Genesis Chapter 49 to 50 : Easy-to-Read Version  | SearchSearch | Next Version | Previous Page | Next Page |

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Jacob Blesses His Sons

49 Then Jacob called all his sons to him. He said, “All my sons, come here to me. I will tell you what will happen in the future. 2“Come together and listen, sons of Jacob. Listen to Israel, your father.”


3“Reuben, my first son, you are my first child, the first proof of my power as a man. You were the most honored and powerful of all my sons. 4But your passion was like a flood you couldn’t control. So you will not remain my most honored son. You climbed into your father’s bed {and slept with one of his wives}. You brought shame to my bed, to the bed you lay on.”

Simeon and Levi

5“Simeon and Levi are brothers. They love to fight with their swords. 6They planned evil things in secret. My soul wants no part in their plans. I will not accept their secret meetings. They killed men when they were angry. And they hurt animals only for fun. 7Their anger is a curse. It is too strong. They are too cruel when they are mad. They will not get their own land in the land of Jacob. They will be spread throughout Israel.”


8“Judah, your brothers will praise you. You will defeat your enemies. Your brothers will bow down to you. 9Judah is like a lion. My son, you are like a lion standing over the animal it killed. Judah is like a lion. He lies down to rest, and no one is brave enough to disturb him. 10Men from Judah’s family will be kings. The sign that his family rules will not leave his family, before the real king comes.* Then many people will obey and serve him. 11He ties his donkey to a grapevine. He ties his young donkey to the best grapevines. He uses the best wine to wash his clothes. 12His eyes are red from drinking wine. His teeth are white from drinking milk.*”


13“Zebulun will live near the sea. His seacoast will be a safe place for ships. His land will continue as far as the city of Sidon.”


14“Issachar is like a donkey who has worked too hard. He will lie down after carrying a heavy load. 15He will see his resting place is good. He will see his land is pleasant. Then he will agree to carry heavy loads. He will agree to work as a slave.”


16“Dan* will judge his own people, like the other families of Israel. 17Dan will be like a snake at the side of the road. He will be like a dangerous snake lying near the path. That snake bites a horse’s foot, and the rider falls to the ground. 18“Lord, I am waiting for your salvation.”19“A group of robbers will attack* Gad. But Gad will chase them away.”


20“Asher’s land will grow much good food. He will have food fit for a king!”


21“Naphtali is like a deer running free, and his words like their beautiful babies.”


22“Joseph is very successful. Joseph is like a vine covered with fruit, like a vine growing by a spring, like a vine growing along a fence. 23Many people turned and fought against him. People with arrows became his enemies. 24But he won the fight with his mighty bow and his skillful arms. He gets power from the Mighty One of Jacob, from the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel, 25from the God of your father. God blesses you. “May God All-Powerful bless you and give you blessings from the sky above, and blessings from the deep below. May he give you blessings from breast and womb. 26My parents had many good things happen to them. And I, your father, was blessed even more. Your brothers left you with nothing. But now I pile all my blessings on you, as high as a mountain.”


27“Benjamin is like a hungry wolf. In the morning he kills and eats. In the evening he shares what is left.”

28Those are the twelve families of Israel. And those are the things their father said to them. He gave each son a blessing that was right for him. 29Then Israel gave them a command. He said, “When I die, I want to be with my people. I want to be buried with my ancestors* in the cave in the field of Ephron the Hittite. 30That cave is in the field of Machpelah near Mamre. It is in the land of Canaan. Abraham bought that field from Ephron so that he could have a burying place. 31Abraham and his wife Sarah are buried in that cave. Isaac and his wife Rebekah are buried in that cave. I buried my wife Leah in that cave. 32That cave is in the field that was bought from the Hittite people.” 33After Jacob finished talking to his sons, he lay down, put his feet back on the bed and died.

before the real king comes Or, “until Shiloh comes” or “until the man it belongs to comes” or “until his tribute comes.” Men from Judah … milk Or, “10The ruler’s scepter will not pass from between Judah’s feet before he gets what is his, that is, the peoples’ obedience. 11His young donkey will be tied to the very best grapevines. He will wash his finest clothes in wine, the blood of grapes. 12His eyes will be redder than wine, his teeth whiter than milk.” Dan This is like the Hebrew word meaning “judge.” A group of robbers will attack The Hebrew words for “group of robbers” and “attack” sound like the name Gad. ancestors Literally, “fathers.” This means a person’s parents, grandparents, and all the people they are descended from.

Jacob’s Funeral

50 When Israel died, Joseph was very sad. He hugged his father and cried on him and kissed him. 2Joseph commanded his servants to prepare his father’s body. (These servants were doctors.) The doctors prepared Jacob’s body to be buried. They prepared the body in the special way of the Egyptians. 3When the Egyptians prepared the body in this special way, they waited 40 days before they buried the body. Then the Egyptians had a special time of sadness for Jacob. This time was 70 days. 4After 70 days, the time of sadness was finished. So Joseph spoke to the Pharaoh’s officers. Joseph said, “Please tell this to Pharaoh: 5‘When my father was near death, I made a promise to him. I promised that I would bury him in a cave in the land of Canaan. This is the cave that he prepared for himself. So please let me go and bury my father. Then I will come back here to you.’” 6Pharaoh answered, “Keep your promise. Go and bury your father.” 7So Joseph went to bury his father. All of Pharaoh’s officials, Pharaoh’s elders (leaders) and all the elders of Egypt went with Joseph. 8All the people in Joseph’s family, his brothers, and all the people in his father’s family went with him. Only the children and the animals stayed in the land of Goshen. 9It was a very large group of people. There was even a group of soldiers riding chariots and horses. 10They went to Goren Atad,* east of the Jordan River. At this place they had a long funeral service for Israel. This funeral service continued for seven days. 11The people who lived in Canaan saw the funeral service at Goren Atad. They said, “Those Egyptians are having a very sad service!” So now that place across the Jordan River is named Abel Mizraim.* 12So Jacob’s sons did what their father told them. 13They carried his body to Canaan and buried it in the cave at Machpelah. This was the cave near Mamre in the field that Abraham bought from Ephron the Hittite. Abraham bought that cave to use as a burial place. 14After Joseph buried his father, he and everyone in the group with him went back to Egypt.

The Brothers Are Still Afraid of Joseph

15After Jacob died, Joseph’s brothers became worried. They were afraid that Joseph would still be mad at them for what they had done years before. They said, “Maybe Joseph still hates us for what we did.” 16So the brothers sent this message to Joseph: Before your father died, he told us to give you a message. 17He said, ‘Tell Joseph that I beg him to please forgive his brothers for the bad things they did to him.’ So now Joseph, we beg you, please forgive us for the bad things we did to you. We are the servants of God, the God of your father. That message made Joseph very sad, and he cried. 18His brothers went to him and bowed down in front of him. They said, “We will be your servants.” 19Then Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. I am not God! {I have no right to punish you.} 20It is true that you planned to do something bad to me. But really, God was planning good things. God’s plan was to use me to save the lives of many people. And that is what happened! 21So don’t be afraid. I will take care of you and your children.” In this way, Joseph said nice things to his brothers. This made his brothers feel good. 22Joseph continued to live in Egypt with his father’s family. Joseph died when he was 110 years old. 23During Joseph’s life, Ephraim had children and grandchildren. And his son Manasseh had a son named Makir. Joseph lived to see Makir’s children.

The Death of Joseph

24When Joseph was near death, he said to his brothers, “My time to die is almost here. But I know that God will take care of you and lead you out of this country. God will lead you to the land he promised to give Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.” 25Then Joseph asked his people to make a promise. Joseph said, “Promise me that you will carry my bones with you when God leads you to that new land.” 26Joseph died in Egypt when he was 110 years old. Doctors prepared his body for burial and put the body in a coffin in Egypt.

Goren Atad Or, “Atad’s threshing floor.” Abel Mizraim This means “Egyptian time of sadness.”

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