21 When Reuben(A) heard this, he tried to rescue him from their hands. “Let’s not take his life,” he said.(B)

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These are the names of the sons of Israel(A) (Jacob and his descendants) who went to Egypt:

Reuben the firstborn(B) of Jacob.

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“Now then, your two sons born to you in Egypt(A) before I came to you here will be reckoned as mine; Ephraim and Manasseh will be mine,(B) just as Reuben(C) and Simeon(D) are mine.

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14 But Israel(A) reached out his right hand and put it on Ephraim’s head,(B) though he was the younger,(C) and crossing his arms, he put his left hand on Manasseh’s head, even though Manasseh was the firstborn.(D)

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“Reuben, you are my firstborn,(A)
    my might, the first sign of my strength,(B)
    excelling in honor,(C) excelling in power.

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14 These were the heads of their families[a]:(A)

The sons of Reuben(B) the firstborn son of Israel were Hanok and Pallu, Hezron and Karmi. These were the clans of Reuben.

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Footnotes

  1. Exodus 6:14 The Hebrew for families here and in verse 25 refers to units larger than clans.

These are the names(A) of the men who are to assist you:

from Reuben,(B) Elizur son of Shedeur;(C)

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20 From the descendants of Reuben(A) the firstborn son(B) of Israel:

All the men twenty years old or more who were able to serve in the army were listed by name, one by one, according to the records of their clans and families.

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The descendants of Reuben,(A) the firstborn son of Israel, were:

through Hanok,(B) the Hanokite clan;

through Pallu,(C) the Palluite clan;

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“Let Reuben live and not die,
    nor[a] his people be few.”(A)

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Footnotes

  1. Deuteronomy 33:6 Or but let

12 The men of Reuben,(A) Gad(B) and the half-tribe of Manasseh(C) crossed over, ready for battle, in front of the Israelites,(D) as Moses had directed them.(E)

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Reuben

The sons of Reuben(A) the firstborn of Israel (he was the firstborn, but when he defiled his father’s marriage bed,(B) his rights as firstborn were given to the sons of Joseph(C) son of Israel;(D) so he could not be listed in the genealogical record in accordance with his birthright,(E)

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the sons of Reuben(A) the firstborn of Israel:

Hanok, Pallu,(B) Hezron(C) and Karmi.

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