Genesis 49

Jacob Blesses his Sons

(1) Jacob called his sons, and said, "Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you that which shall befall you in the last days.

(2) Gather yourselves together, and hear, YOU sons of Jacob, and listen to Israel your father.


(3) Reuben, you are my firstborn, my might, and the beginning of my strength, the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of power.

(4) Unstable as water, you shall not excel, because you went up to your father’s bed, then you defiled it. He went up to my couch.

Simeon and Levi

(5) Simeon and Levi are brothers, instruments of cruelty are their weapons of violence.

(6) O my soul, do not come into their secret counsel, that my honor not be united to their assembly, for in their anger they killed a man, and in their self-will they crippled an ox.

(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 he whom your brothers shall praise. Your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies. Your father’s children shall bow down before you.

(9) Judah is a lion’s cub. From the prey, my son, you have gone up. He stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion, who shall rouse him up?

(10) The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor the commander’s staff from between his feet, until Shiloh comes, and to him shall the people obey.

(11) Binding his donkey to the vine, and his donkey’s colt to the choice vine, he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes.

(12) His eyes shall be dull from wine, and his teeth white as milk.


(13) Zebulun shall dwell at the shore of the sea, and he shall be a haven for ships, and his border shall be to Zidon.


(14) Issachar is a strong donkey crouching down between two burdens.

(15) And he saw that rest was good, and that the land was pleasant, and he bowed his shoulder to bear a heavy load, and became a servant as a forced laborer.


16 Dan shall judge his people, as one of the tribes of Israel.

(17) Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that bites the horse’s heels, so that his rider shall fall backward.

(18) I have waited for your salvation, O LORD.


(19) As for Gad, a troop shall attack him, but he shall overcome at the last.


(20) Asher’s food shall be rich, and he shall provide royal delicacies.


(21) Naphtali is a doe let loose; he gives beautiful words.


(22) Joseph is a fruitful son, a fruitful plant by a spring, whose vines run over the wall.

(23) The archers have bitterly grieved him, and shot at him, and hated him.

(24) But his bow abides in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the mighty God of Jacob (from there is the shepherd, the stone of Israel.)

(25) By the God of your father, who shall help you, and by the Almighty, who shall bless you with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lies below, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb.

(26) The blessings of your father have prevailed above the blessings of my ancestors to the utmost bound of the everlasting hills. They shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him that was separate from his brothers.


(27) Benjamin shall be as a ravenous wolf, in the morning he shall devour the prey, and at night he shall divide the spoil."

(28) All these are the 12 tribes of Israel, and this is what their father spoke to them, and he blessed them, everyone according to his blessing.

Jacob’s Final Commands and Death

(29) Then he charged them, and said to them, "I am to be gathered to my people; bury me with my fathers in the cave that is in the field of Ephron the Hittite,

(30) in the cave that is in the field of Machpelah, which is before Mamre, in the land of Canaan, which Abraham bought with the field of Ephron the Hittite as a possession for a buryingplace.

(31) There they buried Abraham and his wife Sarah, there they buried Isaac and his wife Rebekah, and there I buried Leah.

(32) The field and of the cave that is in it were purchased from the children of Heth."

(33) When Jacob finished commanding his sons, he brought up his feet into the bed, and gave up the ghost and died, and was gathered to his people.

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