Joshua

JB JOSHUA Chapter 1

I. THE CONQUEST OF THE PROMISED LAND

A. THE PREPARATIONS

The summons to enter the Promised Land

1:1 When Moses the servant of Yahweh was dead,[*a] Yahweh spoke to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ adjutant. He said,

1:2 ‘Moses my servant is dead; rise – it is time – and cross the Jordan here, you and all this people with you, into the land which I am giving the sons of Israel.

1:3 Every place you tread with the soles of your feet I shall give you as I declared to Moses that I would.

1:4 From the wilderness and Lebanon to the great river Euphrates and to the Great Sea

westwards, this shall be your territory.[*b]

1:5 As long as you live, no one shall be able to stand in your way; I will be with you as I was with Moses; I will not leave you or desert you.

Faithfulness to the Law is a condition of God’s aid

1:6 ‘Be strong and stand firm, for you are the man to give this people possession of the land that I swore to their fathers I should give to them.

1:7 Only be strong and stand firm and be careful to keep all the Law which my servant Moses laid on you. Never swerve from this to right or left, and then you will be happy in all you do.

1:8 Have the book of this law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may carefully keep everything that is written in it. Then you will prosper in your dealings, then you will have success.

1:9 Have I not told you: Be strong and stand firm? Be fearless then, be confident, for go where you will, Yahweh your God is with you.

Aid from the tribes beyond the Jordan

1:10 Then Joshua gave the officers of the people this order:

1:11 ‘Go through the camp and say to the people, “Get provisions ready, for in three days you will cross the Jordan here and go on to take possession of the land which Yahweh your God is giving you as your very own”‘.

1:12 Then to the Reubenites and Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh, Joshua said,

1:13 ‘Remember what Yahweh’s servant Moses told you, “Yahweh your God, granting you a place to find rest, has given you this land”.

1:14 Your wives, your little ones and your cattle may remain in the land that Moses gave you beyond the Jordan. But all you who are fighting men must go over with your weapons in front of your brothers and fight with them

1:15 till Yahweh grants rest, to your brothers and you alike, when they too have taken possession of the land that Yahweh your God is giving them. Then you may go back again to the land that is yours to hold, which Yahweh’s servant Moses gave you eastwards beyond the Jordan.’

1:16 Then they answered Joshua, ‘We will do all that you have told us, and wherever you send us we will go.

1:17 We obeyed Moses in all things, and now we will obey you. Only may Yahweh your God be with you as he was with Moses!

1:18 If anyone rebels against your direction and does not obey whatever orders you lay on him, let him be put to death. Only be strong and stand firm.’

JB JOSHUA Chapter 2

Joshua’s spies at Jericho

2:1 Joshua son of Nun sent out two spies secretly from Shittim.[*a] He said, ‘Go out and explore the country at Jericho’. They went, and they entered the house of a harlot called Rahab; there they lodged.

2:2 Word of this was brought to the king of Jericho, ‘Take notice, some men from the Israelites have come here tonight to reconnoitre the country’.

2:3 Then the king of Jericho sent a message to Rahab, ‘Send out the men who came to you and are lodging in your house, for they have come to reconnoitre the whole country’.

2:4 But the woman took the two men and hid them; and she answered, ‘True, the men came to me, but I did not know where they came from.

2:5 When the city gate was about to be closed at nightfall, the men went out and I cannot say where they went. Follow them quickly, you may still overtake them.’

2:6 She had taken them up to the roof and hidden them under stalks of flax she had heaped up there.

2:7 The king’s men pursued them towards the Jordan, as far as the fords, and the gate was shut once the pursuers had gone through.

The pact between Rahab and the spies

2:8 The others had not yet lain down when Rahab came up to them on the roof.

2:9 She said to them, ‘I know that Yahweh has given you this land, that we ourselves are afraid of you and that all who live in this territory have been seized with terror at your approach;

2:10 for we have heard how Yahweh dried up the Sea of Reeds before you when you came out of Egypt and what you did with the two Amorite kings across the Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom you put under the ban.

2:11 When we heard this, our hearts failed us, and no courage is left in any of us to stand up to you, because Yahweh your God is God both in heaven above and on earth beneath.

2:12 Swear to me now by Yahweh, then, since I myself have shown you kindness, that you too will show kindness to the people of my father’s house, and will give me a sure sign of this;

2:13 that you will spare the lives of my father and mother, my brothers and sisters and all who belong to them, and will preserve us from death.’

2:14 Then the men answered her, ‘If we do not, it is we, not you, who will deserve to die, unless you tell of our agreement. When Yahweh has given us the land, we will deal with you kindly and faithfully.’

2:15 Rahab let them down from the window by a rope, for her house was against the city wall and she lived inside the wall itself.

2:16 She said, ‘You must make for the hills, to escape your pursuers. Hide there for three days till the pursuers have returned, and then go on your way.’

2:17 The men answered, ‘We for our part will be free of the oath you made us swear, except on these conditions.

2:18 When we enter your land you must use this sign: you must tie this scarlet cord to the window from which you let us down, and you must gather with you in your house your father and mother and brothers and all your family.

2:19 If anybody passes through the doors of your house to go out, his blood shall be on his own head and we are not to blame; but the blood of all who stay with you in the house shall be on our heads if a hand is laid on any of them.

2:20 If you make this talk of ours known, we shall be free of the oath that you made us swear.’

2:21 She replied, ‘Let it be as you say’. She let them go, and they left. Then she tied the scarlet cord to the window. [*b]

The spies return

2:22 They left her and made for the hills. They stayed there for three days, till the pursuers had returned, having scoured the countryside without finding them.

2:23 Then the two men came down again from the hills, crossed the river and came to Joshua son of Nun; and they told him all that had happened to them.

2:24 They said to Joshua, ‘Yahweh has delivered the whole country into our hands, and its inhabitants all tremble already at the thought of us’.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 3

B. THE CROSSING OF THE JORDAN

Before the crossing

3:1 Early in the morning, Joshua struck camp and set out from Shittim with all the Israelites. They reached the Jordan and camped there before they crossed.

3:2 Three days later, the officers went through the camp

3:3 and gave the people these instructions, ‘When you see the ark of the covenant of Yahweh your God and the levitical priests carrying it, you must leave the place where you are standing and follow the ark,

3:4b so that you know which way to take; you have never gone this way before.

3:4a Between you and the ark, however, keep a distance of some thousand cubits;[*a] do not go near it.’

3:5 Joshua said to the people, ‘Sanctify yourselves for tomorrow, because tomorrow Yahweh Will work wonders among you’

3:6 Then he said to the priests ‘Take up the ark of the covenant, and cross at the head of the people’. They took up the ark of the covenant and moved to the front of the people.

The final instructions

3:7 Yahweh said to Joshua, ‘This very day I will begin to make you a great man in the eyes of all Israel, to let them be sure that I am going to be with you even as I was with Moses.

3:8 As for you, give this order to the priests carrying the ark of the covenant: “When you have reached the brink of the waters of the Jordan, you are to stand still in the Jordan itself”.

3:9 Then Joshua said to the Israelites, ‘Come closer and hear the words of Yahweh your God’.

3:10 Joshua said, ‘By this you shall know that a living God is with you and without a doubt will expel the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Hivite, the Perizzite, the Girgashite, the Amorite and the Jebusite.

3:11 Look, the ark of Yahweh, the Lord of the whole earth, is about to cross the Jordan at your head.

3:12 ‘Choose twelve men at once from the tribes of Israel, one man from each tribe.

3:13 ‘As soon as the priests with the ark of Yahweh, the Lord of the whole earth, have set their feet in the waters of the Jordan, the upper waters of the Jordan flowing down will be stopped in their course and stand still in one mass.’

The river crossed

3:14 Accordingly, when the people struck camp to cross the Jordan, the priests carried the ark of the covenant in front of the people.

3:15 As soon as the bearers of the ark reached the Jordan and the feet of the priests who carried it touched the waters (the Jordan overflows the whole length of its banks throughout the harvest season)

3:16 the upper waters stood still and made one heap over a wide space – from Adam to the fortress of Zarethan – while those flowing down to the Sea of the Arabah, that is, the Salt Sea, stopped running altogether. The people crossed opposite Jericho.

3:17 The priests who carried the ark of the covenant of Yahweh stood still on dry ground in mid-Jordan, and all Israel continued to cross dry-shod till the whole nation had finished its crossing of the river.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 4

The twelve memorial stones

4:1 When the whole nation had finished crossing the Jordan, Yahweh spoke to Joshua,

4:2 ‘Choose out twelve men from the people, one man from each tribe,

4:3 and give them this command: “Take from here, from mid-Jordan, twelve stones; carry them with you and set them down in the camp where you pass the night”‘.

4:4 Joshua called the twelve men he had marked out among the Israelites, one man for each tribe,

4:5 and told them, ‘Pass on before the ark of Yahweh your God into mid-Jordan, and each of you take one stone on his shoulder, matching the number of the tribes of Israel,

4:6 to make a memorial of this in your midst; for when in days to come your children ask you, “What do these stones mean for you?”,

4:7 you will tell them, “The waters of the Jordan separated in front of the ark of the covenant of Yahweh, and when it crossed the Jordan, the waters of the river vanished. These stones are an everlasting reminder of this to the Israelites.”‘

4:8 The Israelites did as Joshua told them; they took twelve stones from mid-Jordan to match the number of the tribes of Israel, as Yahweh had told Joshua; they carried them over to the camp and set them down there.

4:9 Then Joshua set up twelve stones in mid-Jordan in the spot where the feet of the priests who carried the ark had rested; they are there even now[*a].

The crossing ends

4:10 The priests carrying the ark stood still in mid-Jordan until everything was done that Yahweh had directed Joshua to tell the people, all as Moses had instructed Joshua; and the people hurried across.

4:11 When they were all over, the ark of Yahweh then crossed, with the priests at the head of the people.

4:12 The Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh crossed over armed in front of the Israelites, as Moses had ordered them.

4:13 They were some forty thousand warriors in arms, and they crossed before Yahweh, ready for battle, towards the plain of Jericho.

4:14 That day Yahweh made Joshua great in the sight of all Israel, and they honoured him as they had honoured Moses as long as he lived.

4:15 Yahweh said to Joshua

4:16 ‘Tell the priests carrying the ark of the testimony to come up from the Jordan”,

4:17 And Joshua commanded the priests: ‘Come up from the Jordan!’

4:18 Now when the priests carrying the ark of the covenant of Yahweh came up from the Jordan, their feet had no sooner touched the bank than the waters of the Jordan returned to their bed and ran on overflowing as before.

Gilgal is reached

4:19 It was the tenth day of the first month when the people came up from the Jordan and made their camp at Gilgal, east of Jericho.

4:20 As for the twelve stones that had been taken from the Jordan, Joshua set them up at Gilgal.

4:21 Then he said to the Israelites, ‘When your children in days to come ask their fathers, “What is the meaning of these stones?”

4:22 tell them this, “You see the Jordan. Israel crossed over it dry-shod,

4:23 because Yahweh your God dried up the waters of the Jordan in front of you until you had crossed, just as Yahweh your God had done with the Sea of Reeds, which he dried up before us till we had crossed it;

4:24 so that all the peoples of the earth may recognise how mighty the hand of Yahweh is, and that you yourselves may always stand in awe of Yahweh your God.”‘

JB JOSHUA Chapter 5

The peoples west of the Jordan are terrified

5:1 When all the kings of the Amorites in the country west of Jordan and all the kings of the Canaanites in the coastal region heard that Yahweh had dried up the waters of the Jordan before the Israelites until they had crossed it, their hearts grew faint and their spirit failed them as the Israelites drew near.

The Hebrews are circumcised at Gilgal

5:2 At this time Yahweh said to Joshua, ‘Make knives of flint and circumcise the Israelites again’.

5:3 Joshua made knives of flint and circumcised the Israelites on the Hill of Foreskins.

5:4 The reason why Joshua circumcised them was this. All the males of the people who had come out of Egypt of age to bear arms had died in the wilderness on their journey after leaving Egypt.

5:5 Now all the people who came out had been circumcised; but those who had been born in the wilderness – in the journey through it when Egypt was left behind – none of these had been circumcised,

5:6 because for forty years the Israelites travelled through the wilderness, until all the nation had died out, that is, the men who had come out of Egypt of age to bear arms; they had not obeyed the voice of Yahweh, and Yahweh had sworn to them never to let them see the land that he had sworn to our fathers to give us, a land where milk and honey flow.

5:7 But in place of these he set their sons, and these it was that Joshua circumcised, for they were uncircumcised, since they could not be circumcised on the journey.

5:8 When the circumcising of the whole nation was over, they stayed to rest in the camp till they were well again;

5:9 and Yahweh said to Joshua, ‘Today I have taken the shame of Egypt away from you’. Hence that place has been called Gilgal until now.[*a]

The Passover kept

5:10 The Israelites pitched their camp at Gilgal and kept the Passover there on the fourteenth day of the month, at evening in the plain of Jericho.

5:11 On the morrow of the Passover they tasted the produce of that country, unleavened bread and roasted ears of corn, that same day.

5:12 From that time, from their first eating of the produce of that country, the manna stopped falling. And having manna no longer, the Israelites fed from that year onwards on what the land of Canaan yielded.

C. THE CONQUEST OF JERICHO

Prelude: a theophany

5:13 When Joshua was near Jericho, he raised his eyes and saw a man standing there before him, grasping a naked sword. Joshua walked towards him and said to him, ‘Are you with us or with our enemies?’

5:14 He answered, ‘No, I am captain of the army of Yahweh, and now I come…’ Joshua fell on his face to the ground and worshipped him and said, ‘What are my Lord’s commands to his servant?’

5:15 The captain of the army of Yahweh answered Joshua, ‘Take your sandals off your feet, for the place you are standing on is holy’. And Joshua obeyed.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 6

The taking of Jericho[*a]

6:1 Now Jericho had been carefully barricaded against the Israelites; no one came out, no one went in.

6:2 Then Yahweh said to Joshua, ‘Now I am delivering Jericho and its king into your hands. All you fighters,

6:3 valiant warriors, will march round the town and make the circuit once, and for six days you will do the same thing.

6:4 (But seven priests will carry seven trumpets in front of the ark.) On the seventh day you will go seven times round the town (and the priests will blow their trumpets).

6:5 when the ram’s horn rings out (when you hear the sound of the trumpet), the whole people must utter a mighty war cry and the town wall will collapse then and there; then the people can storm the town, each man going straight ahead.’

6:6 Joshua son of Nun (called the priests and said to them, ‘Take up the ark of the covenant, and seven priests are to carry seven trumpets of ram’s horn in front of the ark of Yahweh’.

6:7 He) said to the people, ‘Forward! March round the town (and let the vanguard march before the ark of Yahweh).’

6:8 All was done as Joshua ordered the people. (Seven priests carrying the seven trumpets of ram’s horn in front of Yahweh moved onwards and blew their trumpets; the ark of the covenant of Yahweh came behind them,

6:9 the vanguard marched in front of the priests with their trumpets, the rearguard followed behind the ark; the men marched, the trumpets sounded.)

6:10 Joshua had given the people the following order: ‘Do not shout, do not utter even a word; let nothing be heard from you till the day when I say: Raise the war cry. Then you are to shout.’

6:11 (At Joshua’s command, the ark of Yahweh went round the town and made the circuit once; then they returned to the camp and spent the night there.)

6:12 Joshua rose early (and the priests took up the ark of Yahweh.

6:13 Bearing the seven ram’s horn trumpets, the seven priests walked before the ark of Yahweh sounding their trumpets as they went, while the vanguard marched before them and the rearguard behind the ark of Yahweh, and the march went on to the sound of the trumpet.)

6:14 They marched once round the town (on the second day) and returned to the camp, and so on for six days.

6:15 On the seventh day they rose at dawn and marched seven times round the town in the same manner. Only on that day did they march round seven times.

6:16 At the seventh time (the priests blew their trumpets and) Joshua said to the people, ‘Raise the war cry, because Yahweh has given the town into your hands.

Jericho placed under the ban

6:17 ‘The town and everything inside it must be set apart for Yahweh under a ban; only the life of Rahab the harlot is to be spared, with all who are in her house, since she hid the messengers we sent.

6:18 But beware of the ban yourselves; do not be covetous and take anything that is under the ban; that would lay the whole camp of Israel open to the same ban and bring disaster on it.

6:19 All the silver and all the gold, all the things of bronze and things of iron are consecrated to Yahweh and must be put into his treasury.’

6:20 The people shouted, the trumpets sounded. When they heard the sound of the trumpet, the people raised a mighty war cry and the wall collapsed then and there. At once the people stormed the town, every man going straight ahead; and they captured the town.

6:21 They enforced the ban on everything in the town: men and women, young and old, even the oxen and sheep and donkeys, massacring them all.

Rahab’s house preserved

6:22 Joshua said to the two men who had reconnoitred the country, ‘Go into the harlot’s house, and bring out the woman with all who belong to her, so as to keep your oath to her’.

6:23 The young men who had been spies went in and brought out Rahab and her father and mother and brothers and all who belonged to her. They brought out all her clansmen too and set them in safety outside the camp of Israel.

6:24 They burned the town and all within it except the silver and gold and things of bronze and iron; these they put into the treasury of Yahweh’s house.

6:25 But Rahab the harlot, her father’s household and all who belonged to her, these Joshua spared. She has dwelt among Israel until now, because she concealed the messengers Joshua sent to reconnoitre Jericho.

A curse upon Jericho’s restorer

6:26 At that time Joshua made them take this oath before Yahweh: ‘Cursed be any man who comes forth and builds this town up again! On his eldest son he shall lay its foundations, on his youngest set up its gates.’

6:27 Yahweh was with Joshua, and Joshua’s fame spread all through the country.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 7

The ban defied

7:1 But the sons of Israel incurred guilt by violating the ban. Achan son of Carmi, son of Zabdi, son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, laid his hands on something that fell under the ban, and the anger of Yahweh flared out against the Israelites.

The sacrilege punished by a repulse at Ai

7:2 Now Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai,[*a] east of Bethel; his command was: ‘Go up and reconnoitre the country’. The men went up and reconnoitred Ai.

7:3 They came back to Joshua and said, ‘There is no need for all the people to go up; let some two or three thousand men go and attack Ai. Spare the whole people such a toil; the enemy are not many.’

7:4 Some three thousand men of the people marched up to Ai, but broke before the townsmen.

7:5 These killed some thirty-six of them and drove the men back from the town gate to Shebarim; there on the slope they made havoc of them. Then the people lost heart and their courage melted away.

Joshua’s prayer

7:6 Joshua tore his garments and prostrated himself before the ark of Yahweh till nightfall; the elders of Israel did as he did, and all poured dust on their heads.

7:7 And Joshua said, ‘Alas, Lord Yahweh, why did you bring this nation across the Jordan only to deliver us into the power of the Amorite and destroy us?

7:8 I wish we had won a place to live in on the other side of the Jordan! Forgive me, Lord, but what can I say, now that Israel has turned its back on the enemy?

7:9 The Canaanites will hear of it, and all the inhabitants of the country; they will unite against us to wipe our name off the face of the earth. What are you going to do for your great name?’

Yahweh’s answer

7:10 Yahweh answered Joshua, ‘Stand up! Why are you lying prostrate like this?

7:11 Israel has sinned; they have violated the covenant I ordained for them. Yes, they have taken what was under the ban, stolen and hidden it and put it into their baggage.

7:12 That is why the sons of Israel cannot stand up to their foes; why they have turned their backs on their enemies, because they have come under the ban themselves. I will be with you no longer unless you remove what is under the ban from among you.

7:13 ‘Rise and call the people together and say to them, “Sanctify yourselves for tomorrow, because Yahweh the God of Israel declares: The ban is now among you, Israel; you can never stand up to your enemies until you take what is under the ban from among you.”

7:14 In the morning therefore you will come forward tribe by tribe, and then the tribe that Yahweh marks out by lot will come forward clan by clan, and the clan that Yahweh marks out by lot will come forward family by family, and the family that Yahweh marks out by lot will come forward man by man.

7:15 And then the man taken with the thing that is banned is to be delivered over to the fire, he and all that belongs to him, because he has violated the covenant with Yahweh and committed an infamy in Israel.’

The culprit brought to light and punished

7:16 Joshua rose early; he made Israel come forward tribe by tribe, and the lot marked out the tribe of Judah.

7:17 He called up to him the clans of Judah, and the lot marked out the clan of Zerah. He called up the clan of Zerah, family by family, and Zabdi was marked out.

7:18 Then Joshua called up the family of Zabdi, man by man, and it was Achan son of Carmi, son of Zabdi, son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, who was chosen by the lot.

7:19 Then Joshua said to Achan, ‘My son, give glory to Yahweh the God of Israel, and pay him homage; tell me what you have done and hide nothing from me’.

7:20 Achan answered Joshua, ‘Yes, I am the man who has sinned against Yahweh the God of Israel, and this is what I have done.

7:21 When I saw among the spoil a fine robe from Shinar and two hundred shekels of silver and an ingot of gold weighing fifty shekels, I coveted them and took them. They are hidden there in the ground inside my tent, and the silver is underneath.’

7:22 Joshua sent out messengers; they ran to the tent, and the robe was indeed hidden inside the tent, and the silver was underneath.

7:23 They took everything from inside the tent and brought it to Joshua and the elders of Israel and laid it out before Yahweh.

7:24 Then Joshua took Achan son of Zerah, with the silver and the robe and the ingot of gold and led him up to the Vale of Achor – and with him his sons and daughters, his oxen and donkeys and sheep, his tent and everything that belonged to him. All Israel went with him.

7:25 Joshua said, ‘Why did you bring evil on us? May Yahweh bring evil on you today!’ And all Israel stoned him.

7:26 A great cairn was reared over him,[*b] which is still there today. Then Yahweh ceased from his burning anger. It was then that the place was given the name, the Vale of Achor,[*c] which it is still called now.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 8

D. THE TAKING OF AI

The command given to Joshua

8:1 Then Yahweh said to Joshua, ‘Be fearless now, and be confident. Take all your fighting men with you, and march out against Ai. I will put into your power the king of Ai, his people, his town and his territory.

8:2 You are to do with Ai and its king as you did with Jericho and its king. As regards booty, you may take the goods and the cattle no more. Take up a concealed position against the city, to the rear of it.

Joshua’s stratagem

8:3 Joshua prepared to march against Ai with all the fighting men. He chose thirty thousand men from among the bravest and sent them out by night

8:4 after giving them these instructions, ‘Listen! You are to take up a concealed position against the town, but at the rear not far from the town, and mind you all keep alert!

8:5 I and all the people with me will go forward till we are near the town, and when the people of Ai come out against us as they did the first time, we will run before them.

8:6 Then they will follow close behind us, and we shall draw them away from the town, because they will think, “They are running from us as they did last time”.

8:7 Then you will rise from your concealed position and seize the town; Yahweh your God will deliver it into your hands.

8:8 When you have captured the town, set fire to it. These orders must be carried out. See to it! The orders come from me.’

8:9 Joshua sent them off, and they made their way to the concealed position, at a point between Bethel and Ai, to the west of Ai. Joshua spent the night among the people,

8:10 then, rising early next day, mustered the people and marched on Ai; he and the elders of Israel marched at the head of the people.

8:11 All the warriors with him marched up towards the front of the town; they pitched camp north of Ai, with the ravine between Joshua and the town.

8:12 He took some five thousand men and concealed these between Bethel and Ai, to the west of the town.

8:13 The people pitched their camp north of the town, while the concealed position lay to the west. Joshua spent that night in the valley itself.

The battle of Ai

8:14 When the king of Ai saw how things lay, he and all his people hurried out to engage Israel on the slope facing the Arabah; he did not know that an ambush had been laid against him to the rear of the town.

8:15 Joshua and all Israel with him let themselves be driven back, taking flight towards the wilderness.

8:16 All the people who were in the town followed them in loud pursuit, and in pursuing Joshua they left the town itself unguarded.

8:17 Not a man was left behind in Ai, all had gone out in pursuit of Israel; and in pursuing Israel they left the town undefended.

8:18 Then Yahweh said to Joshua, ‘Point the javelin in your hand at Ai; for I am about to put the town in your power’. Then Joshua pointed the javelin in his hand towards the town.

8:19 No sooner had he stretched out his hand than the men in ambush rose quickly from their position, ran forward and entered the town; they captured it and quickly set it on fire.

Disaster for the people of Ai

8:20 When the men of Ai looked back, they saw smoke rising from the town into the sky. None of them had the chance to run one way rather than another, for the people fleeing towards the wilderness turned back on their pursuers.

8:21 For when Joshua and all Israel saw that the town had been seized by the men in ambush, and saw the smoke rising from the town into the sky, they turned round and attacked the men of Ai.

8:22 The others came out from the town to engage them, so that the men of Ai found themselves surrounded by Israelites, some on this side and some on that. These set about them till not one was alive and none left to flee;

8:23 but the king of Ai was captured alive, and brought to Joshua.

8:24 When Israel had finished killing all the inhabitants of Ai in the open ground and where they followed them into the wilderness, and when all to a man had fallen by the edge of the sword, all Israel returned to Ai and slaughtered all its people.

8:25 The number of those who fell that day, men and women together, was twelve thousand, all people of Ai.

The ban; the destruction of the town

8:26 Joshua did not draw back the hand with which he had pointed the javelin until he had dealt with all the dwellers in Ai as with men under a ban.

8:27 For booty, Israel took only the cattle and the spoils of the town, according to the order Yahweh had given to Joshua.

8:28 Then Joshua burned Ai, making it a ruin for evermore, a desolate place even today.

8:29 He hanged the king of Ai from a tree till evening; but at sunset Joshua ordered his body to be taken down from the tree. It was then thrown down at the entrance to the town gate and a great cairn was reared over it; and that is still there today.

E. SACRIFICE ON MOUNT EBAL: THE LAW READ THERE

The altar of undressed stones

8:30 Then Joshua built an altar to Yahweh the God of Israel on Mount Ebal,

8:31 as Moses, Yahweh’s servant, had ordered the sons of Israel, as is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, ‘an altar of undressed stones that no iron tool has ever worked’. On this they offered holocausts to Yahweh and offered communion sacrifices as well.

The reading of the Law

8:32 There Joshua wrote on the stones a copy of the Law which Moses had written for the Israelites.

8:33 Then, on both sides of the ark, and facing the levitical priests who carried the ark of the covenant of Yahweh, all Israel with their elders and scribes and judges – strangers as well as Israelites born – all took their places, half of them in front of Mount Gerizim and half in front of Mount Ebal, as Moses the servant of Yahweh had ordered originally for the blessing of the people of Israel.

8:34 After this, Joshua read all the words of the Law – the blessing and the cursing – exactly as it stands written in the Book of the Law.

8:35 Of every word laid down by Moses there was not one left unread by Joshua in the presence of the full assembly of Israel, with the women and children there, and the strangers living among the people.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 9

F. THE TREATY BETWEEN ISRAEL AND THE GIBEONITES

A coalition against Israel

9:1 Hearing these things, all the kings on this side of the Jordan, in the highlands and in the lowlands, all along the coast of the Great Sea towards Lebanon, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites and the Jebusites,

9:2 formed an alliance to fight together against Joshua and Israel.

The ruse of the Gibeonites[*a]

9:3 When the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and to Ai,

9:4 they decided to resort to trickery. They set out provided with supplies, having loaded their donkeys with old sacks and with old wineskins that had burst and been sewn up again.

9:5 The sandals on their feet were worn out and patched, the garments they wore were threadbare. The bread they took with them to eat was all dry and crumbling.

9:6 They came to Joshua in the camp at Gilgal, and speaking to him and the men of Israel, they said, ‘We come from a distant country, so make a treaty with us’.

9:7 The men of Israel answered these Hivites, ‘It may be that you live in our neighbourhood; how then can we make a treaty with you?’

9:8 They answered Joshua, ‘We are your servants’. But Joshua asked them, ‘Who are you and where do you come from?’

9:9 They answered, ‘Your servants have come from a country very far away, because of the fame of Yahweh your God; for we have heard of him and all that he has done in Egypt

9:10 and all that he has done to the two Amorite kings whose realm was beyond the Jordan, Sihon the king of Heshbon and Og the king of Bashan who lived at Ashtaroth.

9:11 Then our elders and all the people of our country said to us, “Take provisions with you for the journey; go to meet them and say to them: We are your servants; so make a treaty with us”.

9:12 Here is our bread; it was warm when we took it from home for our journey the day we set out to come to you, and now you see it is dry and crumbling.

9:13 These wineskins were new when we filled them; you see they have burst; and our clothes and sandals are all worn out from travelling such a long way.’

9:14 The leaders partook of the provisions they offered and did not consult the oracle of Yahweh.

9:15 Joshua granted them peace and made a treaty with them guaranteeing their lives, and the leaders of the community ratified it by oath.

9:16 Now it so happened that three days after the treaty had been made, it became known that they were a neighbouring people whose home was in the midst of Israel.

9:17 The Israelites set out from the camp and came to their towns, which were Gibeon, Chephirah, Beeroth and Kiriath-jearim.

9:18 The Israelites did not attack them because the leaders of the community had sworn to them by Yahweh the God of Israel, but the community grumbled at the leaders.

The Gibeonites’ place in the community

9:19 All the leaders declared in full assembly, ‘Since we have sworn an oath to them by Yahweh the God of Israel, we cannot touch them.

9:20 This is what we will do with them: we will let them live, lest otherwise we bring the wrath on ourselves because of the oath we swore to them.’

9:21 The leaders went on, ‘Let them live, but let them be wood-cutters and water-carriers in the service of the whole community’. The community did as the leaders had said.

9:22 Joshua sent for the Gibeonites and asked them, ‘Why did you trick us with those words, “We live very far away”, when in fact you live right among us?

9:23 From now you are accursed, and you shall never cease being serfs, wood-cutters and water-carriers in the house of my God.’

9:24 They answered Joshua, ‘We did it because your servants had become convinced that Yahweh your God had ordered Moses his servant to give you this whole country and destroy all its inhabitants before you; also because, as you advanced on us, we were extremely afraid that you would kill us. That was why we did this.

9:25 Now, see, we are in your power; do with us whatever you think right and good.

9:26 What he did with them was this. He saved them from the hands of the Israelites, and they did not kill them.

9:27 But from that day forward, Joshua made them wood-cutters and water-carriers for the community, and bound them, down to the present day, to wait on Yahweh’s altar wherever Yahweh might choose.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 10

G. FIVE AMORITE KINGS FORM A COALITION[*a]

THE SOUTH OF PALESTINE IS SUBDUED

Five kings make war on Gibeon

10:1 Now it happened that Adoni-zedek the king of Jerusalem was told that Joshua had conquered Ai and put the town under a ban, dealing with Ai and its king as he had dealt earlier with Jericho and its king; and also that the inhabitants of Gibeon had made their peace with Israel and entered their community.

10:2 There was consternation at this, since Gibeon was as important a town as one of the royal towns themselves, and larger than Ai, while all its citizens were fighting men.

10:3 Then Adoni-zedek the king of Jerusalem sent word to Hoham the king of Hebron, Piram the king of Jarmuth, Japhia the king of Lachish and Debir the king of Eglon,

10:4 ‘Join me and help me to conquer Gibeon, because it has made peace with Joshua and the Israelites’

10:5 The five Amorite kings joined forces and set off together, that is, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish and the king of Eglon, they and all their armies with them; they besieged Gibeon and attacked it.

Joshua comes to the rescue of Gibeon

10:6 The men of Gibeon sent word to Joshua in the camp at Gilgal, ‘Do not desert your servants; come up here quickly to save us and help us, because all the Amorite kings living in the mountains have allied themselves against us’.

10:7 Joshua came up from Gilgal in person, bringing all the fighting men and all the bravest of his army with him.

10:8 Yahweh said to Joshua, ‘Do not be afraid of these men; I have delivered them into your power; not one of them will be able to stand against you.’

10:9 Having marched from Gilgal throughout the night, Joshua caught them unawares.

Aid from on high

10:10 Yahweh drove them headlong before Israel, defeating them completely at Gibeon; furthermore, he pursued them towards the descent of Beth-horon and harassed them as far as Azekah, and as far as Makkedah

10:11 And as they fled from Israel down the descent of Beth-horon, Yahweh hurled huge hailstones from heaven on them all the way to Azekah, which killed them. More of them died under the hailstones than at the edge of Israel’s sword.

10:12 Then Joshua spoke to Yahweh, the same day that Yahweh delivered the Amorites to the Israelites. Joshua declaimed:[*b] ‘Sun, stand still over Gibeon, and, moon, you also, over the Vale of Aijalon’.

10:13 And the sun stood still, and the moon halted, till the people had vengeance on their enemies. Is this not written in the Book of the Just?[*c] The sun stood still in the middle of the sky and delayed its setting for almost a whole day.

10:14 There was never a day like that before or since, when Yahweh obeyed the voice of a man, for Yahweh was fighting for Israel.

10:15 Then Joshua, and all Israel with him, returned to the camp at Gilgal.[*d]

The five kings in the cave at Makkedah

10:16 As for those five kings, they had fled and hidden in the cave of Makkedah,

10:17 and news of this was brought to Joshua. ‘The five kings’ the message ran ‘have been found hiding in the cave at Makkedah.’

10:18 Joshua answered, ‘Roll great stones to the mouth of the cave and post men there to keep guard.

10:19 And you, do not stay there idle; pursue the enemy, cut off their line of retreat and do not let them enter their towns, for Yahweh your God has put them in your power.’

10:20 When Joshua and the sons of Israel had routed them completely and were near to slaughtering the last of them, the survivors who had escaped alive took refuge in their fortresses.

10:21 The people came back to Joshua’s camp at Makkedah; they were all safe and sound, and no one dared to attempt anything against the Israelites.

10:22 Then Joshua said, ‘Clear the mouth of the cave, and bring the five kings out to me’.

10:23 They did so, bringing him the five kings from the cave; the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish and the king of Eglon.

10:24 When these kings had been brought to him, Joshua assembled all the men of Israel and said to the officers of the men of war who had fought with him, ‘Come forward and put your feet on the necks of these kings!’ They came forward and put their feet on their necks.

10:25 ‘Do not be afraid; have confidence,’ Joshua went on ‘be resolute, for this is how Yahweh shall deal with all the enemies you fight.’

10:26 With this Joshua struck and killed them and had them hanged on five trees; they hung there till evening.

10:27 At the hour of sunset Joshua gave his order; they were taken down from the trees and thrown into the cave where they had been hiding. Great stones were laid at the mouth of the cave, and these are still there today.

The conquest of the southern towns of Canaan

10:28 The same day, Joshua took Makkedah, striking the town and its king with the edge of the sword; he delivered them over to the ban, with every living creature there, and let no one escape; and he treated the king of Makkedah as he had treated the king of Jericho.

10:29 Joshua, and all Israel with him, went on from Makkedah to Libnah and attacked it.

10:30 This, too, with its king, Yahweh gave into the power of Israel; and Israel struck every living creature there with the edge of the sword, and left none alive, and treated its king like the king of Jericho.

10:31 Joshua, and all Israel with him, went on from Libnah to Lachish, and besieged it and attacked it.

10:32 Yahweh gave Lachish into the power of Israel and Israel took it on the second day and struck it and every living creature there with the edge of the sword, as they had treated Libnah.

10:33 Then Horam the king of Gezer marched up to help Lachish, but Joshua struck him and his people down until not one was left alive.

10:34 Joshua, and all Israel with him, went on from Lachish to Eglon. They besieged it and attacked it.

10:35 They took it the same day and struck it with the edge of the sword. Every living creature there he delivered over to the ban that day, as he had treated Lachish.

10:36 Joshua, and all Israel with him, went on up from Eglon to Hebron. They attacked it,

10:37 took it and struck it with the edge of the sword, with its king, all the places belonging to it and every living creature in it. As he had treated Eglon, so here, he left not a man alive. He delivered it over to the ban, with every living creature in it.

10:38 Joshua, and all Israel with him, turned aside to Debir and attacked it.

10:39 He took it and its king and all the places belonging to it; they struck them with the edge of the sword, and every living creature there they delivered over to the ban. He left none alive. As he had treated Hebron, as he had treated Libnah and its king, so he treated Debir and its king.

The southern conquests recapitulated

10:40 Thus Joshua subdued the whole land: the highlands, the Negeb, the lowlands, the hillsides, and all the kings in them. He left not a man alive and delivered every single soul over to the ban, as Yahweh the God of Israel had commanded.

10:41 Joshua conquered them from Kadesh-barnea to Gaza, and the whole region of Goshen as far as Gibeon.

10:42 All these kings and their kingdoms Joshua mastered in one campaign, because Yahweh the God of Israel fought for Israel.

10:43 And then Joshua, and all Israel with him, returned to the camp at Gilgal.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 11

H. THE CONQUEST OF THE NORTH

A coalition of northern kings

11:1 When Jabin the king of Hazor heard these things, he sent word of them to Jobab the king of Madon, to the king of Shimron, the king of Achshaph

11:2 and the kings in the northern highlands and in the valley south of Chinneroth and those of the lowlands and the hillsides of Dor westwards.

11:3 Eastwards and westwards lived the Canaanite; in the highlands the Amorite and Hivite and Perizzite and Jebusite; under Hermon the Hittite, in the land of Mizpah.

11:4 They set out with all their troops, a horde as countless as the sands of the sea, with innumerable horses and chariots.

The victory at Merom

11:5 These kings, having all agreed on a meeting place, came and encamped near one another at the waters of Merom, to fight against Israel.

11:6 Then Yahweh said to Joshua, ‘Have no fear of these men, for by this time tomorrow Israel shall see them all cut to pieces; you shall hamstring their horses and burn their chariots’.

11:7 Joshua and all his warriors caught them unawares by the waters of Merom and fell on them.

11:8 Yahweh delivered them into the power of Israel, who defeated them and pursued them to Sidon the Great and to Misrephoth-maim westwards and to the Vale of Mizpah eastwards; Israel harried them till not one was left to escape.

11:9 Joshua treated them as Yahweh had ordered; he hamstrung their horses and burned their chariots.

The capture of Hazor and of the other northern towns

11:10 Joshua then came back and captured Hazor, putting its king to the sword. Hazor in earlier days was the capital of all these kingdoms.

11:11 And they put to the sword every living creature there, because of the ban. Not a soul was left there, and lastly Hazor was burned.

11:12 Joshua conquered all these royal cities and their kings and struck them with the edge of the sword because of the ban, as Moses the servant of Yahweh had ordered.

11:13 Yet of all these towns standing on their mounds Israel burned none, apart from Hazor which Joshua gave to the flames.

11:14 As for the spoils of these towns and the cattle, the Israelites took them for themselves. But they struck all the human beings with the edge of the sword, and wiped them all out; they did not leave one living soul.

The orders of Moses carried out by Joshua

11:15 What Yahweh had ordered his servant Moses, Moses in turn had ordered Joshua, and Joshua carried it out, leaving nothing unaccomplished that Yahweh had ordered Moses.

11:16 Thus Joshua mastered the whole country: the highlands, the whole Negeb and the whole land of Goshen, the lowlands, the Arabah, the highlands and the lowlands of Israel.

11:17 From Mount Halak, which rises towards Seir, to Baal-gad in the Yale of Lebanon below Mount Hermon, he captured all their kings, struck them down and slaughtered them.

11:18 For many a day Joshua had made war on all these kings;

11:19 no city had made peace with the Israelites except the Hivites who lived at Gibeon; all the rest they conquered in battle.

11:20 For Yahweh had ordained that the hearts of these men should be stubborn enough to fight against Israel, so that they might be mercilessly delivered over to the ban and be wiped out, as Yahweh had ordered Moses.[*a]

The Anakim wiped out

11:21 Then Joshua came and wiped out the Anakim from the highlands, from Hebron, from Debir, from Anab, from all the highlands of Judah and all the highlands of Israel; he delivered them and their towns over to the ban.

11:22 No more Anakim were left in Israelite territory except at Gaza, Gath and Ashdod.

11:23 Joshua mastered the whole country, just as Yahweh had told Moses, and he gave it to Israel as an inheritance according to their division by tribes. And the country had rest from war.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 12

I. RECAPITULATION

The kings conquered east of the Jordan

12:1 These are the kings of the country whom the Israelites conquered and despoiled of their kingdoms, beyond Jordan eastwards, from the wadi Arnon to the mountain country of Hermon, with all the Arabah eastwards:

12:2 Sihon the king of the Amorites who lived at Heshbon ruled from Aroer on the edge of the gorge of the Arnon (and with this went the bed of the gorge) over half of Gilead to the wadi Jabbok, the boundary of the Ammonites,

12:3 and eastwards over the Arabah to the Sea of Chinneroth on the one side, and to the Sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, towards Beth-jeshimoth where you come to the foothills of Pisgah on the south.

12:4 Og, the king of Bashan, one of the last of the Rephaim, who lived at Ashtaroth and Edrei,

12:5 ruled over Mount Hermon and over Salecah, and over the whole of Bashan as far as the boundary of the Geshurites and the Maacathites, and over half of Gilead to the boundary of Sihon the king of Heshbon.

12:6 Moses, the servant of Yahweh, and with him the Israelites, had conquered these kings, and Moses, the servant of Yahweh, had given their possessions to the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh.

The kings conquered west of the Jordan

12:7 And these are the kings of the country whom Joshua and the Israelites conquered westwards of the Jordan, from Baal-gad in the Vale of Lebanon to Mount Halak rising towards Seir, and Joshua allotted their inheritance to the tribes of Israel according to their divisions:

12:8 in the highlands and lowlands, in the Arabah and on the hillsides, in the wilderness and the Negeb: in the territories of Hittite, Amorite, Canaanite, Perizzite, Hivite and Jebusite:

12:9 the king of Jericho, one; the king of Ai near Bethel, one;

12:10 the king of Jerusalem, one; the king of Hebron, one;

12:11 the king of Jarmuth, one; the king of Lachish, one;

12:12 the king of Eglon, one; the king of Gezer, one;

12:13 the king of Debir, one; the king of Geder, one;

12:14 the king of Hormah, one; the king of Arad, one;

12:15 the king of Libnah, one; the king of Adullam, one;

12:16 the king of Makkedah, one; the king of Bethel, one;

12:17 the king of Tappuah, one; the king of Hepher, one;

12:18 the king of Aphek, one; the king of Sharon, one;

12:19 the king of Madon, one; the king of Hazor, one;

12:20 the king of Symoon, one; the king of Achshaph, one;

12:21 the king of Taanach, one; the king of Megiddo, one;

12:22 the king of Kedesh, one; the king of Jokneam in Carmel, one;

12:23 the king of Dor on the hillsides of Dor, one; the king of Goum in Galilee, one;

12:24 the king of Tirzah, one; Total number of all these kings: thirty-one.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 13

II. THE APPORTIONING OF THE LAND AMONG THE TRIBES

Lands remaining unconquered

13:1 Now Joshua had grown old and advanced in years. Yahweh said to him, ‘You are old now and advanced in years, yet much of the country still remains to be subdued.

13:2 This is the country remaining: ‘All the regions of the Philistines[*a] and the whole country of the Geshurites;

13:3 from the Shihor, east of Egypt, to the boundary of Ekron northwards, the land is counted as Canaanite. (The five chiefs of the Philistines are those of Gaza, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Gath and Ekron; the Avvites are in

13:4 the south.) The whole country of the Canaanites from Arah, which the Sidonians hold, to Aphekah and the boundary of the Amorites,

13:5 and then the country of the Gebalites with all Lebanon eastwards from Baal-gad at the foot of Mount Hermon to the Pass of Hamath.

13:6 All who live in the highlands from Lebanon to Misrephoth-maim westwards – all the Sidonians – I myself will drive out before the Israelites. In the meantime, share out the land by lot among the Israelites as I have ordered you.

13:7 The time has come to divide this land among the nine tribes and the half-tribe of Manasseh: from the Jordan to the Great Sea westwards you shall give it to them; the Great Sea will mark their boundary.’

A. THE TRIBES BEYOND THE JORDAN DESCRIBED

A general survey

13:8 As for the other half-tribe of Manasseh, this and the Reubenites and Gadites had already received the allotted inheritance given them by Moses beyond the Jordan eastwards; Moses the servant of Yahweh had then assigned them

13:9 the country onward from Aroer, which lies on the edge of the wadi Arnon, and from the town within the gorge itself; all the tableland from Medeba to Dibon;

13:10 all the towns of Sihon the king of the Amorites, who had reigned in Heshbon, to the boundary of the Ammonites.

13:11 Then Gilead and the territory of the Geshurites and Maacathites with all the highlands of Hermon and with the whole of Bashan, including Salecah;

13:12 and in Bashan the whole kingdom of Og, who had reigned in Ashtaroth and Edrei and was the last survivor of the Rephaim. Moses had conquered and dispossessed these two kings.

13:13 But the Israelites did not dispossess the Geshurites or the Maacathites, and therefore Geshur and Maacah even now still form part of Israel.

13:14 To the tribe of Levi alone no inheritance was given; Yahweh the God of Israel was their inheritance, as he had told them.

The tribe of Reuben

13:15 Moses had given the tribe of the sons of Reuben a portion according to their clans.

13:16 Thus the land they received stretched from Aroer, on the edge of the wadi Arnon, and the town within the gorge itself, and all the tableland up to Medeba,

13:17 and Heshbon and all the towns on the tableland: Dibon, Bamoth-baal, Beth-baal-meon,

13:18 Jahaz, Kedemoth, Mephaath,

13:19 Kiriathaim, Sibmah and Zereth-shahar in the highlands of Gor;

13:20 Beth-peor, the slopes of Pisgah, Beth-jeshimoth,

13:21 all the towns on the tableland and the whole kingdom of Sihon the king of the Amorites, who reigned in Heshbon; he had been defeated by Moses, and with him the princes of Midian, Evi, Rekem, Zur, Hur and Reba, vassals of Sihon who used to live in this country.

13:22 As for Balaam son of Beor, the soothsayer, the Israelites had put him to the sword with others they had slaughtered.

13:23 Thus the land of the Reubenites stretched to the Jordan. This was the inheritance of the sons of Reuben according to their clans, with the towns and their outlying villages.

The tribe of Gad

13:24 Moses had given the tribe of Gad, the sons of Gad, a portion according to their clans.

13:25 The land they received was Jazer, all the towns of Gilead, half the country of the Ammonites as far as Aroer facing Rabbah,

13:26 and from Heshbon to Ramath-mizpeh and Betonim, and from Mahanaim as far as the territory of Lo-debar,

13:27 and lastly, in the valley: Beth-haram, Beth-nimrah, Succoth, and Zaphon, the rest of the kingdom of Sihon the king of Heshbon. The Jordan was their boundary to the lower end of the Sea of Chinnereth, on the eastern side of the Jordan.

13:28 This was the inheritance of the sons of Gad according to their clans, with the towns and their outlying villages.

The half-tribe of Manasseh

13:29 Moses had given the half-tribe of the sons of Manasseh a portion according to their clans.

13:30 The land they received stretched from Mahanaim right through Bashan, with the whole kingdom of Og the king of Bashan and all the Encampments of Jair in Bashan, sixty towns.

13:31 Half of Gilead, with Ashtaroth and Edrei, the royal cities of Og in Bashan, were allotted to the sons of Machir son of Manasseh, to half of the sons of Machir according to their clans.

13:32 This was the apportioning made by Moses in the plains of Moab, beyond the Jordan and facing Jericho eastwards.

13:33 But to the tribe of Levi Moses had given no inheritance; Yahweh the God of Israel is their inheritance, as he has told them.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 14

B. THE THREE GREAT TRIBES WEST OF JORDAN DESCRIBED

Introduction

14:1 These are the portions that the Israelites received as an inheritance in the land of Canaan, assigned to them by Eleazar the priest and by Joshua son of Nun and by the heads of the families of the tribes of Israel.

14:2 They made the apportionment by lot, as Yahweh had ordered through Moses for the nine tribes and the half-tribe.

14:3 Moses had given the two-and-a-half tribes beyond the Jordan their own inheritance but had given the Levites no inheritance among them

14:4 The sons of Joseph were two tribes, Manasseh and Ephraim. No portion in the land was given the Levites except certain towns to live in, with the pasture lands adjoining for their cattle and property.

14:5 In apportioning the land, the Israelites did as Yahweh had ordered Moses to do.

The portion of Caleb

14:6 Certain sons of Judah came to Joshua at Gilgal, and Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite said to him, ‘You know what Yahweh said to Moses the man of God at Kadesh-barnea concerning you and me.

14:7 I was forty years old when Moses the servant of Yahweh sent me from Kadesh-barnea to reconnoitre this country, and of this I most faithfully made report to him.

14:8 But the brothers who had gone up with me discouraged the people, whereas I myself did the whole will of Yahweh my God.

14:9 That day Moses swore this oath, “Be sure of this, that the land your foot has trodden shall be an inheritance for you and your children for ever, because you have done the whole will of Yahweh my God”.

14:10 From then till now, Yahweh has kept me alive in accordance with his promise. It is forty-five years since Yahweh made this promise to Moses (it was while Israel was journeying through the wilderness), and now I am eighty-five years old.

14:11 Today I am still as strong as the day when Moses sent me out on that errand; for fighting, for going and coming, I am as strong now as then.

14:12 It is time you gave me the highlands that Yahweh promised me then. You heard then how it was peopled by the Anakim and how its towns were great and strong. If Yahweh is with me, I shall drive them out as Yahweh said.’

14:13 Joshua blessed Caleb son of Jephunneh and gave him Hebron as an inheritance.

14:14 And hence Hebron down to the present day has remained the possession of Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite, because he did the whole will of Yahweh the God of Israel.

14:15 The name of Hebron in earlier times was Kiriath-arba. Arba had been the greatest man of the Anakim. And the country had rest from war.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 15

The tribe of Judah

15:1 The portion falling to the tribe of the sons of Judah according to their clans was near the boundary of Edom, from the wilderness of Zin to Kadesh south-westwards.

15:2 Their southern boundary began at the end of the Salt Sea, at the bay that faces south;

15:3 it proceeded south of the Ascent of Akrabbim, crossed through Zin and up to the south of Kadesh-barnea, passed Hezron, went up to Addar and from there turned to Karka,

15:4 skirted Azmon, came out at the wadi of Egypt and ended at the sea. This will be your southern boundary.

15:5 Eastwards, the boundary was the Salt Sea as far as the mouth of the Jordan. The boundary to the north began at the bay at the mouth of the Jordan.

15:6 This boundary went up to Beth-hoglah, passed along north of Beth-arabah and reached the Stone of Bohan son of Reuben.

15:7 The boundary went up to Debir from the Vale of Achor and turned towards the circle of stones opposite the Ascent of Adummim, south of the wadi; the boundary went on to the waters of En-shemesh and ended at En-rogel.

15:8 Then it went on up the wadi Ben-hinnom, coming from the south to the flank of the Jebusite, that is to say Jerusalem, and climbed to the crest of the mountain barring the wadi Hinnom, westward and at the northern end of the plain of Rephaim.

15:9 From the mountain top the boundary bent towards the source of the Waters of Nephtoah, passed from there towards Mount Ephron and then turned towards Baalah, that is to say, Kiriath-jearim.

15:10 From Baalah the boundary bent westwards to the mountain country of Seir, skirted the northern slope of Mount Jearim, that is to say Chesalon, went down to Beth-shemesh and through Timnah,

15:11 reached the north side of Ekron, turned towards Shikkeron, passed by the Hill of Baalah, then on to Jabneel, and ended at the sea.

15:12 The western boundary was the Great Sea itself. This was the boundary that enclosed the lands assigned to the clans of the sons of Judah.

The Calebites occupy the territory of Hebron

15:13 Caleb son of Jephunneh was given a portion among the sons of Judah in accordance with the order given by Yahweh to Joshua. Joshua gave him Kiriath-arba,[*a] the chief city of the Anakim, which is now Hebron.

15:14 Caleb drove the three sons of Anak out of it: Sheshai, Ahiman and Talmai, descended from Anak.

15:15 From there he marched up against the inhabitants of Debir, the name of which was once Kiriath-sepher.

15:16 Then Caleb said, ‘To the man who conquers and captures Kiriath-sepher, I will give my daughter Achsah to wife’.

15:17 The man who captured it was Othniel son of Kenaz, Caleb’s brother; Caleb gave him his daughter Achsah to wife.

15:18 When she came to her husband, he urged her to ask her father for a field. Then she jumped down from her donkey, and Caleb asked her, ‘What do you want?’

15:19 She answered, ‘Grant me a favour; since you have banished me to the wilderness of the Negeb, at least grant me some springs of water’. So he gave her the upper springs and the lower springs.

15:20 This was the inheritance of the tribe of the sons of Judah according to their clans.

Names of places possessed by the tribe of Judah

15:21 These are the furthermost towns of the tribe of the sons of Judah, towards the boundary of Edom in the Negeb: Kabzeel, Eder, Jagur,

15:22 Kinah, Dimon, Adadah,

15:23 Kedesh, Hazor, Ithnan,

15:24 Ziph, Telem, Bealoth,

15:25 Hazor-hadattah, Kerioth-hezron (that is to say, Hazor),

15:26 Amam, Shema, Moladah,

15:27 Hazar-gaddah, Heshmon, Beth-pelet,

15:28 Hazar-shual, Beersheba, Biziothiah,

15:29 Baalah, Iim, Ezem,

15:30 Eltolad, Chesil, Hormah,

15:31 Ziklag, Madmannah, Sansannah,

15:32 Lebaoth, Shilhim, En-rimmon. In all, twenty-nine towns, with their outlying villages.

15:33 In the lowlands: Eshtaol, Zorah, Ashnah,

15:34 Zanoah, En-gannim, Tappuah, Enam,

15:35 Jarmuth, Adullam, Socoh, Azekah,

15:36 Shaaraim, Adithaim, Gederah, Gederothaim; fourteen towns with their villages.

15:37 Zenan, Hadashah, Migdal-gad,

15:38 Dilean, Mizpeh, Joktheel,

15:39 Lachish, Bozkath, Eglon,

15:40 Cabbon, Lahmas, Chitlish,

15:41 Gederoth, Beth-dagon, Naamah, Makkedah: sixteen towns with their villages.

15:42 Libnah, Ether, Ashan,

15:43 Iphtah, Ashnah, Nezib,

15:44 Keilah, Achzib, Mareshah: nine towns with their villages.

15:45 Ekron, with its towns and outlying villages.

15:46 From Ekron to the sea, everything to the side of Ashdod, with its villages.

15:47 Ashdod with its towns and outlying villages; Gaza with its towns and outlying villages as far as the wadi of Egypt; the Great Sea marks the boundary.

15:48 In the highlands: Shamir, Jattir, Socoh,

15:49 Dannah, Kiriath-sannah, which is now Debir,

15:50 Anab, Eshtemoh, Anim,

15:51 Goshen, Holon, Giloh: eleven towns with their villages.

15:52 Arab, Dumah, Eshan,

15:53 Janum, Beth-tappuah, Aphekah,

15:54 Humtah, Kiriath-arba, which is now Hebron, Zior: nine towns with their villages.

15:55 Maon, Carmel, Ziph, Juttah,

15:56 Jezreel, Jokdeam, Zanoah,

15:57 Kain, Gibeah, Timnah: ten towns with their villages.

15:58 Halhul, Beth-zur, Gedor,

15:59 Maarath, Beth-anoth, Eltekon: six towns with their villages. Tekoa, Ephrathah, which is now Bethlehem, Peor, Etam, Kulon, Tatam, Sores, Carem, Gallim, Bether, Manach: eleven towns with their villages.

15:60 Kiriath-baal, which is now Kiriath-jearim, and Rabbah: two towns with their villages.

15:61 In the wilderness: Beth-arabah, Middin, Secacah,

15:62 Nibshan, the City of Salt and Engedi: six towns with their villages.

15:63 But the sons of Judah could not drive out the Jebusites who lived in Jerusalem; the Jebusites lived in Jerusalem side by side with the sons of Judah, as they still do today.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 16

The tribe of Ephraim

16:1 The portion awarded by lot to the sons of Joseph stretched from the Jordan opposite Jericho eastwards. From Jericho onwards the boundary climbed the highlands to the wilderness of Bethel;

16:2 it left Bethel-luz and went on towards the boundary of the Archites at Ataroth;

16:3 then passed downwards and westwards to the boundary of the Japhletites as far as the border of Lower Beth-horon, as far as Gezer, and from there it reached the sea.

16:4 This was the inheritance of the sons of Joseph, Manasseh and Ephraim.

16:5 As regards the territory of the sons of Ephraim according to their clans, the boundary of their inheritance to the east was Ataroth-addar as far as Upper Beth-horon,

16:6 and it ended at the sea . . . Michmethath to the north; and the boundary turned east to Tanaath-shiloh and ran beyond it on the east to Janoah;

16:7 it went down from Janoah to Ataroth and Naarah, then touched Jericho and ended at the Jordan.

16:8 From Tappuah the boundary went westwards to the wadi Kanah and ended at the sea. This was the inheritance of the tribe of Ephraim according to their clans,

16:9 as well as the towns set apart for the Ephraimites inside the inheritance of the sons of Manasseh, all those towns and their villages.

16:10 The Canaanites living in Gezer were not driven out; they have remained in Ephraim to the present day, but are obliged to do forced labour.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 17

The tribe of Manasseh

17:1 A portion was awarded by lot to Manasseh, because he was Joseph’s first-born son. To Machir, Manasseh’s eldest son and father of Gilead, there fell, as was right for a fighting man, the country of Gilead and Bashan.

17:2 And portions were also given to Manasseh’s other sons, according to their clans: to the sons of Abiezer, the sons of Helek, the sons of Asriel, the sons of Shechem, the sons of Hepher, the sons of Shemida: these were the clans of the male children of Manasseh son of Joseph.

17:3 Zelophehad son of Hepher, son of Gilead, son of Machir, son of Manasseh, had no sons, only daughters, whose names are these: Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milcah and Tirzah.

17:4 These came to the priest Eleazar and to Joshua the son of Nun and to the leaders, and said, ‘Yahweh ordered Moses to give us an inheritance among our brothers’. According to Yahweh’s order, therefore, they were given an inheritance among the brothers of their father.

17:5 In this way there fell to Manasseh ten portions besides the country of Gilead and Bashan which lies across the Jordan,

17:6 since Manasseh’s daughters received an inheritance as well as his sons. The country of Gilead itself belonged to Manasseh’s other sons.

17:7 The boundary of Manasseh was, on the side of Asher, Michmethath, which is opposite Shechem, and thence continued

17:8 to the right to Jashib at the spring of Tappuah. The territory of Tappuah belonged to Manasseh, but Tappuah on Manasseh’s border belonged to the sons of Ephraim.

17:9 The boundary passed down to the wadi Kanah (south of the wadi were the Ephraimite towns, besides those which Ephraim had among the towns of Manasseh, the territory of Manasseh being north of the wadi), and it ended at the sea.

17:10 Southwards Ephraim, northwards Manasseh, both bounded by the sea; they touched Asher to the north and Issachar to the east.

17:11 In Issachar and in Asher; Manasseh had Beth-shean and its dependent towns, Ibleam and its dependent towns, the inhabitants of Dor and En-dor and their dependent towns, the inhabitants of Taanach and Megiddo and their dependent towns, and a third of the Nepheth.

17:12 But because the sons of Manasseh could not take possession of these towns, the Canaanites managed to hold their own in the country.

17:13 However, when the Israelites became stronger, they put the Canaanites to forced labour, though they never drove them out.

The sons of Joseph occupy forest country

17:14 The House of Joseph spoke thus to Joshua, ‘Why have you given me for inheritance only one share, only one portion, when my people are many because Yahweh has so blessed me?’

17:15 Joshua answered, ‘If your people are so many, go up to the woodland region and clear yourselves the forest of the country of the Perizzites and the Rephaim, since the highlands of Ephraim are too small for you’.

17:16 The sons of Joseph answered, ‘The highlands are not enough for us, and what is more, all the Canaanites living in the plain have iron chariots, and so have those in Beth-shean and its dependent towns, and those in the plain of Jezreel’.

17:17 Joshua said to the House of Joseph, to Ephraim and Manasseh, ‘You are a large population and one of great strength; you shall not have one share only

17:18 but a mountain shall be yours; it is covered with woods, but you must clear it, and its boundaries shall be yours, since you cannot drive out the Canaanite because of his iron chariots and his superior strength’.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 18

C. THE SEVEN OTHER TRIBES DESCRIBED

The land survey for the seven other tribes

18:1 The whole community of the Israelites assembled at Shiloh, and the Tent of Meeting was set up there; the whole country was now subdued and at their disposal.

18:2 But among the Israelites there were still seven tribes left which had not received their inheritance.

18:3 Then Joshua said to them, ‘How much more time will you waste before taking possession of the land which Yahweh the God of your fathers has given to you?

18:4 Choose three men from each tribe, for me to send up and down the country so that they can make a survey with a view to its apportioning, and then come back to me.

18:5 They must divide the land into seven portions. Judah will remain in his territory to the south, and those of the House of Joseph will remain in their territory to the north.

18:6 You are to survey the land in seven sections and bring your findings to me here, so that I can cast lots for you before Yahweh our God.

18:7 For the Levites have no portion with the rest of you; the priesthood of Yahweh is to be their inheritance; and Gad and Reuben and the half-tribe of Manasseh have received their inheritance beyond the Jordan eastwards, as Moses, Yahweh’s servant, gave it to them.’

18:8 The men set off. To those who were to survey the country Joshua gave this order: ‘Off you go, survey and map the whole country, and then come back here to me; I shall cast lots for you before Yahweh at Shiloh’.

18:9 So the men left, and went up and down the country, making a sevenfold list in writing of all the towns and bringing it back to Joshua in the camp at Shiloh.

18:10 Joshua cast lots for them before Yahweh at Shiloh, and there Joshua apportioned the land among the Israelites according to their groupings.

The tribe of Benjamin

18:11 One portion fell to the tribe of the sons of Benjamin according to their clans: their territory lay, as it proved, between that of the sons of Judah and the sons of Joseph.

18:12 Their northern boundary began at the Jordan, climbed to the northern flank of Jericho, rose through the highlands westwards and ended at the wilderness of Beth-aven.

18:13 Thence it continued towards Luz, southwards to the flank of Luz, which is now Bethel; then downwards to Ataroth-addar, on the mountain south of Lower Beth-horon.

18:14 The boundary curved, and on the western side turned southward, from the mountain that faces Beth-horon from the south and ended at Kiriath-baal, which is now Kiriath-jearim, a city of the sons of Judah. This was the western side.

18:15 On the south side the boundary ran from the edge of Kiriath-jearim towards Gasin, emerged by the waters of the spring of Nephtoah,

18:16 continued to the skirts of the mountain facing the Vale of Ben-hinnom, north of the plain of the Rephaim, then down into the Vale of Hinnom, south of the flank of the Jebusite and reaching En-rogel.

18:17a It then curved northwards, going on to En-shemesh; it came out at the circles of stones facing the Ascent of Adummim,

18:18 then went on to Cheteph in sight of the Arabah and down to the Arabah and

18:17b the Stone of Bohan son of Reuben,

18:19 then reached the flank of Beth-hoglah to the north. The boundary stopped at the northern bay of the Salt Sea, at the southern end of the Jordan. This was the southern border.

18:20 The Jordan itself was the eastern border. Such was the inheritance of the sons of Benjamin, with the boundaries defining it.

The towns of Benjamin

18:21 The towns of the tribe of the sons of Benjamin, according to their clans, were Jericho, Beth-hoglah, Emek-keziz;

18:22 Beth-arabah, Zemaraim, Bethel;

18:23 Avvim, Parah, Ophrah;

18:24 Chephar-ammoni, Ophni, Geba: twelve towns and their villages.

18:25 Gibeon, Ramah, Beeroth;

18:26 Mizpeh, Chephirah, Mozah;

18:27 Rekem, Irpeel, Taralah;

18:28 Zela Haeleph, Jerusalem, Gibeah and Kiriath: fourteen towns with their villages. This was the inheritance of the sons of Benjamin, according to their clans.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 19

The tribe of Simeon

19:1 The second portion awarded by lot came to Simeon, the tribe of the sons of Simeon, according to their clans their inheritance was encircled by the inheritance of the sons of Judah.

19:2 For their portion they had Beersheba, Shema, Moladah;

19:3 Hazar-shual, Balah, Ezem;

19:4 Eltolad, Bethul, Hormah;

19:5 Ziklag, Beth-marcaboth, Hazar-susah;

19:6 Beth-lebaoth and Sharuhen: thirteen towns and their villages;

19:7 Ain, Rimmon, Ether and Ashan: four towns and their villages.

19:8 With these go all the villages lying outside these towns as far as Baalath-beer, Ramah of the Negeb. This was the inheritance of the tribe of the sons of Simeon according to their clans.

19:9 The inheritance of the sons of Simeon was taken out of the portion of the sons of Judah, because the share of the sons of Judah was too large for them; this is why it was within the inheritance of the sons of Judah that the sons of Simeon were given theirs.

The tribe of Zebulun

19:10 The third portion fell to the sons of Zebulun according to their clans; the territory of their inheritance reached as far as Sarid;

19:11 their boundary climbed westwards to Maraalah, touching Dabbesheth first and then the wadi facing Jokneam.

19:12 But eastwards and towards the sunrise the boundary went from Sarid to the boundary of Chisloth-tabor, then towards Dobrath and upwards to Japhia.

19:13 Thence it went on, eastwards and towards the sunrise, to Gath-hepher and Ittah-kazin; it came out at Rimmon and turned towards Neah.

19:14 Then northwards the boundary bent towards Hannathon and ended at the plain of Iphtahel.

19:15 Besides this, there were Kattath, Nahalal, Shimron, Iralah and Bethlehem: twelve towns with their villages.

19:16 This was the inheritance of the sons of Zebulun according to their clans: these towns and their villages.

The tribe of Issachar

19:17 The fourth portion came to Issachar, to the sons of Issachar, according to their clans.

19:18 Their territory reached to Jezreel and included Chesulloth and Shunem;

19:19 Hapharaim, Shion, Anaharath;

19:20 Dobrath, Kishion, Ebez;

19:21 Remeth and En-gannim, En-haddah and Beth-pazzez.

19:22 Their boundary touched Tabor and Shahazimah and Beth-shemesh, and ended at the Jordan: sixteen towns with their villages.

19:23 This was the inheritance of the tribe of the sons of Issachar, according to their clans: the towns with their villages.

The tribe of Asher

19:24 The fifth portion came to the tribe of the sons of Asher, according to their clans.

19:25 Within their territory were Helkath, Hali, Beten, Achshaph,

19:26 Allam-melech, Amad and Mishal; on the west it touched Carmel and the streams of the Libnath;

19:27 on the other side it went eastwards to Beth-dagon, touching Zebulun and the Vale of Iphtahel northwards, then Beth-emek and Neiel beyond; it ended at Cabul. To the north it took in

19:28 Abdon, Rehob, Hammon and Kanah as far as Sidon the Great.

19:29 The boundary then turned back towards Ramah and onto the stronghold of Tyre and Hosah, and ended at the sea. Mahalab, Achzib,

19:30 Acco, Aphek, Rehob: twenty-two towns with their villages.

19:31 This was the inheritance of the tribe of the sons of Asher, according to their clans; these towns with their villages.

The tribe of Naphtali

19:32 To the sons of Naphtali came the sixth portion, to the sons of Naphtali according to their clans.

19:33 Their territory went from Heleph and the Oak of Zanaannim to Adami-negeb, to Jabneel as far as Lakkum, and ended at the Jordan.

19:34 The westward boundary ran to Aznoth-tabor and thence passed on to Hukkok, touching Zebulun southwards, Asher westwards and the Jordan east-wards.

19:35 The fortified towns were Ziddim, Zer, Hammath, Rakkath, Chinnereth;

19:36 Adamah, Ramah, Hazor;

19:37 Kedesh, Edrei, En-hazor;

19:38 Yiron, Migdalel, Horem, Beth-anath, Beth-shemesh: nineteen towns with their villages.

19:39 This was the inheritance of the sons of Naphtali according to their clans; the towns with their villages.

The tribe of Dan[*a]

19:40 To the tribe of the sons of Dan came the seventh portion according to their clans.

19:41 Within the territory of their inheritance were Zorah, Eshtaol, Irshemesh;

19:42 Sha-alabbin, Aijalon, Ithlah;

19:43 Elon, Timnah, Ekron,

19:44 Eltekeh, Gibbethon, Baalath;

19:45 Jehud, Bene-berak, Gath-rimmon;

19:46 Me-jarkon and Rakkon with the territory facing Joppa.

19:47 But the territory of the sons of Dan resisted them; and therefore the sons of Dan went up and attacked Leshem and captured it and put it to the sword. Having seized the town they settled in it, and changed the name of Leshem to Dan after Dan their ancestor.

19:48 This was the inheritance of the tribe of the sons of Dan, according to their clans: these towns with their villages.

19:49 So ended the drawing of lots for the country and the apportioning of it.

19:50 And the Israelites gave Joshua son of Nun an inheritance among them;

19:50 at the command of Yahweh, they gave him the city he had asked for, Timnath-serah in the highlands of Ephraim; he rebuilt the city and settled there.

19:51 These are the inheritances which Eleazar the priest, Joshua son of Nun, and the heads of each family apportioned by lot among the tribes of Israel at Shiloh, in Yahweh’s presence, at the door of the Tent of Meeting; and thus the apportioning of the land was finished.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 20

D. PRIVILEGED CITIES

The cities of refuge

20:1 Yahweh said to Joshua,

20:2 ‘Speak to the Israelites and say to them, “Choose the cities of refuge of which I spoke to you through Moses,

20:3 towns where a man who has killed accidentally, unwittingly, may find sanctuary; they are to be your refuge from the avenger of blood.

20:4 The man who has killed may seek sanctuary in one of these towns; he must stop at the entrance of the town gate and explain his case to the elders of the place. They shall let him enter the town and assign him a place to live with them.

20:5 If he is pursued by the avenger of blood, they are not to give him up to him, since he has killed his neighbour unwittingly, with no long-cherished hatred against him.

20:6 The man who has killed must remain in that town until he has appeared for judgement before the community, until the death of the high priest then in office. Only then may the man who has killed go back to his own town and his own house, to the town from which he has fled.”‘

20:7 For this purpose they designated Kedesh in Galilee, in the highlands of Naphtali, Shechem in the highlands of Ephraim, and Kiriath-arba, which is now Hebron, in the highlands of Judah.

20:8 Across the Jordan and on the east facing Jericho, in the wilderness on the tableland, they chose Bezer of the tribe of Reuben, Ramoth-gilead of the tribe of Gad, and Golan in Bashan of the tribe of Manasseh.

20:9 These were the towns marked out for all the Israelites and for the stranger living among them, so that any man might find sanctuary there if he had killed accidentally, and might escape the hand of the avenger of blood until he had appeared for judgement before the community.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 21

The levitical cities

21:1 Then the heads of families among the Levites came to Eleazar the priest and to Joshua son of Nun and the heads of families of the tribes of Israel –

21:2 they were then at Shiloh in the land of Canaan. They said to them, ‘Yahweh ordered through Moses that we should be given towns to live in, with the adjoining pasture lands for our cattle’.

21:3 So because of Yahweh’s order the Israelites gave the Levites these towns from their inheritance, and with them the adjoining pasture lands.

21:4 Lots were cast for the clans of the Kohathites. To the Levites, the sons of Aaron the priest, fell thirteen towns from the tribes of Judah, Simeon and Benjamin;

21:5 the other sons of Kohath received, clan by

21:6 clan, ten towns from the tribes of Ephraim, Dan, and the half-tribe of Manasseh. To the sons of Gershon, clan by clan, fell thirteen towns from the tribes of Issachar, Asher, Naphtali and the half-tribe of Manasseh in Bashan.

21:7 To the sons of Merari, clan by clan, fell twelve towns from the tribes of Reuben, Gad and Zebulun.

21:8 These towns and the adjoining pasture land, the Israelites gave by lot to the Levites, as Yahweh had ordered through Moses.

The portion of the Kohathites

21:9 From the tribe of Judah and the tribe of Simeon they gave the towns named below;

21:10 this was the portion of the sons of Aaron from the clans of the Kohathites, of the sons of Levi; for theirs was the first portion.

21:11 They gave them Kiriath-arba, the chief city of the Anakim, which is now Hebron, in the highlands of Judah, with the pasture lands round it.

21:12 But the fields and villages of this town they gave into the possession of Caleb son of Jephunneh as his property.

21:13 To the sons of Aaron the priest they gave Hebron, the city of refuge for men who had killed, and the adjoining pasture lands; also Libnah with its pasture lands,

21:14 and Jattir, Eshtemoa,

21:15 Holon, Debir,

21:16 Ashan, Juttah and Beth-shemesh, each with its pasture lands: nine towns taken from these two tribes.

21:17 From the tribe of Benjamin, Gibeon and Geba with their pasture lands,

21:18 and Anathoth and Almon with theirs: four towns.

21:19 The towns of the priests, the sons of Aaron, were thirteen towns in all, with their pasture lands.

21:20 To the clans of the sons of Kohath, to the remaining Levites of the sons of Kohath, the lot assigned towns belonging to the tribe of Ephraim.

21:21 They were given the city of refuge, Shechem, with its pasture lands, in the highlands of Ephraim, together with Gezer,

21:22 Kibzaim and Beth-horon, each with its pasture lands: four towns.

21:23 From the tribe of Dan, Elteke, Gibbethon,

21:24 Aijalon and Gath-rimmon with their pasture lands: four towns.

21:25 From the half-tribe of Manasseh, Taanach and Jibleam with their pasture lands: two towns. In all: ten towns with their pasture lands for the remaining clans of the sons of Kohath.

The portion of the sons of Gershon

21:27 To the sons of Gershon who were of levitical clans were given the city of refuge Golan in Bashan and also Ashtaroth, each with its pasture lands: two towns, both from the half-tribe of Manasseh.

21:28 From the tribe of Issachar, Kishion, Dobrath,

21:29 Jarmuth and En-gannim, each with its pasture lands: four towns.

21:30 From the tribe of Asher, Mishal, Abdon,

21:31 Helkath and Rehob, each with its pasture lands: four towns.

21:32 From the tribe of Naphtali, Kedesh the city of refuge in Galilee, Hammoth-dor and Rakkath, each with its pasture lands: three towns.

21:33 The towns for the Gershonites according to their clans were thirteen towns in all with their pasture lands.

The portion of the sons of Merari

21:34 To the clans of the sons of Merari, the remainder of the Levites, fell four towns with their pasture lands from the tribe of Zebulun, Jokneam, Kartah,

21:35 Rimmon and Nahalal;

21:36 from beyond the Jordan and from the tribe of Reuben, the city of refuge Bezer in the wilderness on the tableland, Jahaz,

21:37 Kedemoth and Mephaath, each with its pasture lands: four towns;

21:38 from the tribe of Gad the city of refuge Ramoth-gilead, Mahanaim,

21:39 Heshbon and Jazer, each with its pasture lands: four towns.

21:40 The towns allotted clan by clan to the sons of Merari, to the remainder of the levitical clans, were twelve towns in all.

21:41 The towns thus granted to the Levites in Israelite territory were in all forty-eight, with their pasture lands.

21:42 For all these towns, the town itself and the pasture land round it went together. This was true of every town named.

The end of the apportioning

21:43 So it was that Yahweh gave the Israelites all the land he had sworn to give their fathers. They took possession of it and settled there.

21:44 Yahweh granted them peace on all their frontiers just as he had sworn to their fathers, and of all their enemies not one had managed to stand against them. Yahweh had given all their enemies into their hands.

21:45 Of all the promises that Yahweh had made to the House of Israel, not one failed; all were fulfilled.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 22

III. JOSHUA FINISHES HIS COURSE

A. THE RETURN OF THE EASTERN TRIBES. THE QUESTION OF THEIR ALTAR

The tribes from across the Jordan are sent home

22:1 Then Joshua summoned the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh

22:2 and said to them, ‘You have faithfully observed all that Moses the servant of Yahweh ordered you, and whenever I have given you an order you have obeyed me.

22:3 Despite the fact that the campaign has lasted such a very long time, you have never deserted your brothers; at every point you have obeyed the orders of Yahweh your God.

22:4 Now that Yahweh your God has granted your brothers the rest he promised them, go back to your tents, to the land given into your possession by Moses the servant of Yahweh, beyond the Jordan.

22:5 But take great care to practise the commandments and the Law which Moses the servant of Yahweh gave you: love Yahweh your God, follow his paths always, keep his commandments, be loyal to him and serve him with all your heart and soul.’

22:6 Joshua blessed them and sent them away; they went home to their tents.

22:7 Moses had given a territory in Bashan to one half of the tribe of Manasseh; to the other half Joshua gave another among their brothers on the west bank of the Jordan. As Joshua sent them home to their tents he blessed them

22:8 and said to them, ‘You are going back to your tents with great wealth, with cattle in plenty, with silver and gold, bronze and iron and great quantities of clothing; share these spoils of your enemies with your brothers’.

An altar is built beside the Jordan

22:9 The Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh went home again; they left the Israelites at Shiloh in the land of Canaan, and made their way back to the land of Gilead, the territory which belonged to them and where they had settled in accordance with the order of Yahweh given through Moses.

22:10 When they came to the circles of stones at the Jordan which are in Canaanite territory, the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh built an altar there beside the Jordan, an imposing altar of great size.

22:11 This came to the ears of the Israelites. ‘See,’ the word went round ‘the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh have built this altar facing the land of Canaan near the circles of stones at the Jordan, beyond the territory of the Israelites.’

22:12 At this news, the whole community of the children of Israel mustered at Shiloh, ready to march against them and make war on them.

The eastern tribes rebuked

22:13 The Israelites sent the priest Phinehas son of Eleazar to the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh, in the land of Gilead,

22:14 and with him ten leading men, one leader and head of his family from each tribe in Israel; every one of them was head of his family among the clans of Israel.

22:15 When they came to the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh in the land of Gilead, this is what they said to them:

22:16 ‘This is our message to you from the whole community of Yahweh: What do you mean by this treachery committed against the God of Israel? Why turn aside from Yahweh today, building yourselves an altar, an act of rebellion today against Yahweh himself?

22:17 ‘Was the sin at Peor not enough, the sin from which we are not cleansed even now, in spite of the plague that ravaged the whole community of Yahweh?

22:18 Since then, you have stopped following Yahweh today, since you set yourselves in revolt against him today, tomorrow his anger will be roused against the whole community of Israel.

22:19 Do you think your territory is unclean? Then cross over into the territory of Yahweh, where his tabernacle is, and choose a home among us. But do not rebel against Yahweh or make us accomplices in rebellion by building an altar to vie with the altar of Yahweh our God.

22:20 When Achan son of Zerah betrayed his trust in the matter of the ban, did not the wrath come down on the whole community of Israel, although he was only one man? Did he not have to die for his sin?’

The tribes from across the Jordan clear their name

22:21 The Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh spoke in their turn and answered the heads of the clans of Israel:

22:22 ‘The God of gods, Yahweh, the God of gods, Yahweh well knows, and let Israel know it too: if there has been defiance or treachery on our part against Yahweh, let him not save us today;

22:23 or if we have built an altar to turn away from Yahweh and offer holocaust and oblation and communion sacrifice on it, let Yahweh punish us for it!

22:24 The truth is, we acted from fear and for this reason: one day your children might say to ours, “What link have you with Yahweh the God of Israel?

22:25 Has not Yahweh set the boundary of the Jordan between us and you, you sons of Reuben and sons of Gad? You have no share in Yahweh.” Thus your children might be the cause of stopping ours from paying reverence to Yahweh.

22:26 ‘So we said to each other, “Let us build this altar, not for holocausts or other sacrifices

22:27 but as a witness between us and you and among our descendants after us, proving that we do indeed worship Yahweh with our holocausts, our victims and our communion sacrifices in his presence. So that one day your children will not be able to say to ours: You have no share in Yahweh.

22:28 But if ever it were to happen that they said such a thing to us or to our descendants in the future, we should say to them: Look at this structure, Yahweh’s altar, made by our ancestors not for holocausts or other sacrifices but as a witness between us and you.”

22:29 We have no intention of defying Yahweh or turning away from serving him today by building an altar for holocausts or oblations or sacrifices to vie with the altar of Yahweh our God that stands before his tabernacle!’

Peace restored

22:30 When Phinehas the priest, the leaders of the community and the heads of the clans of Israel who were with him heard the words spoken by the sons of Gad and of Reuben and of Manasseh, they approved of them.

22:31 Then the priest Phinehas son of Eleazar said to the sons of Reuben and sons of Gad and sons of Manasseh, ‘Now we clearly see that Yahweh is among us, because you have not committed any treachery against him; this means you have saved the children of Israel from the punishment of Yahweh’.

22:32 The priest Phinehas son of Eleazar and the leaders left the Reubenites and the Gadites and returned from the land of Gilead to the land of Canaan and the Israelites, to whom they brought back this answer.

22:33 The Israelites were pleased to hear this; they gave thanks to God and spoke no more of marching against them and making war and ravaging the country where the sons of Reuben and of Gad had settled.

22:34 The Reubenites and the Gadites named the altar. . ., ‘Because’ they said ‘it will be a witness between us that Yahweh is God’.

JB JOSHUA Chapter 23

B.JOSHUA’S LAST WORDS TO THE PEOPLE

Joshua sums up his work

23:1 Long after Yahweh had given Israel rest from all the enemies round them – Joshua was old now, far advanced in years –

23:2 Joshua summoned all Israel, their elders, chief men, judges and scribes, and said to them, ‘I myself am old, far advanced in years;

23:3 you for your part have witnessed all that Yahweh your God has done to all these nations before your eyes; Yahweh your God himself has fought for you.

23:4 Now as an inheritance for your tribes, I have apportioned you by lot the peoples who still remain to be conquered, no less than those that I have wiped out between the Jordan and the Great Sea in the west.

23:5 Yahweh your God will himself drive them out before you; he will cast them out before you and you will take possession of their country as Yahweh your God promised you.

A rule of life among foreign peoples

23:6 ‘Therefore stand firm to keep and fulfil all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, never turning aside from it to right or left,

23:7 never mingling with the peoples who are still left beside you. Do not utter the names of their gods, do not swear by them, do not serve them and do not bow down before them.

23:8 No; you must be loyal to Yahweh your God as you have been till now.

23:9 Because of this, Yahweh has driven out great and powerful nations before you, and no one so far has been able to resist you.

23:10 One man of you could rout a thousand of them, because Yahweh your God himself fought for you as he had promised you.

23:11 Be very careful, as you value your life, to love Yahweh your God.

23:12 ‘But if you prove faithless, if you make friends with the remnant of those peoples who are still left beside you, if you form kinships with them and intermarry,

23:13 then know for certain that Yahweh your God will no longer drive these peoples before you; instead, they will be a snare and a pitfall for you, a scourge to your sides and thorns in your eyes, till you vanish from this good land which Yahweh your God has given you.

23:14 ‘And now today I must go the way of all the earth. Acknowledge with all your heart and soul that of all the promises of good that Yahweh your God has made you, not one has failed: all have been fulfilled, and not one has failed.

23:15 ‘But just as every promise of good made to you by Yahweh your God has been fulfilled for you, so also will Yahweh fulfil against you all his threats of evil, even to driving you out of the good land that Yahweh your God has given you.

23:16 ‘For if you violate the covenant which Yahweh your God has demanded of you, if you go and serve other gods and bow down before them, then Yahweh’s anger will be roused against you and you will quickly vanish from the good land that he has given you.’

JB JOSHUA Chapter 24

C. THE GREAT ASSEMBLY AT SHECHEM[*a]

Israel’s vocation set forth once more

24:1 Joshua gathered all the tribes of Israel together at Shechem; then he called the elders, leaders, judges and scribes of Israel, and they presented themselves before God.

24:2 Then Joshua said to all the people: ‘Yahweh the God of Israel says this, “In ancient days your ancestors lived beyond the River – such was Terah the father of Abraham and of Nahor – and they served other gods.

24:3 Then I brought your father Abraham from beyond the River and led him through all the land of Canaan. I increased his descendants and gave him Isaac.

24:4 To Isaac I gave Jacob and Esau. To Esau I gave the mountain country of Seir as his possession. Jacob and his sons went down into Egypt.

24:5 Then I sent Moses and Aaron and plagued Egypt with the wonders that I worked there. So I brought you out of it.

24:6 I brought your ancestors out of Egypt, and you came to the Sea; the Egyptians pursued your ancestors with chariots and horsemen as far as the Sea of Reeds.

24:7 There they called to Yahweh, and he spread a thick fog between you and the Egyptians, and made the sea go back on them and cover them. You saw with your own eyes the things I did in Egypt. Then for a long time you lived in the wilderness,

24:8 until I brought you into the land of the Amorites who lived beyond the Jordan; they made war on you and I gave them into your hands; you took possession of their country because I destroyed them before you.

24:9 Next, Balak son of Zippor the king of Moab arose to make war on Israel, and sent for Balaam son of Beor to come and curse you.

24:10 But I would not listen to Balaam; instead, he had to bless you, and I saved you from his hand.

24:11 “When you crossed the Jordan and came to Jericho, those who held Jericho fought against you, as did the Amorites and Perizzites, the Canaanites, Hittites, Girgashites, Hivites and Jebusites, but I put them all into your power.

24:12 I sent out hornets in front of you, which drove the two Amorite kings before you; this was not the work of your sword or your bow.

24:13 I gave you a land where you never toiled, you live in towns you never built; you eat now from vineyards and olivegroves you never planted.”

Israel chooses Yahweh

24:14 ‘So now, fear Yahweh and serve him perfectly and sincerely; put away the gods that your ancestors served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve Yahweh.

24:15 But if you will not serve Yahweh, choose today whom you wish to serve, whether the gods that your ancestors served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are now living. As for me and my House, we will serve Yahweh.’

24:16 The people answered, ‘We have no intention of deserting Yahweh and serving other gods!

24:17 Was it not Yahweh our God who brought us and our ancestors out of the land of Egypt, the house of slavery, who worked those great wonders before our eyes and preserved us all along the way we travelled and among all the peoples through whom we journeyed?

24:18 What is more, Yahweh drove all those peoples out before us, as well as the Amorites who used to live in this country. We too will serve Yahweh, for he is our God.’

24:19 Then Joshua said to the people, ‘You cannot serve Yahweh, because he is a holy God, he is a jealous God who will not forgive your transgressions or your sins.

24:20 If you desert Yahweh to follow alien gods he in turn will afflict and destroy you after the goodness he has shown you.’

24:21 The people answered Joshua, ‘No; it is Yahweh we wish to serve’.

24:22 Then Joshua said to the people, ‘You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen Yahweh, to serve him’. They answered, ‘We are witnesses’.

24:23 ‘Then cast away the alien gods among you and give your hearts to Yahweh the God of Israel!’

24:24 The people answered Joshua, ‘It is Yahweh our God we choose to serve; it is his voice that we will obey’.

The covenant at Shechem

24:25 That day, Joshua made a covenant for the people; he laid down a statute and ordinance for them at Shechem.

24:26 Joshua wrote these words in the Book of the Law of God. Then he took a great stone and set it up there, under the oak in the sanctuary of Yahweh,

24:27 and Joshua said to all the people, ‘See! This stone shall be a witness against us because it has heard all the words that Yahweh has spoken to us: it shall be a witness against you in case you deny your God.’

24:28 Then Joshua sent the people away, and each returned to his own inheritance.

D. TWO ADDITIONS

The death of Joshua

24:29 After these things Joshua son of Nun, the servant of Yahweh, died; he was a hundred and ten years old.

24:30 They buried him on the estate he had received for inheritance, at Timnath-serah which lies in the highlands of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash.

24:31 Israel served Yahweh throughout the lifetime of Joshua and the lifetime of those elders who outlived Joshua and had known all the deeds that Yahweh had done for the sake of Israel.

The bones of Joseph. The death of Eleazar

24:32 The bones of Joseph, which the sons of Israel had brought from Egypt, were buried at Shechem in the portion of ground that Jacob had bought for a hundred pieces of money from the sons of Hamor, the father of Shechem, which had become the inheritance of the sons of Joseph.

24:33 Then Eleazar son of Aaron died and was buried at Gibeah, the town of his son Phinehas, which had been given him in the highlands of Ephraim.

END OF JB JOSHUA [24 Chapters].

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