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Home > Torah Portion > Parshat Miketz

Parshat Miketz
by Shlomo Ressler

Parshat Miketz starts by telling us that after two years Paroh had a dream (41:1). After two years of what? Well, the Midrash (sources) explains that Yosef (Joseph) stayed in jail for an extra two years because he told the drink servant to request for his release, when he should have trusted in G-d. But what's wrong with asking? Don't we all have to make an effort, even if everything is planned? The Lekach Tov explains that when Yosef told the servant with him in jail to 'remember' him, he wasn't even asking him to remember him! Instead, if we analyze the grammar we'd notice that he was stating a fact, that when the servant is placed before Paroh, he WILL remember Yosef and mention it to him (40:14), not that the servant SHOULD remember Yosef! THAT'S why he was punished...because he felt like he had to tell the servant!

Yosef deserved punishment for that because a person at Yosef's level should have been completely confident in Hashem. To even risk that the servant should think that it was HE who saved Yosef (by sounding like a request to remember Yosef) was reason enough for punishment. Because of what he did, it was that tiny bit less obvious that G-d was on his side, and that alone was reason enough for him to stay in jail another two years. We can learn a great lesson from this about G-d being on our side, and about being on G-d's side. If we always kept in mind that G-d's on our side, we wouldn't have to ever lie, steal, or wrong anyone else, because it'll all be taken care of by our "partner", G-d. It's when we lose sight of that, as Yosef briefly did, that we get into trouble, and forget that for G-d to be by our side, we have to behave like we're ON His side, and BY his side!


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