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Joseph's steward finds the stolen cup in Benjamin's bag - artist unknown

After Joseph dined with his brothers, he gave instructions to his steward:

“Fill the men’s sacks with as much food as they can carry and put each man’s silver in the mouth of his sack. Then put my cup, the silver one, in the mouth of the youngest one’s sack, along with the silver for his grain.”

As morning dawned, the men were sent away with their donkeys. They had not gone far when Joseph said to his steward, “Go after those men at once, and when you catch up to them, say to them, ‘Why have you repaid good with evil? Isn’t’ this the cup my master drinks from?’”

The steward caught up with the men and repeated Joseph’s words to them. The men replied, “Why does my lord say such things? Far be it from your servants to do anything like that! We even brought back to you the silver we found in the mouths of our sacks last time we visited. Why would we steal silver or gold from your master’s house? If any of us is found to have it, he will die; and the rest of us will become my lord’s slaves.”

“Very well then,” the steward said, “let it be as you say. Whoever is found to have my master’s cup will become my slave but the rest of you will be free from blame.”

Each of Joseph’s brothers lowered his sack to the ground and opened it. The steward searched each bag, beginning with the oldest brother’s sack and ending with Benjamin, the youngest. And the cup was found in Benjamin’s sack.

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Joseph's steward searches for the stolen cup in Joseph's brothers' bagsThe brothers were greatly upset and tore at their clothes. Then they loaded their donkeys and returned to the city. Joseph was still in the house when Judah and his brothers came in and threw themselves on the ground before him. Joseph said to them, “What is this you have done? Don’t you know that a man like me can find things out by divination?”

“What can we say to my lord? Judah replied. “What can we say? How can we prove or innocence? God has uncovered your servants’ guilt. We are now my lord’s slaves.”

But Joseph said, “Far be it from me to do such a thing! Only the man who was found to have the cup will become my slave. The rest of you, go back to your father in peace.”

Then Judah went up to Joseph and said, “Pardon your servant, my lord, let me speak to you please. Do not be angry with your servant, though you are equal to Pharaoh himself. You asked us, ‘Do you have a father or brother? And we answered, ‘We have an elderly father and a young brother who was born to him in his old age. His brother is dead and he is the only one of his mother’s sons left and his father loves him very much.’

Then you said to us, ‘Bring him down to me so I can see him for myself.’ And we said to you, ‘The boy cannot leave his father. If he leaves him, his father will die.’ But you told us, ‘Unless your youngest brother comes down with you, you will not see my face again.’

When we went back to your servant, my father, we told him what you had said. Then our father said, ‘Go back and buy a little more food.’ But we said, ‘We cannot go down. Only if our youngest brother is with us will we be able to go. We cannot see the man’s face again unless our youngest brother is with us.’

Your servant my father said to us, ‘You know that my wife bore me two sons. One of them went away from me and I said, ‘He has surely been torn to pieces.’’ And I have not seen him since. If you take this one from me too and harm comes to him, you will bring my gray head down to the grave in misery.’

If the boy is not with us when go back to my father, and if my father, whose life is closely bound up with the boy’s life, sees that the boy isn’t there, he will die. You servants will bring the gray head of our father down to the grave in sorrow.

Your servant guaranteed the boy’s safety to my father. Please let me remain here as my lord’s slave in place of the boy and let the boy return with his brothers. How can I go back to my father if the boy is not with me? No! Do not let me see the misery that would come on my father.”

What the story means to us today

Judah shows a sense of responsibility, respect, and love for his father

We now see Joseph’s brothers make a second journey into Egypt to procure food during the famine. The brothers are still unaware that the man they are meeting is Joseph, the brother they threw into a well and sold into slavery. Knowing from their prior visit that they cannot return to Egypt without Benjamin, Judah insists on taking the youngest brother with them in accordance with Joseph’s prior demands.

When the trip concludes, and the brothers leave, Joseph again tricks the brothers by framing them for a theft they did not do. We begin to see that Joseph’s actions are not those of revenge, but rather, to see if the brothers will lie and abandon their brother Benjamin as they had abandoned Joseph many years earlier.

Joseph knows the important of Benjamin to the brothers and his father and thus, Benjamin becomes the pawn in this series of events. The highlight of the story however, is not Benjamin, but Judah, who offers to receive Joseph’s punishment in place of his youngest brother. Judah does this out of a sense of responsibility, respect, and love for his father. Judah’s sacrifice should not be underestimated. He cares more for his brother and father than for himself.

Additional thoughts and considerations

An abbreviated version of events highlights important themes of this story

Joseph's steward searches for the stolen cup in Joseph's brothers' bagsIf the reader carefully examines the conversations in this story, it is clear the events are presented in an abbreviated form. This is done to highlight the main themes of the story – the evil done by the brothers and the atonement that is to come. Although the brothers are framed and rightfully deny any wrongdoing, their prior acts toward Joseph drive Joseph’s lesson for the brothers.

Judah’s words once again highlight their prior mistreatment of Joseph but his actions show growth in God

If is clear that Judah’s plea to Joseph makes several mentions of their mistreatment of Joseph (even though they do not yet know that the man they are speaking to is Joseph). Judah mentions that Benjamin’s brother (Joseph) is presumed to be dead and stresses how Joseph’s disappearance greatly impacted their father. Notice however, that Judah tells the story from the vantage of their interaction with their father. He still does not freely admit what they had done to their brother.

If we follow Judah’s storyline throughout the Bible, we find a man who started off on the wrong foot. In the beginning, he was not as righteous as God would have liked him to have been. But as he grows, we see a man become more Christlike. In this instance, we see Judah grow even more – out of love he offers himself in place of his brother – and act of love similar to what we see in Jesus’ actions. This should come as no surprise to Christians – Jesus, like so many other Jews, descended from the house of Judah.

God has uncovered our guilt

Judah tells Joseph, “What can we say. How can we prove our innocence? God has uncovered your servants’ guilt. We are no my lord’s slaves.”

Since Joseph knows the brothers did not steal from him, and the brothers know they did not steal, what did Judah mean by “God has uncovered your servant’s guilt?” Although Judah’s offer to take Benjamin’s punishment upon himself surely touched Joseph, it is likely this is a narrative statement referring to the brother’s true guilt – the mistreatment of their brother, Joseph. And this may be what Joseph was seeking from the brothers all along.

Joseph practiced divination?

Divination was strictly forbidden by Old Testament laws (Deuteronomy 18:10). But in Genesis 44:14: Joseph warns the brothers they should not lie to him – “Don’t you know that a man like me can find things out by divination?” We know that Joseph had the ability to interpret dreams and potentially this is what he was referring too. But readers may wonder if Joseph practices divination too.

Remember, Joseph knows that the brothers did not steal from him. His warning continues the false narrative he has put together to teach the brothers a lesson – but he does not necessarily indicate that he practices divination. It is likely a mere continuation of the threat to punish he brothers for something they did not do. In context, everything that his happening at this point is a ruse against the brothers and adding the threat of divination would fit Joseph’s narrative quite well.

Bible Text

NIV

44 Now Joseph gave these instructions to the steward of his house: “Fill the men’s sacks with as much food as they can carry and put each man’s silver in the mouth of his sack. 2 Then put my cup, the silver one, in the mouth of the youngest one’s sack, along with the silver for his grain.” And he did as Joseph said.

3 As morning dawned, the men were sent on their way with their donkeys. 4 They had not gone far from the city when Joseph said to his steward, “Go after those men at once, and when you catch up with them, say to them, ‘Why have you repaid good with evil? 5 Isn’t this the cup my master drinks from and also uses for divination? This is a wicked thing you have done.’ ”

Judah pleads with Joseph to let him take Benjamin's place - artist unknown6 When he caught up with them, he repeated these words to them. 7 But they said to him, “Why does my lord say such things? Far be it from your servants to do anything like that! 8 We even brought back to you from the land of Canaan the silver we found inside the mouths of our sacks. So why would we steal silver or gold from your master’s house? 9 If any of your servants is found to have it, he will die; and the rest of us will become my lord’s slaves.”

10 “Very well, then,” he said, “let it be as you say. Whoever is found to have it will become my slave; the rest of you will be free from blame.”

11 Each of them quickly lowered his sack to the ground and opened it. 12 Then the steward proceeded to search, beginning with the oldest and ending with the youngest. And the cup was found in Benjamin’s sack. 13 At this, they tore their clothes. Then they all loaded their donkeys and returned to the city.

14 Joseph was still in the house when Judah and his brothers came in, and they threw themselves to the ground before him. 15 Joseph said to them, “What is this you have done? Don’t you know that a man like me can find things out by divination?”

16 “What can we say to my lord?” Judah replied. “What can we say? How can we prove our innocence? God has uncovered your servants’ guilt. We are now my lord’s slaves—we ourselves and the one who was found to have the cup.”

17 But Joseph said, “Far be it from me to do such a thing! Only the man who was found to have the cup will become my slave. The rest of you, go back to your father in peace.”

18 Then Judah went up to him and said: “Pardon your servant, my lord, let me speak a word to my lord. Do not be angry with your servant, though you are equal to Pharaoh himself. 19 My lord asked his servants, ‘Do you have a father or a brother?’ 20 And we answered, ‘We have an aged father, and there is a young son born to him in his old age. His brother is dead, and he is the only one of his mother’s sons left, and his father loves him.’

21 “Then you said to your servants, ‘Bring him down to me so I can see him for myself.’ 22 And we said to my lord, ‘The boy cannot leave his father; if he leaves him, his father will die.’ 23 But you told your servants, ‘Unless your youngest brother comes down with you, you will not see my face again.’ 24 When we went back to your servant my father, we told him what my lord had said.

25 “Then our father said, ‘Go back and buy a little more food.’ 26 But we said, ‘We cannot go down. Only if our youngest brother is with us will we go. We cannot see the man’s face unless our youngest brother is with us.’

27 “Your servant my father said to us, ‘You know that my wife bore me two sons. 28 One of them went away from me, and I said, “He has surely been torn to pieces.” And I have not seen him since. 29 If you take this one from me too and harm comes to him, you will bring my gray head down to the grave in misery.’

30 “So now, if the boy is not with us when I go back to your servant my father, and if my father, whose life is closely bound up with the boy’s life, 31 sees that the boy isn’t there, he will die. Your servants will bring the gray head of our father down to the grave in sorrow. 32 Your servant guaranteed the boy’s safety to my father. I said, ‘If I do not bring him back to you, I will bear the blame before you, my father, all my life!’

33 “Now then, please let your servant remain here as my lord’s slave in place of the boy, and let the boy return with his brothers. 34 How can I go back to my father if the boy is not with me? No! Do not let me see the misery that would come on my father.”

The New International Version. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2011. Print.

The NET Bible

44:1 He instructed the servant who was over his household, “Fill the sacks of the men with as much food as they can carry and put each man’s money in the mouth of his sack. 44:2 Then put my cup—the silver cup—in the mouth of the youngest one’s sack, along with the money for his grain.” He did as Joseph instructed.

44:3 When morning came, the men and their donkeys were sent off. 44:4 They had not gone very far from the city when Joseph said to the servant who was over his household, “Pursue the men at once! When you overtake them, say to them, ‘Why have you repaid good with evil? 44:5 Doesn’t my master drink from this cup and use it for divination? You have done wrong!’ ”

44:6 When the man overtook them, he spoke these words to them. 44:7 They answered him, “Why does my lord say such things? Far be it from your servants to do such a thing! 44:8 Look, the money that we found in the mouths of our sacks we brought back to you from the land of Canaan. Why then would we steal silver or gold from your master’s house? 44:9 If one of us has it, he will die, and the rest of us will become my lord’s slaves!”

44:10 He replied, “You have suggested your own punishment! The one who has it will become my slave, but the rest of you will go free.” 44:11 So each man quickly lowered his sack to the ground and opened it. 44:12 Then the man searched. He began with the oldest and finished with the youngest. The cup was found in Benjamin’s sack! 44:13 They all tore their clothes! Then each man loaded his donkey, and they returned to the city.

44:14 So Judah and his brothers came back to Joseph’s house. He was still there, and they threw themselves to the ground before him. 44:15 Joseph said to them, “What did you think you were doing? Don’t you know that a man like me can find out things like this by divination?”

44:16 Judah replied, “What can we say to my lord? What can we speak? How can we clear ourselves? God has exposed the sin of your servants! We are now my lord’s slaves, we and the one in whose possession the cup was found.”

44:17 But Joseph said, “Far be it from me to do this! The man in whose hand the cup was found will become my slave, but the rest of you may go back to your father in peace.”

44:18 Then Judah approached him and said, “My lord, please allow your servant to speak a word with you. Please do not get angry with your servant, for you are just like Pharaoh. 44:19 My lord asked his servants, ‘Do you have a father or a brother?’ 44:20 We said to my lord, ‘We have an aged father, and there is a young boy who was born when our father was old. The boy’s brother is dead. He is the only one of his mother’s sons left, and his father loves him.’

44:21 “Then you told your servants, ‘Bring him down to me so I can see him.’ 44:22 We said to my lord, ‘The boy cannot leave his father. If he leaves his father, his father will die.’ 44:23 But you said to your servants, ‘If your youngest brother does not come down with you, you will not see my face again.’ 44:24 When we returned to your servant my father, we told him the words of my lord.

44:25 “Then our father said, ‘Go back and buy us a little food.’ 44:26 But we replied, ‘We cannot go down there. If our youngest brother is with us, then we will go, for we won’t be permitted to see the man’s face if our youngest brother is not with us.’

44:27 “Then your servant my father said to us, ‘You know that my wife gave me two sons. 44:28 The first disappeared and I said, “He has surely been torn to pieces.” I have not seen him since. 44:29 If you take this one from me too and an accident happens to him, then you will bring down my gray hair in tragedy to the grave.’

44:30 “So now, when I return to your servant my father, and the boy is not with us—his very life is bound up in his son’s life. 44:31 When he sees the boy is not with us, he will die, and your servants will bring down the gray hair of your servant our father in sorrow to the grave. 44:32 Indeed, your servant pledged security for the boy with my father, saying, ‘If I do not bring him back to you, then I will bear the blame before my father all my life.’

44:33 “So now, please let your servant remain as my lord’s slave instead of the boy. As for the boy, let him go back with his brothers. 44:34 For how can I go back to my father if the boy is not with me? I couldn’t bear to see my father’s pain.”

Biblical Studies Press. The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible. Biblical Studies Press, 2006. Print.

New King James Version

44 And he commanded the steward of his house, saying, “Fill the men’s sacks with food, as much as they can carry, and put each man’s money in the mouth of his sack. 2 Also put my cup, the silver cup, in the mouth of the sack of the youngest, and his grain money.” So he did according to the word that Joseph had spoken. 3 As soon as the morning dawned, the men were sent away, they and their donkeys. 4 When they had gone out of the city, and were not yet far off, Joseph said to his steward, “Get up, follow the men; and when you overtake them, say to them, ‘Why have you repaid evil for good? 5 Is not this the one from which my lord drinks, and with which he indeed practices divination? You have done evil in so doing.’ ”

6 So he overtook them, and he spoke to them these same words. 7 And they said to him, “Why does my lord say these words? Far be it from us that your servants should do such a thing. 8 Look, we brought back to you from the land of Canaan the money which we found in the mouth of our sacks. How then could we steal silver or gold from your lord’s house? 9 With whomever of your servants it is found, let him die, and we also will be my lord’s slaves.”

10 And he said, “Now also let it be according to your words; he with whom it is found shall be my slave, and you shall be blameless.” 11 Then each man speedily let down his sack to the ground, and each opened his sack. 12 So he searched. He began with the oldest and left off with the youngest; and the cup was found in Benjamin’s sack. 13 Then they tore their clothes, and each man loaded his donkey and returned to the city.

14 So Judah and his brothers came to Joseph’s house, and he was still there; and they fell before him on the ground. 15 And Joseph said to them, “What deed is this you have done? Did you not know that such a man as I can certainly practice divination?”

16 Then Judah said, “What shall we say to my lord? What shall we speak? Or how shall we clear ourselves? God has found out the iniquity of your servants; here we are, my lord’s slaves, both we and he also with whom the cup was found.”

17 But he said, “Far be it from me that I should do so; the man in whose hand the cup was found, he shall be my slave. And as for you, go up in peace to your father.”

18 Then Judah came near to him and said: “O my lord, please let your servant speak a word in my lord’s hearing, and do not let your anger burn against your servant; for you are even like Pharaoh. 19 My lord asked his servants, saying, ‘Have you a father or a brother?’ 20 And we said to my lord, ‘We have a father, an old man, and a child of his old age, who is young; his brother is dead, and he alone is left of his mother’s children, and his father loves him.’ 21 Then you said to your servants, ‘Bring him down to me, that I may set my eyes on him.’ 22 And we said to my lord, ‘The lad cannot leave his father, for if he should leave his father, his father would die.’ 23 But you said to your servants, ‘Unless your youngest brother comes down with you, you shall see my face no more.’

24 “So it was, when we went up to your servant my father, that we told him the words of my lord. 25 And our father said, ‘Go back and buy us a little food.’ 26 But we said, ‘We cannot go down; if our youngest brother is with us, then we will go down; for we may not see the man’s face unless our youngest brother is with us.’ 27 Then your servant my father said to us, ‘You know that my wife bore me two sons; 28 and the one went out from me, and I said, “Surely he is torn to pieces”; and I have not seen him since. 29 But if you take this one also from me, and calamity befalls him, you shall bring down my gray hair with sorrow to the grave.’

30 “Now therefore, when I come to your servant my father, and the lad is not with us, since his life is bound up in the lad’s life, 31 it will happen, when he sees that the lad is not with us, that he will die. So your servants will bring down the gray hair of your servant our father with sorrow to the grave. 32 For your servant became surety for the lad to my father, saying, ‘If I do not bring him back to you, then I shall bear the blame before my father forever.’ 33 Now therefore, please let your servant remain instead of the lad as a slave to my lord, and let the lad go up with his brothers. 34 For how shall I go up to my father if the lad is not with me, lest perhaps I see the evil that would come upon my father?”

The New King James Version. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982. Print.

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The Message

44 Joseph ordered his house steward: “Fill the men’s bags with food—all they can carry—and replace each one’s money at the top of the bag. Then put my chalice, my silver chalice, in the top of the bag of the youngest, along with the money for his food.” He did as Joseph ordered.

3–5 At break of day the men were sent off with their donkeys. They were barely out of the city when Joseph said to his house steward, “Run after them. When you catch up with them, say, ‘Why did you pay me back evil for good? This is the chalice my master drinks from; he also uses it for divination. This is outrageous!’ ”

6 He caught up with them and repeated all this word for word.

7–9 They said, “What is my master talking about? We would never do anything like that! Why, the money we found in our bags earlier, we brought back all the way from Canaan—do you think we’d turn right around and steal it back from your master? If that chalice is found on any of us, he’ll die; and the rest of us will be your master’s slaves.”

10 The steward said, “Very well then, but we won’t go that far. Whoever is found with the chalice will be my slave; the rest of you can go free.”

11–12 They outdid each other in putting their bags on the ground and opening them up for inspection. The steward searched their bags, going from oldest to youngest. The chalice showed up in Ben-jamin’s bag.

13 They ripped their clothes in despair, loaded up their donkeys, and went back to the city.

14 Joseph was still at home when Judah and his brothers got back. They threw themselves down on the ground in front of him.

15 Joseph accused them: “How can you have done this? You have to know that a man in my position would have discovered this.”

16 Judah as spokesman for the brothers said, “What can we say, master? What is there to say? How can we prove our innocence? God is behind this, exposing how bad we are. We stand guilty before you and ready to be your slaves—we’re all in this together, the rest of us as guilty as the one with the chalice.”

17 “I’d never do that to you,” said Joseph. “Only the one involved with the chalice will be my slave. The rest of you are free to go back to your father.”

18–20 Judah came forward. He said, “Please, master; can I say just one thing to you? Don’t get angry. Don’t think I’m presumptuous—you’re the same as Pharaoh as far as I’m concerned. You, master, asked us, ‘Do you have a father and a brother?’ And we answered honestly, ‘We have a father who is old and a younger brother who was born to him in his old age. His brother is dead and he is the only son left from that mother. And his father loves him more than anything.’

21–22 “Then you told us, ‘Bring him down here so I can see him.’ We told you, master, that it was impossible: ‘The boy can’t leave his father; if he leaves, his father will die.’

23 “And then you said, ‘If your youngest brother doesn’t come with you, you won’t be allowed to see me.’

24–26 “When we returned to our father, we told him everything you said to us. So when our father said, ‘Go back and buy some more food,’ we told him flatly, ‘We can’t. The only way we can go back is if our youngest brother is with us. We aren’t allowed to even see the man if our youngest brother doesn’t come with us.’

27–29 “Your servant, my father, told us, ‘You know very well that my wife gave me two sons. One turned up missing. I concluded that he’d been ripped to pieces. I’ve never seen him since. If you now go and take this one and something bad happens to him, you’ll put my old gray, grieving head in the grave for sure.’

30–32 “And now, can’t you see that if I show up before your servant, my father, without the boy, this son with whom his life is so bound up, the moment he realizes the boy is gone, he’ll die on the spot. He’ll die of grief and we, your servants who are standing here before you, will have killed him. And that’s not all. I got my father to release the boy to show him to you by promising, ‘If I don’t bring him back, I’ll stand condemned before you, Father, all my life.’

33–34 “So let me stay here as your slave, not this boy. Let the boy go back with his brothers. How can I go back to my father if the boy is not with me? Oh, don’t make me go back and watch my father die in grief!”

Peterson, Eugene H. The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language. Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 2005. Print.

King James Version

44 And he commanded the steward of his house, saying, Fill the men’s sacks with food, as much as they can carry, and put every man’s money in his sack’s mouth. 2 And put my cup, the silver cup, in the sack’s mouth of the youngest, and his corn money. And he did according to the word that Joseph had spoken. 3 As soon as the morning was light, the men were sent away, they and their asses. 4 And when they were gone out of the city, and not yet far off, Joseph said unto his steward, Up, follow after the men; and when thou dost overtake them, say unto them, Wherefore have ye rewarded evil for good? 5 Is not this it in which my lord drinketh, and whereby indeed he divineth? ye have done evil in so doing. 6 And he overtook them, and he spake unto them these same words. 7 And they said unto him, Wherefore saith my lord these words? God forbid that thy servants should do according to this thing: 8 Behold, the money, which we found in our sacks’ mouths, we brought again unto thee out of the land of Canaan: how then should we steal out of thy lord’s house silver or gold? 9 With whomsoever of thy servants it be found, both let him die, and we also will be my lord’s bondmen. 10 And he said, Now also let it be according unto your words: he with whom it is found shall be my servant; and ye shall be blameless. 11 Then they speedily took down every man his sack to the ground, and opened every man his sack. 12 And he searched, and began at the eldest, and left at the youngest: and the cup was found in Benjamin’s sack. 13 Then they rent their clothes, and laded every man his ass, and returned to the city.

14 And Judah and his brethren came to Joseph’s house; for he was yet there: and they fell before him on the ground. 15 And Joseph said unto them, What deed is this that ye have done? wot ye not that such a man as I can certainly divine? 16 And Judah said, What shall we say unto my lord? what shall we speak? or how shall we clear ourselves? God hath found out the iniquity of thy servants: behold, we are my lord’s servants, both we, and he also with whom the cup is found. 17 And he said, God forbid that I should do so: but the man in whose hand the cup is found, he shall be my servant; and as for you, get you up in peace unto your father. 18 Then Judah came near unto him, and said, Oh my lord, let thy servant, I pray thee, speak a word in my lord’s ears, and let not thine anger burn against thy servant: for thou art even as Pharaoh. 19 My lord asked his servants, saying, Have ye a father, or a brother? 20 And we said unto my lord, We have a father, an old man, and a child of his old age, a little one; and his brother is dead, and he alone is left of his mother, and his father loveth him. 21 And thou saidst unto thy servants, Bring him down unto me, that I may set mine eyes upon him. 22 And we said unto my lord, The lad cannot leave his father: for if he should leave his father, his father would die. 23 And thou saidst unto thy servants, Except your youngest brother come down with you, ye shall see my face no more. 24 And it came to pass when we came up unto thy servant my father, we told him the words of my lord. 25 And our father said, Go again, and buy us a little food. 26 And we said, We cannot go down: if our youngest brother be with us, then will we go down: for we may not see the man’s face, except our youngest brother be with us. 27 And thy servant my father said unto us, Ye know that my wife bare me two sons: 28 And the one went out from me, and I said, Surely he is torn in pieces; and I saw him not since: 29 And if ye take this also from me, and mischief befall him, ye shall bring down my gray hairs with sorrow to the grave. 30 Now therefore when I come to thy servant my father, and the lad be not with us; seeing that his life is bound up in the lad’s life; 31 It shall come to pass, when he seeth that the lad is not with us, that he will die: and thy servants shall bring down the gray hairs of thy servant our father with sorrow to the grave. 32 For thy servant became surety for the lad unto my father, saying, If I bring him not unto thee, then I shall bear the blame to my father for ever. 33 Now therefore, I pray thee, let thy servant abide instead of the lad a bondman to my lord; and let the lad go up with his brethren. 34 For how shall I go up to my father, and the lad be not with me? lest peradventure I see the evil that shall come on my father.

The Holy Bible: King James Version. Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009. Print.

Sources: NIV, The Message, The NET Bible, King James Version, NET Bible Notes, Faithlife Study Bible, The Apologetics Study Bible, The Bible Knowledge Commentary, Jamieson, Fausset, Brown Commentary, The Bible Reader’s Companion, Matthew Henry’s Commentary, Holman Concise Bible Commentary, The Bible Exposition Commentary, The Teacher’s Bible Commentary, The Teacher’s Commentary, The Bible Guide, Word Studies in the New Testament, Holman Bible Handbook, Calvin Commentaries, Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines, The New Manner and Customs of the Bible, Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary, The Lexham Bible Dictionary, Easton’s Bible Dictionary, Harper’s Bible Dictionary, Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible, The Archaeological Encyclopedia, Biblical Archeology Review, The New Bible Dictionary, The Lexham Analytical Lexicon, Glossary of Morpho-Syntactic Database
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