King David wrote in Psalm 23, “Even if I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, because you are with me. Your rod and your staff comfort and protect me.” Joseph would have understood the words of this prayer.
The master icon illustrates one of the worst days in this young man’s life: the day that his brothers faked his death and sold him into slavery. The sun, moon, and stars in the sky represent the dreams that Joseph had and shared with his family. These dreams were beautiful visions that came true years later; however, at the time, these dreams became seeds of bitterness that led his brothers to despise and hate him. Ultimately, they decided to kill him.
The man in front of the house is Joseph’s father, and the two brothers holding the rainbow-colored cloak represent the brothers coming back to tell their father the lie that Joseph had been mauled by wild animals. The blood trail to the slaughtered goat illustrates the brothers faking Joseph’s death. The bloody knife and the river of blood flowing from the goat illustrates the shameful deed of death these brothers committed and the curse of God that came upon them because of their lies and violence. Joseph in the well has his hands on his head illustrating his despair and shock that his brothers would sell him as a slave.
The fire and dove upon him is the Holy Spirit representing God’s presence with Joseph. God was with Joseph, gave him spiritual gifts, and blessed his integrity. The chain from his foot to the trader’s hand represents Joseph’s descent from favored son to suffering slave. The path from the camel to the Egyptian city and pyramids represents the journey of Joseph from his home to Egypt. Jesus and a guardian angel are on the path illustrating God’s plan to send Joseph to Egypt so he could use his gifts and leadership to save the whole world from a severe, seven-year famine in the future.
Joseph Slave Dreamer story sketches:
Sketch #1: Man & pit – This sketch is the story logo. This sketch illustrates Joseph thrown into a pit by his brothers.
Sketch #2: Cloak – This sketch illustrates the first part of the story where Israel favors Joseph and angers his brothers by giving him a multi-colored cloak of honor.
Sketch #3: Wheat & star – This sketch illustrates the second part of the story where Joseph had two dreams about his family bowing down to him.
Sketch #4: Knife & chain – This sketch illustrates the third part of the story where the brothers kill a goat to fake Joseph’s death. Joseph travels to Egypt as a slave.
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