Jacob blesses his twelve sons just before he dies.
His sons were:
1 Reuben the name means: see, a son – mother Leah.
2 Simeon the name means: one who hears – mother Leah.
3 Levi the name means: attached – mother Leah.
4 Judah the name means: praise – mother Leah.
5 Issachar the name means: for reward – mother Leah.
6 Zebulun the name means: honor – mother Leah.
7 Gad the name means: a troop is coming – mother Zilpah Leah’s maid.
8 Asher the name means: happy – mother Zilpah Leah’s maid.
9 Joseph the name means: may he add – mother Rachel. Joseph’s two sons that Jacob adopted as his were – Manasseh the name means: causing to forget and Ephraim the name means: Double fruitfulness.
10 Benjamin the name means: son of my right hand – mother Rachel.
11 Dan the name means: he has vindicated – mother Bilhah Rachel’s maid.
12 Naphtali the name means: my struggle – mother Bilhah Rachel’s maid.
Jacob Final Blessings of His 12 Sons
49:1 After this, Jacob called his sons together and told them, “Assemble yourselves around me so I can tell you all what is going to happen to you in the last days.
2 “Gather together and listen,
you children of Jacob.
Listen to your father Israel.”
On the Future of Reuben
3 “Reuben, you’re my firstborn,
and the first fruit of my vitality.
You excel in rank
and excel in power.
4 But you’re as undisciplined as a roaring river,
so eventually you won’t succeed,
because you got in your father’s bed,
defiled it, and then approached my couch.”
On the Future of Simeon and Levi
5 “Simeon and Levi are brothers;
their swords are violent weapons.
6 I’ll never join their council;
I’ll never enter their assembly.
In their anger they committed murder
and lamed cattle just for fun.
7 Their anger is cursed,
because it is so fierce,
as is their vehemence,
because it is so cruel.
I will separate them throughout Jacob’s territory
and disperse them throughout Israel.”
On the Future of Judah
8 “Your brothers will praise you, Judah.
Your hand will be at the throat of your enemies,
and your father’s children will bow down to you.
9 Judah is a lion cub.
My son, you have gone up from the prey.
Crouching like a lion,
he lies down,
Like a lioness,
who would dare rouse him?
10 The scepter will never depart from Judah,
nor a ruler’s staff from between his feet,
until the One comes, who owns them both,
and to him will belong the allegiance of nations.
11 Binding his donkey to the vine
and his mare’s foal to its thick tendrils,
he will wash his garments in wine
and his robe in the juice of grapes.
12 His eyes are darker than wine
and his teeth whiter than milk.”
On the Future of Zebulun
13 “Zebulun will settle down near the sea shore
and become a safe haven for shipping,
On the Future of Issachar
14 “Issachar is a strong donkey,
resting between sheepfolds.
15 He observed that his resting place was excellent,
and that the land was pleasant;
he bent down,
picked up his burdens,
and became a slave at forced labor.”
On the Future of Dan
16 “Dan will judge his people
as one of Israel’s tribes.
17 Dan will be a snake on the path,
a viper on the road
that snaps at the heels of horses,
causing their riders to fall off.
18 “LORD, I’m waiting for your salvation.”
On the Future of Gad
19 “Bandits will raid Gad,
but Gad will raid them back.”
On the Future of Asher
20 “Asher’s food will be delicious;
he will be a provider of delicacies fit for royalty.”
On the Future of Naphtali
21 “Naphtali is a free running deer
who produces eloquent literature.”
On the Future of Joseph
22 “Joseph is descended from a fruitful vine,
a fruitful vine planted near springs of water.
His branches climb over walls.
23 Even though enemies attacked him,
shooting at him
and pursuing him viciously,
24 nevertheless his bow remained steady
and his arms kept in shape
by the strength of Jacob’s Mighty One,
in the name of the Shepherd,
25 by your father’s God
who helps you,
by the Almighty
who will keep on blessing you
with blessings from heaven above,
with blessings from the deepest ocean,
with blessing from the breasts and the womb.
26 Your father’s blessings will prove to be stronger
than blessings from the eternal mountains
or bounties from the everlasting hills.
May they come to rest on Joseph’s head,
May they be set upon the brow of the one
who was separated from his own brothers.”
On the Future of Benjamin
27 “Benjamin is vicious like a wolf;
what he kills in the morning
he devours in the evening.”
28 That’s how Israel blessed these twelve tribes of Israel, and this is what their father told them when he pronounced his blessing for them, blessing each one with a blessing suitable for them.
Other modules in this unit:
- Jacob steals Isaac’s blessing, Genesis 27:1-29
- Jacob dreams about a ladder and angels at Bethel, Genesis 28:10-22
- Jacob marries Rachel the daughter of Laban, Genesis 29:15-30
- Laban meets Jacob, Genesis 29:1-14
- Leah the older sister of Rachel, Genesis 29:1-30
- Bilhah, the servant of Rachel, Genesis 30:1-30
- Zilpah, servant of Leah, Genesis 30:9-13
- Jacob had twelve sons, Genesis 29:31-30:24 and 35:23-26
- Reuben finds some mandrakes for Leah, Genesis 30:14-18
- Jacob flees with his family from Laban, Genesis 31:1-55
- Esau’s descendants, Genesis 36:1-43
- Joseph’s Dreams, Genesis 37:1-11
- Joseph is put down a well, Genesis 37:12-36
- Tamar and Judah, Genesis 38:1-30
- Joseph runs from Potiphar’s Wife, Genesis 39:1-20
- The Cup that held the wine for the King of Egypt, Genesis 40:1-23 and Genesis 41:1-13
- The chief Baker to the King of Egypt, Genesis 40:1-4, 40:16-22 and 41:1-13
- Joseph’s brothers first trip to Egypt for food, Genesis 42:1-38
- The Second Journey to Egypt, Genesis 43:1-34
- A silver cup belonging to Joseph was put in a Sack, Genesis 44:1-34
- Jacob moves to Egypt in a cart, Genesis 46:1-47:12
- Two Sons of Joseph, Genesis 47:28-48:1-22
- Manasseh Joseph’s older son, Genesis 48:1-22 and 49:22-26
- Ephraim, Joseph’s younger son, Genesis 48:1-22 and 49:22-28
- 12 sons of Jacob which he blesses before he dies, Genesis 49:1-28
- Death of Jacob at one hundred and forty-seven years old, Genesis 49:29-33
- Death of Joseph at one hundred and ten years old, Genesis 50:22-26
- 300-year gap between Joseph and Moses, Genesis 50:22-Exodus 1:22
- Life of Moses » »
- Timeline for the book of Genesis parts one and two »
- Background Information – Genesis Part Two
- Resources – Genesis Part Two