Genesis 44:9
With whomsoever of thy servants it be found, both let him die, and we also will be my lord's bondmen.
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44:1-17 Joseph tried how his brethren felt towards Benjamin. Had they envied and hated the other son of Rachel as they had hated him, and if they had the same want of feeling towards their father Jacob as heretofore, they would now have shown it. When the cup was found upon Benjamin, they would have a pretext for leaving him to be a slave. But we cannot judge what men are now, by what they have been formerly; nor what they will do, by what they have done. The steward charged them with being ungrateful, rewarding evil for good; with folly, in taking away the cup of daily use, which would soon be missed, and diligent search made for it; for so it may be read, Is not this it in which my lord drinketh, as having a particular fondness for it, and for which he would search thoroughly? Or, By which, leaving it carelessly at your table, he would make trial whether you were honest men or not? They throw themselves upon Joseph's mercy, and acknowledge the righteousness of God, perhaps thinking of the injury they had formerly done to Joseph, for which they thought God was now reckoning with them. Even in afflictions wherein we believe ourselves wronged by men, we must own that God is righteous, and finds out our sin.The cup is found in Benjamin's bag. "Spake unto them these words." The words of Joseph, supplying of course the mention of the cup which is expressed in the text only by the pronoun this. "We brought back to thee." Silver that we might have retained, and to which you made no claim when we tendered it, we brought back. How or why should we therefore, steal silver? "Now also according to your words let it be." He adopts their terms with a mitigation. He with whom the cup is found shall become a slave for life, and the rest be acquitted. The steward searches from the oldest to the youngest. The cup is found where it was put.6, 7. he overtook them, and he spake … these words—The steward's words must have come upon them like a thunderbolt, and one of their most predominant feelings must have been the humiliating and galling sense of being made so often objects of suspicion. Protesting their innocence, they invited a search. The challenge was accepted [Ge 44:10, 11]. Beginning with the eldest, every sack was examined, and the cup being found in Benjamin's [Ge 44:12], they all returned in an indescribable agony of mind to the house of the governor [Ge 44:13], throwing themselves at his feet [Ge 44:14], with the remarkable confession, "God hath found out the iniquity of thy servants" [Ge 44:16]. This overdaring offer proceeded from hence, that they were all conscious of their own innocency, and did not suspect any fraud or artifice in the matter.

With whomsoever of thy servants it be found,.... The silver cup:

both let him die; which was rashly said, since they might have thought the cup might be put in one of their sacks unknown to them, as their money had been before; and besides, death was a punishment too severe for such a crime, and therefore is by the steward himself moderated; but this they said the more strongly to express their innocence:

and we also will be my lord's bondmen; his servants, as long as they lived: this was likewise carrying the matter too far, and exceeding all bounds of justice, which could only require satisfaction of the offender.

With whomsoever of thy servants it be found, both let him die, and we also will be my lord's bondmen.
9. With whomsoever] Joseph’s brethren propose the harshest possible penalty, death for the thief, and slavery for all the company. Cf. Jacob’s proposal in Genesis 31:32.

Genesis 44:9In the consciousness of their innocence the brethren repelled this charge with indignation, and appealed to the fact that they brought back the gold which was found in their sacks, and therefore could not possibly have stolen gold or silver; and declared that whoever should be found in possession of the goblet, should be put to death, and the rest become slaves.
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