And Judah said, What shall we say unto my lord? what shall we speak? or how shall we clear ourselves? God has found out the iniquity of your servants: behold, we are my lord's servants, both we, and he also with whom the cup is found.
Read Chapter 44
Ephrem The Syrian
Then Judah said, “Before God the sins of your servants have been discovered”—not this one [of the cup] but the one for which we have been requited with these things. “Therefore not only he in whose sack the cup was found but we also will become slaves to our master.” And Joseph said, “Far be it from” the just Egyptian “to do this!” These men, because of their great virtue, do not even eat bread with Hebrews lest they become unclean by them. How then can we do what is foreign to our conduct? The justice that hinders us from sinning against one who has not sinned against us compels us to be avenged on that one who has caused us offence. “The one in whose hand the cup was found shall remain and be a slave.” This will be better for him than freedom, for this later servitude, which will free him from theft, will be better for him than that first freedom that enslaved him to theft. ...
Iniquity. He begins with the greatest humility, acknowledging that they were justly punished by God for some transgression, though they were, in his opinion, innocent of any theft. (Haydock)
Perhaps he might imagine, that Benjamin had been guilty, (Bonfrere) and is willing to bear a part of the blame with the rest; or his conscience still presents before him the injustice done to Joseph so long before. (Haydock) ...