Genesis 43:29 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 43:29, NIV: As he looked about and saw his brother Benjamin, his own mother's son, he asked, 'Is this your youngest brother, the one you told me about?' And he said, 'God be gracious to you, my son.'

Genesis 43:29, ESV: And he lifted up his eyes and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s son, and said, “Is this your youngest brother, of whom you spoke to me? God be gracious to you, my son!”

Genesis 43:29, KJV: And he lifted up his eyes, and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother's son, and said, Is this your younger brother, of whom ye spake unto me? And he said, God be gracious unto thee, my son.

Genesis 43:29, NASB: And as he raised his eyes and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother’s son, he said, 'Is this your youngest brother, of whom you spoke to me?' Then he said, 'May God be gracious to you, my son.'

Genesis 43:29, NLT: Then Joseph looked at his brother Benjamin, the son of his own mother. 'Is this your youngest brother, the one you told me about?' Joseph asked. 'May God be gracious to you, my son.'

Genesis 43:29, CSB: When he looked up and saw his brother Benjamin, his mother's son, he asked, "Is this your youngest brother that you told me about? " Then he said, "May God be gracious to you, my son."

What does Genesis 43:29 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The eleven men laying flat on the floor before him are Joseph's own brothers. They have been summoned (Genesis 43:16–17) during their second trip to buy grain in Egypt (Genesis 43:1–2). Twenty years earlier, Joseph prophesied his entire family would one day bow before him (Genesis 37:5–10). This was part of what motivated his ten older brothers to sell him into slavery (Genesis 37:24–28). Now Joseph—unrecognized by his family (Genesis 42:8)—is the second-in-command over the entire nation of Egypt (Genesis 41:44). As the men bow, they fully complete the prediction from Joseph's first dream.

Joseph has asked them the men about their father—his father Jacob (Genesis 43:27–28). Now he sets his eyes fully on Benjamin. This is the youngest son of Jacob, and Joseph's only full-blooded brother, the other son of their mother, Rachel (Genesis 35:18–19, 24). Joseph had insisted the men not return unless they brought Benjamin with them (Genesis 42:19–20). Still hiding his identity, he asks if this is the brother mentioned in their first visit (Genesis 42:13).

Benjamin is the only one of Joseph's eleven brothers not involved in his sale into slavery. Unlike the harsh response Joseph used when he first saw the others (Genesis 42:7), he speaks kindly to Benjamin. Though Joseph has further tests in mind for his brothers (Genesis 43:34; 44:1–2), the blessing he offers here strains his self-control. In the following verse (Genesis 43:30), it becomes clear the dam holding back Joseph's joy is beginning to crack.