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Bible Dictionaries

Fausset's Bible Dictionary


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From Egyptian Ρa-ti , "the given" or devoted to Par or Phar, the (royal) house or palace. "An officer (chamberlain) of Pharaoh, chief of the executioners," i.e. captain of the bodyguard (KJV), who executed the king's sentences (Genesis 37:36; Genesis 39:1; 2 Kings 25:8; Jeremiah 39:9; Jeremiah 52:12). The prison in which he confined Joseph was an apartment arched, vaulted, and rounded (ha-sohar ) for strength (called a "dungeon," Genesis 40:15), in the house of the chief of the executioners (Genesis 40:3).

Joseph's feet at first "they afflicted with fetters, the iron entered into has soul" (Psalms 105:17-18); but Jehovah gave him favor in the sight of "the keeper of the prison," probably distinct from Potiphar. There seems little ground for thinking that Potiphar was succeeded by another "chief of the executioners," "the keeper of the prison" was entrusted by Potiphar with Joseph. Potiphar scarcely believed his lustful wife's story, or he would have killed Joseph at once; but instead he put him in severe imprisonment at first, then with Potiphar's connivance the prison keeper put the same confidence in Joseph as Potiphar himself had put in him when he was free. Egyptian monuments, in harmony with Scripture, represent rich men's stewards, as Joseph, carefully registering all the produce of the garden and field, and storing it up. (See JOSEPH.)

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Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew R. Entry for 'Potiphar'. Fausset's Bible Dictionary. 1949.

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Wednesday, November 22nd, 2017
the Week of Proper 28 / Ordinary 33
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