Genesis 44:21 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 44:21, NIV: Then you said to your servants, 'Bring him down to me so I can see him for myself.'

Genesis 44:21, ESV: Then you said to your servants, ‘Bring him down to me, that I may set my eyes on him.’

Genesis 44:21, KJV: And thou saidst unto thy servants, Bring him down unto me, that I may set mine eyes upon him.

Genesis 44:21, NASB: Then you said to your servants, ‘Bring him down to me so that I may set my eyes on him.’

Genesis 44:21, NLT: 'And you said to us, 'Bring him here so I can see him with my own eyes.'

Genesis 44:21, CSB: Then you said to your servants, 'Bring him to me so that I can see him.'

What does Genesis 44:21 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Judah is making a plea to the Egyptian governor (Genesis 44:14–17). He speaks on behalf of his father Jacob, and his youngest brother Benjamin (Genesis 44:18–20). He reminds the vizier that he had demanded the brothers bring Benjamin to him so that he could look at him (Genesis 42:15). So far, he has not recognized that the man to whom he begs is his own brother, Joseph (Genesis 42:7–8), sold as a slave twenty years prior (Genesis 42:21–23).

At the time Joseph demanded to see Benjamin, Judah and his brothers thought this purpose was to prove they were not spies. Joseph's true motive in demanding to see Benjamin, however, was simply that he longed to set eyes on his brother again. He is also testing to see if his older brothers have changed since their despicable actions long ago (Genesis 37:24–28).