Ephraim and Manasseh
Before Jacob died he had an audience with Joseph and his two sons. Manasseh and Ephraim were adopted into Jacobs family and became his so that they would be properly blessed. Here is what Scripture tells us
17 When Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand on the head of Ephraim, it displeased him, and he took his father’s hand to move it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s head. 18 And Joseph said to his father, “Not this way, my father; since this one is the firstborn, put your right hand on his head.” 19 But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. He also shall become a people, and he also shall be great. Nevertheless, his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his offspring shall become a multitude of nations.” 20 So he blessed them that day, saying,
“By you Israel will pronounce blessings, saying, ‘God make you as Ephraim and as Manasseh.’”
Thus he put Ephraim before Manasseh.
He did give both a blessing but the better of the blessings fell on Ephraim. Why did Jacob do this? Was it because he was biased? Or did he understand the need for a younger, stronger nation to be built up. Was it because Manasseh actually lived up to his names meaning, ”forgetfulness”, while Ephraim means, “fruitfulness”. In his blessing Jacob says his younger brother will be greater than he, what does he mean?
Ephraim is spoken of more than Manasseh and suffers curses as well as many blessings. When the kingdom split into two Ephraim was the lead house in the northern kingdom while Judah maintained the south. Ephraim is known to be a mixture of nations and is it unknown how many are truly out there.
Gilead is mine, Manasseh is mine; Ephraim is my helmet, Judah is my scepter Psalm 108:8
Judah is the Scepter….which is the holder of the Kingdom power. Judah is at the seat of the city called holy and the ruling party of God’s Kingdom will sit in Jerusalem. Ephraim is the helmet….the strength of numbers, the strong arm of God. Ephraim will be numerous and as there is strength in numbers they also must be strong in their faith. But something went wrong…..
Ephraim has been known as the largest grouping of many ethnicities which eludes to Ephraim being America with many houses of Jacob intertwined with the world. The book of Hosea shares many things about future Ephraim in 7:11 Ephraim is called a silly dove; 8:9 says that Ephraim has hired lovers. Here is something that is relevant to this very day:
8 “Ephraim has mixed himself among the peoples; Ephraim is a cake unturned. 9 Aliens have devoured his strength, But he does not know it; Yes, gray hairs are here and there on him, Yet he does not know it. Hosea 7:8-9
This is a rabbit hole that will hurt. We are a melting pot of many nations this “cake unturned” is a half- baked notion that though we live together we do not truly live as one. There are so many ethnic divisions that cause way to much strife and this will leave us wide open for destruction from within.
If Ephraim is America then we are in deep trouble. Hosea mentions many of the issues we are having from what once was great has caused great tribulation. We led in agriculture but have now poisoned ourselves and the land with Genetically Modified Organisms. We are the richest country but this will be our downfall as greed will overtake the leaders and rich, destroying the economy. We have become harlots from Israel as many in this place have forgotten God and began to serve pagans (false religions and false Christian doctrine). All the attempts to live as one will not work as long as there is still an ethnic and religious division. We are one country with many tribes, as long as these tribes continue to self-identify and spit hate at the others, we will not be one. As long as there is mental dysfunction causing confusion from what God made and people think they know themselves better than God, there will be disharmony and civil unrest. As long as God’s law continues to be distorted by man, there will be wrath from above which will wipe us out.
What can we learn from Ephraim?? If what Hosea says is true about America then it is time to get out of there, not keep trying to get there. The country is still young and has lost the original premise of the fore-fathers. It is a land of hate and dissention where even those in charge cannot get along because of their misunderstandings and the greed that has infected the government.
But you know something? There is hope. There is a promise, a man, a father, and a friend, who gave us something wonderful. Jesus came to save the wretched, the poor, the greedy, the lost, the hurt, the hopeless, kings, paupers, nobles, servants, warriors, masters, slaves. He came to save us all from our sins by giving up His life on the cross and defeating death once and for all. All we need do is believe in Him and follow Him with our own crosses suffering to do His will and having a fullness of life.
As we come to a close today We need to pray for God to guide us in His ways so that we can be the lights in this dark and weary world. For the Ephraim’s we pray that God will have mercy and look into our souls to save us as we cry out in Jesus Name. Jesus we ask You to do Your will in us through the Holy Spirit so that we can go and make Disciples of ALL men. Thank You Lord. In Jesus Name. AMEN