Joseph was so well-built and handsome that Potiphar’s wife wanted to sleep with him, but Joseph said, “No.”
Potiphar’s wife had been trying many days to get Joseph to go to bed with her. In Joseph’s mind if he did go and sleep with his master’s wife this was sinning against God.
So Potiphar’s wife got him alone one day then told lies about Joseph so that he ended up in prison.
Joseph keeps true to God’s word here as he kept true to God’s word the rest of his life.
Joseph is Delivered to Potiphar as a slave and Potiphar’s wife tries to have sex with Joseph
39:1 Meanwhile, Joseph had been delivered to Egypt and turned over to Potiphar, one of Pharaoh’s court officials and the Commander-in-Chief of the imperial guards. An Egyptian, he bought Joseph from the Ishmaelites, who had brought him down there.
2 But the LORD was with Joseph. He became a very prosperous man while in the house of his Egyptian master, 3 who could see that the LORD was with Joseph, because the LORD made everything prosper that Joseph did. 4 That’s how Joseph pleased Potiphar as he served him. Eventually, Potiphar appointed Joseph as overseer of his entire household. Moreover, he entrusted everything that he owned into his care. 5 From the time he appointed Joseph to be overseer over his entire household and everything that he owned, the LORD blessed the household of the Egyptian because of Joseph. The LORD’s blessing rested on Joseph, whether in Potiphar’s household or in Potiphar’s fields. 6 Everything that he owned, he entrusted into Joseph’s care. He never concerned himself about anything, except for the food he ate.
Potiphar’s Wife Accuses Joseph
Now Joseph was well built and good looking. 7 That’s why, sometime later, Joseph’s master’s wife looked straight at Joseph and propositioned him: “Come on! Let’s have a little sex!”
8 But he refused, telling his master’s wife, “Look! My master doesn’t have to worry about anything in the house with me in charge, and he has entrusted everything into my care. 9 No one has more authority in this house than I do. He has withheld nothing from me, except you, and that’s because you’re his wife. So how can I commit such a horrible evil? How can I sin against God?”
10 She kept on talking to him like this day after day, but he wouldn’t listen to her. Not only would he refuse to have sex with her, he refused even to stay around her. 11 One day, though, he went into the house to do his work. None of the household servants were inside, 12 so she grabbed Joseph by his outer garment and demanded “Let’s have some sex!”
Instead, Joseph ran outside, leaving his outer garment still in her hand. 13 When she realized that he had left his outer garment right there in her hand, she ran outside 14 and yelled for her household servants. “Look!” she cried out. “My husband brought in a Hebrew man to humiliate us. He came in here to have sex with me, but I screamed out loud! 15 When he heard me starting to scream, he left his outer garment with me and fled outside.” 16 She kept his outer garment by her side until Joseph’s master came home, 17 and then this is what she told him: “That Hebrew slave whom you brought to us came in here to rape me. 18 But when I started to scream, he left his outer garment with me and ran outside.”
Joseph is Locked in Prison
19 When Joseph’s master heard his wife’s claim to the effect that “This is how your servant treated me,” he flew into a rage, 20 arrested Joseph, and locked him up in the same prison where the king’s prisoners were confined. So Joseph remained there in prison.
Other modules in this unit:
- Jacob steals Isaac’s blessing, Genesis 27:1-29
- Jacob dreams about a ladder and angels at Bethel, Genesis 28:10-22
- Jacob marries Rachel the daughter of Laban, Genesis 29:15-30
- Laban meets Jacob, Genesis 29:1-14
- Leah the older sister of Rachel, Genesis 29:1-30
- Bilhah, the servant of Rachel, Genesis 30:1-30
- Zilpah, servant of Leah, Genesis 30:9-13
- Jacob had twelve sons, Genesis 29:31-30:24 and 35:23-26
- Reuben finds some mandrakes for Leah, Genesis 30:14-18
- Jacob flees with his family from Laban, Genesis 31:1-55
- Esau’s descendants, Genesis 36:1-43
- Joseph’s Dreams, Genesis 37:1-11
- Joseph is put down a well, Genesis 37:12-36
- Tamar and Judah, Genesis 38:1-30
- Joseph runs from Potiphar’s Wife, Genesis 39:1-20
- The Cup that held the wine for the King of Egypt, Genesis 40:1-23 and Genesis 41:1-13
- The chief Baker to the King of Egypt, Genesis 40:1-4, 40:16-22 and 41:1-13
- Joseph’s brothers first trip to Egypt for food, Genesis 42:1-38
- The Second Journey to Egypt, Genesis 43:1-34
- A silver cup belonging to Joseph was put in a Sack, Genesis 44:1-34
- Jacob moves to Egypt in a cart, Genesis 46:1-47:12
- Two Sons of Joseph, Genesis 47:28-48:1-22
- Manasseh Joseph’s older son, Genesis 48:1-22 and 49:22-26
- Ephraim, Joseph’s younger son, Genesis 48:1-22 and 49:22-28
- 12 sons of Jacob which he blesses before he dies, Genesis 49:1-28
- Death of Jacob at one hundred and forty-seven years old, Genesis 49:29-33
- Death of Joseph at one hundred and ten years old, Genesis 50:22-26
- 300-year gap between Joseph and Moses, Genesis 50:22-Exodus 1:22
- Life of Moses » »
- Timeline for the book of Genesis parts one and two »
- Background Information – Genesis Part Two
- Resources – Genesis Part Two