Israel’s Last Days

48 Now it came about after these things that [a]Joseph was told, “Behold, your father is sick.” So he took his two sons (A)Manasseh and Ephraim with him. When [b]it was told to Jacob, “Behold, your son Joseph has come to you,” Israel [c]collected his strength and sat [d]up in the bed. Then Jacob said to Joseph, “[e](B)God Almighty appeared to me at (C)Luz in the land of Canaan and blessed me, and He said to me, ‘Behold, I will make you fruitful and numerous, and I will make you a multitude of peoples, and will give this land to your [f]descendants after you as (D)an everlasting possession.’ Now your two sons, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you in Egypt, are mine; (E)Ephraim and Manasseh shall be mine, as (F)Reuben and Simeon are. But your children that you have fathered after them shall be yours; they shall be called by the [g]names of their brothers in their inheritance. Now as for me, when I came from (G)Paddan, (H)Rachel died, [h]to my sorrow, in the land of Canaan on the journey, when there was still some distance to go to Ephrath. I buried her there on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem).”

When Israel (I)saw Joseph’s sons, he said, “Who are these?” And Joseph said to his father, “(J)They are my sons, whom God has given me here.” So he said, “Bring them to me, please, so that (K)I may bless them.” 10 Now (L)the eyes of Israel were so [i]dim from age that he could not see. And [j]Joseph brought them close to him, and he (M)kissed them and embraced them. 11 And Israel said to Joseph, “I never [k]expected to see your face, and behold, God has let me see your [l]children as well!” 12 Then Joseph [m]took them from his knees, and (N)bowed with his face to the ground. 13 And 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 reached out his right hand and placed it on the head of Ephraim, who was the younger, and his left hand on Manasseh’s head, crossing his hands, although (O)Manasseh was the firstborn. 15 And he blessed Joseph, and said,

(P)The God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked,
(Q)The God who has been my shepherd [n]all my life to this day,
16 (R)The angel who has redeemed me from all evil,
(S)Bless the boys;
And may my name [o]live on in them,
And the [p]names of my fathers Abraham and Isaac;
And (T)may they grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.”

17 When Joseph saw that his father (U)placed his right hand on Ephraim’s head, it displeased him; and he grasped his father’s hand to move it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head. 18 And 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 (V)his [q]descendants shall become [r]a multitude of nations.” 20 So (W)he blessed them that day, saying,

“By you Israel will pronounce blessing, saying,
‘May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh!’”

And so he put Ephraim before Manasseh. 21 Then Israel said to Joseph, “Behold, I am about to die, but (X)God will be with you, and (Y)bring you back to the land of your fathers. 22 And I give you one [s]portion more than your brothers, (Z)which I took from the hand of the Amorite with my sword and my bow.”

Jacob’s Prophecy concerning His Sons

49 Then Jacob summoned his sons and said, “Assemble yourselves, so that I may tell you what will happen to you (AA)in the [t]days to come.

Gather together and listen, sons of Jacob;
Yes, (AB)listen to Israel your father.

“Reuben, you are my firstborn,
My might and (AC)the beginning of my strength,
Preeminent in dignity and preeminent in power.
[u]Uncontrollable as water, you shall not have preeminence,
(AD)Because you went up to your father’s bed;
Then you defiled it—he went up to my couch.

(AE)Simeon and Levi are brothers;
Their [v]swords are implements of violence.
(AF)May my soul not enter into their council;
May my glory not be united with their assembly;
For in their anger they killed [w]men,
And in their self-will they lamed [x]oxen.
Cursed be their anger, for it is fierce;
And their wrath, for it is cruel.
(AG)I will scatter them in Jacob,
And disperse them among Israel.

“As for you, Judah, your brothers shall praise you;
Your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies;
(AH)Your father’s sons shall bow down to you.
Judah is a (AI)lion’s cub;
From the prey, my son, you have gone up.
(AJ)He [y]crouches, he lies down as a lion,
And as a [z]lion, who [aa]dares to stir him up?
10 (AK)The scepter will not depart from Judah,
Nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet,
[ab]Until Shiloh comes,
And (AL)to him shall be the obedience of the peoples.
11 (AM)He ties his foal to the vine,
And his donkey’s colt to the choice vine;
(AN)He washes his garments in wine,
And his robes in the blood of grapes.
12 His eyes are [ac]dull from wine,
And his teeth [ad]white from milk.

13 (AO)Zebulun will reside at the seashore;
And he shall be [ae]a harbor for ships,
And his flank shall be toward Sidon.

14 “Issachar is a [af]strong donkey,
(AP)Lying down between the sheepfolds.
15 When he saw that a resting place was good
And that the land was pleasant,
He bowed his shoulder to carry burdens,
And became a slave at forced labor.

16 (AQ)Dan shall (AR)judge his people,
As one of the tribes of Israel.
17 Dan shall be a serpent in the way,
A horned viper in the path,
That bites the horse’s heels,
So that its rider falls backward.
18 (AS)For Your salvation I wait, Lord.

19 (AT)As for Gad, a band of raiders shall attack him,
But he will attack at their [ag]heels.

20 [ah](AU)As for (AV)Asher, his [ai]food shall be [aj]rich,
And he will yield royal delicacies.

21 (AW)Naphtali is a doe let loose;
He utters beautiful words.

22 (AX)Joseph is a fruitful [ak]branch,
A fruitful [al]branch by a spring;
Its [am]branches hang over a wall.
23 The archers provoked him,
And shot at him and were hostile toward him;
24 But his (AY)bow remained [an]firm,
And [ao](AZ)his arms were agile,
From the hands of the (BA)Mighty One of Jacob
(From there is (BB)the Shepherd, (BC)the Stone of Israel),
25 From (BD)the God of your father who helps you,
And [ap](BE)by the [aq]Almighty who blesses you
With (BF)blessings of heaven above,
Blessings of the deep that lies beneath,
Blessings of the breasts and of the womb.
26 The blessings of your father
Have surpassed the blessings of my ancestors
Up to the [ar]furthest boundary of (BG)the everlasting hills;
May they be on the head of Joseph,
And on the top of the head of the one distinguished among his brothers.

27 “Benjamin is a [as]ravenous wolf;
In the morning he devours the prey,
And in the evening he divides the spoils.”

28 All these are the twelve tribes of Israel, and this is what their father said to them [at]when he blessed them. He blessed them, every one [au]with the blessing appropriate to him.

Jacob Dies

29 Then he commanded them and said to them, “I am about to be (BH)gathered to my people; (BI)bury me with my fathers in the cave that is in (BJ)the field of Ephron the Hittite, 30 in the (BK)cave that is in the field of Machpelah, which is opposite Mamre, in the land of Canaan, which Abraham bought along with the field from Ephron the Hittite as a [av]burial site. 31 There they buried (BL)Abraham and his wife (BM)Sarah, there they buried (BN)Isaac and his wife Rebekah, and there I buried Leah— 32 the field and the cave that is in it, purchased from the sons of Heth.” 33 When Jacob finished commanding his sons, he drew his feet into the bed and (BO)breathed his last, and was (BP)gathered to his people.

Jacob Is Buried

50 Then Joseph fell on his father’s face, and wept over him and kissed him. Joseph commanded his servants the physicians to embalm his father. So the physicians (BQ)embalmed Israel. Now forty days were [aw]required for [ax]it, for [ay]such is the period required for embalming. And the Egyptians (BR)wept for him seventy days.

When the days of [az]mourning for him were past, Joseph spoke to the household of Pharaoh, saying, “If now I have found favor in your sight, please speak [ba]to Pharaoh, saying, (BS)My father made me swear, saying, “Behold, I am about to die; in my grave (BT)which I dug for myself in the land of Canaan, there you shall bury me.” Now then, please let me go up and bury my father; then I will return.’” Pharaoh said, “Go up and bury your father, as he made you swear.”

So Joseph went up to bury his father, and with him went up all the servants of Pharaoh, the elders of his household and all the elders of the land of Egypt, and all the household of Joseph and his brothers and his father’s household; they left only their little ones and their flocks and their herds in the land of Goshen. Chariots with teams of horses also went up with him; and it was a very great company. 10 When they came to the [bb]threshing floor of Atad, which is beyond the Jordan, they (BU)mourned there with a very great and [bc]sorrowful lamentation; and he [bd]observed seven days of mourning for his father. 11 Now when the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites, saw the mourning at [be]the threshing floor of Atad, they said, “This is a [bf]grievous [bg]mourning for the Egyptians.” Therefore it was named [bh]Abel-mizraim, which is beyond the Jordan.

Burial at Machpelah

12 And so his sons did for him as he had commanded them; 13 for his sons carried him to the land of Canaan and buried him in (BV)the cave of the field of Machpelah opposite Mamre, which Abraham had bought along with the field as a [bi]burial site from Ephron the Hittite. 14 And after he had buried his father, Joseph returned to Egypt, he and his brothers, and all who had gone up with him to bury his father.

15 When Joseph’s brothers had seen that their father was dead, they said, “(BW)What if Joseph holds a grudge against us and pays us back in full for all the wrong which we did to him!” 16 So they sent instructions to Joseph, saying, “Your father commanded us before he died, saying, 17 ‘This is what you shall say to Joseph: “Please forgive, I beg you, the offense of your brothers and their sin, for they did you wrong.”’ And now, please forgive the offense of the servants of the God of your father.” And Joseph wept when they spoke to him. 18 Then his brothers also came and (BX)fell down before him and said, “Behold, we are your servants.” 19 But Joseph said to them, “Do not be afraid, for am I in God’s place? 20 As for you, (BY)you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about [bj]this present result, to keep many people alive. 21 So therefore, do not be afraid; (BZ)I will provide for you and your little ones.” So he comforted them and spoke [bk]kindly to them.

Death of Joseph

22 Now Joseph stayed in Egypt, he and his father’s household, and Joseph lived 110 years. 23 Joseph saw the third generation of Ephraim’s sons; also the sons of Machir, the son of Manasseh, were (CA)born on Joseph’s knees. 24 Joseph said to his brothers, “(CB)I am about to die, but God will assuredly [bl]take care of you and bring you up from this land to the land which He [bm]promised on oath to (CC)Abraham, to (CD)Isaac, and to (CE)Jacob.” 25 Then Joseph made the sons of Israel swear, saying, “God will assuredly [bn]take care of you, and (CF)you shall carry my bones up from here.” 26 So Joseph died at the age of 110 years; and they (CG)embalmed him and placed him in a coffin in Egypt.


  1. Genesis 48:1 Lit one said to Joseph
  2. Genesis 48:2 Lit one told Jacob and said
  3. Genesis 48:2 Lit strengthened himself
  4. Genesis 48:2 Lit upon the bed
  5. Genesis 48:3 Heb El Shaddai
  6. Genesis 48:4 Lit seed
  7. Genesis 48:6 Lit name
  8. Genesis 48:7 Lit upon me
  9. Genesis 48:10 Lit dull
  10. Genesis 48:10 Lit he
  11. Genesis 48:11 Lit assumed
  12. Genesis 48:11 Lit seed
  13. Genesis 48:12 Lit made them come out
  14. Genesis 48:15 Lit from the continuance of me
  15. Genesis 48:16 Lit be called
  16. Genesis 48:16 Lit name
  17. Genesis 48:19 Lit seed
  18. Genesis 48:19 Lit the fullness
  19. Genesis 48:22 Or ridge; lit shoulder; Heb Shechem
  20. Genesis 49:1 Lit end of the days
  21. Genesis 49:4 Or Gushing over
  22. Genesis 49:5 Or plans; meaning uncertain
  23. Genesis 49:6 Lit a man
  24. Genesis 49:6 Lit an ox
  25. Genesis 49:9 Lit bows down
  26. Genesis 49:9 Lit lioness
  27. Genesis 49:9 Lit shall
  28. Genesis 49:10 Or Until he comes to Shiloh; or Until he comes to whom it belongs
  29. Genesis 49:12 Or darker than
  30. Genesis 49:12 Or whiter than
  31. Genesis 49:13 Lit a shore of ships
  32. Genesis 49:14 Lit donkey of bone
  33. Genesis 49:19 Lit heel
  34. Genesis 49:20 Lit From
  35. Genesis 49:20 Or bread
  36. Genesis 49:20 Lit fat
  37. Genesis 49:22 Lit son
  38. Genesis 49:22 Lit son
  39. Genesis 49:22 Lit daughters
  40. Genesis 49:24 I.e., in an unyielding position
  41. Genesis 49:24 Lit the arms of his hands
  42. Genesis 49:25 Or with
  43. Genesis 49:25 Heb Shaddai
  44. Genesis 49:26 Lit limit; or desire
  45. Genesis 49:27 Lit a wolf that tears
  46. Genesis 49:28 Lit and
  47. Genesis 49:28 Lit according to his blessing
  48. Genesis 49:30 Lit possession of a burial place
  49. Genesis 50:3 Lit fulfilled
  50. Genesis 50:3 Or him
  51. Genesis 50:3 Lit so are fulfilled the days of embalming
  52. Genesis 50:4 Lit weeping
  53. Genesis 50:4 Lit In the ears of
  54. Genesis 50:10 Heb Goren ha-Atad
  55. Genesis 50:10 Lit heavy
  56. Genesis 50:10 Lit made a mourning for seven days
  57. Genesis 50:11 Heb Goren ha-Atad
  58. Genesis 50:11 Lit heavy
  59. Genesis 50:11 Heb ebel
  60. Genesis 50:11 I.e., the meadow (or mourning) of Egypt
  61. Genesis 50:13 Lit possession of a burial place
  62. Genesis 50:20 Lit as this day
  63. Genesis 50:21 Lit to their heart
  64. Genesis 50:24 Or visit
  65. Genesis 50:24 Lit swore
  66. Genesis 50:25 Or visit

Bible Gateway Recommends