Skip to Content

The 12 Tribes of Israel (or is it 14?) Overview of Tribes & Lessons We Can Learn

This page/post may contain affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate, as well as an affiliate of other programs, this means if you purchase something using these links, I will receive a commission on qualifying purchases at no cost to you! For more detailed information, please visit our Affiliate Disclaimer page

The Twelve tribes of Israel. Or wait, is it 14? Will get to that in a moment. 

Each of the tribes of Israel had its own personality, history, territory, and lessons we can learn. They also each had their own blessings by Jacob as he lay dying. Many were also blessed by Moses. (Genesis 49:1-28)

tribes of israel

These blessings also included prophecies concerning the fate of each of the tribes of Israel.

Then Jacob called his sons and said, “Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you what shall happen to you in days to come. – Genesis 49:1 (ESV)

These tribes were known as the tribes of Israel in honor of Jacob, whose name was changed to Israel by God.

Then he said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed.” – Genesis 32:28 (ESV)

The twelve tribes (14) individually bore the names of Jacob’s sons: Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Issachar, Zebulun, Joseph, (Manasseh and Ephraim) and Benjamin.

You can find everything that you are looking for about the tribe of Israel on my website, but if you would like a study of all 12 Tribes of Israel, (plus the two half tribes) you can purchase the ebook for your convenience. No ads, no pop ups and you’ll have it forever to refer to when studying the sons of Jacob. It includes videos and additional downloads. The best part – it’s only $10 for over 230 pages!! Your choice, read it here or have it forever.

Twelve Tribes of Israel

As a compass for our time here on earth, we have much to learn from these blessings. Each of the tribes of Israel took a unique path.

At the end of the blessing by Jacob, we read:

All these are the twelve tribes of Israel. This is what their father said to them as he blessed them, blessing each with the blessing suitable to him. – Genesis 49:28 (ESV)

 Let’s start by looking at the word “blessing”. 

In Hebrew, the word Berakah (בְּרָכָה) means blessing. It also means gift or of God.

To understand the tribes of Israel, it is interesting to note that they are each described in three ways:

  1. By their mother
  2. By their blessing from Jacob
  3. By their blessing from Moses. (Deuteronomy 33:6-25)

When you look at each of the tribes, take special note on how each son of Jacob and each tribe of Israel was described by their mother, Jacob, and Moses.

Tribes of Israel

The 12 Tribes of Israel (or is it 14?) Overview of Tribes & Lessons We Can Learn

The tribes of Israel are fascinating studies on the character of not just each tribe, but God as well. We learn of punishment, redemption, grace and love.

Each of the post above include history, territory, prominent members of the tribe, and lessons we can learn from each of these tribes of Israel.

Which tribe of Israel do you find most interesting?

Because He Lives,


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.