And when they saw him afar off, even before he came near to them, they conspired against him to slay him.…
To-day we do not like the dreamers who have seen visions which involve us more or less in decay and inferiority. It is not easy to forgive a man who has dreamed an unpleasant dream concerning us. We cannot easily forgive a man who has founded an obnoxious institution. If a man has written a book which is distasteful to us, it is no matter, though he should do ten thousand acts which ought to excite our admiration and confirm our confidence, we will go back and back upon the obnoxious publication, and whensoever that man's name is mentioned, that book will always come up in association with it. Is this right? Ought we to be confined in our view of human character to single points, and those points always of a kind to excite unpleasant, indignant, perhaps vindictive feelings? The world's dreamers have never had an easy lot of it. Don't let us imagine that Joseph was called to a very easy and comfortable position when he was called to see the visions of Providence in the time of his slumber. God speaks to man by dream and by vision, by strange scene and unexpected sight; and we who are prosaic groundlings are apt to imagine that those men who live in transcendental regions, who are privileged occasionally to see the invisible, have all the good fortune of life, and we ourselves are but servants of dust and hirelings of an-ill-paid day. No; the poets have their own pains, and the dreamers have their own peculiar sorrows. Men of double sight often have double difficulties in life. Don't let us suppose that we are all true of inspiration. It is not because a man has had a dream that he is to be hearkened unto. It is because the dream is a parable of heaven that we ought to ask him to speak freely and fully to us concerning his wondrous vision, that we may see further into the truth and beauty of God's way concerning man.
(J. Parker, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And when they saw him afar off, even before he came near unto them, they conspired against him to slay him.