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Deuteronomy 33 International Standard Version (ISV)

Moses Reviews the Tribes of Israel

33 This is the blessing with which Moses, the man of God, blessed the Israelis before his death. He said:

“The Lord came from Sinai.
    Rising from Seir upon us,[a]
he shone forth from Mount Paran,
    accompanied[b] by a myriad[c] of his holy ones,
        with flaming fire from his right hand for them.
Indeed, lover of people,
    all of his holy ones are in your control.[d]
They gather at your feet
    to do as you have instructed.[e]
Moses commanded with the Law,
    an inheritance for the community of Jacob.
The Lord[f] was king of Jeshurun[g]
    when the leaders of the people—
        all the tribes of Israel—gathered together.”


“May Reuben live and not die,
    though his numbers are few.”


He declared this about Judah:

“Hear, Lord, the voice of Judah
    and return him to his people.
With his own strength he fights for himself,
    and you will be of assistance[h] against[i] his enemies.”


About Levi he said:

“Let your Thummim and Urim[j] be with the man
    to whom you showed gracious love,
whom you tested at Massah
    and with whom you struggled
        at the waters of Meribah,
the one who told his mother and father,
    ‘I don’t know[k] them,’
and who would neither acknowledge his brothers
    nor know his own children.
For they kept your word
    and guarded your covenant.
10 They will teach your ordinances to Jacob,
    and your Law to Israel.
They will offer incense as a pleasant aroma to you[l]
    and a whole burnt offering upon your altar.
11 Lord, bless his substance
    and approve the work that he undertakes.[m]
Shatter the legs[n] of those who oppose against him;
    may those who hate him stand no more.”


12 About Benjamin he said:

“The beloved of the Lord will live confidently,
    the Most High protecting[o] him all day long,
        and resting in his bosom.[p]


13 About Joseph he said:

“May the blessing of the Lord be on his land:
    dew from the choicest of the heavens,
        and from the depths beneath;
14 from the choicest products of the sun,
    the rich fruit of the harvest moon,[q]
15 the choicest portion[r] of the eternal mountains,
    and the best of the everlasting hills;
16 from the choicest of the earth and its fullness,
    and the favor of the one who lived in the burning[s] bush.
May blessing[t] rest on Joseph’s head,
    and on the crown of the head
        of the one set apart from his brothers.
17 May the firstborn of his bull be honorable to him,
    and may his horns be those of a wild ox.
With them may he push people all together,
    to the ends of the earth.
These are the myriads[u] of Ephraim
    and the thousands of Manasseh.”

Zebulun and Issachar

18 About Zebulun he said:

“Zebulun, rejoice as you go out
    and Issachar, in being inside your tents.
19 They will call the nations[v] to the mountain,
    and there they will offer righteous sacrifices,
for they’ll draw from the abundance of the sea
    and from the hidden treasures of the sand.”


20 About Gad he said:

“Blessed be the one who enlarges Gad!
    Like a roaring lion, he crouches,
        tearing arm and scalp.
21 He chose the best part for himself,
    when the leader’s portion was assigned.
He came at the head of the people,
    carrying out the Lord’s justice
        and his ordinances concerning Israel.”


22 About Dan he said:

“Dan is a lion’s cub,
    leaping forth from Bashan.”


23 About Naphtali he said:

“Naphtali, full of favor and the Lord’s blessing,
    take possession of the west[w] and south.”


24 About Asher he said:

“May Asher be blessed, along with his descendants,
    may his brothers be pleased with him,
        may he dip his feet in oil,
25 may your bolts be made of iron and bronze,
    and may your strength be sufficient for each day you live.”

Israel’s Defender

26 “There is no one like the God of Jeshurun,[x]
    who rides through the heavens
        with its lofty clouds to help you.
27 The God of old is a dwelling place,
    with everlasting arms underneath.
He drove out your enemies before you
    and said: ‘Destroy them!’
28 So Israel lives in confidence,
    isolated as the fountain of Jacob
in a land of grain and new wine,
    where the heavens rain down dew.
29 How blessed are you, Israel!
    Who can be like you,
a people delivered by the Lord,
    your shield of help and
        your finely crafted sword.
May your enemies cower before you.
    You will tread down their high places.”


  1. Deuteronomy 33:2 So LXX. MT reads them
  2. Deuteronomy 33:2 Lit. came or brought
  3. Deuteronomy 33:2 Or by countless; Lit. by ten thousands
  4. Deuteronomy 33:3 Lit. hand
  5. Deuteronomy 33:3 Lit. to do your word
  6. Deuteronomy 33:5 The Heb. lacks The Lord
  7. Deuteronomy 33:5 I.e. a poetic term for national Israel; the Heb. name means Upright One
  8. Deuteronomy 33:7 So LXX. MT reads be his helper
  9. Deuteronomy 33:7 Lit. from
  10. Deuteronomy 33:8 I.e. the jewel-encrusted breastplate worn by the high priest by which the will of God could be revealed; cf. Ezra 2:63, Neh 7:65
  11. Deuteronomy 33:9 Lit. see
  12. Deuteronomy 33:10 Lit. for your nose
  13. Deuteronomy 33:11 Lit. work of his hands
  14. Deuteronomy 33:11 Or loins
  15. Deuteronomy 33:12 Or shading
  16. Deuteronomy 33:12 Lit. between his shoulders
  17. Deuteronomy 33:14 Lit. the month
  18. Deuteronomy 33:15 The Heb. lacks portion
  19. Deuteronomy 33:16 The Heb. lacks burning
  20. Deuteronomy 33:16 Lit. it
  21. Deuteronomy 33:17 Or the countless ones; Lit. the ten thousands
  22. Deuteronomy 33:19 Lit. peoples
  23. Deuteronomy 33:23 Or sea
  24. Deuteronomy 33:26 I.e. a poetic term for national Israel; the Heb. name means Upright One
International Standard Version (ISV)

Copyright © 1995-2014 by ISV Foundation. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED INTERNATIONALLY. Used by permission of Davidson Press, LLC.

Deuteronomy 33 New International Version (NIV)

Moses Blesses the Tribes

33 This is the blessing that Moses the man of God pronounced on the Israelites before his death. He said:

“The Lord came from Sinai
    and dawned over them from Seir;
    he shone forth from Mount Paran.
He came with[a] myriads of holy ones
    from the south, from his mountain slopes.[b]
Surely it is you who love the people;
    all the holy ones are in your hand.
At your feet they all bow down,
    and from you receive instruction,
the law that Moses gave us,
    the possession of the assembly of Jacob.
He was king over Jeshurun[c]
    when the leaders of the people assembled,
    along with the tribes of Israel.

“Let Reuben live and not die,
    nor[d] his people be few.”

And this he said about Judah:

“Hear, Lord, the cry of Judah;
    bring him to his people.
With his own hands he defends his cause.
    Oh, be his help against his foes!”

About Levi he said:

“Your Thummim and Urim belong
    to your faithful servant.
You tested him at Massah;
    you contended with him at the waters of Meribah.
He said of his father and mother,
    ‘I have no regard for them.’
He did not recognize his brothers
    or acknowledge his own children,
but he watched over your word
    and guarded your covenant.
10 He teaches your precepts to Jacob
    and your law to Israel.
He offers incense before you
    and whole burnt offerings on your altar.
11 Bless all his skills, Lord,
    and be pleased with the work of his hands.
Strike down those who rise against him,
    his foes till they rise no more.”

12 About Benjamin he said:

“Let the beloved of the Lord rest secure in him,
    for he shields him all day long,
    and the one the Lord loves rests between his shoulders.

13 About Joseph he said:

“May the Lord bless his land
    with the precious dew from heaven above
    and with the deep waters that lie below;
14 with the best the sun brings forth
    and the finest the moon can yield;
15 with the choicest gifts of the ancient mountains
    and the fruitfulness of the everlasting hills;
16 with the best gifts of the earth and its fullness
    and the favor of him who dwelt in the burning bush.
Let all these rest on the head of Joseph,
    on the brow of the prince among[e] his brothers.
17 In majesty he is like a firstborn bull;
    his horns are the horns of a wild ox.
With them he will gore the nations,
    even those at the ends of the earth.
Such are the ten thousands of Ephraim;
    such are the thousands of Manasseh.

18 About Zebulun he said:

“Rejoice, Zebulun, in your going out,
    and you, Issachar, in your tents.
19 They will summon peoples to the mountain
    and there offer the sacrifices of the righteous;
they will feast on the abundance of the seas,
    on the treasures hidden in the sand.”

20 About Gad he said:

“Blessed is he who enlarges Gad’s domain!
    Gad lives there like a lion,
    tearing at arm or head.
21 He chose the best land for himself;
    the leader’s portion was kept for him.
When the heads of the people assembled,
    he carried out the Lord’s righteous will,
    and his judgments concerning Israel.”

22 About Dan he said:

“Dan is a lion’s cub,
    springing out of Bashan.”

23 About Naphtali he said:

“Naphtali is abounding with the favor of the Lord
    and is full of his blessing;
    he will inherit southward to the lake.”

24 About Asher he said:

“Most blessed of sons is Asher;
    let him be favored by his brothers,
    and let him bathe his feet in oil.
25 The bolts of your gates will be iron and bronze,
    and your strength will equal your days.

26 “There is no one like the God of Jeshurun,
    who rides across the heavens to help you
    and on the clouds in his majesty.
27 The eternal God is your refuge,
    and underneath are the everlasting arms.
He will drive out your enemies before you,
    saying, ‘Destroy them!’
28 So Israel will live in safety;
    Jacob will dwell[f] secure
in a land of grain and new wine,
    where the heavens drop dew.
29 Blessed are you, Israel!
    Who is like you,
    a people saved by the Lord?
He is your shield and helper
    and your glorious sword.
Your enemies will cower before you,
    and you will tread on their heights.


  1. Deuteronomy 33:2 Or from
  2. Deuteronomy 33:2 The meaning of the Hebrew for this phrase is uncertain.
  3. Deuteronomy 33:5 Jeshurun means the upright one, that is, Israel; also in verse 26.
  4. Deuteronomy 33:6 Or but let
  5. Deuteronomy 33:16 Or of the one separated from
  6. Deuteronomy 33:28 Septuagint; Hebrew Jacob’s spring is
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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