44Then he commanded the steward of his house, Fill the mens sacks with food, as much as they can carry, and put each mans money in the top of his sack. 2Put my cup, the silver cup, in the top of the sack of the youngest, with his money for the grain. And he did as Joseph told him. 3As soon as the morning was light, the men were sent away with their donkeys. 4When they had gone only a short distance from the city, Joseph said to his steward, Go, follow after the men; and when you overtake them, say to them, Why have you returned evil for good? Why have you stolen my silver cup?* 5Is it not from this that my lord drinks? Does he not indeed use it for divination? You have done wrong in doing this.
6 When he overtook them, he repeated these words to them. 7They said to him, Why does my lord speak such words as these? Far be it from your servants that they should do such a thing! 8Look, the money that we found at the top of our sacks, we brought back to you from the land of Canaan; why then would we steal silver or gold from your lords house? 9Should it be found with any one of your servants, let him die; moreover, the rest of us will become my lords slaves. 10He said, Even so; in accordance with your words, let it be: he with whom it is found shall become my slave, but the rest of you shall go free. 11Then each one quickly lowered his sack to the ground, and each opened his sack. 12He searched, beginning with the eldest and ending with the youngest; and the cup was found in Benjamins sack. 13At this they tore their clothes. Then each one loaded his donkey, and they returned to the city.
14 Judah and his brothers came to Josephs house while he was still there; and they fell to the ground before him. 15Joseph said to them, What deed is this that you have done? Do you not know that one such as I can practise divination? 16And Judah said, What can we say to my lord? What can we speak? How can we clear ourselves? God has found out the guilt of your servants; here we are then, my lords slaves, both we and also the one in whose possession the cup has been found. 17But he said, Far be it from me that I should do so! Only the one in whose possession the cup was found shall be my slave; but as for you, go up in peace to your father.
The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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10 February 2011