Genesis 49

So what does Jacob do in his final words: bless or prophecy? Does he know these things will be or does he wish it? What is the relationship of these two activities? What relationship exists (relationships exist?) between a future tense and an imperative mode?

Worth thinking about at any level you want (especially in English where the future tense seems less a tense and more the function of a modal verb). In Genesis 49, the text starts out saying he is going to tell them what will come, it ends up saying he has blessed them.

How much of what Jacob says is desire and how much what he says is what he has seen, truly seen? Is there that much of a difference between faith and desire in the heart of a believer? Is that what Jacob has finally learned: to match them up?

Jacob has learned both to be in earnest and to rest. He has desired and cared, and now that he is content at last, carefree and even feeling more blessed than all his forebears; has he indeed learned to align faith and desire? Does it seem they can be misaligned somehow? His poetry has moments in which it is playful enough, matched exactly to what God will do.

Sed Deus disponit . . . homo ludit, yes?

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