5 Simeon and Levi are brethren; instruments [1] of cruelty are in their habitations.

Other Translations of Genesis 49:5

New International Version

5 "Simeon and Levi are brothers- their swordsThe meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain. are weapons of violence.

English Standard Version

5 "Simeon and Levi are brothers; weapons of violence are their swords.

The Message

5 Simeon and Levi are two of a kind, ready to fight at the drop of a hat.

New King James Version

5 "Simeon and Levi are brothers; Instruments of cruelty are in their dwelling place.

New Living Translation

5 "Simeon and Levi are two of a kind; their weapons are instruments of violence.

Matthew Henry's Commentary on Genesis 49:5

Commentary on Genesis 49:3-7

(Read Genesis 49:3-7)

Reuben was the first-born; but by gross sin, he forfeited the birthright. The character of Reuben is, that he was unstable as water. Men do not thrive, because they do not fix. Reuben's sin left a lasting infamy upon his family. Let us never do evil, then we need not fear being told of it. Simeon and Levi were passionate and revengeful. The murder of the Shechemites is a proof of this. Jacob protested against that barbarous act. Our soul is our honour; by its powers we are distinguished from, and raised above, the beasts that perish. We ought, from our hearts, to abhor all bloody and mischievous men. Cursed be their anger. Jacob does not curse their persons, but their lusts. I will divide them. The sentence as it respects Levi was turned into a blessing. This tribe performed an acceptable service in their zeal against the worshippers of the golden calf, Exodus 32. Being set apart to God as priests, they were in that character scattered through the nation of Israel.