Genesis 42:19 MEANING

Genesis 42:19
42:7-20 Joseph was hard upon his brethren, not from a spirit of revenge, but to bring them to repentance. Not seeing his brother Benjamin, he suspected that they had made away with him, and he gave them occasion to speak of their father and brother. God, in his providence, sometimes seems harsh with those he loves, and speaks roughly to those for whom yet he has great mercy in store. Joseph settled at last, that one of them should be left, and the rest go home and fetch Benjamin. It was a very encouraging word he said to them, I fear God; as if he had said, You may be assured I will do you no wrong; I dare not, for I know there is one higher than I. With those that fear God, we may expect fair dealing.If ye be true men,.... As you say you are:

let one of your brethren be bound in the house of your prison; agree among yourselves which of you (for one of you must) remain in prison where you are: and the rest being set at liberty:

go ye, carry corn for the famine of your houses; Joseph, though he dealt with them after this manner to get what knowledge he could of his family, and to get sight of his brother, yet was concerned for the good of them and theirs, lest they should be in extreme want through the famine, and that they might have a speedy supply of corn, was not willing to detain them any longer.

Courtesy of Open Bible