The Brothers Fall Before Joseph
1Then he commanded his house steward, 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. 2Now put my cup, the silver cup, in the mouth of the sack of the youngest, and his money for the grain.” And he did #44:2 Or according to the wordas Joseph had told him. 3#44:3 Lit The morning was lightAs the morning light broke, the men were sent away, they with their donkeys. 4Now they had just gone out of the city and were not far off when Joseph said to his house steward, “Arise, pursue the men; you shall overtake them and say to them, ‘Why have you repaid evil for good? 5Is not this the one from which my lord drinks and which he indeed uses to interpret omens? You have done evil in doing this.’ ”
6So he overtook them and spoke these words to them. 7And they said to him, “Why does my lord speak such words as these? Far be it from your servants to do such a thing. 8Behold, the money which we found in the mouth of our sacks we have brought back to you from the land of Canaan. How then could we steal silver or gold from your lord’s house? 9With whomever of your servants it is found, let him die, and we also will be my lord’s slaves.” 10So he said, “Now let it also be according to your words; he with whom it is found shall be my slave, but the rest of you shall be innocent.” 11Then they hurried, each man brought his sack down to the ground, and each man opened his sack. 12So he searched, beginning with the oldest and ending with the youngest, and the cup was found in Benjamin’s sack. 13Then they tore their clothes, and each man loaded his donkey and returned to the city.
14Then Judah and his brothers came to Joseph’s house, and he was still there. So they fell to the ground before him. 15And Joseph said to them, “What is this deed that you have done? Do you not know that such a man as I can indeed interpret omens?” 16So Judah said, “What can we say to my lord? What can we speak? And how can we justify ourselves? God has found out the iniquity of your servants; behold, we are my lord’s slaves, both we and the one in whose #44:16 Lit handpossession the cup has been found.” 17But he said, “Far be it from me to do this. The man in whose #44:17 Lit handpossession the cup has been found, he shall be my slave; but as for you, go up in peace to your father.”
Judah Remains Instead of Benjamin
18Then Judah came near to him and said, “O my lord, may your servant please speak a word in my lord’s ears, and #44:18 Lit let not your anger burn againstdo not be angry with your servant; for you are equal to Pharaoh. 19My lord asked his servants, saying, ‘Have you a father or a brother?’ 20And we said to my lord, ‘We have an old father and a little child of his old age. Now his brother is dead, so he alone is left of his mother, and his father loves him.’ 21Then you said to your servants, ‘Bring him down to me that I may set my eyes on him.’ 22And we said to my lord, ‘The boy cannot leave his father; if he should leave his father, #44:22 Lit he wouldhis father would die.’ 23You said to your servants, however, ‘If your youngest brother does not come down with you, you will not see my face again.’ 24Thus it happened that when we went up to your servant my father, we told him the words of my lord. 25And our father said, ‘Go back, buy us a little food.’ 26But we said, ‘We cannot go down. If our youngest brother is with us, then we will go down; for we cannot see the man’s face if our youngest brother is not with us.’ 27And your servant my father said to us, ‘You know that my wife bore me two sons; 28and the one went out from me, and I said, “Surely he is torn to pieces,” and I have not seen him since. 29If you take this one also from #44:29 Lit my faceme and harm befalls him, you will bring my gray hair down to Sheol in #44:29 Or sorrowevil.’ 30So now, when I come to your servant my father, and the boy is not with us—#44:30 Lit his soul is bound with his souland his life is bound up in the boy’s life— 31so it will be that when he sees that the boy is not with us, he will die. Thus your servants will bring the gray hair of your servant our father down to Sheol in sorrow. 32For your servant became a guarantee for the boy to my father, saying, ‘If I do not bring him back to you, #44:32 Lit and I shall have sinned for all the days before my fatherthen I shall bear the sin before my father all my days.’ 33So now, please let your servant remain instead of the boy as a slave to my lord, and let the boy go up with his brothers. 34For how shall I go up to my father if the boy is not with me, lest I see the evil that would #44:34 Lit findovertake my father?”