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Genesis 49

49
Jacob Blesses His Sons
1Then Jacob called his sons to him. He said, “Come here to me, and I will tell you what will happen to you in the future.
2“Come together and listen, sons of Jacob.
Listen to Israel, your father.”
3“Reuben, my first son, you are my strength.
Your birth showed I could be a father.
You have the highest position among my sons,
and you are the most powerful.
4But you are uncontrolled like water,
so you will no longer lead your brothers.
This is because you got into your father’s bed
and shamed me by having sexual relations with my slave girl.
5“Simeon and Levi are brothers
who used their swords to do violence.
6I will not join their secret talks,
and I will not meet with them to plan evil.
They killed men because they were angry,
and they crippled oxen just for fun.
7May their anger be cursed, because it is too violent.
May their violence be cursed, because it is too cruel.
I will divide them up among the tribes of Jacob
and scatter them through all the tribes of Israel.
8“Judah, your brothers will praise you.
You will grab your enemies by the neck,
and your brothers will bow down to you.
9Judah is like a young lion.
You have returned from killing, my son.
Like a lion, he stretches out and lies down to rest,
and no one is brave enough to wake him.
10Kings will come from Judah’s family;
someone from Judah will always be on the throne.
Judah will rule until Shiloh comes,
and the nations will obey him.
11He ties his donkey to a grapevine,
his young donkey to the best branch.
He can afford to use wine to wash his clothes
and the best wine to wash his robes.
12His eyes are dark like the color of wine,
and his teeth are as white as the color of milk.
13“Zebulun will live near the sea.
His shore will be a safe place for ships,
and his land will reach as far as Sidon.
14“Issachar is like a strong donkey
who lies down while carrying his load.
15When he sees his resting place is good
and how pleasant his land is,
he will put his back to the load
and become a slave.
16“Dan will rule his own people
like the other tribes in Israel.
17Dan will be like a snake by the side of the road,
a dangerous snake lying near the path.
That snake bites a horse’s leg,
and the rider is thrown off backward.
18“Lord, I wait for your salvation.
19“Robbers will attack Gad,
but he will defeat them and drive them away.
20“Asher’s land will grow much good food;
he will grow food fit for a king.
21“Naphtali is like a female deer that runs free,
that has beautiful fawns.
22“Joseph is like a grapevine that produces much fruit,
a healthy vine watered by a spring,
whose branches grow over the wall.
23Archers attack him violently
and shoot at him angrily,
24but he aims his bow well.
His arms are made strong.
He gets his power from the Mighty God of Jacob
and his strength from the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel.
25Your father’s God helps you.
God Almighty blesses you.
He blesses you with rain from above,
with water from springs below,
with many babies born to your wives,
and many young ones born to your animals.
26The blessings of your father are greater
than the blessings of the oldest mountains,
greater than the good things of the long-lasting hills.
May these blessings rest on the head of Joseph,
on the forehead of the one who was separated from his brothers.
27“Benjamin is like a hungry wolf.
In the morning he eats what he has caught,
and in the evening he divides what he has taken.”
28These are the twelve tribes of Israel, and this is what their father said to them. He gave each son the blessing that was right for him. 29Then Israel gave them a command and said, “I am about to die. Bury me with my ancestors in the cave in the field of Ephron the Hittite. 30That cave is in the field of Machpelah east of Mamre in the land of Canaan. Abraham bought the field and cave from Ephron the Hittite for a burying place. 31Abraham and Sarah his wife are buried there. Isaac and Rebekah his wife are buried there, and I buried my wife Leah there. 32The field and the cave in it were bought from the Hittite people.” 33After Jacob finished talking to his sons, he lay down. He put his feet back on the bed, took his last breath, and died.
49
CHAPTER 49
1Forsooth Jacob called his sons, and said to them, Be ye gathered together, that I tell what things shall come to you in the last days;
2be ye gathered [together], and hear, ye sons of Jacob, hear ye Israel your father.
3Reuben, my first begotten son, thou art my strength, and the beginning of my sorrow; thou oughtest to be the former in gifts, the more in lordship;
4thou art shed [or poured] out as water; wax thou not, for thou ascend-edest [or went up] on the bed of thy father, and defouledest his bed.
5Simeon and Levi, brethren, fighting vessels of wickedness;
6my soul come not into the counsel of them, and my glory be not in the congregation of them; for in their strong vengeance, they killed a man, and in their [own] will, they under-mined the wall;
7cursed be the strong vengeance of them, for it is obstinate, and the indignation of them, for it is hard; I shall part them in Jacob, and I shall scatter them in Israel.
8Judah, thy brethren shall praise thee, thine hands shall be in the nolls of thine enemies; the sons of thy father shall worship thee.
9Judah, the whelp of a lion; my son, thou hast gone up to the prey; thou restedest, and hast lain as a lion, and as a lioness, who shall raise him?
10The sceptre shall not be taken away from Judah, and a duke of his hip, till he come that shall be sent, and he shall be the abiding of heathen men;
11and he shall tie his colt at the vinery [or vineyard], and his she-ass at the vine; O! my son, he shall wash his stole in wine, and his mantle in the blood of the grape;
12his eyes be fairer than wine, and his teeth be whiter than milk.
13Zebulun shall dwell in the brink of the sea, and in the standing of ships; and he shall stretch till to Sidon.
14Issachar, a strong ass, lying betwixt [the] terms,
15saw rest, that it was good, and saw the land, that it was best, and he underset his shoulder to bear, and he was made serving to tributes#49:15 Either to rent, (Or to pay rent or taxes), as it is in Hebrew..
16Dan shall deem his people, as also another lineage in Israel.
17Dan be made a serpent in the way, and a cerastes, that is, an horned adder, in the path, and bite he the feet of an horse, that the rider of him fall backward;
18Lord, I shall abide thine health.
19Gad shall be girded, and he shall fight before him, and he shall be girded behind.
20Asher, his bread shall be fat, and he shall give delights to kings.
21Naphtali shall be an hart sent out, and giving speeches of fairness.
22Joseph, a son increasing, a son increasing, and fair in beholding; [the] daughters run about on the wall,
23but his brethren wrathed at him, and chided him, and they had darts, and had envy to him.
24His bow sat in the Strong, that is, the Lord, and the bonds of his arms and his hands were unbound by the hand of the mighty God of Jacob; of him a shepherd went out, the stone of Israel.
25God of thy father shall be thine helper, and Almighty God shall bless thee, with blessings of heaven from above, and with blessings of the sea lying beneath, with blessings of teats, and of the womb;
26the blessings of thy father be comforted, that is, be better than the blessings of his fathers, till the desire of everlasting hills came; blessings be made on the head of Joseph, and in the noll of Nazarite, that is, holy, among his brethren.
27Benjamin, a ravishing wolf, shall eat the prey early, and in the eventide he shall part spoils.
28All these were in [the] twelve kindreds of Israel; their father spake these things to them, and he blessed them all by proper blessings,
29and he commanded to them, and said, I am soon to be gathered to my people; bury ye me with my fathers in the double den, that is in the land of Ephron the Hittite,
30 that is, in the den in the field at Machpelah, against Mamre, in the land of Canaan, which den Abraham bought with the field of Ephron the Hittite, into possession of a sepulchre.
31There they buried him, and Sarah his wife; also Isaac was buried there, with Rebecca his wife; there also Leah lieth buried.
32(This verse is omitted in the original text.)
33And when the behests were ended, by which he taught his sons, he gathered together his feet on the bed, and died, and he was put to his people.