Are You The Baker Or The Butler?

While studying the life of Joseph, you read about the ups and downs of his life.  Every time his life started to get better, something always came along to make it worse!

  • He was his father’s favorite child and was given a nice coat of many different colors to show how special he was to him… but then his brothers plotted to kill him!
  • Reuben talked the other brothers out of killing him… but then he was sold as a slave!
  • He worked very hard as a slave and Potiphar rewarded his efforts with a promotion… but then Potiphar’s wife lied about Joseph and he ended up in prison!

There is no doubt that Joseph had his fair share of difficult situations, but the more you read about Joseph, you realize that God had him go through these hard times so that He could use him to preserve life during the seven years of famine.

But the story I would like to focus on today, is the story of the butler and the baker.  During the time that Joseph was in prison, the Pharaoh had thrown his butler and baker into prison as well.  While they were in prison, they both had very unique dreams that needed to be interpreted.  Joseph offered to help with the interpretation of the dreams (realizing that God is the only one who can truly interpret a dream).  Although these dreams happened thousands of years ago, the message behind them can still be applied to our lives today!

Dream #1 – The Butler

Genesis 40:9-11 – “And the chief butler told his dream to Joseph, and said to him, In my dream, behold, a vine was before me; And in the vine were three branches: and it was as though it budded, and her blossoms shot forth; and the clusters thereof brought forth ripe grapes: And Pharaoh’s cup was in my hand: and I took the grapes, and pressed them into Pharaoh’s cup, and I gave the cup into Pharaoh’s hand.”

Joseph interpreted the butler’s dream to mean that in three days the Pharaoh would restore his position to the same as it was before his imprisonment!  This was obviously great news for the butler!  He must have been excited that his life would turn back to normal in just three days!

Dream #2 – The Baker

Genesis 40:16-18 – “When the chief baker saw that the interpretation was good, he said unto Joseph, I also was in my dream, and, behold, I had three white baskets on my head: And in the uppermost basket there was of all manner of bakemeats for Pharaoh; and the birds did eat them out of the basket upon my head. And Joseph answered and said, This is the interpretation thereof: The three baskets are three days:”

The Baker was probably excited to hear the same great news that the butler just heard… but his news wasn’t quite different!  Joseph told him that in three days Pharaoh would have him executed!  This was obviously not what he wanted to hear.

And in three days, the interpretations proved accurate… as the butler was restored and the baker was executed.

So what can we learn from this dreams?  They are pictures of salvation!

Both men broke the law in some way (both were in jail for a reason) but both men had very different outcomes come judgement day!  What was the difference?  Well, in the butler’s dream, he was relying solely on the grapes (the blood of the grapes) to satisfy the Pharaoh (Master).  But the baker was relying on his own recipe (good works) and yeast to impress the Pharaoh (Master).

Both men broke the law, both men had to pay the price, but only one man was relying on the blood instead of his own good works to save him come judgement day!

The fact is, no one is perfect!  We all sin… but when judgement day comes… what are you relying on to get you to heaven?  Good works?  Baptism?  Church attendance?  The Bible doesn’t mention any of those things when talking about salvation… it only mentions one thing… the blood of Jesus!   You can’t be good enough to get to heaven!  Baptism doesn’t get you to heaven!  Being a member of a church doesn’t get you to Jesus!  Accepting Jesus Christ as your personal Savior is the only way to heaven!  Don’t be like the baker and rely on your own works to get to heaven… you will fall short every time!

We are mess up and deserve to pay the price of sin… but Jesus has already paid the price for you if you will only accept Him!

Romans 10:13 – For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

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