From Pastor Perry

05/03/2017 Gen. 48:8-22

Genesis 48:8–22 (ESV)

Jacob Blesses Ephraim and Manasseh

When Israel saw Joseph’s sons, he said, “Who are these?” Joseph said to his father, “They are my sons, whom God has given me here.” And he said, “Bring them to me, please, that I may bless them.” 10 Now the eyes of Israel were dim with age, so that he could not see. So Joseph brought them near him, and he kissed them and embraced them. 11 And Israel said to Joseph, “I never expected to see your face; and behold, God has let me see your offspring also.” 12 Then Joseph removed them from 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 him. 14 And Israel stretched out his right hand and laid it on the head of Ephraim, who was the younger, and his left hand on the head of Manasseh, crossing his hands (for Manasseh was the firstborn). 15 And he blessed Joseph and said,

       “The God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked,

the God who has been my shepherd all my life long to this day,

16    the angel who has redeemed me from all evil, bless the boys;

and in them let my name be carried on, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac;

and let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.”

17 When Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand on the head of Ephraim, it displeased him, and he took his father’s hand to move it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head. 18 And Joseph said to his father, “Not this way, my father; since this one is the firstborn, put your right hand on his head.” 19 But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. He also shall become a people, and he also shall be great. Nevertheless, his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his offspring shall become a multitude of nations.” 20 So he blessed them that day, saying,

       “By you Israel will pronounce blessings, saying,

       ‘God make you as Ephraim and as Manasseh.’ ”

Thus he put Ephraim before Manasseh. 21 Then Israel said to Joseph, “Behold, I am about to die, but God will be with you and will bring you again to the land of your fathers. 22 Moreover, I have given to you rather than to your brothers one mountain slope that I took from the hand of the Amorites with my sword and with my bow.”

I know this was a longer than usual reading, but I was having difficulty in breaking it up.   The Lutheran Study Bible states: “Jacob (Israel) adopts and blesses Joseph’s sons. Though born in Egypt to an Egyptian mother, they have full status as “children of Israel,” people through whom God will bless the world. Like their father, Joseph, we must learn not to value human convention over God’s Word and purposes. As Jacob adopted Ephraim and Manasseh, God has graciously adopted us in Holy Baptism (Gal 3:27–4:7).”  God baptizing us and washing away our sins is something He does out of love.  We do not deserve it.  We do not earn it.  But it is a gift of love that he gives to us.

 

 

I pray:  “Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, You who lead Joseph like a flock! You who are enthroned upon the cherubim, shine forth. Before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh, stir up Your might and come to save us! Restore us, O God; let Your face shine, that we may be saved!” (Ps 80:1–3). Amen.

 

 

Engelbrecht, E. A. (2009). The Lutheran Study Bible (p. 90). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House.

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