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Genesis 49

49
1 AND JACOB called for his sons and said, Gather yourselves together [around me], that I may tell you what shall befall you in the latter or last days.
2 Gather yourselves together and hear, you sons of Jacob; and hearken to Israel your father.
3 Reuben, you are my firstborn, my might, the beginning (the firstfruits) of my manly strength and vigor; [your birthright gave you] the preeminence in dignity and the preeminence in power.
4 But unstable and boiling over like water, you shall not excel and have the preeminence [of the firstborn], because you went to your father's bed; you defiled it–he went to my couch! [Gen. 35:22.]
5 Simeon and Levi are brothers [equally headstrong, deceitful, vindictive, and cruel]; their swords are weapons of violence. [Gen. 34:25-29.]
6 O my soul, come not into their secret council; unto their assembly let not my honor be united [for I knew nothing of their plot], because in their anger they slew men [an honored man, Shechem, and the Shechemites], and in their self-will they disabled oxen.
7 Cursed be their anger, for it was fierce, and their wrath, for it was cruel. I will divide them in Jacob and scatter them in Israel.
8 Judah, you are the one whom your brothers shall praise; your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies; your father's sons shall bow down to you.
9 Judah, a lion's cub! With the prey, my son, you have gone high up [the mountain]. He stooped down, he crouched like a lion, and like a lioness–who dares provoke and rouse him? [Rev. 5:5.]
10 The scepter or leadership shall not depart from Judah, nor the ruler's staff from between his feet, until Shiloh [the Messiah, the Peaceful One] comes to Whom it belongs, and to Him shall be the obedience of the people. [Num. 24:17; Ps. 60:7.]
11 Binding His foal to the vine and His donkey's colt to the choice vine, He washes His garments in wine and His clothes in the blood of grapes. [Isa. 63:1-3; Zech. 9:9; Rev. 19:11-16.]
12 His eyes are darker and more sparkling than wine, and His teeth whiter than milk.
13 Zebulun shall live toward the seashore, and he shall be a haven and a landing place for ships; and his border shall be toward Sidon.
14 Issachar is a strong-boned donkey crouching down between the sheepfolds.
15 And he saw that rest was good and that the land was pleasant; and he bowed his shoulder to bear [his burdens] and became a servant to tribute [subjected to forced labor].
16 Dan shall judge his people as one of the tribes of Israel.
17 Dan shall be a serpent by the way, a horned snake in the path, that bites at the horse's heels, so that his rider falls backward.
18 I wait for Your salvation, O Lord.
19 Gad–a raiding troop shall raid him, but he shall raid at their heels and assault them [victoriously].
20 Asher's food [supply] shall be rich and fat, and he shall yield and deliver royal delights.
21 Naphtali is a hind let loose which yields lovely fawns.
22 Joseph is a fruitful bough, a fruitful bough by a well (spring or fountain), whose branches run over the wall.
23 Skilled archers have bitterly attacked and sorely worried him; they have shot at him and persecuted him.
24 But his bow remained strong and steady and rested in the Strength that does not fail him, for the arms of his hands were made strong and active by the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob, by the name of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel, [Gen. 48:15; Deut. 32:4; Isa. 9:6; 49:26.]
25 By the God of your father, Who will help you, and by the Almighty, Who will bless you with blessings of the heavens above, blessings lying in the deep beneath, blessings of the breasts and of the womb.
26 The blessings of your father [on you] are greater than the blessings of my forefathers [Abraham and Isaac on me] and are as lasting as the bounties of the eternal hills; they shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him who was the consecrated one and the one separated from his brethren and [the one who] is prince among them.
27 Benjamin is a ravenous wolf, in the morning devouring the prey and at night dividing the spoil.
28 All these are the twelve tribes of Israel, and this is what their father said to them as he blessed them, blessing each one according to the blessing suited to him.
29 He charged them and said to them, I am to be gathered to my [departed] people; bury me with my fathers in the cave that is in the field of Ephron the Hittite,
30 In the cave in the field at Machpelah, east of Mamre in the land of Canaan, that Abraham bought, along with the field of Ephron the Hittite, to possess as a cemetery. [Gen. 23:17-20.]
31 There they buried Abraham and Sarah his wife, there they buried Isaac and Rebekah his wife, and there I buried Leah.
32 The purchase of the field and the cave that is in it was from the sons of Heth.
33 When Jacob had finished commanding his sons, he drew his feet up into the bed and breathed his last and was gathered to his [departed] people.
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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.