2 ‘Be assembled, and hear, sons of Jacob, And hearken unto Israel your father. 3Reuben! my first-born thou, My power, and beginning of my strength, The abundance of exaltation, And the abundance of strength; 4Unstable as water, thou art not abundant; For thou hast gone up thy father’s bed; Then thou hast polluted: My couch he went up!
5 Simeon and Levi are brethren! Instruments of violence—their espousals! 6Into their secret, come not, O my soul! Unto their assembly be not united, O mine honour; For in their anger they slew a man, And in their self-will eradicated a prince. 7Cursed is their anger, for it is fierce, And their wrath, for it is sharp; I divide them in Jacob, And I scatter them in Israel.
8 Judah! thou—thy brethren praise thee! Thy hand is on the neck of thine enemies, Sons of thy father bow themselves to thee. 9A lion’s whelp is Judah, For prey, my son, thou hast gone up; He hath bent, he hath crouched as a lion, And as a lioness; who causeth him to arise? 10The sceptre turneth not aside from Judah, And a lawgiver from between his feet, Till his Seed come; And his is the obedience of peoples. 11Binding to the vine his ass, And to the choice vine the colt of his ass, He hath washed in wine his clothing, And in the blood of grapes his covering; 12Red are eyes with wine, And white are teeth with milk!
13 Zebulun at a haven of the seas doth dwell, And he is for a haven of ships; And his side is unto Zidon. 14Issacher is a strong ass, Crouching between the two folds; 15And he seeth rest that it is good, And the land that it is pleasant, And he inclineth his shoulder to bear, And is to tribute a servant. 16Dan doth judge his people, As one of the tribes of Israel; 17Dan is a serpent by the way, An adder by the path, Which is biting the horse’s heels, And its rider falleth backward. 18For Thy salvation I have waited, Jehovah! 19Gad! a troop assaulteth him, But he assaulteth last. 20Out of Asher his bread is fat; And he giveth dainties of a king. 21Naphtali is a hind sent away, Who is giving beauteous young ones.
22 Joseph is a fruitful son; A fruitful son by a fountain, Daughters step over the wall; 23And embitter him—yea, they have striven, Yea, hate him do archers; 24And his bow abideth in strength, And strengthened are the arms of his hands By the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob, Whence is a shepherd, a son of Israel. 25By the God of thy father who helpeth thee, And the Mighty One who blesseth thee, Blessings of the heavens from above, Blessings of the deep lying under, Blessings of breasts and womb;— 26Thy father’s blessings have been mighty Above the blessings of my progenitors, Unto the limit of the heights age-during They are for the head of Joseph, And for the crown of the one Separate from his brethren. 27Benjamin! a wolf teareth; In the morning he eateth prey, And at evening he apportioneth spoil.’
28 All these are the twelve tribes of Israel, and this is that which their father hath spoken unto them, and he blesseth them; each according to his blessing he hath blessed them. 29And he commandeth them, and saith unto them, ‘I am being gathered unto my people; bury me by my fathers, at the cave which is in the field of Ephron the Hittite; 30in the cave which is in the field of Machpelah, which is on the front of Mamre, in the land of Canaan, which Abraham bought with the field from Ephron the Hittite for a possession of a burying-place; 31(there they buried Abraham and Sarah his wife; there they buried Isaac and Rebekah his wife; and there I buried Leah); 32the purchase of the field and of the cave which is in it, is from Sons of Heth.’ 33And Jacob finisheth commanding his sons, and gathereth up his feet unto the bed, and expireth, and is gathered unto his people.
About Young’s Literal Translation
Robert Young is best known for his monumental work, Young’s Analytical Concordance To The Bible. Young’s Literal Translation is a very good work to add to your Bible collection for text comparisons. Since this is a very literal translation, it offers a good contrast and comparison to a dynamic equivalent translation like the NIV.