When Joseph saw his brothers, he recognized them, but he acted as if he did not know them. He asked them harshly, "Where do you come from?" "We have come from Canaan to buy food," they answered.
Although Joseph recognized his brothers, they did not recognize him.
He remembered the dreams he had dreamed about them and said, "You are spies; you have come to find out where our country is weak." 1
"No, sir," they answered. "We have come as your slaves, to buy food.
We are all brothers. We are not spies, sir, we are honest men."
Joseph said to them, "No! You have come to find out where our country is weak."
They said, "We were twelve brothers in all, sir, sons of the same man in the land of Canaan. One brother is dead, and the youngest is now with our father."
"It is just as I said," Joseph answered. "You are spies.
This is how you will be tested: I swear by the name of the king that you will never leave unless your youngest brother comes here.
One of you must go and get him. The rest of you will be kept under guard until the truth of what you say can be tested. Otherwise, as sure as the king lives, you are spies."
With that, he put them in prison for three days.