Moses Blesses the Tribes of Israel
1 Moses was a prophet, and before he died, he blessed the tribes of Israel by saying:

2 The Lord came from Mount Sinai.
From Edom, he gave light
to his people,
and his glory was shining
from Mount Paran.
Thousands of his warriors
were with him, and fire
was at his right hand.
3 The Lord loves the tribes
of Israel,
and he protects his people.
They listen to his words
and worship at his feet.
* 4 I called a meeting
of the tribes of Israel
and gave you God's Law.
5 Then you and your leaders
made the Lord your king.

6 Tribe of Reuben, you will live,
even though your tribe
will always be small.

7 The Lord will listen to you,
tribe of Judah, as you beg
to come safely home.
You fought your enemies alone;
now the Lord will help you.

8 At Massah and Meribah Spring,
the Lord tested you,
tribe of Levi.
You were faithful,
and so the priesthood belongs
to the Levi tribe.
9 Protecting Israel's agreement
with the Lord
was more important to you
than the life of your father
or mother,
or brothers or sisters,
or your own children.

10 You teach God's laws to Israel,
and at the place of worship
you offer sacrifices
and burn incense.
11 I pray that the Lord will bless
everything you do,
and make you strong enough
to crush your enemies.

12 The Lord Most High loves you,
tribe of Benjamin.
He will live among your hills
and protect you.

13 Descendants of Joseph,
the Lord will bless you
with precious water
from deep wells
and with dew from the sky.
14 Month by month, your fruit
will ripen in the sunshine.
15 You will have a rich harvest
from the slopes
of the ancient hills.
16 The Lord who appeared
in the burning bush
wants to give you the best
the land can produce,
and it will be a princely crown
on Joseph's head.

17 The armies of Ephraim
and Manasseh
are majestic and fierce
like a bull or a wild ox.
They will run their spears
through faraway nations.

18 Be happy, Zebulun,
as your boats set sail;
be happy, Issachar,
in your tents.
19 The sea will make you wealthy,
and from the sandy beach
you will get treasure.
So invite the other tribes
to celebrate with you
and offer sacrifices to God.

20 Tribe of Gad,
the Lord will bless you
with more land.
So shout his praises!
Your tribe is like a lion
ripping up its victim.
21 Your leaders met together
and chose the best land
for your tribe,
but you obeyed the Lord
and helped the other tribes.

22 Tribe of Dan,
you are like a lion cub,
startled by a snake.

23 The Lord is pleased with you,
people of Naphtali.
He will bless you
and give you the land
to the west and the south.

24 The Lord's greatest blessing
is for you, tribe of Asher.
You will be the favorite
of all the other tribes.
You will be rich with olive oil
25 and have strong town gates
with bronze and iron bolts.
Your people will be powerful
for as long as they live.

26 Israel, no other god
is like ours—
the clouds are his chariot
as he rides across the skies
to come and help us.
27 The eternal God
is our hiding place;
he carries us in his arms.
When God tells you
to destroy your enemies,
he will make them run.
28 Israel, you will live in safety;
your enemies will be gone.
The dew will fall from the sky,
and you will have plenty
of grain and wine.
29 The Lord has rescued you
and given you more blessings
than any other nation.
He protects you like a shield
and is your majestic sword.
Your enemies will bow in fear,
and you will trample
on their backs.