Genesis 48:20 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Genesis 48:20, NIV: "He blessed them that day and said, 'In your name will Israel pronounce this blessing: 'May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh.'' So he put Ephraim ahead of Manasseh."

Genesis 48:20, ESV: "So he blessed them that day, saying, “By you Israel will pronounce blessings, saying, ‘God make you as Ephraim and as Manasseh.’” Thus he put Ephraim before Manasseh."

Genesis 48:20, KJV: "And he blessed them that day, saying, In thee shall Israel bless, saying, God make thee as Ephraim and as Manasseh: and he set Ephraim before Manasseh."

Genesis 48:20, NASB: "So he blessed them that day, saying, 'By you Israel will pronounce blessing, saying, ‘May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh!’?' And so he put Ephraim before Manasseh."

Genesis 48:20, NLT: "So Jacob blessed the boys that day with this blessing: 'The people of Israel will use your names when they give a blessing. They will say, 'May God make you as prosperous as Ephraim and Manasseh.'' In this way, Jacob put Ephraim ahead of Manasseh."

Genesis 48:20, CSB: "So he blessed them that day, putting Ephraim before Manasseh when he said, "The nation Israel will invoke blessings by you, saying, 'May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh.' ""

What does Genesis 48:20 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Jacob is giving a deathbed blessing to the two oldest sons of Joseph. In fact, Jacob is giving them the primary blessing. They are being honored even beyond Jacob's naturally-born oldest sons (Genesis 48:1–13). Joseph had been displeased that Jacob had done so with his right hand on the younger son's head instead of the firstborn. Jacob explained to Joseph that he did this intentionally. Though Manasseh will be greatly blessed, his younger brother Ephraim will be even greater and grow into a much larger people (Genesis 48:14–19).

Now Jacob concludes his blessing on the two boys. Both will be greatly blessed. Both will be held up in Israel as an example of God's blessing and prayer for others to be blessed likewise: "May God make you as Ephraim and Manasseh." And yet, the verse ends with one more acknowledgement that Ephraim will be more blessed than his brother Manasseh.