16 Dan shall judge his people, as one of the tribes of Israel.
17 Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that biteth the horse heels, so that his rider shall fall backward.
18 I have waited for thy salvation, O Lord.
19 Gad, a troop shall overcome him: but he shall overcome at the last.
20 Out of Asher his bread shall be fat, and he shall yield royal dainties.
21 Naphtali is a hind let loose: he giveth goodly words.
22 Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by a well; whose branches run over the wall:
23 The archers have sorely grieved him, and shot at him, and hated him:
24 But his bow abode in strength, and the arms of his hands were made strong by the hands of the mighty God of Jacob; (from thence is the shepherd, the stone of Israel:)
25 Even by the God of thy father, who shall help thee; and by the Almighty, who shall bless thee with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lieth under, blessings of the breasts, and of the womb:
26 The blessings of thy father have prevailed above the blessings of my progenitors unto the utmost bound of the everlasting hills: they shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him that was separate from his brethren.
27 Benjamin shall ravin as a wolf: in the morning he shall devour the prey, and at night he shall divide the spoil.
28 All these are the twelve tribes of Israel: and this is it that their father spake unto them, and blessed them; every one according to his blessing he blessed them.
29 And he charged them, and said unto them, I am to be gathered unto my people: bury me with my fathers in the cave that is in the field of Ephron the Hittite,
30 In the cave that is in the field of Machpelah, which is before Mamre, in the land of Canaan, which Abraham bought with the field of Ephron the Hittite for a possession of a buryingplace.
31 There they buried Abraham and Sarah his wife; there they buried Isaac and Rebekah his wife; and there I buried Leah.
32 The purchase of the field and of the cave that is therein was from the children of Heth.
33 And when Jacob had made an end of commanding his sons, he gathered up his feet into the bed, and yielded up the ghost, and was gathered unto his people.
K.J.V. Bible Text
In today’s reading, Jacob continues prophesying about each of his sons.
He tells them Dan will provide justice for his people and that Gad would be attacked by a band of raiders but would attack them at their heels.
Asher, Jacob said, would eat rich food fit for a king.
Naphtalie was prophesied to bear beautiful children.
Joseph he said was under the aid of the Almighty and would be a prince among his brothers.
Benjamin he likened to a ravenous wolf.
Jacob, having blessed each of his children as was appropriate, gave them instructions about his burial as he knew he was about to be gathered to his people. He asked that he be buried with his fathers in the cave in the field of Ephron the Hittite that Abraham had purchased as a burial place for his wife and where he and she, Isaac and his wife Rebekah and Jacob’s wife Leah were all buried. Once the instructions were given, Jacob breathed his last.
So now, let’s pause for a moment to think back over Jacob’s life and his heritage. He was a direct descendant of Abraham and was himself the father of many progeny. It is evident that he formed a very important link in the chain of humanity that would someday lead the Israelites to the promised land.
And now my friends, after many long weeks of reading, we have completed the book of Genesis. We begin Exodus tomorrow.
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