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Berĕshith (Genesis) 48

48
1And after these events it came to be that it was said to Yosĕph, “See, your father is sick.” And he took with him his two sons, Menashsheh and Ephrayim.
2And Ya‛aqoḇ was told, “See, your son Yosĕph is coming to you.” And Yisra’ĕl strengthened himself and sat up on the bed.
3And Ya‛aqoḇ said to Yosĕph, “Ěl Shaddai appeared to me at Luz in the land of Kena‛an and blessed me,
4and said to me, ‘See, I am making you fruitful and shall increase you and make of you an assembly of peoples, and give this land to your seed after you as an everlasting possession.’
5“And now, your two sons, Ephrayim and Menashsheh, who were born to you in the land of Mitsrayim before I came to you in Mitsrayim, are mine – as Re’uḇĕn and Shim‛on, they are mine.
6“Your offspring whom you shall bring forth after them are yours, and let them be called by the name of their brothers in their inheritance.
7And I, when I came from Paddan, Raḥĕl died beside me in the land of Kena‛an 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 Bĕyth Leḥem.
8And Yisra’ĕl saw Yosĕph’s sons, and said, “Who are these?”
9And Yosĕph said to his father, “They are my sons, whom Elohim has given me in this place.” And he said, “Please bring them to me, and let me bless them.”
10And the eyes of Yisra’ĕl were dim with age, and he was unable to see. And he drew them near him, and he kissed them and embraced them.
11And Yisra’ĕl said to Yosĕph, “I had not thought to see your face. But see, Elohim has also shown me your seed!”
12So Yosĕph brought them from between his knees, and he bowed down with his face to the earth.
13And Yosĕph took them both, Ephrayim with his right hand toward Yisra’ĕl’s left hand, and Menashsheh with his left hand toward Yisra’ĕl’s right hand, and brought them near him.
14And Yisra’ĕl stretched out his right hand and laid it on Ephrayim’s head, who was the younger, and his left hand on Menashsheh’s head, consciously directing his hands, for Menashsheh was the first-born.
15And he blessed Yosĕph, and said, “The Elohim before whom my fathers Aḇraham and Yitsḥaq walked, the Elohim who has fed me all my life long to this day,
16the Messenger who has redeemed me from all evil – bless the youths! And let my name be called upon them, and the name of my fathers Aḇraham and Yitsḥaq. And let them increase to a multitude in the midst of the earth.”
17And when Yosĕph saw that his father laid his right hand on the head of Ephrayim, it was evil in his eyes; and he took hold of his father’s hand to remove it from the head of Ephrayim to the head of Menashsheh.
18And Yosĕph said to his father, “Not so, my father, for this one is the first-born, put your right hand on his head.”
19But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. He also becomes a people, and he also is great. And yet, his younger brother is greater than he, and his seed is to become the completeness of the nations.”
20And he blessed them on that day, saying, “In you Yisra’ĕl shall bless, saying, ‘Elohim make you as Ephrayim and as Menashsheh!’ ” Thus he put Ephrayim before Menashsheh.
21And Yisra’ĕl said to Yosĕph, “See, I am dying, but Elohim shall be with you and bring you back to the land of your fathers.
22And I, I have given to you one portion above your brothers, which I took from the hand of the Amorite with my sword and with my bow.
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 Israel, “Your son Joseph has come to see you.” Israel was very weak, but he tried hard and sat up in his bed.
3Then Israel 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 make you a great family. I will give you many children and you will be a great people. Your family will own this land forever.’ 5Now you have two sons. These two sons were born here in the country of Egypt before I came. Your two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, will be like my own sons. They will be like Reuben and Simeon to me. 6So these two boys will be my sons. They will share in everything I own. But if you have other sons, they will be your sons. But they will also be like sons to Ephraim and Manasseh—that is, in the future, they will share in everything that Ephraim and Manasseh own. 7On the trip from Paddan Aram, Rachel died in the land of Canaan. This made me very sad. We were still traveling toward Ephrath. I buried her there on the road to Ephrath.” (Ephrath is Bethlehem.)
8Then Israel saw Joseph’s sons. Israel said, “Who are these boys?”
9Joseph said to his father, “These are my sons. These are the boys God gave me.”
Israel said, “Bring your sons to me. I will bless them.”
10Israel was old and his eyes were not good. So Joseph brought the boys close to his father. Israel kissed and hugged the boys. 11Then Israel said to Joseph, “I never thought I would see your face again. But look! God has let me see you and your children.”
12Then Joseph took the boys off Israel’s lap, and they bowed down in front of his father. 13Joseph put Ephraim on his right side and Manasseh on his left side. (So Ephraim was on Israel’s left side, and Manasseh was on Israel’s right side.) 14But Israel crossed his hands and put his right hand on the head of the younger boy Ephraim. Then he put his left hand on Manasseh, even though Manasseh was the firstborn. 15And Israel blessed Joseph and said,
“My ancestors, Abraham and Isaac, worshiped our God,
and that God has led me all my life.
16He was the Angel who saved me from all my troubles.
And I pray that he will bless these boys.
Now they will have my name
and the name of our ancestors, Abraham and Isaac.
I pray that they will grow to become great families and nations
on earth.”
17Joseph saw that his father put his right hand on Ephraim’s head. This didn’t make Joseph happy. Joseph took his father’s hand because he wanted to move it from Ephraim’s head and put it on Manasseh’s head. 18Joseph said to his father, “You have your right hand on the wrong boy. Manasseh is the firstborn. Put your right hand on him.”
19But his father refused and said, “I know, son. I know. Manasseh is the firstborn. He will be great and will be the father of many people. But his younger brother will be greater than he is. And the younger brother’s family will be much larger.”
20So Israel blessed them that day. He said,
“The Israelites will use your names
whenever they bless someone.
They will say, ‘May God make you
like Ephraim and Manasseh.’”
In this way Israel made Ephraim greater than Manasseh.
21Then Israel said to Joseph, “Look, my time to die is almost here, but God will still be with you. He will lead you back to the land of your ancestors. 22I have given you one portion more than I gave to your brothers. I gave you the land that I won from the Amorites. I used my sword and bow to take that land.”