33 Moses, the man of God, gave this blessing to the ·Israelites [L sons/T children of Israel] before he died. 2 He said:
“The Lord came from Mount Sinai and ·rose like the sun [shone forth] from ·Edom [L Seir; C another name for Edom]; he ·showed his greatness [blazed forth] from Mount Paran. He came with ·thousands of angels [myriads of holy ones] ·from the southern mountains [or marching at his right hand; Ex. 15:17; Judg. 5:4–5; Ps. 68:7–8, 17–18; Hab. 3:3–7]. 3 The Lord surely loves his people and takes care of all ·those who belong to him [his holy/consecrated ones]. They ·bow down [submit; or followed] at his feet, and they are taught by him. 4 Moses ·gave us [commanded us with] the ·teachings [laws; instructions] that ·belong to the people [L are the possession of the assembly] of Jacob. 5 The Lord became king ·of Israel [L in Jeshurun; 32:15] when the leaders of the people gathered, when the tribes of Israel came together.
6 “Let the people of Reuben live and not die, but let ·the people [L his numbers] be few [2 Kin. 10:32–34].”
7 Moses said this about the people of Judah: “Lord, listen to Judah’s ·prayer [L voice]; bring them back to their people. They ·defend [contend for] themselves with their hands. Help them fight their enemies!”
8 Moses said this about the people of Levi:
“Lord, your Thummim and Urim [Ex. 28:30] belong to ·Levi, whom you love [L your loyal one]. Lord, you tested him at Massah and argued with him at the waters of Meribah [Ex. 17:1–7]. 9 He said about his father and mother, ‘I don’t care about them.’ He did not treat his brothers as favorites or give special favors to his children, but he protected your word and guarded your ·agreement [covenant; treaty; Ex. 32:25–29]. 10 He teaches your ·laws [judgments] to the people of Jacob and your ·teachings [laws; instructions] to the people of Israel. He ·burns [places] incense before you and makes whole burnt offerings [Lev. 1:1–17] on your altar. 11 Lord, ·make them strong [L bless his powers]; be pleased with the work ·they do [L of their hand]. ·Defeat those who attack them [L Strike the loins of those who rise against them], and don’t let ·their enemies [L those who hate them] rise up again.”
12 Moses said this about the people of Benjamin:
“The Lord’s loved ones will lie down in safety, because ·he [or the Most High] protects them all day long. The ones he loves rest ·with him [L between his shoulders].”
13 Moses said this about the people of Joseph:
“May the Lord bless their land with ·wonderful [or the best fruits from the] dew from heaven, ·with water from the springs [and from the deeps] below, 14 with the best fruits that the sun brings, and with the best fruits ·that the moon brings [or of the months]. 15 Let the ·old [ancient] mountains give the finest crops, and let the everlasting hills give the best fruits. 16 Let the ·full earth [L earth and its fullness] give the best fruits, and let the Lord who lived in ·the burning bush [the thorn bush; or Sinai; Ex. 3:2] be pleased. May ·these blessings [L they] rest on the head of Joseph, on the forehead of the ·one who was blessed [L prince] among his brothers. 17 Joseph has the majesty of a firstborn bull; ·he is as strong as [L his horns are the horns of] a wild ox [Ex. 27:2]. He will ·stab [gore] other nations with them, even those ·nations far away [L at the ends of the earth]. These are the ·ten thousands [myriads] of Ephraim, and these are the thousands of Manasseh [C tribes named after Joseph’s sons].”
18 Moses said this about the people of Zebulun:
“·Be happy [Rejoice] when you go out, Zebulun, and ·be happy [rejoice] in your tents, Issachar. 19 They will call the people to the mountain, and there they will offer the ·right [righteous] sacrifices. They will ·do well from all that is in [L suck the abundance of] the sea, and from the treasures hidden in the sand on the shore.”
20 Moses said this about the people of Gad:
“·Praise God who gives Gad more land [L Blessed be the one who enlarges Gad]! Gad lives there like a lion, who tears off arms and heads. 21 They chose the best land for themselves. They received a large share, like that given to an officer. When the leaders of the people ·gathered [or came], the people of Gad did what the Lord said was ·right [righteous; just], and they judged Israel fairly.”
22 Moses said this about the people of Dan:
“Dan is like a lion’s cub, who ·jumps out of [leaps forth from] Bashan [32:14].”
23 Moses said this about the people of Naphtali:
“Naphtali ·enjoys special kindnesses [is deeply favored], and they are full of the Lord’s blessings. ·Take as your own [or It possesses] the west and south.”
24 Moses said this about the people of Asher:
“Asher is the most blessed of the sons; let him be his brothers’ favorite. Let him ·bathe [dip] his feet in olive oil [C symbolizing comfort and luxury]. 25 Your ·gates will have locks of [L bolts/bars are] iron and bronze, and ·you will be strong as long as you live [L your strength will be like your days].
26 “There is no one like the God of ·Israel [L Jeshurun; 32:15], who rides through the ·skies [heavens] to help you, who rides on the clouds in his majesty [Ps. 18:7–15; 68:5–7; Dan. 7:13–14; Nah. 1:3; Matt. 24:30; Rev. 1:7]. 27 ·The everlasting God is your place of safety [or He humbles the gods of old], and ·his arms will hold you up forever [or humbles the ancient powers]. He will force your enemy out ahead of you, saying, ‘Destroy the enemy!’ 28 The people of Israel will ·lie down [reside; dwell] in safety. Jacob’s ·spring [or abode] is theirs alone. Theirs is a land full of grain and new wine, where the ·skies [heavens] drop their dew. 29 Israel, you are blessed! ·No one else [L Who…?] is like you, because you are a people saved by the Lord. He is your shield and helper, your glorious sword. Your enemies will ·be afraid of you [come cringing to you], and you will ·walk all over [trample] their ·holy places [L high places; or backs].”
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