English Standard Version
Jacob Blesses His Sons
2 “Assemble and listen, O sons of Jacob,
listen to Israel your father.
3 “Reuben, you are (C)my firstborn,
my might, and the (D)firstfruits of my strength,
preeminent in dignity and preeminent in power.
4 Unstable as water, you shall not have preeminence,
because you (E)went up to your father's bed;
then you defiled it—he went up to my couch!
5 (F)“Simeon and Levi are brothers;
weapons (G)of violence are their swords.
6 Let my soul come not into their council;
(H)O my glory, (I)be not joined to their company.
For in their anger they killed men,
and in their willfulness they (J)hamstrung oxen.
7 Cursed be their anger, for it is fierce,
and their wrath, for it is cruel!
I will (K)divide them in Jacob
and scatter them in Israel.
8 “Judah, (L)your brothers shall praise you;
(M)your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies;
(N)your father's sons shall bow down before you.
9 Judah is (O)a lion's cub;
from the prey, my son, you have gone up.
(P)He stooped down; he crouched as a lion
and as a lioness; who dares rouse him?
10 The (Q)scepter shall not depart from Judah,
nor the ruler's staff (R)from between his feet,
until tribute comes to him;[a]
and to him shall be the obedience of the peoples.
11 Binding his foal to the vine
and his donkey's colt to the choice vine,
he has washed his garments in wine
and his vesture in the blood of grapes.
12 His (S)eyes are darker than wine,
and his teeth whiter than milk.
14 (V)“Issachar is a strong donkey,
crouching between the sheepfolds.[b]
15 He saw that a resting place was good,
and that the land was pleasant,
so he bowed his shoulder to bear,
and (W)became a servant at forced labor.
16 (X)“Dan shall (Y)judge his people
as one of the tribes of Israel.
17 Dan (Z)shall be a serpent in the way,
a viper by the path,
that bites the horse's heels
so that his rider falls backward.
18 I (AA)wait for your salvation, O Lord.
20 (AD)“Asher's food shall be rich,
and he shall yield royal delicacies.
22 “Joseph is (AF)a fruitful bough,
a fruitful bough by a spring;
his branches run over the wall.[e]
23 The archers (AG)bitterly attacked him,
shot at him, and harassed him severely,
24 yet (AH)his bow remained unmoved;
his arms[f] were made agile
by the hands of the (AI)Mighty One of Jacob
(from there is (AJ)the Shepherd,[g] (AK)the Stone of Israel),
25 (AL)by the God of your father who will help you,
by (AM)the Almighty[h] (AN)who will bless you
with blessings of heaven above,
blessings of the deep that crouches beneath,
blessings of the breasts and of the womb.
26 The blessings of your father
are mighty beyond the blessings of my parents,
up to the bounties (AO)of the everlasting hills.[i]
May they be (AP)on the head of Joseph,
and on the brow of him who was set apart from his brothers.
Jacob's Death and Burial
28 All these are the twelve tribes of Israel. This is what their father said to them as he blessed them, blessing each with the blessing suitable to him.Read full chapter
- Genesis 49:10 By a slight revocalization; a slight emendation yields (compare Septuagint, Syriac, Targum) until he comes to whom it belongs; Hebrew until Shiloh comes, or until he comes to Shiloh
- Genesis 49:14 Or between its saddlebags
- Genesis 49:19 Gad sounds like the Hebrew for raiders and raid
- Genesis 49:21 Or he gives beautiful words, or that bears fawns of the fold
- Genesis 49:22 Or Joseph is a wild donkey, a wild donkey beside a spring, his wild colts beside the wall
- Genesis 49:24 Hebrew the arms of his hands
- Genesis 49:24 Or by the name of the Shepherd
- Genesis 49:25 Hebrew Shaddai
- Genesis 49:26 A slight emendation yields (compare Septuagint) the blessings of the eternal mountains, the bounties of the everlasting hills