In Genesis 49, we read the last words of the unlikely man that God chose to be the patriarch of His chosen people—Israel. Aware that his time on earth was coming to an end, he begins the difficult business of putting his house in order—saying what must be said to his sons‚ the patriarchs of the tribes that would come from their families.
What Israel must say must be said because these prophecies come from God. In fact, what Israel says are the first recorded prophecies spoken by a person in the Bible. Some of the things Israel must say aren’t all that great—but Israel is faithful to the task because he knows they are God’s words, not his.
Why weren’t these prophecies always wonderful? Because sin has consequences—and Israel’s sons were no strangers to sin. Unfortunately for some of Israel’s sons, their sin would be dealt with on their father’s death bed. Even though sin can be forgiven and relationships can be fully restored, if hidden sin hasn’t been confessed, forsaken, and forgiven it will fester and it will eventually find you out.
Listen to our study of Genesis 49 and hear the final words of Israel to his family: