Joseph’s Surrounding People: (2) the Chief Cupbearer and the Chief Baker

Joseph was locked in a prison where the king’s prisoners were confined (Gen 39:20). But that prison is also described as “the house of the captain of the guard” (Gen 40:3). These descriptions seem to indicate two different places because the first is an official prison where the chief jailer is in charge of everything, but the second is a personal house (the house of Potiphar, the captain of the guard) where Potiphar manages everything. As mentioned in the previous post, Joseph was not treated as other prisoners in the king’s prison because the chief jailer committed all the prisoners and everything done there to Joseph’s care. However, in the house of the captain of the guard, Potiphar made him serve the cupbearer and the baker.

The Documentary Hypothesis can explain these narrative problems, as I often mentioned in a few posts here, but that is not my main concern in this writing. I will instead talk about Joseph’s surrounding people, the chief cupbearer and the chief baker in Gen 40.

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