Jacob Blesses His Sons
49 Then Jacob called for his sons and said:
“Gather around so I can tell you what will happen to you in days to come.
2 “Assemble and listen, sons of
listen to your father Israel.
3 “Reuben, you
are my firstborn,
my might, the first sign of my strength,
excelling in honor, excelling in power.
4 Turbulent as the waters, you will no longer excel,
for you went up onto your father’s
onto my couch and defiled it.
5 “Simeon and
Levi are brothers—
their swords are weapons of violence.
Let me not enter their council,
let me not join their assembly,
for they have killed men in their anger
and hamstrung oxen as they pleased.
7 Cursed be their anger, so fierce,
and their fury, so cruel!
I will scatter them in Jacob
and disperse them in Israel.
The title of this section is Jacob blesses his sons. Many of them seem to be curses rather than blessings. Reuben is the first born and is to receive
the blessings of the first son, yet his father Jacob gives him the curse due to what his incest with Bilhah Luther writes: “Reuben should have had the honor of being first-born, namely, the priesthood and the kingdom. But now both are taken from
him, and to Levi the priesthood is given, and to Judah the kingdom” (WA DB 8:193). We will see more blessings and curses tomorrow.
I pray: O Lord, when I sent… help me to repent and to walk according to your ways. Amen.
Engelbrecht, E. A. (2009). The
Lutheran Study Bible (p. 90). St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House.