The Last Days of Jacob
27Thus Israel settled in the land of Egypt, in the region of Goshen; and they gained possessions in it, and were fruitful and multiplied exceedingly.28Jacob lived in the land of Egypt seventeen years; so the days of Jacob, the years of his life, were one hundred forty-seven years.29When the time of Israel's death drew near, he called his son Joseph and said to him, “If I have found favor with you, put your hand under my thigh and promise to deal loyally and truly with me. Do not bury me in Egypt.30When I lie down with my ancestors, carry me out of Egypt and bury me in their burial place.” He answered, “I will do as you have said.”31And he said, “Swear to me”; and he swore to him. Then Israel bowed himself on the head of his bed.Chapter 48Jacob Blesses Joseph's Sons
1After this Joseph was told, “Your father is ill.” So he took with him his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim.2When Jacob was told, “Your son Joseph has come to you,” he summoned his strength and sat up in bed.3And Jacob said to Joseph, “God Almighty appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan, and he blessed me,4and said to me, ‘I am going to make you fruitful and increase your numbers; I will make of you a company of peoples, and will give this land to your offspring after you for a perpetual holding.’5Therefore your two sons, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you in Egypt, are now mine; Ephraim and Manasseh shall be mine, just as Reuben and Simeon are.6As for the offspring born to you after them, they shall be yours. They shall be recorded under the names of their brothers with regard to their inheritance.7For when I came from Paddan, Rachel, alas, died in the land of Canaan on the way, while there was still some distance to go to Ephrath; and I buried her there on the way to Ephrath” (that is, Bethlehem).8When Israel saw Joseph's sons, he said, “Who are these?”9Joseph said to his father, “They are my sons, whom God has given me here.” And he said, “Bring them to me, please, that I may bless them.”10Now the eyes of Israel were dim with age, and he could not see well. So Joseph brought them near him; and he kissed them and embraced them.11Israel said to Joseph, “I did not expect to see your face; and here God has let me see your children also.”12Then Joseph removed them from his father's knees, and he bowed himself with his face to the earth.13Joseph took them both, Ephraim in his right hand toward Israel's left, and Manasseh in his left hand toward Israel's right, and brought them near him.14But Israel stretched out his right hand and laid it on the head of Ephraim, who was the younger, and his left hand on the head of Manasseh, crossing his hands, for Manasseh was the firstborn.15He blessed Joseph, and said,
“The God before whom my ancestors Abraham and Isaac walked,
the God who has been my shepherd all my life to this day,16the angel who has redeemed me from all harm, bless the boys;
and in them let my name be perpetuated, and the name of my ancestors Abraham and Isaac;
and let them grow into a multitude on the earth.”17When Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand on the head of Ephraim, it displeased him; so he took his father's hand, to remove it from Ephraim's head to Manasseh's head.18Joseph said to his father, “Not so, my father! Since this one is the firstborn, put your right hand on his head.”19But his father refused, and said, “I know, my son, I know; he also shall become a people, and he also shall be great. Nevertheless his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his offspring shall become a multitude of nations.”20So he blessed them that day, saying,
“By you Israel will invoke blessings, saying,
‘God make you like Ephraim and like Manasseh.’ ”
So he put Ephraim ahead of Manasseh.21Then Israel said to Joseph, “I am about to die, but God will be with you and will bring you again to the land of your ancestors.22I now give to you one portion more than to your brothers, the portion that I took from the hand of the Amorites with my sword and with my bow.”Chapter 49Jacob's Last Words to His Sons
1Then Jacob called his sons, and said: “Gather around, that I may tell you what will happen to you in days to come.2Assemble and hear, O sons of Jacob;
listen to Israel your father.
3Reuben, you are my firstborn,
my might and the first fruits of my vigor,
excelling in rank and excelling in power.4Unstable as water, you shall no longer excel
because you went up onto your father's bed;
then you defiled it—you went up onto my couch!
5Simeon and Levi are brothers;
weapons of violence are their swords.6May I never come into their council;
may I not be joined to their company—
for in their anger they killed men,
and at their whim they hamstrung oxen.7Cursed be their anger, for it is fierce,
and their wrath, for it is cruel!
I will divide them in Jacob,
and scatter them in Israel.
8Judah, your brothers shall praise you;
your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies;
your father's sons shall bow down before you.9Judah is a lion's whelp;
from the prey, my son, you have gone up.
He crouches down, he stretches out like a lion,
like a lioness—who dares rouse him up?10The scepter shall not depart from Judah,
nor the ruler's staff from between his feet,
until tribute comes to him;
and the obedience of the peoples is his.11Binding his foal to the vine
and his donkey's colt to the choice vine,
he washes his garments in wine
and his robe in the blood of grapes;12his eyes are darker than wine,
and his teeth whiter than milk.
13Zebulun shall settle at the shore of the sea;
he shall be a haven for ships,
and his border shall be at Sidon.
14Issachar is a strong donkey,
lying down between the sheepfolds;15he saw that a resting place was good,
and that the land was pleasant;
so he bowed his shoulder to the burden,
and became a slave at forced labor.
16Dan shall judge his people
as one of the tribes of Israel.17Dan shall be a snake by the roadside,
a viper along the path,
that bites the horse's heels
so that its rider falls backward.
18I wait for your salvation, O Lord.
19Gad shall be raided by raiders,
but he shall raid at their heels.
20Asher's food shall be rich,
and he shall provide royal delicacies.
21Naphtali is a doe let loose
that bears lovely fawns.
22Joseph is a fruitful bough,
a fruitful bough by a spring;
his branches run over the wall.23The archers fiercely attacked him;
they shot at him and pressed him hard.24Yet his bow remained taut,
and his arms were made agile
by the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob,
by the name of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel,25by the God of your father, who will help you,
by the Almighty who will bless you
with blessings of heaven above,
blessings of the deep that lies beneath,
blessings of the breasts and of the womb.26The blessings of your father
are stronger than the blessings of the eternal mountains,
the bounties of the everlasting hills;
may they be on the head of Joseph,
on the brow of him who was set apart from his brothers.
27Benjamin is a ravenous wolf,
in the morning devouring the prey,
and at evening dividing the spoil.”
28All these are the twelve tribes of Israel, and this is what their father said to them when he blessed them, blessing each one of them with a suitable blessing.Jacob's Death and Burial
29Then he charged them, saying to them, “I am about to be gathered to my people. Bury me with my ancestors—in the cave in the field of Ephron the Hittite,30in the cave in the field at Machpelah, near Mamre, in the land of Canaan, in the field that Abraham bought from Ephron the Hittite as a burial site.31There Abraham and his wife Sarah were buried; there Isaac and his wife Rebekah were buried; and there I buried Leah—32the field and the cave that is in it were purchased from the Hittites.”33When Jacob ended his charge to his sons, he drew up his feet into the bed, breathed his last, and was gathered to his people.Chapter 501Then Joseph threw himself on his father's face and wept over him and kissed him.2Joseph commanded the physicians in his service to embalm his father. So the physicians embalmed Israel;3they spent forty days in doing this, for that is the time required for embalming. And the Egyptians wept for him seventy days.4When the days of weeping for him were past, Joseph addressed the household of Pharaoh, “If now I have found favor with you, please speak to Pharaoh as follows:5My father made me swear an oath; he said, ‘I am about to die. In the tomb that I hewed out for myself in the land of Canaan, there you shall bury me.’ Now therefore let me go up, so that I may bury my father; then I will return.”6Pharaoh answered, “Go up, and bury your father, as he made you swear to do.”7So Joseph went up to bury his father. With him went up all the servants of Pharaoh, the elders of his household, and all the elders of the land of Egypt,8as well as all the household of Joseph, his brothers, and his father's household. Only their children, their flocks, and their herds were left in the land of Goshen.9Both chariots and charioteers went up with him. It was a very great company.10When they came to the threshing floor of Atad, which is beyond the Jordan, they held there a very great and sorrowful lamentation; and he observed a time of mourning for his father seven days.11When the Canaanite inhabitants of the land saw the mourning on the threshing floor of Atad, they said, “This is a grievous mourning on the part of the Egyptians.” Therefore the place was named Abel-mizraim; it is beyond the Jordan.12Thus his sons did for him as he had instructed them.13They carried him to the land of Canaan and buried him in the cave of the field at Machpelah, the field near Mamre, which Abraham bought as a burial site from Ephron the Hittite.14After he had buried his father, Joseph returned to Egypt with his brothers and all who had gone up with him to bury his father.