New International Reader's Version

Deuteronomy 33

Moses Blesses the Tribes

1Here is the blessing that Moses, the man of God, gave to the Israelites before he died. He said,

“The Lord came from Mount Sinai.
    Like the rising sun, he shone on his people from Mount Seir.
    He shone on them from Mount Paran.
He came with large numbers of angels.
    He came from his mountain slopes in the south.
Lord, I’m sure you love your people.
    All the holy ones are in your hands.
At your feet all of them bow down.
    And you teach them.
They learn the law Moses gave us.
    It belongs to the community of the people of Jacob.
The Lord was king over Israel
    when the leaders of the people came together.
    The tribes of Israel were also there.”

Here’s what Moses said about Reuben.

“Let Reuben live. Don’t let him die.
    And do not let his people be few.”

Here’s what Moses said about Judah.

Lord, listen to Judah cry out.
    Bring him to his people.
By his own power he stands up for himself.
    Lord, help him fight against his enemies!”

Here’s what Moses said about Levi.

“Your Thummim and Urim belong to your faithful servant.
    You tested him at Massah.
    You argued with him at the waters of Meribah.
Levi didn’t show special favor to anyone.
    He did not spare his father and mother.
    He didn’t excuse his relatives or his children.
But he watched over your word.
    He guarded your covenant.
10 He teaches your rules to the people of Jacob.
    He teaches your law to Israel.
He offers incense to you.
    He sacrifices whole burnt offerings on your altar.
11 Lord, bless all his skills.
    Be pleased with everything he does.
Destroy those who rise up against him.
    Strike down his enemies until they can’t get up.”

12 Here’s what Moses said about Benjamin.

“Let the one the Lord loves rest safely in him.
    The Lord guards him all day long.
    The one the Lord loves rests in his arms.”

13 Here’s what Moses said about Joseph.

“May the Lord bless Joseph’s land.
    May he bless it with dew from the highest heavens.
    May he bless it with water from the deepest oceans.
14 May he bless it with the best crops the sun can produce.
    May he bless it with the finest crops the moon can give.
15 May he bless it with the best products of the age-old mountains.
    May he bless it with the many crops of the ancient hills.
16 May he bless it with the best gifts that fill the earth.
    May he bless it with the favor of the God who spoke out of the burning bush.
Let all these blessings rest on the head of Joseph.
    Let them rest on the head of the one who is prince among his brothers.
17 His glory is like the glory of a bull born first to its mother.
    His horns are like the horns of a wild ox.
He will use them to destroy the nations.
    He’ll wipe out the nations that are very far away.
The ten thousands of men in Ephraim’s army are like the bull and the ox.
    So are the thousands in the army of Manasseh.”

18 Here’s what Moses said about Zebulun and Issachar.

“Zebulun, be filled with joy when you go out.
    Issachar, be joyful in your tents.
19 You will call for other people to go to the mountain.
    There you will offer the sacrifices of those who do what is right.
You will enjoy the many good things your ships bring you.
    You will enjoy treasures that are hidden in the sand.”

20 Here’s what Moses said about Gad.

“May the God who gives Gad more land be praised!
    Gad lives there like a lion
    that tears off arms and heads.
21 He chose the best land for his livestock.
    The leader’s share was kept for him.
The leaders of the people came together.
    Then Gad carried out the Lord’s holy plan.
    He carried out the Lord’s decisions for Israel.”

22 Here’s what Moses said about Dan.

“Dan is like a lion’s cub
    that charges out of the land of Bashan.”

23 Here’s what Moses said about Naphtali.

“The Lord greatly favors Naphtali.
    The Lord fills him with his blessing.
    Naphtali’s land will reach south to the Sea of Galilee.”

24 Here’s what Moses said about Asher.

“Asher is the most blessed of sons.
    Let his brothers be kind to him.
    Let Asher wash his feet with olive oil.
25 The bars of his gates will be made out of iron and bronze.
    His strength will last as long as he lives.

26 “There is no one like the God of Israel.
    He rides across the heavens to help you.
    He rides on the clouds in his glory.
27 God lives forever! You can run to him for safety.
    His powerful arms are always there to carry you.
He will drive out your enemies to make room for you.
    He’ll say to you, ‘Destroy them!’
28 So Israel will live in safety.
    Jacob will live secure
in a land that has grain and fresh wine.
    There the heavens drop their dew.
29 Israel, how blessed you are!
    Who is like you?
    The Lord has saved you.
He keeps you safe. He helps you.
    He’s like a glorious sword to you.
Your enemies will bow down to you in fear.
    You will walk on the highest places of their lands.”