Modern English Version
Jacob Blesses Joseph’s Sons
48 After these things, Joseph was told, “Your father is sick.” So he took his two sons Manasseh and Ephraim with him. 2 When Jacob was told, “Your son Joseph is coming to you,” Israel strengthened himself and sat up in the bed.
3 Jacob said to Joseph, “God Almighty appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan, and blessed me. 4 And He said to me, ‘I will make you fruitful and multiply you, and I will make you into a multitude of people and will give this land to your descendants after you for an everlasting possession.’
5 “Now your two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you in Egypt, are mine; as Reuben and Simeon, they shall be mine. 6 Any children you have after them will be yours and will be called by the names of their brothers in their inheritance. 7 As for me, when I came from Paddan, Rachel died beside me in the land of Canaan on the way, when there was still some distance to get to Ephrath, and I buried her there on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem).”
8 Then Israel saw Joseph’s sons and said, “Whose are these?”
9 And Joseph said to his father, “They are my sons, whom God has given me in this place.”
And he said, “Please bring them to me, and I will bless them.”
10 Now the eyes of Israel were dim with age, so that he could not see. So Joseph brought them near to him, and he kissed them and embraced them.
11 Israel said to Joseph, “I never thought I would see your face, but here God has also shown me your children.”
12 So Joseph took them from beside his knees, and he bowed down with his face to the ground. 13 Joseph took them both, Ephraim in his right hand toward Israel’s left hand, and Manasseh in his left hand toward Israel’s right hand, and brought them near him. 14 Israel stretched out his right hand and laid it on Ephraim’s head, who was the younger, and his left hand on Manasseh’s head, crossing his hands, for Manasseh was the firstborn.
15 He blessed Joseph and said,
“God, before whom my fathers
Abraham and Isaac walked,
the God who fed me
all my life long to this day,
16 the angel who redeemed me from all evil,
bless the boys;
let them be called by my name,
and the name of my fathers, Abraham and Isaac;
and let them grow into a multitude
in the midst of the earth.”
17 When Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand on the head of Ephraim, it displeased him, and he took hold of 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. Put your right hand on his head.”
19 His father refused and said, “I know it, my son, I know it. He will also become a people, and he will also be great, but truly his younger brother will be greater than he, and his descendants will become a multitude of nations.” 20 He blessed them that day, saying,
“By you Israel will bless, saying,
‘May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh.’ ”
So he set Ephraim before Manasseh.
21 Israel said to Joseph, “I am about to die, but God will be with you and return you again to the land of your fathers. 22 Moreover, I have given to you one portion more than your brothers, which I took out of the hand of the Amorites with my sword and my bow.”