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Genesis 49

49
Jacob Gives Blessings to His Sons
1Then Jacob sent for his sons. He said, “Gather around me so I can tell you what will happen to you in days to come.
2“Sons of Jacob, come together and listen.
Listen to your father Israel.
3“Reuben, you are my oldest son.
You were my first child. You were the first sign of my strength.
You were first in honor. You were first in power.
4But you are as unsteady as water. So you won’t be first anymore.
You had sex with my concubine on my bed.
You lay on my couch and made it ‘unclean.’
5“Simeon and Levi are brothers.
Their swords have killed a lot of people.
6I won’t share in their plans.
I won’t have anything to do with them.
They became angry and killed people.
They cut the legs of oxen just for the fun of it.
7May the Lord put a curse on them
because of their terrible anger.
I will scatter them in Jacob’s land.
I will spread them around in Israel.
8“Judah, your brothers will praise you.
Your enemies will be brought under your control.
Your father’s sons will bow down to you.
9Judah, you are like a lion’s cub.
You return from hunting, my son.
Like a lion, you lie down and sleep.
You are like a mother lion. Who dares to wake you up?
10The right to rule will not leave Judah.
The ruler’s scepter will not be taken from between his feet.
It will be his until the king it belongs to will come.
The nations will obey that king.
11He will tie his donkey to a vine.
He will tie his colt to the very best branch.
He will wash his clothes in wine.
He will wash his robes in the red juice of grapes.
12His eyes will be darker than wine.
His teeth will be whiter than milk.
13“Zebulun will live by the seashore.
He will become a safe harbor for ships.
His border will go out toward Sidon.
14“Issachar is like a wild donkey
lying down among the sheep pens.
15He sees how good his resting place is.
He sees that his land is pleasant.
So he will carry a heavy load on his back.
He will obey when he’s forced to work.
16“Dan will do what is fair for his people.
He will do it as one of the tribes of Israel.
17Dan will be a snake by the side of the road.
He will be a poisonous snake along the path.
It bites the horse’s heels
so that the rider falls off backward.
18Lord, I look to you to save me.
19“Gad will be attacked by a group of robbers.
But he will attack them as they run away.
20“Asher’s food will be rich and sweet.
He will provide food that even a king would enjoy.
21“Naphtali is a female deer set free
and gives birth to beautiful fawns.
22“Joseph is a vine that grows a lot of fruit.
It grows close by a spring.
Its branches climb over a wall.
23Mean people shot arrows at him.
They shot at him because they were angry.
24But his bow remained steady.
His strong arms moved freely.
The hand of the Mighty God of Jacob was with him.
The Shepherd, the Rock of Israel, stood by him.
25Joseph, your father’s God helps you.
The Mighty God blesses you.
He gives you blessings from the sky above.
He gives you blessings from the deep springs below.
He blesses you with children and with a mother’s milk.
26Your father’s blessings are great.
They are greater than the blessings from the age-old mountains.
They are greater than the gifts from the ancient hills.
Let all those blessings rest on the head of Joseph.
Let them rest on the head of the one who is prince among his brothers.
27“Benjamin is a hungry wolf.
In the morning he eats what he has killed.
In the evening he shares what he has stolen.”
28All these are the 12 tribes of Israel. That’s what their father said to them when he blessed them. He gave each one the blessing that was just right for him.
Jacob Dies
29Then Jacob gave directions to his sons. He said, “I’m about to join the members of my family who have already died. Bury me with them in the cave in the field of Ephron, the Hittite. 30The cave is in the field of Machpelah near Mamre in Canaan. Abraham had bought it as a place where he could bury his wife’s body. He had bought the cave and the field from Ephron, the Hittite. 31The bodies of Abraham and his wife Sarah were buried there. So were the bodies of Isaac and his wife Rebekah. I also buried Leah’s body there. 32Abraham bought the field and the cave from the Hittites.”
33When Jacob had finished telling his sons what to do, he pulled his feet up into his bed. Then he took his last breath and died. He joined the members of his family who had already died.
49
1And Ya'akov called unto his banim, and said, Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you that which shall befall you in the acharit hayamim (last days). 2Gather yourselves together, and hear, ye Bnei Ya'akov; and pay heed unto Yisroel Avichem. 3Reuven, thou art my bechor, my koach, and the reshit of my strength, the excellency of honor, and excellency of oz (power): 4Unstable as mayim, thou shalt not excel; because thou wentest up to mishkevei avicha (thy father's bed, i.e. incest); then defiledst thou it; he went up to my couch. 5Shimon and Levi are achim; kelei chamas (instruments of violence) are in their swords. 6O my nefesh, enter not thou into their sod (secret, council); unto their kehal, mine kavod, be not thou united; for in their anger they slaughtered ish, and in their ratzon (self-will) they lamed shor (ox). 7Arur (cursed) be their anger, for it was fierce; and their wrath, for it was cruel; I will dispense them in Ya'akov, and scatter them in Yisroel. 8Yehudah, thou art he whom thy achim yoducha (they will praise you); thy yad shall be in the oref (neck) of thine enemies; Bnei Avicha shall bow down before thee. 9Yehudah is the cub of an aryeh (lion); from the prey, beni (my son), thou hast gone up; he stooped down, he couched like an aryeh, and like a lioness; who shall rouse him? 10The shevet (sceptre) shall not depart from Yehudah, nor a Mekhokek (Lawgiver) from between his raglayim, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall be the obedience of the amim (peoples, nations). 11He ties his foal unto the gefen (vine), and his donkey's colt unto the choice vine; he will wash his levush (garments) in yayin, and his robe in the dahm anavim (blood of grapes); 12His eyes shall be darker with yayin, and his shinayim (teeth) whiter than cholov (milk). 13Zevulun shall dwell at the seashore; and he shall be a haven for oniyyot (ships); and his border shall be unto Tzidon. 14Yissakhar is a strong chamor (donkey) lying down between two saddlebags; 15And he saw that a menuchah (resting place) was tov, and haaretz that it was pleasant; and bowed his shoulder to bear, and became oved (submitting, enslaved) at forced labor. 16Dan yadin (shall judge) his people, as one of the Shivtei Yisroel. 17Dan shall be a nachash beside the derech, a viper along the orach (path) that biteth the ikkvei sus (the horse heels), so that its rider shall fall backward. 18I have waited for Thy Yeshuah (Salvation), Hashem. 19Gad, gedud (raider) shall raid him; but he shall raid akev ([at] the heel). 20Out of Asher his lechem shall be rich, and he shall yield royal dainties. 21Naphtali is a doe let loose; he giveth goodly sayings. 22Yosef is a ben of a fruittree, even ben of a fruit-tree near an ayin (spring, well); its daughters (i.e., branches) run over the wall; 23The ba'alei khitzim (archers) provoke him, and shoot at him, and hate him; 24But his keshet (bow) remained steady, and the arms of his hands remain strong, from the hands of the Avir Ya'akov, from there, from the Ro'eh, Even Yisroel; 25And from El Avicha, who shall help thee; and Shaddai, who shall make berakhah over thee with Birkat Shomayim above, Birkat Tehom that lieth beneath, Birkat Shadayim and of Rekhem. 26Birkat Avicha surpass the Birkat of my progenitors unto the utmost border of the giveot olam (everlasting hills); they shall come on the rosh Yosef, and on the brow of the Prince among his achim. 27Binyamin--a ze'ev (wolf) which tears in pieces; in the boker he shall devour the prey, and at erev he shall divide the plunder. 28All these are the Shivtei Yisroel; and this is it that Avichem spoke unto them, and made a berakhah on them; every one according to his berakhah he blessed them. 29And he charged them, and said unto them, I am to be gathered unto my people; bury me with Avotai in the me'arah (cave) that is in the sadeh of Ephron the Chitti, 30In the me'arah that is in the sadeh of Machpelah, which is near Mamre, in Eretz Kena'an, which Avraham bought with the sadeh of Ephron the Chitti for an achuzzat kever (burial estate). 31There they buried Avraham and Sarah his isha; there they buried Yitzchak and Rivkah his isha; and there I buried Leah. 32The purchase of the sadeh and of the me'arah (cave) that is therein was from the Bnei Chet (Heth). 33And when Ya'akov had made an end of commanding his banim, he gathered up his raglayim into the mittah, and expired, and was gathered unto his people.