Testament of Simeon
The Testament of Simeon
Simeon was the second son of Jacob and Leah. The Hebrew meaning of his name is "God has learned that I have been unloved".
Genesis 29:33 "She conceived again and bore a son, and said, “Because the LORD has heard that I am hated, he has given me this son also.” And she called his name Simeon."
He is the strong man. He and his brother Levi destroyed the entire city of Shechem in retaliation for the rape of their sister Dinah (Genesis 34). He becomes jealous of Joseph and is the instigator of the plot against Joseph. After the family moved to Egypt during the famine in Canaan, he was appointed as Benjamin’s guarantor so that his brothers could go to Canaan.
He urged on envy, lust, and jealousy.
The copy of the words of Simeon, the things which he spake to his sons before he died, in the hundred and twentieth year of his life, at which time Joseph, his brother, died.
For when Simeon was sick, his sons came to visit him, and he strengthened himself and sat up and kissed them, and said:--
Hear, O my children, hear Simeon your father, what things I have in my heart.
I was born of Jacob my father, his second son; and my mother Leah called me Simeon, because the Lord heard her prayer.
I became strong exceedingly; I shrank from no deed, nor was I afraid of anything.
For my heart was hard, and my mind was unmoveable, and my bowels unfeeling:
because valour also has been given from the Most High to men in soul and in body.
And at that time I was jealous of Joseph because our father loved him;
and I set my mind against him to destroy him, because the prince of deceit sent forth the spirit of jealousy and blinded my mind, that I regarded him not as a brother, and spared not Jacob my father.
But his God and the God of his fathers sent forth His angel, and delivered him out of my hands.
For when I went into Shechem to bring ointment for the flocks, and Reuben to Dotham, where were our necessaries and all our stores, Judah our brother sold him to the Ishmaelites.
And when Reuben came he was grieved, for he wished to have restored him safe to his father.
But I was angry against Judah in that he let him go away alive, and for five months I continued wrathful against him;
but God restrained me, and withheld from me all working of my hands, for my right hand was half withered for seven days.
And I knew, my children, that because of Joseph this happened to me, and I repented and wept; and I besought the Lord that He would restore my hand unto me, and that I might be kept from all pollution and envy, and from all folly.
For I knew that I had devised an evil deed before the Lord and Jacob my father, on account of Joseph my brother, in that I envied him.
And now, children, take heed of the spirit of deceit and of envy.
For envy rules over the whole mind of a man, and suffers him neither to eat, nor to drink, nor to do any good thing:
it ever suggests to him to destroy him that he envies;
and he that is envied ever flourishes, but he that envies fades away.
Two years of days I afflicted my soul with fasting in the fear of the Lord, and I learned that deliverance from envy comes by the fear of God.
If a man flee to the Lord, the evil spirit runs away from him, and his mind becomes lightened.
And henceforward he sympathizes with him whom he envied, and condemns not those who love him, and so ceases from his envy.
And my father asked concerning me, because he saw that I was sad; and I said, I am pained in my liver.
For I mourned more than they all, because I was guilty of the selling of Joseph.
And when we went down into Egypt, and he bound me as a spy, I knew that I was suffering justly, and I grieved not.
Now Joseph was a good man, and had the Spirit of God within him: compassionate and pitiful, he bore not malice against me; nay, he loved me even as the rest of his brothers.
Take heed, therefore, my children, of all jealousy and envy, and walk in singleness of soul and with good heart, keeping in mind the brother of your father, that God may give to you also grace and glory, and blessing upon your heads, even as you saw in Joseph's case.
All his days he reproached us not concerning this thing, but loved us as his own soul, and beyond his own sons; and he glorified us, and gave riches, and cattle, and fruits freely to us all.
Then also, my beloved children, love each one his brother with a good heart, and the spirit of envy will withdraw from you.
For this makes savage the soul and destroys the body; it causes anger and war in the mind, and stirs up unto blood, and leads the mind into frenzy, and suffers not prudence to act in men: moreover, it takes away sleep, and causes tumult to the soul and trembling to the body.
For even in sleep some malicious jealousy, deluding him, gnaws at his soul, and with wicked spirits disturbs it, and causes the body to be troubled, and the mind to awake from sleep in confusion; and as though having a wicked and poisonous spirit, so appears it to men.
Therefore was Joseph comely in appearance, and goodly to look upon, because no wickedness dwelt in him,
For in trouble of the spirit the face manifest it. And now, my children, make your hearts good before the Lord, and your ways straight before men,
and you shall find grace before God and men. And take heed not to commit fornication, for fornication is mother of all evils, separating from God, and bringing near to Beliar.
For I have seen it inscribed in the writing of Enoch that your sons shall with you be corrupted in fornication, and shall do wrong against Levi with the sword.
But they shall not prevail against Levi, for he shall wage the war of the Lord, and shall conquer all your hosts;
and there shall be a few divided in Levi and Judah, and there shall be none of you for sovereignty, even as also my father Jacob prophesied in his blessings.
Behold, I have foretold you all things, that I may be clear from the sin of your souls.
Now, if you remove from you your envy, and all your stiff-neckedness, as a rose shall my bones flourish in Israel, and as a lily my flesh in Jacob, and my odour shall be as the odour of Libanus; and as cedars shall holy ones be multiplied from me for ever, and their branches shall stretch afar off.
Then shall perish the seed of Canaan, and a remnant shall not be to Amalek, and all the Cappadocians shall perish, and all the Hittites shall be utterly destroyed.
Then shall fail the land of Ham, and every people shall perish. Then shall all the earth rest from trouble, and all the world under heaven from war.
Then shall Shem be glorified, because the Lord God, the Mighty One of Israel, shall appear upon earth as man, and saved by Him Adam.
Then shall all the spirits of deceit be given to be trampled under foot, and men shall rule over the wicked spirits.
Then will I arise in joy, and will bless the Most High because of His marvellous works, because God has taken a body and eaten with men and saved men.
And now, my children, obey Levi, and Judah; and be not lifted up against these two tribes, for from them shall arise unto you the salvation of God.
For the Lord shall raise up from Levi as it were a Priest, and from Judah as it were a King, God and man. So shall He save all the Gentiles and the race of Israel.
Therefore I command you all things, in order that you also may command your children, that they may observe them throughout their generations.
And Simeon made an end of commanding his sons, and slept with his fathers, being an hundred and twenty years old.
And they laid him in a wooden coffin, to take up his bones to Hebron.
And they carried them up in a war of the Egyptians secretly.
For the bones of Joseph the Egyptians guarded in the treasure-house of the palace; for the sorcerers told them that at the departure of the bones of Joseph there should be throughout the whole of Egypt darkness and gloom, and an exceeding great plague to the Egyptians, so that even with a lamp a man should not recognise his brother.
And the sons of Simeon bewailed their father according to the law of mourning.
And they were in Egypt until the day of their departure from Egypt by the hand of Moses.
To God be the glory. Amen!