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Genesis: 48

Jacob blesses Ephraim and Manasseh.  Gn.48.1-22

1After this Joseph was told, "Behold, your father is ill"; so he took with him his two sons, Manas'seh and E'phraim. 2And it was told to Jacob, "Your son Joseph has come to you"; then Israel 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 blessed me, 4and said to me, 'Behold, I will make you fruitful, and multiply you, and I will make of you a company of peoples, and will give this land to your descendants after you for an everlasting possession.' 5And now your two sons, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you in Egypt, are mine; E'phraim and Manas'seh shall be mine, as Reuben and Simeon are. 6And the offspring born to you after them shall be yours; they shall be called by the name of their brothers in their inheritance. 7For when I came from Paddan, Rachel to my sorrow died in the land of Canaan on the way, when 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, I pray you, that I may bless them." 10Now the eyes of Israel were dim with age, so that he could not see. So Joseph brought them near him; and he kissed them and embraced them. 11And Israel said to Joseph, "I had not thought to see your face; and lo, God has let me see your children also." 12Then Joseph removed them from his knees, and he bowed himself with his face to the earth. 13And Joseph took them both, E'phraim in his right hand toward Israel's left hand, and Manas'seh in his left hand toward Israel's right hand, and brought them near him. 14And Israel stretched out his right hand and laid it upon the head of E'phraim, who was the younger, and his left hand upon the head of Manas'seh, crossing his hands, for Manas'seh was the first-born. 15And he blessed Joseph, and said,

"The God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked,
the God who has led me all my life long to this day,
16the angel who has redeemed me from all evil, bless the lads;
and in them let my name be perpetuated,
and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac;
and let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth."

17When Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand upon the head of E'phraim, it displeased him; and he took his father's hand, to remove it from E'phraim's head to Manas'seh's head. 18And Joseph said to his father, "Not so, my father; for this one is the first-born; put your right hand upon 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 descendants shall become a multitude of nations." 20So he blessed them that day, saying,

"By you Israel will pronounce blessings, saying,
'God make you as E'phraim and as Manas'seh'";
and thus he put E'phraim before Manas'seh. 21Then Israel said to Joseph, "Behold, I am about to die, but God will be with you, and will bring you again to the land of your fathers. 22Moreover I have given to you rather than to your brothers one mountain slope which I took from the hand of the Amorites with my sword and with my bow."


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