Moses’ Blessings
1This is the blessing that Moses, the man of God, gave the Israelites before his death. Gn 49:1-33
2He said:
The Lord came from Sinai
and appeared to them from Seir; Gn 14:6; 32:3; 36:8; Dt 1:2; Jdg 5:4
He shone on them from Mount Paran Gn 21:21; Nm 10:12; 12:16; Dt 1:1; Hab 3:3
and came with ten thousand holy ones, LXX reads Mount Paran with ten thousands from Kadesh
with lightning Or fiery law ; Hb obscure from His right hand Or ones, from His southland to the mountain slopes for them. Jdg 5:4-5; Ps 68:7-8; Hab 3:3
3Indeed He loves the people. Or peoples Dt 4:37; Mal 1:2
All Your Lit His, or its holy ones Either the saints of Israel or angels are in Your hand,
and they assemble Hb obscure at Your feet.
Each receives Your words.
4Moses gave us instruction,
a possession for the assembly of Jacob.
5So He became King in Jeshurun = Upright One, referring to Israel Dt 32:15; 33:26; Is 44:2
when the leaders of the people gathered
with the tribes of Israel.
6Let Reuben live and not die
though his people become few. Gn 49:3-4; Jdg 5:15-16
7He said this about Judah:
Lord, hear Judah’s cry and bring him to his people.
He fights for his cause Or He contends for them with his own hands,
but may You be a help against his foes.
8He said about Levi:
Your Thummim and Urim Ex 28:30; Lv 8:8; Ezr 2:63; Neh 7:65 belong to Your faithful one; DSS, LXX read Give to Levi Your Thummim, Your Urim to Your favored one
You tested him at Massah
and contended with him at the waters of Meribah. Ex 17:1-7; Nm 20:2-13; Dt 6:16; 9:22; Ps 95:8
9He said about his father and mother,
“I do not regard them.”
He disregarded his brothers
and didn’t acknowledge his sons,
for they kept Your word
and maintained Your covenant. Ex 32:25-29
10They will teach Your ordinances to Jacob
and Your instruction to Israel; Dt 31:9-13
they will set incense before You
and whole burnt offerings on Your altar.
11Lord, bless his possessions, Or abilities
and accept the work of his hands.
Smash the loins of his adversaries and enemies,
so that they cannot rise again.
12He said about Benjamin:
The Lord’s beloved rests Or Let the Lord’s beloved rest securely on Him.
He LXX reads The Most High shields him all day long,
and he rests on His shoulders. Or and He dwells among his mountain slopes
13He said about Joseph:
May his land be blessed by the Lord
with the dew of heaven’s bounty
and the watery depths that lie beneath; Pr 3:20
14with the bountiful harvest from the sun
and the abundant yield of the seasons;
15with the best products of the ancient mountains
and the bounty of the eternal hills; Gn 49:26; Hab 3:6
16with the choice gifts of the land
and everything in it;
and with the favor of Him
who appeared Lit dwelt in the burning bush. Ex 3:2-4
May these rest on the head of Joseph,
on the crown of the prince of his brothers. Gn 49:26
17His firstborn bull has Some DSS, Sam, LXX, Syr, Vg read A firstborn bull — he has splendor,
and horns like Lit and his horns are those of a wild ox;
he gores all the peoples with them
to the ends of the earth.
Such are the ten thousands of Ephraim,
and such are the thousands of Manasseh.
18He said about Zebulun:
Rejoice, Zebulun, in your journeys,
and Issachar, in your tents.
19They summon the peoples to a mountain;
there they offer acceptable sacrifices.
For they draw from the wealth of the seas
and the hidden treasures of the sand. Gn 49:13; Jdg 5:15,18
20He said about Gad:
The one who enlarges Gad’s territory
will be blessed.
He lies down like a lion
and tears off an arm or even a head. 1Ch 12:8
21He chose the best part for himself,
because a ruler’s portion was assigned there for him.
He came with the leaders of the people;
he carried out the Lord’s justice
and His ordinances for Israel. Nm 32:1-38
22He said about Dan:
Dan is a young lion,
leaping out of Bashan. Jdg 5:17
23He said about Naphtali:
Naphtali, enjoying approval,
full of the Lord’s blessing,
take Sam, LXX, Syr, Vg, Tg read he will take possession to the west and the south.
24He said about Asher:
May Asher = Happy or Blessed; Gn 30:13 be the most blessed of the sons;
may he be the most favored among his brothers
and dip his foot in olive oil. A symbol for prosperity Gn 49:20
25May the bolts of your gate be iron and bronze,
and your strength last as long as you live.
26There is none like the God of Jeshurun, = Upright One, referring to Israel
who rides the heavens to your aid,
the clouds in His majesty. 2Sm 22:8-20; Ps 18:7-19; 68:4,33; Is 19:1
27The God of old is your dwelling place, Ps 91:9
and underneath are the everlasting arms.
He drives out the enemy before you
and commands, “Destroy! ”
28So Israel dwells securely; Lv 25:18-19; 26:5; Dt 12:10; 33:12; Jr 23:6; 33:16; Ezk 28:26; 34:28; 39:6
Jacob lives untroubled Text emended; MT reads Jacob’s fountain is alone Nm 23:9
in a land of grain and new wine;
even his skies drip with dew. Dt 8:7-9
29How happy you are, Israel!
Who is like you,
a people saved by the Lord?
He is the shield that protects you,
the sword you boast in.
Your enemies will cringe before you, 2Sm 22:44-46; Ps 18:43-45
and you will tread on their backs. Or high places Dt 32:13; Hab 3:19