8 When Israel saw Joseph’s sons, he said, “Who are these?”9 Joseph said to his father, “They are my sons, whom God has given me here.” So he said, “Bring them to me, please, that I may bless them.”10 Now the eyes of Israel were so dim from age that he could not see. Then [a]Joseph brought them close to him, and he kissed them and embraced them.11 Israel said to Joseph, “I never [b]expected to see your face, and behold, God has let me see your [c]children as well.”12 Then Joseph [d]took them from his knees, and bowed with his face to the ground.13 Joseph took them both, Ephraim with his right hand toward Israel’s left, and Manasseh with his left hand toward Israel’s right, and brought them close to him.14 But Israel stretched out his right hand and laid it on the head of Ephraim, who was the younger, and his left hand on Manasseh’s head, [e]crossing his hands, [f]although Manasseh was the firstborn.15 He blessed Joseph, and said,
“The God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked, The God who has been my shepherd [g]all my life to this day, 16 The angel who has redeemed me from all evil, Bless the lads; And may my name [h]live on in them, And the [i]names of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; And may they grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.”
17 When Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand on Ephraim’s head, it displeased him; and he grasped his father’s hand to remove it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head.18 Joseph said to his father, “Not so, my father, for this one is the firstborn. Place your right hand on his head.”19 But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know; he also will become a people and he also will be great. However, his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his [j]descendants shall become a [k]multitude of nations.”20 He blessed them that day, saying,
“By you Israel will pronounce blessing, saying, ‘May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh!’”
Thus he put Ephraim before Manasseh.21 Then Israel said to Joseph, “Behold, I am about to die, but God will be with you, and bring you back to the land of your fathers.22 I give you one [l]portion more than your brothers, which I took from the hand of the Amorite with my sword and my bow.”
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