Genesis 44:18
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
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.

New Living Translation
Then Judah stepped forward and said, "Please, my lord, let your servant say just one word to you. Please, do not be angry with me, even though you are as powerful as Pharaoh himself.

English Standard Version
Then Judah went up to him and said, “Oh, my lord, please let your servant speak a word in my lord’s ears, and let not your anger burn against your servant, for you are like Pharaoh himself.

New American Standard Bible
Then Judah approached him, and said, "Oh my lord, may your servant please speak a word in my lord's ears, and do not be angry with your servant; for you are equal to Pharaoh.

King James Bible
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.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
But Judah approached him and said, "Sir, please let your servant speak personally to my lord. Do not be angry with your servant, for you are like Pharaoh.

International Standard Version
But Judah approached him and begged him, "Your Excellency, please allow your servant to speak to you privately. Please don't be angry with your servant, since you are equal to Pharaoh.

NET Bible
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.

New Heart English Bible
Then Judah came near to him, and said, "Oh, my lord, please let your servant speak a word in my lord's ears, and do not let your anger burn against your servant; for you are even as Pharaoh.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Then Judah went up to Joseph and said, "Please, sir, let me speak openly with you. Don't be angry with me, although you are equal to Pharaoh.

JPS Tanakh 1917
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.

New American Standard 1977
Then Judah approached him, and said, “Oh my lord, may your servant please speak a word in my lord’s ears, and do not be angry with your servant; for you are equal to Pharaoh.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Then Judah came near unto him and said, Oh my lord, let thy slave, I pray thee, speak a word in my lord's ears, and let not thine anger burn against thy slave; for thou art even as Pharaoh.

King James 2000 Bible
Then Judah came near unto him, and said, Oh my lord, let your servant, I pray you, speak a word in my lord's ears, and let not your anger burn against your servant: for you are even as Pharaoh.

American King James Version
Then Judah came near to him, and said, Oh my lord, let your servant, I pray you, speak a word in my lord's ears, and let not your anger burn against your servant: for you are even as Pharaoh.

American Standard Version
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.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Then Juda coming hearer, said boldly: I beseech thee, my lord, let thy servant speak a word in thy ears,and be not angry with thy servant: for after Pharao thou art,

Darby Bible Translation
Then Judah came near to him, and said, Ah! 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.

English Revised Version
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.

Webster's Bible Translation
Then Judah came near to him, and said, Oh my lord, let thy servant, I pray thee, speak a word in my lord's ears, and let not thy anger burn against thy servant; for thou art even as Pharaoh.

World English Bible
Then Judah came near to him, and said, "Oh, my lord, please let your servant speak a word in my lord's ears, and don't let your anger burn against your servant; for you are even as Pharaoh.

Young's Literal Translation
And Judah cometh nigh unto him, and saith, 'O, my lord, let thy servant speak, I pray thee, a word in the ears of my lord, and let not thine anger burn against thy servant -- for thou art as Pharaoh.
Study Bible
Judah Pleads for Benjamin
17But he said, "Far be it from me to do this. The man in whose possession the cup has been found, he shall be my slave; but as for you, go up in peace to your father." 18Then Judah approached him, and said, "Oh my lord, may your servant please speak a word in my lord's ears, and do not be angry with your servant; for you are equal to Pharaoh. 19"My lord asked his servants, saying, 'Have you a father or a brother?'…
Cross References
Genesis 18:30
Then he said, "Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak; suppose thirty are found there?" And He said, "I will not do it if I find thirty there."

Genesis 18:32
Then he said, "Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak only this once; suppose ten are found there?" And He said, "I will not destroy it on account of the ten."

Genesis 37:7
for behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and lo, my sheaf rose up and also stood erect; and behold, your sheaves gathered around and bowed down to my sheaf."

Genesis 37:8
Then his brothers said to him, "Are you actually going to reign over us? Or are you really going to rule over us?" So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words.

Genesis 41:40
"You shall be over my house, and according to your command all my people shall do homage; only in the throne I will be greater than you."

Genesis 44:17
But he said, "Far be it from me to do this. The man in whose possession the cup has been found, he shall be my slave; but as for you, go up in peace to your father."

Exodus 32:22
Aaron said, "Do not let the anger of my lord burn; you know the people yourself, that they are prone to evil.
Treasury of Scripture

Then Judah came near to him, and said, Oh my lord, let your servant, I pray you, speak a word in my lord's ears, and let not your anger burn against your servant: for you are even as Pharaoh.

Oh my Lord. 'No paraphrase,' says Dr. A. Clarke, `can heighten the effect of Judah's address to Joseph. To add, would be to diminish its excellence; to attempt to {explain}, would be to obscure its beauties; to clothe the ideas in other language than that of Judah, and his translators in our Bible, would ruin its energy, and destroy its influence. It is perhaps one of the most tender, affecting pieces of natural oratory ever spoken or penned: and we need not wonder to find that, when Joseph heard it, he could not refrain himself, but wept aloud. His soul must have been insensible beyond what is common to human nature, had he not immediately yielded to a speech so delicately tender, and so powerfully impressive.'

let thy.

Genesis 18:30,32 And he said to him, Oh let not the LORD be angry, and I will speak: …

2 Samuel 14:12 Then the woman said, Let your handmaid, I pray you, speak one word …

Job 33:31 Mark well, O Job, listen to me: hold your peace, and I will speak.

Acts 2:29 Men and brothers, let me freely speak to you of the patriarch David, …

anger.

Exodus 32:22 And Aaron said, Let not the anger of my lord wax hot: you know the …

Esther 1:12 But the queen Vashti refused to come at the king's commandment by …

Psalm 79:5 How long, LORD? will you be angry for ever? shall your jealousy burn like fire?

as Pharaoh.

Genesis 41:40,44 You shall be over my house, and according to your word shall all …

Proverbs 19:12 The king's wrath is as the roaring of a lion; but his favor is as …

Daniel 3:15,19-23 Now if you be ready that at what time you hear the sound of the cornet, …

Daniel 5:19 And for the majesty that he gave him, all people, nations, and languages, …

John 5:22 For the Father judges no man, but has committed all judgment to the Son:

Verses 18-34. - Then Judah came near to him, and said, - the speech of Judah in behalf of his young brother Benjamin has been fittingly characterized as "one of the master. pieces of Hebrew composition" (Kalisch), "one of the grandest and fairest to be found in the Old Testament" (Lange), "a more moving oration than ever orator pronounced" (Lawson), "one of the finest specimens of natural eloquence in the world" (Inglis). Without being distinguished by either brilliant imagination or highly poetic diction, "its inimitable charm and excellence consist in the power of psychological truth, easy simplicity, and affecting pathos" (Kalisch) - Oh my lord (the interjection Oh is the same as that used by Judah in Genesis 43:20; q.v.), let thy servant, I pray thee, speak a word in my lord's ears (probably pressing towards him in his eagerness), and let not thine anger burn against thy servant: for thou art even as Pharaoh (i.e. one invested with the authority of Pharaoh, and therefore able, like Pharaoh, either to pardon or condemn). My lord asked his servants, saying, Have yea father, or a brother! And we said unto my lord, We have a father, an old man, and a child of his old age (vide Genesis 37:3), a little one; and his brother is dead, and he alone is left of his mother, and his father loveth him. Substantially this is the account which the brethren gave of themselves from the first (Genesis 42:13); only Judah now with exquisite tact as well as resistless pathos dwells on the threefold circumstance that the little one whose life was at stake was inexpressibly dear to his father for his dead brother's sake as well as for his departed mother's and his own. And thou saidst unto thy servants, Bring him down unto me, that I may set mine eyes upon him. This last clause is also a rhetorical enlargement of Joseph's words, ἐπιμελοῦμαι αὐτοῦ (LXX.); the phrase, to set one's eyes on any one, being commonly used in a good sense, signifying to regard any one with kindness, to look to his good (cf. Ezra 5:5; Job 24:23; Jeremiah 39:12; Jeremiah 40:4). And we said unto my lord, The lad cannot leave his father: for if he should leave his father, his father would die. Judah in this no doubt correctly reports the original conversation, although the remark is not recorded in the first account. And thou saidst unto thy servants, Except your youngest brother come down with you, ye shall see my face no more (cf. Genesis 43:3-5). And it came to pass (literally, it was) when we came up unto thy servant my father, we told him the words of my lord. The effect upon Jacob of their sad communication Judah does not recite (Genesis 42:36), but passes on to the period of the commencement of the second journey. And our father laid (i.e. after the consumption of the corn supply), Go again, and buy us a little food (vide Genesis 43:2). And we laid, 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. And thy servant my father said unto us (at this point Judah with increased tenderness alludes to the touching lamentation of the stricken patriarch as he first listens to the unwelcome proposition to take Benjamin from his side), Ye know that my wife - Rachel was all through her life the wife of his affections (cf. Genesis 46:19) - bare me two sons: - Joseph and Benjamin (Genesis 30:22, 24; Genesis 35:18) - and the one (Joseph) went out from me (and returned not, thus indirectly alluding to his death), and I said, Surely he is torn in pieces; and I saw him not since. Jacob means that had Joseph been alive, he would certainly have returned; but that as since that fatal day of his departure from Hebron he had never beheld him, he could only conclude that his inference was correct, and that Joseph was devoured by some beast of prey. And if ye take this also from me (in the sense which the next clause explains), and mischief befall him, ye shall bring down my grey hairs with sorrow to the grave - Sheol (vide Genesis 37:35). Now therefore (literally, and now) when I come (or go) to thy servant my father, and the lad be not with us; seeing that his life (or soul) is bound up in the lad's life (or soul); it shall come to pass, when he sooth that the lad is not with us, that he will die: and thy servants shall bring down the grey hairs of thy servant our father with sorrow to the grave. 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 (vide Genesis 43:9). Now therefore (literally, and now), I pray thee, let thy servant abide instead of the lad a bondman (or servant) to my lord; and let the lad go up with his brethren. "There was no duty that imperiously prohibited Judah from taking the place of his unfortunate brother. His children, and even his wife, if he had been in the married state, might have been sent to Egypt. He was so far master of his own liberty that he could warrantably put himself in Benjamin's room, if the governor gave his consent" (Lawson). 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 (literally, shall find) my father. The sublime heroism of this noble act of self-sacrifice on the part of Judah it is impossible to over-estimate. In behalf of one whom he knew was preferred to a higher place in his father's affection than himself, he was willing to renounce his liberty rather than see his aged parent die of a broken heart. The self-forgetful magnanimity of such an action has never been eclipsed, and seldom rivaled. After words so exquisitely beautiful and profoundly pathetic it was impossible for Joseph to doubt that a complete change had passed upon his brethren, and in particular upon Judah, since the day when he had eloquently urged, and they had wickedly consented, to sell their brother Joseph into Egypt. Everything was now ready for the denouement in this domestic drama. The story of Joseph's discovery of himself to his astonished brethren is related in the ensuing chapter.



Then Judah came near unto him,.... Being the spokesman of his brethren, and the surety of Benjamin: he plucked up a spirit, put on courage, and drew nearer to the governor, and with much freedom and boldness, and in a very polite manner, addressed him:

and said, O my lord, let thy servant, I pray thee, speak a word in my lord's ears; not admit him to private audience, or suffer him to whisper something to him, but give him the hearing of a few words he had to say to him:

and let not thine anger burn against thy servant; do not be displeased with his boldness, and the freedom he takes, but hear him patiently:

for thou art even as Pharaoh; next, if not equal in power and authority with him; could exercise justice or show mercy, punish or release from punishment, at his pleasure; and having leave granted him, he began his speech, and made the following narrative. 44:18-34 Had Joseph been, as Judah supposed him, an utter stranger to the family, he could not but be wrought upon by his powerful reasonings. But neither Jacob nor Benjamin need an intercessor with Joseph; for he himself loved them. Judah's faithful cleaving to Benjamin, now, in his distress, was recompensed long afterwards by the tribe of Benjamin keeping with the tribe of Judah, when the other tribes deserted it. The apostle, when discoursing of the mediation of Christ, observes, that our Lord sprang out of Judah, Heb 7:14; and he not only made intercession for the transgressors, but he became a Surety for them, testifying therein tender concern, both for his Father and for his brethren. Jesus, the great antitype of Joseph, humbles and proves his people, even after they have had some tastes of his loving-kindness. He brings their sins to their remembrance, that they may exercise and show repentance, and feel how much they owe to his mercy.
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