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Genesis 48

48
1Sometime after this, Joseph was told, “Your father is sick.” So Joseph went to see him, taking with him his two sons Manasseh and Ephraim.
2When Jacob was told, “Your son Joseph has come to you,” he gathered his strength and sat up in bed. 3Jacob said to Joseph, “God Almighty appeared to me at Luz in Canaan, and he blessed me there. 4He told me, ‘Listen! I will make you prosperous and make your descendants so numerous that you will become the ancestor of many nations, and I will give this land to your descendants to own forever.’
5I am counting as mine your two sons Ephraim and Manasseh who were born here in Egypt before I arrived, just as Reuben and Simeon are mine. 6Any other children you have after them will be yours, and will share their inheritance within the land of their older brothers. 7I'm doing this because#48:7. “I'm doing this because”: supplied for context. The sense seems to be that since Rachel died in childbirth having Benjamin, she wasn't able to have any more children, so in Jacob's mind he claims Joseph's sons as some kind of recompense. tragically for me when I was returning from Paddan-aram, Rachel died in Canaan some distance from Ephrath. I buried her there on the way to Ephrath” (also known as Bethlehem).
8Israel saw Joseph's sons and said, “So these are your sons?”
9“Yes, these are the sons God gave me here,” Joseph told his father.
“Bring them over here so I can bless them,” he said.
10Israel's eyesight was failing because of his age and he couldn't see well, so Joseph brought them close to his father, and he kissed and hugged them. 11Israel said to Joseph, “I never thought I'd see your face again, and now God has even let me see your children!”
12Joseph took his sons from between Israel's knees, and bowed low with his face to the ground. 13Then Joseph placed Ephraim on his right so he would be on Israel's left, and Manasseh on his left so he would be on Israel's right, and then brought them over to Israel. 14But when Israel reached out his hands, he crossed them over and placed his right hand on Ephraim the younger son, and placed his left on Manasseh, the firstborn. 15He blessed Joseph, saying,
“May the God my grandfather Abraham and my father worshiped—the God who has taken care of me like a shepherd throughout my life until now, 16the Angel who has saved me from all kinds of trouble—may he bless these boys. May my name and the names of my grandfather Abraham and father Isaac continue through them, and may they have many descendants that spread throughout the earth.”
17Joseph was unhappy when he saw his father had put his right hand on Ephraim, so he took his father's hand to try and move it from Ephraim's head to Manasseh's head. 18“Not like that, father, this is the firstborn; put your right hand on his head,” Joseph told him.
19But his father refused, saying, “I know what I'm doing. Manasseh will also become an important people, but his younger brother will be greater than him, and his descendants will become a large nation.”
20So Israel blessed them that day and said: “In the future the people of Israel will use your names to give a blessing, saying, ‘May God bless you like he did Ephraim and Manasseh.’” In saying this he placed Ephraim before Manasseh.
21Then Israel said to Joseph, “I'm going to die soon, but God will be with you and bring you back to the land of your fathers. 22I'm also giving you something in addition to what I'm giving your brothers—the piece of land on the mountain slope of Shechem#48:22. The word used here meaning “shoulder” refers to both a mountain slope and also the town of Shechem named after such a slope. In 33:18, it's recorded that Jacob bought a piece of land at Shechem, and in Joshua 24:32 it's stated that Joseph was later buried there. It is also referred to in John 4:5 as the land Jacob gave to Joseph. that I took from the Amorites with my sword and bow.”
48
Chapter 48
Jacob blesses Joseph's sons
1After some time, someone told Joseph, ‘Your father is ill.’ So, Joseph went to see Jacob and he took his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim, with him. 2Someone told Jacob, ‘Your son Joseph has come to see you.’ Jacob's body became stronger and he sat up on the bed. 3Jacob said to Joseph, ‘God Almighty appeared to me at Luz, in Canaan. God blessed me there. 4He said to me, “I am going to give you many children, so that your descendants are many. In that way, you will become the ancestor of many nations. I will give this land to you so that it belongs to your descendants for ever.” ’
5Jacob continued to say to Joseph, ‘You have two sons that were born to you in Egypt before I came here. They will become my own sons. Ephraim and Manasseh will be my sons, just as Reuben and Simeon are my sons. #48:5 Ephraim and Manasseh became ancestors of two of the 12 Israelite tribes. 6Any children born to you after them will be your own children. They will receive part of the land that belongs to their brothers, Ephraim and Manasseh.
7As for me, I was very sad when your mother Rachel died on our journey from Paddan. She died near to Ephrath. So I buried her there, next to the road to Ephrath (that is now called Bethlehem).’
8Joseph brought Ephraim and Manasseh to his father, Jacob. Jacob asked him, ‘Who are these boys?’ 9Joseph replied, ‘They are the sons that God has given to me here in Egypt.’ Then Israel said, ‘Bring them near to me so that I can bless them.’
10Jacob's eyes had become weak because he was very old. He was almost blind. So Joseph brought his sons near to his father. His father kissed them and he hugged them. 11Jacob said to Joseph, ‘I never thought that I would see you again. But now God has let me see your children too.’
12Then Joseph removed his sons from Jacob's knees. He bent down low, with his face towards the ground. 13He took his two sons near to Jacob. With his right hand, he put Ephraim beside Jacob's left hand. With his left hand, he put Manasseh beside Jacob's right hand. #48:13 Manasseh was Joseph's firstborn son. This son usually received the blessing from his father. The father put his right hand on the head of the son who would receive his blessing.
14Jacob then put out his right hand. But he put it on Ephraim's head, even though Ephraim was the younger son. Jacob crossed his arms so that he put his left hand on Manasseh's head. Manasseh was Joseph's firstborn son.
15Then Jacob blessed Joseph. He said,
‘May God bless these two boys.
He is the God that my ancestors, Abraham and Isaac, served.
Like a shepherd takes care of his sheep,
God has taken care of me all my life, until this day.
16He is the Angel who has kept me safe. #48:16 God appeared to Jacob as an angel. See Genesis 32:29.
I pray that he will bless these boys.
I pray that, because of them, people will remember my name,
and the names of my ancestors, Abraham and Isaac.
I pray that they will have many descendants who live all over the earth.’
17Joseph saw that his father had put his right hand on Ephraim's head. This made Joseph upset. So he took hold of his father's right hand. He moved it from Ephraim's head on to Manasseh's head. 18Joseph said to Jacob, ‘No, my father. This boy is the firstborn son. Put your right hand on his head.’
19But Jacob refused to change. He said, ‘I know, my son. I know what I am doing. Manasseh will also have many descendants who become a great nation. But his younger brother, Ephraim, will become even greater. Ephraim's descendants will become many great nations.’
20So Jacob blessed both of Joseph's sons that day. He said, ‘In your name Israel's people will give this blessing:
“May God be good to you, just like he was to Ephraim and Manasseh.” ’ #48:20 Jacob is saying that God will do good things for Ephraim and Manasseh. And people will remember how good God was to them.
In this way, Jacob put Ephraim before Manasseh when he blessed them.
21Then Jacob said to Joseph, ‘I will die soon. But God will be with you. He will take you back to the land where your ancestors lived. 22I give to you more than I give to your brothers. I give to you the good part of the land that I took from the Amorites. #48:22 Jacob is giving to Joseph an extra part of the land of Canaan. I fought against them with my weapons to take that land.’