Gen 44:5

44:5 practices divination. Hydromancy, a form of ancient Near Eastern divination, made use of vessels of water. Objects or liquids put in the water generated patterns that were thought to reveal the future. This description and Joseph’s statement in v. 15 do not indicate that he actually practiced pagan divination; this description was necessary to the ruse and identified the silver cup as a treasured possession (cf. 42:7, 12). Joseph received revelation from God alone (40:8 and note; 41:16).