Genesis 48-49:28 The Blessings Of Jacob.

Genesis 48-49:28 The Blessings Of Jacob.

In Jacob’s mind Joseph’s sons Manasseh and Ephraim were his to take and treat as the two sons he first had with Leah, Reuben and Simeon (48:5). Furthermore in blessing the two boys he regarded the youngest over the oldest of the two, just as he as the youngest was regarded first over Esau. Ephraim would receive the blessing of Jacob’s right hand (v. 19), both would be blessed with a multitude of descendants (vv. 15-16). Jacob believed that Joseph’s bones would also be returned to the land of promise, and he gave Joseph the added blessing of his sword and bow (vv. 20-22). Despite how Reuben had stepped up in defense of Joseph and Benjamin, he would not enjoy the typical blessing of the firstborn, because of his defiling of his father’s bed (49:4). Simeon and Levi would also suffer loss, Jacob cursing their anger (vv. 5-7).

On the other hand, Judah’s brothers would praise him as a fierce lion doing battle with their enemies (vv. 8-12). Zebulun would dwell along the seacoast, but Issachar, for his love of ease, would become a band of slaves (13-15). In Dan we hear an echo of the gospel promise of Genesis 3:15, as Dan would be judge, biting at the heels of the horses, and being symbolic of the salvation waited for (vv. 16-18). God would suffer, but then ultimately obtain victory (v. 19). Asher would be rich, as bread in the land, and Naphtali the purveyor of beautiful words (vv. 20-21). Joseph receives the bountiful blessing. Even though he had been treated badly, he would be exceedingly fruitful, also receiving a Messianic promise of “the Shepherd” (v. 24). Finally, Benjamin would be like a ravenous wolf devouring his prey and dividing the spoil (v. 27).

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