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Genesis 48:5-8a

  1. .
    Gen 48:5-6 . . Now, your two sons, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you in Egypt, shall be mine; Ephraim and Manasseh shall be mine no less than Reuben and Simeon. Progeny born to you after them shall be yours; but they shall be recorded under the names of their brothers in their inheritance.

    Jacob set a rather odd precedent by adopting his own two grandsons Manasseh and Ephraim; thus giving them tribal positions equal in rank to his original sons; and increasing his total number of sons from twelve to fourteen.

    Jacob's motive for adopting Manasseh and Ephraim was in sympathy for his beloved Rachel being cut off during her child bearing years, which subsequently prevented her from having any more children of her own.

    Gen 48:7 . . As I was returning from Paddan, to my sorrow Rachel died in the land of Canaan while we were still on the way, a little distance from Ephrath. So I buried her there beside the road to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem).

    Manasseh and Ephraim brought Rachel's grand total up to six, two boys of her own, two by her maid Bilhah, and two by Joseph's wife Asenath.

    Gen 48:8a . .When Israel

    At this point, Genesis switches from Jacob's earthly name to his God-given name; viz: his spiritual name; probably because the first portion of the interview was personal business while the second half will be conducted in Jacob's official capacity as a prophet.

    The Hebrew word for "prophet" is nabiy' (naw-bee') which just means an inspired man. Abel was a prophet (Luke 11:50-51) and Abraham was a prophet (Gen 20:7).

    People needn't be high powered prognosticators like Isaiah to be prophets. Anybody whom God empowers with a degree of spiritual intuition is a prophet because prophets aren't necessarily predictors of the future, nor revealers of sacred secrets, but also just simply savvy in the knowledge of God.

    Where did they get that savvy? From seminary and yeshiva? From rabbis and Sunday school teachers? No. From God's Spirit.

    "Turn you at My reproof: behold: I will pour out My Spirit unto you, I will make known My words unto you." (Prov 1:23)

    It was Moses' wish that all of Moses' people were prophets. (Num 11:29)

    In the future, they will. (Ezek 36:24-27)
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