Genesis 43:20
And said, O sir, we came indeed down at the first time to buy food:
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43:15-25 Jacob's sons went down the second time into Egypt to buy corn. If we should ever know what a famine of the word means, let us not think it much to travel as far for spiritual food, as they did for bodily food. Joseph's steward had orders from his master to take them to his house. Even this frightened them. Those that are guilty make the worst of every thing. But the steward encouraged them. It appears, from what he said, that by his good master he was brought to the knowledge of the true God, the God of the Hebrews. Religious servants should take all fit occasions to speak of God and his providence, with reverence and seriousness.They are encouraged by the steward of Joseph's house to lay aside their fears, and prepare their present. "Spake to him at the door of the house." This was, of course, before they entered. "When we came to the inn." The relater is prone to lump matters in the narration, for the sake of brevity. They began to "open their bags" at the first lodging-place, and finished the process at the last when they got home. Other silver. This explains the phrase "second silver" in Genesis 43:12. "Peace be to you." Be at rest. All is well. Your God. The steward of Joseph expresses himself as one who fears and trusts God, the God of the Hebrews, who had displayed his omniscience and omnipotence in Egypt. "He brought out unto them Simon." While they still linger at the entrance, the considerate steward bethought himself of bringing out Simon to them, which reassured their hearts, and induced them to enter willingly. He now succeeds therefore, in bringing them in, and then bestows upon them the usual attentions of Eastern hospitality. They now "make ready their present."18. the men were afraid—Their feelings of awe on entering the stately mansion, unaccustomed as they were to houses at all, their anxiety at the reasons of their being taken there, their solicitude about the restored money, their honest simplicity in communicating their distress to the steward and his assurances of having received their money in "full weight," the offering of their fruit present, which would, as usual, be done with some parade, and the Oriental salutations that passed between their host and them—are all described in a graphic and animated manner. No text from Poole on this verse. And said, O sir,.... Or, "on me, my lord" (a), one said in the name of the rest, perhaps Judah, on me let the blame lie, if guilty of rudeness in making our address to thee; or as the Vulgate Latin version, "we pray, sir, that thou wouldest hear us"; and so Jarchi and Aben Ezra say the phrase is expressive of beseeching, entreating, and supplicating:

we came indeed down at the first time to buy food; not to spy the land but to buy corn, and not to get it by fraud or tricking but by paying for it the price that was required.

(a) "in me Domine mi", Montanus.

And said, O sir, we came indeed down at the first time to buy food:
20. Oh my lord] Cf. Genesis 44:18. The expression introduces an appeal. The word for “my lord” (adoni) is rendered by LXX κύριε, and by the Lat. domine. See Numbers 12:11; Jdg 6:13; 1 Samuel 1:26; 1 Kings 3:17; 1 Kings 3:26.Thus Israel let his sons go with the blessing, "God Almighty give you mercy before the man, that he may liberate to you your other brother (Simeon) and Benjamin;" and with this resigned submission to the will of God, "And I, if I am bereaved, I am bereaved," i.e., if I am to lose my children, let it be so! For this mode of expression, cf. Esther 4:16 and 2 Kings 7:4. שׁכּלתּי with the pausal a, answering to the feelings of the speaker, which is frequently used for o; e.g., טרף for יטרף, Genesis 49:27.
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