Today, I have been thinking about the cup-bearer, who when released from prison, forgot all about Joseph. Pharaoh’s cup-bearer and baker displeased him, so he sent them to prison. Joseph was already in prison. He had been sold by his brothers into slavery and then accused by Potiphar’s wife of rape. While in prison, Joseph served both those in oversight and those held in bonds. The cup-bearer and baker had dreams which Joseph was able to interpret. When released from prison, the cup-bearer promised to remember Joseph. Genesis 40:23 says, “Pharaoh’s chief cup-bearer, however, forgot all about Joseph, never giving him another thought.” (NKJV)

Cup-bearers are mentioned several times in the Bible. Being a cup-bearer was a highly esteemed position. His job was to protect and thwart plots against the royal person he attended. To ensure that the wine being served was not poisonous, he was, at times, required to drink from the royal chalice. The Bible does not say why Pharaoh’s cup-bearer fell out of grace, but Scripture indicates that he was restored again to his trusted position. The challenges he faced, and the demands of his life-threatening position probably took most of his energy. It is easy to explain away his forgetfulness.

The Bible says in Genesis 41:1 that two full years later when Pharaoh had a dream, which no one could interpret, that the cup-bearer shared about his encounter with Joseph. He prefaced the story with these words, “Today, I have been reminded of my failure.” His failure was forgetting about someone he promised to remember.

The Lord has been bringing to my remembrance several people who I promised not to forget but have neglected due to busyness and distraction. I am also going to ask my husband and our ministry teammates if they recall me making any commitments to others that I have not fulfilled.

The cup-bearer’s remembrance brought deliverance to Joseph. Perhaps there is someone in my life who needs victory from imprisonment, and I am part of the plan to open the doors of freedom.

Are you willing to be reminded of those you have forgotten?

Thoughts or comments?

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