Reading: Genesis 44:1-5 and 18-33
Joseph is not completely satisfied that the brothers have repented and that there is true love. So he tests them further. When the brothers go home he has his royal cup placed in Benjamin’s sack and has him seized. This brings a serious crisis for the brothers. They had promised their father to bring Benjamin back. First Judah confesses “God has found out the iniquity of your servants” (vs16). Joseph hears this confession of guilt, but wants to be sure the brothers have really repented from their past evil ways. So he deepens the crisis by insisting that Benjamin must now remain in Egypt as a slave while the rest of the brothers can go home. Judah, now showing genuine love for his father Jacob, pleads for him saying that if Benjamin does not return, Jacob will die. “So your servants will bring down the grey hair of your servant our father with sorrow to the grave” (vs 31).
Judah offers to remain in Egypt instead of Benjamin. Judah is now showing true repentance and self-sacrifice. The time for the healing of the family and church is finally coming close. But some important things must still happen.
Key text: Genesis 44:16 “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’ ”.
Question: What does true repentance consist of? Refer to Heidelberg Catechism Lord’s Day 33.