TRULY WE ARE BEING CALLED TO ACCOUNT FOR OUR BROTHER.
When the country of Egypt began to feel the famine, the people cried out to Pharaoh for bread. But Pharaoh told all the Egyptians, “Go to Joseph and do what he tells you.” – There was famine all over the world. – Then Joseph opened all the granaries and sold grain to the Egyptians. The famine grew worse in the land of Egypt. People came to Egypt from all over the world to buy grain from Joseph, for the famine had grown severe throughout the world.
Israel’s sons with others making the same journey went to buy grain, for there was famine in the land of Canaan. It was Joseph, as the man in authority over the country, who sold the grain to all comers. So Joseph’s brothers went and bowed down before him, their faces touching the ground. When Joseph saw his brothers he recognised them. Then he kept them all in custody for three days.
On the third day Joseph said to them, “Do this and you shall keep your lives, for I am a man who fears God. If you are honest men let one of your brothers be kept in the place of your detention; as for you, go and take grain to relieve the famine of your families. You shall bring me your youngest brother; this way your words will be proved true, and you will not have to die!” This they did. They said to one another, “Truly we are being called to account for our brother. We saw his misery of soul when he begged our mercy, but we did not listen to him and now this misery has come home to us.” Reuben answered them, “Did I not tell you not to wrong the boy? But you did not listen, and now we are brought to account for his blood.” They did not know that Joseph understood, because there was an interpreter between them. He left them and wept.
V. The word of the Lord.
R. Thanks be to God.