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Genesis 49:1-28

Author: Kent Berghuis

"Passing the Blessing"
(Genesis 49:1-28)
Genesis 49:28: "All these are the twelve tribes of Israel, and this is what their father said to them when 
he blessed them, giving each the blessing appropriate to him."

Introduction: How we speak and act with our children can greatly affect the outcome of their lives.

The "blessing" has played a pivotal role in the story line of Genesis.  God blessed his creation, 1:22, 28; 
the sabbath, 2:3; mankind, 5:2; Noah and his family, 9:1; Noah blessed his sons, 9:26; God called and 
blessed Abram, 12:1-3; Melchizedek blessed Abram, 14:18-20; God blessed Sarai with a son, 17:16; 
God blessed Ishmael, 17:20; God would bless Abraham, and the world through Abraham's family, 
18:18, 22:17-18, 24:1; God blessed in finding Rebekah for Isaac, 24:27-60; God blessed Isaac, 25:11, 
26:3-12; Isaac blessed Esau and Jacob, 27:4-41; Isaac blessed Jacob specially, 28:1-6; God would bless 
the world through Jacob, 28:14; God blessed Leah and Rachel with children, 30:13-30; Jacob and Esau 
blessed each other, 33:4-11; God blessed Jacob at his return to Bethel, 35:9; God blessed Potiphar's 
house through Joseph, 39:5; Jacob blessed Pharaoh, 47:7-10; Jacob blessed Joseph's sons, 48:1-20; 
Jacob blessed his sons before he died, 49:1-28.

God wants us to pass "the blessing" on.

I.  The shaping of Israel's destiny (49:1-28)
	A.  God holds the future and reveals it as he will (1-2).
	B.  Sinful actions may remove people from positions of greatest blessing (3-7).
		1.  Reuben should have been heir, but he forfeited it (3-4)
			--he was "turbulent as the waters," and he defiled his father's bed (35:22)
		2.  Levi and Simeon forfeited tribal lands due to their violence (Gen 34)
	C.  God entrusts leadership to those worthy of responsibility (8-12)
		1.  Judah will be a mighty leader (8-9)
		2.  Judah will bring the rightful ruler (10); David, through whom came Jesus
		3.  Judah will be blessed materially (11-12)
	D.  God declares the destinies of his people (13-21, 27)
		1.  Zebulun would dwell by the sea (13)
		2.  Issachar would sacrifice freedom for prosperity (14-15)
		3.  Dan would help his brothers against oppression by God's power (16-18)
		4.  Gad would prevail over enemies by attacking their "heel" (19)
		5.  Asher would become rich (20)
		6.  Naphtali would be free (21)
		7.  Benjamin would have success in battle (27)
	E.  God blesses those who endure opposition (22-26)
		1.  Joseph was attacked by his enemies (22-23)
		2.  Joseph was defended by God (24-25a)
		3.  Joseph gained a superior blessing (25b-26)
II.  The shaping of your destiny 
	5 elements of the blessing for you to pass on (from Gary Smalley and John Trent, The Blessing):
	1.  Meaningful touch
	2.  Spoken words
	3.  Expressing high value
	4.  Picturing a special future
	5.  An active commitment


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