48:8 When Israel saw Joseph’s sons, he asked, “Who are these?” 48:9 Joseph said to his father, “They are the 1 sons God has given me in this place.” His father 2 said, “Bring them to me so I may bless them.” 3 48:10 Now Israel’s eyes were failing 4 because of his age; he was not able to see well. So Joseph 5 brought his sons 6 near to him, and his father 7 kissed them and embraced them. 48:11 Israel said to Joseph, “I never expected 8 to see you 9 again, but now God has allowed me to see your children 10 too.”
48:12 So Joseph moved them from Israel’s knees 11 and bowed down with his face to the ground. 48:13 Joseph positioned them; 12 he put Ephraim on his right hand across from Israel’s left hand, and Manasseh on his left hand across from Israel’s right hand. Then Joseph brought them closer to his father. 13 48:14 Israel stretched out his right hand and placed it on Ephraim’s head, although he was the younger. 14 Crossing his hands, he put his left hand on Manasseh’s head, for Manasseh was the firstborn.
48:15 Then he blessed Joseph and said,
“May the God before whom my fathers
Abraham and Isaac walked –
the God who has been my shepherd 15
all my life long to this day,
from all harm –
bless these boys.
May my name be named in them, 18
and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac.
May they grow into a multitude on the earth.”
[48:10] sn The disjunctive clause provides supplemental information that is important to the story. The weakness of Israel’s sight is one of several connections between this chapter and Gen 27. Here there are two sons, and it appears that the younger is being blessed over the older by a blind old man. While it was by Jacob’s deception in chap. 27, here it is with Jacob’s full knowledge.