The First Book of Moses, Called Genesis

Chapter 48

Joseph and his sons visit his sick father, 1. Jacob strengthens himself to bless them, 2. He repeats God's promise, 3, 4. He takes Ephraim and Manasseh as his own sons, 5, 6. He tells Joseph of his mother's grave, 7. He blesses Ephraim and Manasseh, 8-16. He prefers the younger before the elder, 17-20. He prophesies their return to Canaan, 21, 22.

1 And it came to pass after these things, that someone told Joseph, "Behold, your father is sick." And he took with him his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim. 2 And someone told Jacob, and said, "Behold, your son Joseph comes to you." And Israel strengthened himself and sat upon the bed. 3 And Jacob said to Joseph, "God Almighty appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan and blessed me, 4 And said to me, 'Behold I will make you fruitful and multiply you, and I will make you into a multitude of people, and will give this land to your offspring after you for an everlasting possession.' 5 And now, your two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, who were born to you in the land of Egypt, before I came to you into Egypt, are mine. As Reuben and Simeon, they shall be mine. 6 And your family, which you beget after them, shall be yours and shall be called after the name of their brothers in their inheritance. 7 And as for me, when I came from Padan, Rachel died beside me in the land of Canaan, on the way, when yet there was but a little way to come to Ephrath, and I buried her there on the way of Ephrath (the same is Beth-lehem)."

8 And Israel beheld Joseph's sons and said, "Who are these?" 9 And Joseph said to his father, "They are my sons, whom God has given me in this place." And he said, "Bring them, I pray you, to me and I will bless them." 10 (Now the eyes of Israel were dim with age so that he could not see.) And he brought them near to him, and he kissed them and embraced them. 11 And Israel said to Joseph, "I had not thought to see your face, and behold, God has shown me your children also." 12 And Joseph brought them out from between his knees, and he bowed himself with his face to the earth. 13 And Joseph took them both, Ephraim in his right hand toward Israel's left hand and Manasseh in his left hand toward Israel's right hand, and brought them near to him. 14 And Israel stretched out his right hand and laid it upon Ephraim's head, who was the younger, and his left hand upon Manasseh's head, guiding his hands by design, for Manasseh was the first-born. 15 And he blessed Joseph, and said,

"God, before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked,/
the God who has fed me all my life long to this day,

16 The angel who has redeemed me from all evil, bless the boys,/
and let my name be named on them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac./
And let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth."

17 And when Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand upon the head of Ephraim, it displeased him. And he lifted his father's hand to move it from Ephraim's head to Manasseh's head. 18 And Joseph said to his father, "Not so, my father. For this is the first-born. Put your right hand upon his head." 19 And his father refused and said, "I know it, my son, I know it. He also shall become a people, and he also shall be great, but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he is, and his offspring shall become a multitude of nations." 20 And he blessed them that day, saying,

"In you Israel shall bless, saying,/
'May God make you as Ephraim and as Manasseh.'"

And he set Ephraim before Manasseh. 21 And Israel said to Joseph, "Behold, I die, but God shall be with you and bring you back to the land of your fathers. 22 Moreover, I have given to you one portion above your brothers, which I took out of the hand of the Amorite with my sword and with my bow."


Matthew Henry Commentary - Genesis, Chapter 48[➚]