Tuesday, June 27, 2017

The missing blessings

An interesting inconsistency can be found in the Tribal blessings of Moses and Jacob (Israel). There seem to be one blessing missing. Let's take a look at the text:

Genesis 49

1) Reuben
2) Simeon
3) Levi
4) Judah
5) Zebulon
6) Issachar
7) Dan
8) Gad
9) Asher
10) Naphtali
11) Joseph
12) Benjamin

Deuteronomy 33

1) Reuben
2) Judah
3) Levi
4) Benjamin
5) Joseph
6) Zebulun
7) Gad
8) Dan
9) Naphtali
10) Asher

So as you can see, we are missing several blessings, namely for Simeon and Issachar, from the list of blessings that Moses gave.

My NIP also does not show any additional information (Genesis, Deuteronomy).

This means that most likely these blessings fell out of the text before the 2nd Temple period because they most certainly had to be there originally.

Also, it is interesting to see that Ephraim and Menashe tribes are listed under Joseph's name. This is because Joseph was one of the brothers originally and therefore also needed a blessing.

So we are missing two blessings, which are very important for Tribal identification. It would be very interesting to find the missing pieces but all current witnesses of the Torah do not contain them.

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