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Genesis 48

48
Blessings for Manasseh and Ephraim
1Some time later Joseph learned that his father was very sick. So he took his two sons Manasseh and Ephraim and went to his father. 2When Joseph arrived, someone told Jacob, also called Israel, “Your son Joseph has come to see you.” Jacob was weak. So he used all his strength and sat up on his bed.
3Then Jacob said to Joseph, “God All-Powerful appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan. God blessed me there. 4He said to me, ‘I will give you many children. I will make you the father of many peoples. And I will give your descendants this land forever.’ 5Your two sons were born here in Egypt before I came. They will be counted as my own sons. Ephraim and Manasseh will be my sons just as Reuben and Simeon are my sons. 6But if you have other children, they will be your own. But their land will be part of the land given to Ephraim and Manasseh. 7When I came from Northwest Mesopotamia, Rachel died in the land of Canaan. We were traveling toward Ephrath. This made me very sad. I buried her there beside the road to Ephrath.” (Today Ephrath is Bethlehem.)
8Then Israel saw Joseph’s sons. He said, “Who are these boys?”
9Joseph said to his father, “They are my sons. God has given them to me here in Egypt.”
Israel said, “Bring your sons to me so I may bless them.”
10At this time Israel’s eyesight was bad because he was old. So Joseph brought the boys close to him. Israel kissed the boys and put his arms around them. 11He said to Joseph, “I thought I would never see you alive again. And now God has let me see you and also your children.” 12Then Joseph moved his sons off Israel’s lap. Joseph bowed facedown to the ground. 13He put Ephraim on his right side and Manasseh on his left. (So Ephraim was near Israel’s left hand, and Manasseh was near Israel’s right hand.) Joseph brought the boys close to Israel. 14But Israel crossed his arms. He put his right hand on the head of Ephraim, who was younger. He put his left hand on the head of Manasseh. But he was the firstborn son. 15And Israel blessed Joseph and said,
“My ancestors Abraham and Isaac served our God.
And like a shepherd God has led me all my life.
16He was the Angel who saved me from all my troubles.
Now I pray that he will bless these boys.
May my name be known through these boys.
And may the names of my ancestors Abraham and Isaac be known through them.
May they have many descendants on the earth.”
17Joseph saw that his father put his right hand on Ephraim’s head. Joseph didn’t like it. So he took hold of his father’s hand. He wanted to move it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head. 18Joseph said to his father, “You are doing it wrong, Father. Manasseh is the firstborn son. Put your right hand on his head.”
19But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. Manasseh will be great and have many descendants. But his younger brother will be greater. And his descendants will be enough to make a nation.”
20So Israel blessed them that day. He said,
“When a blessing is given in Israel, they will say:
‘May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh.’”
In this way he made Ephraim greater than Manasseh.
21Then Israel said to Joseph, “Look at me. I am about to die. But God will be with you. He will take you back to the land of your fathers. 22I have given you something that I did not give your brothers. I have given you the land of Shechem that I took from the Amorite people. I took it with my sword and my bow.”
48
Jacob Blesses Joseph’s Sons
1Now it came to pass after these things that Joseph was told, “Indeed your father is sick”; and he took with him his two sons, #Gen. 41:51, 56; 46:20; 50:23; Josh. 14:4Manasseh and Ephraim. 2And Jacob was told, “Look, your son Joseph is coming to you”; and Israel strengthened himself and sat up on the bed. 3Then Jacob said to Joseph: “God #Gen. 43:14; 49:25Almighty appeared to me at #Gen. 28:13, 19; 35:6, 9Luz in the land of Canaan and blessed me, 4and said to me, ‘Behold, I will #Gen. 46:3make you fruitful and multiply you, and I will make of you a multitude of people, and #Gen. 35:12; Ex. 6:8give this land to your descendants after you #Gen. 17:8as an everlasting possession.’ 5And now your #Gen. 41:50; 46:20; 48:8; Josh. 13:7; 14:4two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you in Egypt, are mine; as Reuben and Simeon, they shall be mine. 6Your offspring whom you beget after them shall be yours; they will be called by the name of their brothers in their inheritance. 7But as for me, when I came from Padan, #Gen. 35:9, 16, 19, 20Rachel died beside me in the land of Canaan on the way, when there was but a little distance to go to Ephrath; and I buried her there on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem).”
8Then Israel saw Joseph’s sons, and said, “Who are these?”
9And Joseph said to his father, “They are my sons, whom God has given me in this place.
And he said, “Please bring them to me, and #Gen. 27:4; 47:15I will bless them.” 10Now #Gen. 27:1; 1 Sam. 3:2the eyes of Israel were dim with age, so that he could not see. Then Joseph brought them near him, and he #Gen. 27:27; 45:15; 50:1kissed them and embraced them. 11And Israel said to Joseph, #Gen. 45:26“I had not thought to see your face; but in fact, God has also shown me your offspring!”
12So Joseph brought them from beside his knees, and he bowed down with his face to the earth. 13And Joseph took them both, Ephraim with his right hand toward Israel’s left hand, and Manasseh with his left hand toward Israel’s right hand, and brought them near him. 14Then Israel stretched out his right hand and #Matt. 19:15; Mark 10:16laid it on Ephraim’s head, who was the younger, and his left hand on Manasseh’s head, #Gen. 48:19guiding his hands knowingly, for Manasseh was the #Gen. 41:51, 52; Josh. 17:1firstborn. 15And #Gen. 47:7, 10; 49:24; (Heb. 11:21)he blessed Joseph, and said:
“God, #Gen. 17:1; 24:40; 2 Kin. 20:3before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked,
The God who has fed me all my life long to this day,
16The Angel #Gen. 22:11, 15–18; 28:13–15; 31:11; (Ps. 34:22; 121:7)who has redeemed me from all evil,
Bless the lads;
Let #Amos 9:12; Acts 15:17my name be named upon them,
And the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac;
And let them #Num. 26:34, 37grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.”
17Now when Joseph saw that his father #Gen. 48:14laid his right hand on the head of Ephraim, it displeased him; so he took hold of his father’s hand to remove it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head. 18And Joseph said to his father, “Not so, my father, for this one is the firstborn; put your right hand on his head.”
19But his father refused and said, #Gen. 48:14“I know, my son, I know. He also shall become a people, and he also shall be great; but truly #Num. 1:33, 35; Deut. 33:17his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his descendants shall become a multitude of nations.”
20So he blessed them that day, saying, #Ruth 4:11, 12“By you Israel will bless, saying, ‘May God make you as Ephraim and as Manasseh!’ ” And thus he set Ephraim before Manasseh.
21Then Israel said to Joseph, “Behold, I am dying, but #Gen. 28:15; 46:4; 50:24God will be with you and bring you back to the land of your fathers. 22Moreover #Gen. 14:7; Josh. 24:32; John 4:5I have given to you one portion above your brothers, which I took from the hand #Gen. 34:28of the Amorite with my sword and my bow.”