And Jacob called unto his sons, and said, Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you that which shall befall you in the last days. Gather yourselves together, and hear, ye sons of Jacob; and hearken unto Israel your father.
Judah, thou art he whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand shall be in the neck of thine enemies; thy father's children shall bow down before thee. Judah is a lion's whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up? The Sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto Him shall the gathering of the people be. Binding His foal unto the vine, and His ass's colt unto the choice vine; He washed His garments in wine, and His clothes in the blood of grapes: His eyes shall be red with wine, and His teeth white with milk.
And he charged them, and said unto them, I am to be gathered unto my people: bury me with my fathers in the cave that is in the field of Ephron the Hittite,
And when Jacob had made an end of commanding his sons, he gathered up his feet into the bed, and yielded up the ghost, and was gathered unto his people. (Gen 49:1-2, 8-12, 29, 33)
At the end of his 130 years, Jacob passes on the blessing to each of his children. Since Reuben, Simeon and Levi lost their double blessing and inheritance as firstborn because of their sIn, with Bilhah and with the sons of Shechem, Judah becomes the head of the family, and the tribe which will bring forth not only earthly kings to rule Israel, but the King of Kings when He is born of the flesh, the Lion of the Tribe of Judah.
Jacob's children were blessed according to their character, their actions, and their future, as a person, a leader, and a tribe. Jacob, by divine inspiration, declared not only the immediate future of each family, but also the legacy and disposition of each tribe as they grew and Israel remains a nation. In the future, when Israel is once more the center of GOD's attention, each tribe will once again take its place as Jacob declared here.
Levi will be blessed with a partial restoral of their leadership, in that they will become the priestly tribe of Israel, but even in that they stray and live up to that which Jacob declared. GOD is not surprised by our character, nor is He unaware of the legacy of His people. He knows the end from the beginning, and has it all in His hand for a purpose. His ways are not our ways, and His thoughts are not our thoughts, but He has given us His Word that we may know, not only what He has already done, His character and nature, but also His divine love and judgment according to the grace and our faith in Him.
He commands His people to be a light in the darkness, to be salt in this world, to be a voice crying in the wilderness, and to lift Him up that He may draw all men to Himself. We are commissioned to minister to the hurting and in need as He gives the increase, to disciple one another in love and His Word, and to proclaim the Good News of Salvation through faith in His finished and perfect work on the Cross of Calvary to all who will hear, that they might believe in Him and believing have life in His Name.
For GOD is not willing that any should perish, but that all would come to repentance and the knowledge of the Truth. Jesus loves you and wants to establish a covenant relationship with you that is real and personal. Surrender to Him on His terms and He will give you a brand new life of discipleship and fellowship with Him that is abundant and everlasting. Just as He knew everything about the sons of Israel, GOD knows you and He still took your place, and you must trust what He has already done for you to pay your sIn debt. Because of your need of Him, He has provided the only way of reconciliation with GOD with forgiveness and Salvation through Jesus Christ, the Son of GOD who is GOD the Son, to give you a new heart in Christ. Turn away from yourself and your sIn and turn to Him alone for eternal Life.