And he turned himself about from them, and wept; and returned to them again, and communed with them, and took from them Simeon…
The hearing of the bitter reflections made by his brethren, upon their barbarous treatment of himself, brought rivers of waters from Joseph's eyes. Many passions, many unpleasant and many pleasant remembrances, struggled together in his mind. He tenderly sympathized with the distress of his brethren. He was grieved when he found it necessary to inflict such grief upon men so dear to him, after all they had done to ruin his comfort. He wept at the remembrance of that anguish which he had felt in the day of his calamity, and of the unavailing applications to his hard-hearted brethren, extorted by strong necessity and bitter anguish. He called to mind his afflictions and his misery, the wormwood and the gall; but he remembered also how the Lord had sent from above, and taken and drawn him out of many waters, and set him in a large place, and established his goings. Although Joseph was now exalted to glory and power, he was not in the place where all tears are wiped from every eye. We must in this world weep often, even for ourselves; we must often weep for our friends; but "they that sow in tears shall reap in joy." He that "goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him." Joseph wished not that his brethren should see his tears. When he found he could not refrain, he turned himself from them and wept. Tears shed in secret are the truest indication of the heart. Jeremiah wept in secret places for the calamities coming upon his people, when the Lord's flock was to be carried away captive.
(G. Lawson, D. D.)
Took from them Simeon, and bound him: —
Parallel VersesKJV: And he turned himself about from them, and wept; and returned to them again, and communed with them, and took from them Simeon, and bound him before their eyes.