Manasseh and Ephraim 1Some time later Joseph was told, “Your father is ill.” So he took his two sons Manasseh and Ephraim along with him.
2When Jacob was told, “Your son Joseph has come to you,” Israel rallied his strength and sat up on the bed.
3Jacob said to Joseph, “God Almighty
4and said to me, ‘I am going to make you fruitful and increase your numbers. I will make you a community of peoples, and I will give this land as an everlasting possession to your descendants after you.’ 5“Now then, your two sons born to you in Egypt before I came to you here will be reckoned as mine; Ephraim and Manasseh will be mine, just as Reuben and Simeon are mine. 6Any children born to you after them will be yours; in the territory they inherit they will be reckoned under the names of their brothers.
7As I was returning from Paddan,
8When Israel saw the sons of Joseph, he asked, “Who are these?”
9“They are the sons God has given me here,” Joseph said to his father. Then Israel said, “Bring them to me so I may bless them.”
10Now Israel’s eyes were failing because of old age, and he could hardly see. So Joseph brought his sons close to him, and his father kissed them and embraced them.
11Israel said to Joseph, “I never expected to see your face again, and now God has allowed me to see your children too.” 12Then Joseph removed them from Israel’s knees and bowed down with his face to the ground. 13And Joseph took both of them, Ephraim on his right toward Israel’s left hand and Manasseh on his left toward Israel’s right hand, and brought them close to him.
14But Israel reached out his right hand and put it on Ephraim’s head, though he was the younger, and crossing his arms, he put his left hand on Manasseh’s head, even though Manasseh was the firstborn.
15Then he blessed Joseph and said, “May the God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked faithfully, the God who has been my shepherd all my life to this day,
16the Angel who has delivered me from all harm —may he bless these boys. May they be called by my name and the names of my fathers Abraham and Isaac, and may they increase greatly on the earth.” 17When Joseph saw his father placing his right hand on Ephraim’s head he was displeased; so he took hold of his father’s hand to move it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head.
18Joseph said to him, “No, my father, this one is the firstborn; put your right hand on his head.” 19But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. He too will become a people, and he too will become great. Nevertheless, his younger brother will be greater than he, and his descendants will become a group of nations.”
20He blessed them that day and said, “In your