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Genesis 48

48
1And it cometh to pass, after these things, that [one] saith to Joseph, ‘Lo, thy father is sick;’ and he taketh his two sons with him, Manasseh and Ephraim.
2And [one] declareth to Jacob, and saith, ‘Lo, thy son Joseph is coming unto thee;’ and Israel doth strengthen himself, and sit upon the bed.
3And Jacob saith unto Joseph, ‘God Almighty hath appeared unto me, in Luz, in the land of Canaan, and blesseth me,
4and saith unto me, Lo, I am making thee fruitful, and have multiplied thee, and given thee for an assembly of peoples, and given this land to thy seed after thee, a possession age-during.
5‘And now, thy two sons, who are born to thee in the land of Egypt, before my coming unto thee to Egypt, mine they [are]; Ephraim and Manasseh, as Reuben and Simeon they are mine;
6and thy family which thou hast begotten after them are thine; by the name of their brethren they are called in their inheritance.
7‘And I — in my coming in from Padan-[Aram] Rachel hath died by me in the land of Canaan, in the way, while yet a kibrath of land to enter Ephrata, and I bury her there in the way of Ephrata, which [is] Bethlehem.’
8And Israel seeth the sons of Joseph, and saith, ‘Who [are] these?’
9and Joseph saith unto his father, ‘They [are] my sons, whom God hath given to me in this [place];’ and he saith, ‘Bring them, I pray thee, unto me, and I bless them.’
10And the eyes of Israel have been heavy from age, he is unable to see; and he bringeth them nigh unto him, and he kisseth them, and cleaveth to them;
11and Israel saith unto Joseph, ‘To see thy face I had not thought, and lo, God hath shewed me also thy seed.’
12And Joseph bringeth them out from between his knees, and boweth himself on his face to the earth;
13and Joseph taketh them both, Ephraim in his right hand towards Israel's left, and Manasseh in his left towards Israel's right, and bringeth [them] nigh to him.
14And Israel putteth out his right hand, and placeth [it] upon the head of Ephraim, who [is] the younger, and his left hand upon the head of Manasseh; he hath guided his hands wisely, for Manasseh [is] the first-born.
15And he blesseth Joseph, and saith, ‘God, before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked habitually: God who is feeding me from my being unto this day:
16the Messenger who is redeeming me from all evil doth bless the youths, and my name is called upon them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; and they increase into a multitude in the midst of the land.’
17And Joseph seeth that his father setteth his right hand on the head of Ephraim, and it is wrong in his eyes, and he supporteth the hand of his father to turn it aside from off the head of Ephraim to the head of Manasseh;
18and Joseph saith unto his father, ‘Not so, my father, for this [is] the first-born; set thy right hand on his head.’
19And his father refuseth, and saith, ‘I have known, my son, I have known; he also becometh a people, and he also is great, and yet, his young brother is greater than he, and his seed is the fulness of the nations;’
20and he blesseth them in that day, saying, ‘By thee doth Israel bless, saying, God set thee as Ephraim and as Manasseh;’ and he setteth Ephraim before Manasseh.
21And Israel saith unto Joseph, ‘Lo, I am dying, and God hath been with you, and hath brought you back unto the land of your fathers;
22and I — I have given to thee one portion above thy brethren, which I have taken out of the hand of the Amorite by my sword and by my bow.’

Genesis 48

48
1#Jacob continues his preparations for death. In a scene that evokes the nearly blind Isaac blessing Jacob and Esau (chap. 27), Jacob blesses Joseph’s two sons. He adopts them, elevating them to a status equal to that of Jacob’s first sons Reuben and Simeon (cf. 1 Chr 5:1). The adoption is one more instance of Jacob’s favoring Rachel and those born of her. The mention of Jacob’s failing eyesight and his selection of the younger son over the older evokes the great deathbed scene in chap. 27. He reaffirms to Joseph the ancient divine promise of progeny and land. Some time afterward, Joseph was informed, “Your father is failing.” So he took along with him his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim. 2When Jacob was told, “Your son Joseph has come to you,” Israel rallied his strength and sat up in bed.
3#Gn 28:12–15; 35:6. Jacob then said to Joseph: “God Almighty appeared to me at Luz#Luz: an older name of Bethel (28:19). in the land of Canaan, and blessing me, 4he said, ‘I will make you fertile and multiply you and make you into an assembly of peoples, and I will give this land to your descendants after you as a permanent possession.’ 5So now your two sons who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I joined you here, shall be mine; Ephraim and Manasseh shall be mine as much as Reuben and Simeon are mine. 6Progeny born to you after them shall remain yours; but their heritage shall be recorded in the names of their brothers. 7#Gn 35:19. I do this because, when I was returning from Paddan, your mother Rachel died, to my sorrow, during the journey in Canaan, while we were still a short distance from Ephrath; and I buried her there on the way to Ephrath [now Bethlehem].”#Since her early death prevented Rachel from bearing more than two sons, Jacob feels justified in treating her two grandsons as if they were her own offspring.
8When Israel saw Joseph’s sons, he asked, “Who are these?” 9“They are my sons,” Joseph answered his father, “whom God has given me here.” “Bring them to me,” said his father, “that I may bless them.” 10Now Israel’s eyes were dim from age; he could not see well. When Joseph brought his sons close to him, he kissed and embraced them. 11Then Israel said to Joseph, “I never expected to see your face again, and now God has allowed me to see your descendants as well!”
12Joseph removed them from his father’s knees and bowed down before him with his face to the ground. 13Then Joseph took the two, Ephraim with his right hand, to Israel’s left, and Manasseh with his left hand, to Israel’s right, and brought them up to him. 14But Israel, crossing his hands, put out his right hand and laid it on the head of Ephraim, although he was the younger, and his left hand on the head of Manasseh, although he was the firstborn. 15Then he blessed them with these words:
“May the God in whose presence
my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked,
The God who has been my shepherd
from my birth to this day,#Heb 11:21.
16The angel who has delivered me from all harm,
bless these boys
That in them my name be recalled,
and the names of my fathers, Abraham and Isaac,
And they may become teeming multitudes
upon the earth!”
17When Joseph saw that his father had laid his right hand on Ephraim’s head, this seemed wrong to him; so he took hold of his father’s hand, to remove it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s, 18saying, “That is not right, father; the other one is the firstborn; lay your right hand on his head!” 19But his father refused. “I know it, son,” he said, “I know. That one too shall become a people, and he too shall be great. Nevertheless, his younger brother shall surpass him, and his descendants shall become a multitude of nations.” 20So he blessed them that day and said, “By you shall the people of Israel pronounce blessings, saying, ‘God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh.’” Thus he placed Ephraim before Manasseh.#Heb 11:21.
21Then Israel said to Joseph: “I am about to die. But God will be with you and will restore you to the land of your ancestors. 22#Jos 17:14, 17–18; Jn 4:5. As for me, I give to you, as to the one above his brothers, Shechem, which I captured from the Amorites with my sword and bow.”#Both the meaning of the Hebrew and the historical reference in this verse are obscure. By taking the Hebrew word for Shechem as a common noun meaning shoulder or mountain slope, some translators render the verse, “I give you one portion more than your brothers, which I captured…” The reference may be to the capture of Shechem by the sons of Jacob (34:24–29). Shechem lay near the border separating the tribal territory of Manasseh from that of Ephraim (Jos 16:4–9; 17:1–2, 7).