But think of me when it shall be well with you, and show kindness, I pray you, unto me, and make mention of me unto Pharaoh, and bring me out of this house:
All Commentaries on Genesis 40:14 Go To Genesis 40
When you hear this, dearly beloved, far from despising the good man’s pusillanimity, be amazed rather at the fact that despite the onset of such awful difficulties, he put up with his internment there nobly and thankfully. I mean, even though he had often been given authority by the chief jailer, still he found it harsh to be locked up and live with squalid and filthy people. Notice, in fact, his philosophical attitude even from his bearing it in courageous fashion and giving evidence of great humility in every circumstance. “Have compassion on me, remind Pharaoh of me, and get me out of this dungeon.” Consider in this, I ask you, how Joseph says nothing against that disgusting adulteress, does not blame his master or recount his brothers’ inhumanity to him. Instead, he suppresses all that in saying, “Remember me, and have me taken out of this dungeon, for I was really abducted from the land of the Hebrews and have done nothing here and yet have been cast into this prison.” Instead of passing this idly by, let us consider his philosophical frame of mind in finding such a suitable opportunity and in not maligning the Egyptian woman (I make the same point, note) or drawing attention to his master or his brothers, aware as he was that the chief cupbearer was in the ideal position to acquaint the king of his situation once he had come into his own. Joseph assigned no blame for his being sentenced to a term in prison and was in no hurry to demonstrate the injustice committed against him. Rather, his one concern was not for them to be roundly condemned but only for someone to speak on his behalf. On the one hand, he obscured the role of his brothers when he said, “I was abducted from the land of the Hebrews,” and, on the other hand, he drew attention neither to the doings of the wanton Egyptian woman nor to his master’s unjust rage against him. Instead, what did he say? “I have done nothing here, and yet have been cast into this prison.” Hearing this let us learn, when we fall foul of such people, not to be bent on railing against them and sharpening our tongue in accusing them. [Instead, let us] … demonstrate our innocence meekly and mildly and imitate this remarkable man in that, though being in difficulties, he did not bring himself to parade the Egyptian woman’s incontinence even by word of mouth. You are aware, of course, that often enough many people who are liable to accusation have recourse to vile abuse in endeavoring to fix their own crimes on others. This man, on the contrary, though in fact more spotless than the sun and in a position to tell the complete truth in exposing her frenzy and putting himself in the clear, did not draw attention to them. You see, far from hankering for the esteem of mortals, Joseph was content with favor from on high and wanted for an admirer of his conduct only that unsleeping eye. Hence, as he kept silence and endeavored to conceal everything, the loving Lord brought him to wonderful prominence when he saw with approbation the athlete under pressure.