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And it came to pass, after the death of Yehoshuwah, that the children of Israel inquired of YEHOWAH, saying, “Which of us shall go up against the Canaanites first, to fight against them?”
2 And YEHOWAH said, “Yehudah shall go up; behold, I have given the land into his hand.”
3 So Yehudah said to Simeon his brethren, “Come up with me into my lot, that we may fight against the Canaanites, and I in turn will go with you into your lot.” So Simeon went with him.
4 And Yehudah went up, and YEHOWAH gave the Canaanites and the Perizzites into their hands, and they defeated ten thousand men at Bezek.
5 And they found Adoni-bezek in Bezek and fought against him, and they defeated the Canaanites and the Perizzites,
6 but Adoni-bezek fled, and they pursued him, and caught him, and cut off his thumbs and great toes.
7 And Adoni-bezek said, “Seventy kings with their thumbs and their great toes cut off gleaned under my table; as I have done, Elohim has repaid me.” So they brought him to Jerusalem and he died there.
8 And the children of Yehudah fought against Jerusalem, and captured it, and struck it with the edge of the sword, and set the city on fire,
9 and afterward the children of Yehudah went down to fight against the Canaanites dwelling in the hill country, and in the south country, and in the lowland,
10 and Yehudah went against the Canaanites who dwelled in Hebron (now the name of Hebron formerly was Kirjath-arba), and they struck Sheshai and Ahiman and Talmai.
11 And from there they fought against the inhabitants of Debir (now the name of Debir formerly was Kirjath-sepher),
12 and Caleb said, “The one who attacks Kirjath-sepher and captures it, I will even give him my daughter Achsah for a wife.”
13 And Othniel, the son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother, captured it; so he gave him his daughter Achsah for a wife.
14 And it came to pass when she came to him, that she persuaded him to ask her father for a field. Then she alighted from her ass, and Caleb said to her, “What do you want?”
15 She said to him, “Give me a blessing, since you have given me the land of the south country, give me also springs of water.” So Caleb gave her the upper springs and the lower springs.
16 The descendants of the Kenite, Moses’ father-in-law, went up from the city of palms with the children of Yehudah, to the wilderness of Yehudah, which is in the south of Arad, and they went and dwelled with the people.
17 And Yehudah went with Simeon his brethren, and they struck the Canaanites living in Zephath, and utterly destroyed it. So the name of the city was called Hormah.
18 Also Yehudah took Gaza with its territory and Ashkelon with its territory and Ekron with its territory.
19 Now YEHOWAH was with Yehudah, and they took possession of the hill country, but they could not dispossess the inhabitants of the valley, because they had iron chariots.
20 And they gave to Caleb, Hebron, as Moses had promised, and he dispossessed from there the three sons of Anak.
21 But the children of Benyehmin did not drive out the Jebusites who dwelled in Jerusalem; so the Jebusites have dwelled with the children of Benyehmin in Jerusalem to this day.
22 And the house of Yehoseph went up against Bethel, and YEHOWAH was with them,
23 and the house of Yehoseph spied out Bethel (now the name of the city was formerly Luz).
24 And the spies saw a man coming out of the city and they said to him, “Show us, please, the entrance to the city, and we will treat you kindly.”
25 And when he showed them the entrance to the city, they struck the city with the edge of the sword, but they let go the man and all his family.
26 And the man went into the land of the Hittites and built a city and named it Luz, which is its name to this day.
27 Neither did Manasseh take possession of Beth-shean and its villages, or Taanach and its villages, or the inhabitants of Dor and its villages, or the inhabitants of Ibleam and its villages, or the inhabitants of Megiddo and its villages, so the Canaanites persisted in dwelling in that land.
28 And it came to pass, when Israel became strong, that they made the Canaanites tributary, but they did not utterly dispossess them.
29 Neither did Ephraim drive out the Canaanites who dwelled in Gezer, so the Canaanites dwelt in Gezer among them.
30 Neither did Zebulun drive out the inhabitants of Kitron, nor the inhabitants of Nahalol, so the Canaanites dwelled among them and became tributaries.
31 Neither did Asher drive out the inhabitants of Acco, nor the inhabitants of Sidon, nor of Ahlab, nor of Achzib, nor of Helbah, nor of Aphek, nor of Rehob,
32 so the Asherites dwelt among the Canaanites; the inhabitants of the land, for they did not utterly dispossess them.
33 Neither did Naphtali drive out the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh, nor the inhabitants of Beth-anath, but dwelled among the Canaanites; the inhabitants of the land, and the inhabitants of Beth-shemesh and Beth-anath became tributary to them.
34 And the Amorites forced the children of Dan into the hill country, for they did not allow them to come down to the valley;
35 and the Amorites persisted in dwelling in Mount Heres, in Aijalon and in Shualabbin, but when the power of the house of Yehoseph grew strong, they became tributary.
36 And the border of the Amorites ran from the ascent of Akrabbim, from the rock and upward.
And the angel of YEHOWAH came up from Gilgal to Bochim, and he said, “I brought you up out of Egypt and led you into the land which I have sworn to your fathers, and I said, ‘I will never break My covenant with you,
2 and as for you, you shall make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land; you shall tear down their altars.’ But you have not obeyed My voice. Why have you done this?
3 Therefore I also said, ‘I will not drive them out before you, but they will become as thorns in your sides, and their elohim will be a snare to you.'”
4 And it came to pass, when the angel of YEHOWAH spoke these words to all the children of Israel, the people lifted up their voices and wept,
5 and they called the name of that place Bochim, and there they sacrificed to YEHOWAH.
6 And when Yehoshuwah let the people go, the children of Israel each went to their own inheritance to possess the land.
7 And the people served YEHOWAH all the days of Yehoshuwah, and all the days of the elders who outlived Yehoshuwah, who had seen all the great work of YEHOWAH that He did for Israel.
8 Then Yehoshuwah the son of Nun, the servant of YEHOWAH, died at the age of one hundred and ten.
9 And they buried him in the territory of his inheritance in Timnath-heres, in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash.
10 And all that generation also were gathered to their fathers; and there arose another generation after them, who did not know YEHOWAH, nor yet the work that He had done for Israel.
11 And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of YEHOWAH and served Baal,
12 and they forsook YEHOWAH, the Elohim of their fathers, Who had brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other elohim from the elohim of the peoples who were round about them, and bowed themselves down to them; thus they provoked YEHOWAH to anger.
13 So they forsook YEHOWAH and served Baal and the Ashtaroth.
14 And the anger of YEHOWAH burned against Israel, and He gave them into the hands of plunderers who plundered them; and He sold them into the hands of their enemies round about them, so that they could no longer stand before their enemies.
15 Wherever they went, the hand of YEHOWAH was against them for evil, as YEHOWAH had spoken, and as YEHOWAH had sworn to them, so that they were greatly distressed.
16 Then YEHOWAH raised up judges to deliver them from the hands of those who plundered them,
17 but they did not listen to their judges, for they went whoring after other elohim and bowed themselves to them. They turned aside quickly from the way in which their fathers had walked; in obeying the commandments of YEHOWAH, they did not do so.
18 And when YEHOWAH raised up judges for them, YEHOWAH was with the judge, and delivered them from the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge, for YEHOWAH relented because of their groaning by reason of those who oppressed and afflicted them.
19 And it came about, when the judge died, they turned back and acted more corruptly than their fathers, in following other elohim, to serve them and bow down to them. They ceased not from their own doings, nor from their stubborn ways.
20 And the anger of YEHOWAH burned against Israel, and He said, “Because this people has transgressed My covenant, which I commanded their fathers, and has not listened to My voice,
21 I also will no longer dispossess from before them any of the nations that Yehoshuwah left when he died,
22 that through them I may test Israel, whether they will keep the way of YEHOWAH; to walk therein as their fathers did, or not.”
23 Therefore, YEHOWAH allowed those nations to remain, not driving them out quickly; and neither did He give them into the hand of Yehoshuwah.
Now these are the nations that YEHOWAH left, to test Israel by them (that is, all who had not experienced any of the wars of Canaan;
2 only that the generations of the children of Israel might know war by learning it, at least those who had not experienced it before);
3 namely, the five lords of the Philistines, and all the Canaanites, and the Sidonians, and the Hivites who lived in Mount Lebanon; from Mount Baal-hermon as far as Lebo-hamath.
4 They were for testing Israel, to find out if they would obey the commandments of YEHOWAH, which He had commanded their fathers through Moses.
5 And the children of Israel dwelt among the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites;
6 and they took their daughters for themselves as wives, and gave their own daughters to their sons, and served their elohim,
7 and the children of Israel did evil in the sight of YEHOWAH, and forgot YEHOWAH their Elohim and served the Baal and the Asheroth.
8 Therefore the anger of YEHOWAH was hot against Israel, so that He sold them into the hands of Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia; and the children of Israel served Cushan-rishathaim eight years.
9 When the children of Israel cried to YEHOWAH, YEHOWAH raised up a deliverer for the children of Israel to deliver them, Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother.
10 And The Spirit of YEHOWAH came upon him, and he judged Israel. When he went out to war, YEHOWAH gave Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand, so that he prevailed over Cushan-rishathaim.
11 Then the land had rest forty years. And Othniel the son of Kenaz died.
12 And the children of Israel again did evil in the sight of YEHOWAH, so YEHOWAH strengthened Eglon the king of Moab against Israel, because they had done evil in the sight of YEHOWAH.
13 And he gathered to himself the children of Ammon and Amalek, and he went and defeated Israel, and they possessed the city of the palm trees.
14 And the children of Israel served Eglon the king of Moab eighteen years.
15 When the children of Israel cried to YEHOWAH, YEHOWAH raised up a deliverer for them, Ehud the son of Gera, the Benyehmite; a man left-handed. And by him the children of Israel sent a tribute to Eglon the king of Moab.
16 And Ehud made himself a sword, which had two edges; a cubit in length, and he bound it on his right thigh under his cloak.
17 And he brought the tribute to Eglon king of Moab. Now Eglon was a very fat man.
18 And it came to pass, when he had made an end to presenting the tribute, that he sent away the people who had carried the tribute,
19 but he himself turned back from the idols which were at Gilgal, and said, “I have a secret message for you, O king.” And he said, “Keep silence,” and all who attended him left him.
20 And Ehud came to him, as he was sitting alone in a cool upper chamber, and Ehud said, “I have a message from Elohim for you. ” And he arose from his seat,
21 and Ehud stretched out his left hand, took the sword from his right thigh and thrust it into his belly.
22 The handle also went in after the blade, and the fat closed over the blade, so he could not draw the sword out of his belly; and the refuse came out.
23 Then Ehud went out into the portico, and shut and locked the doors of the roof chamber behind him.
24 When he had gone out, his servants came and looked, and behold, the doors of the roof chamber were locked; and they said, “He is only relieving himself in the cool room.”
25 And they tarried until they became ashamed, and behold, he opened not the doors of the upper chamber. Therefore they took the key and opened them, and behold, their lord lay dead on the earth.
26 Now Ehud escaped while they were delaying, and he passed by the idols and escaped to Seirath.
27 And it came to pass, when he had come, that he blew the trumpet in the hill country of Ephraim, and the children of Israel went down with him from the hill country; with him before them.
28 And he said to them, “Follow after me, for YEHOWAH has delivered your enemies, the Moabites, into your hands.” So they went down after him and seized the fords of the Jordan opposite Moab, and did not allow anyone to cross over.
29 And they struck down at that time about ten thousand Moabites, all fat and strong men; and no one escaped.
30 So Moab was subdued that day under the hand of Israel, and the land had rest for eighty years.
31 After him came Shamgar the son of Anath, who struck down six hundred Philistines with an ox goad; and he also delivered Israel.
And the children of Israel again did evil in the sight of YEHOWAH, after Ehud died.
2 And YEHOWAH sold them into the hand of Jabin king of Canaan, who reigned in Hazor; and the captain of his army was Sisera, who lived in Harosheth of the Gentiles.
3 And the children of Israel cried to YEHOWAH, for he had nine hundred iron chariots, and he mightily oppressed the children of Israel for twenty years.
4 Now Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, judged Israel at that time,
5 and she dwelt under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel, in the hill country of Ephraim, and the children of Israel came up to her for judgment.
6 And she sent and summoned Barak the son of Abinoam from Kedesh-naphtali, and said to him, “Behold, YEHOWAH, the Elohim of Israel has commanded, ‘Go and march to Mount Tabor, and take with you ten thousand men from the children of Naphtali and from the children of Zebulun,
7 and I will draw out to you Sisera, the captain of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his many, to the river Kishon, and I will give him into your hand.'”
8 And Barak said to her, “If you will go with me, then I will go, but if you will not go with me, I will not go.”
9 She said, “I will surely go with you; by all means, but the journey you take will then not be for your honor, for YEHOWAH will sell Sisera into the hands of a woman.” Then Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh.
10 And Barak called Zebulun and Naphtali together to Kedesh, and there went up with him ten thousand men; Deborah also went up with him.
11 Now Heber the Kenite had separated himself from the Kenites; from the children of Hobab the father-in-law of Moses, and had pitched his tent as far away as the oak in Zaanannim, which is near Kedesh,
12 and they told Sisera that Barak the son of Abinoam had gone up to Mount Tabor.
13 So Sisera called together all his chariots; nine hundred iron chariots, and all the people with him, from Harosheth of the Gentiles, to the river Kishon.
14 And Deborah said to Barak, “Rise up! For this is the day in which YEHOWAH has given Sisera into your hands. Behold, YEHOWAH has gone out before you.” So Barak went down from Mount Tabor with ten thousand men following him.
15 And YEHOWAH put in commotion Sisera, and the chariots and the army, with the edge of the sword before Barak; and Sisera got down from his chariot and fled away on foot.
16 But Barak pursued the chariots and the army as far as Harosheth of the Gentiles, and all the army of Sisera fell by the edge of the sword; not even one was left.
17 Now Sisera fled away on foot to the tent of Jael the wife of Heber the Kenite, for there was peace between Jabin the king of Hazor and the house of Heber the Kenite.
18 And Jael went out to meet Sisera, and said to him, “Turn aside, my lord, turn aside to me; fear not!” And he turned aside to her into the tent, and she covered him with a rug.
19 He said to her, “Please give me a little water to drink, for I am thirsty.” So she opened a bottle of milk and gave him a drink; then she covered him.
20 He said to her, “Stand in the doorway of the tent, and it shall be if anyone comes and inquires of you, and says, ‘Is there anyone here?’ that you shall say, ‘No.'”
21 Then Jael, Heber’s wife, took a tent stake, and took a hammer in her hand, and went secretly to him and drove the stake into his temple, and it penetrated into the ground, for he was fast asleep and weary; and he died.
22 And behold, as Barak pursued Sisera, Jael came out to meet him and said to him, “Come, and I will show you the man whom you seek.” And he came with her, and behold Sisera was lying dead with the tent stake in his temple.
23 So Elohim subdued on that day Jabin the king of Canaan before the children of Israel.
24 And the hand of the children of Israel prospered and prevailed against Jabin the king of Canaan, until they had destroyed Jabin the king of Canaan.
Then sang Deborah and Barak the son of Abinoam on that day, saying,
2 “For that the leaders led in Israel, and that the people willingly offered themselves, bless YEHOWAH!
3 Hear, O kings, give ear, O rulers! I, even I, will sing to YEHOWAH; I will sing praise to YEHOWAH, the Elohim of Israel.
4 YEHOWAH, when You went out from Seir; when You marched out from the field of Edom, the earth shook, the heavens also dropped, even the clouds dropped water.
5 The mountain melted at the presence of YEHOWAH; this Sinai, at the presence of YEHOWAH, the Elohim of Israel.
6 In the days of Shamgar the son of Anath, in the days of Jael, the highways were unoccupied, and travelers walked through the by-ways.
7 The leadership ceased; they ceased in Israel, until I, Deborah, rose up; until I rose up as a mother in Israel.
8 They chose new elohim, then was war in the gates; was there a shield or a spear seen among forty thousand in Israel?
9 My heart is for the governors of Israel, who offered themselves willingly among the people. Bless YEHOWAH!
10 You who ride on white asses, you who sit on carpets, and you who travel on the road, consider!
11 From the noise of those who divide the spoil at the watering places; from there they shall celebrate the righteous deeds of YEHOWAH; the righteous deeds for His leaders in Israel. Then the people of YEHOWAH went down to the gates.
12 Awake, awake, Deborah; awake, awake, sing a song! Arise, Barak, and take captive your captives, O son of Abinoam.
13 Then the remnant came down to the nobles; the people of YEHOWAH came down to me as warriors.
14 Out of Ephraim, those whose root is in Amalek, following you; Benyehmin with your peoples; from Machir commanders came down, and from Zebulun those who wield the pen of a scribe.
15 And the princes of Issachar, with Deborah; as Issachar, so was Barak. Into the valley they rushed at his heels; among the divisions of Reuben great resolve of heart.
16 Why did you sit amid the sheepfolds, to hear the bleating of the flocks? Among the divisions of Reuben great searching of heart.
17 Gilead remained across the Jordan, and why did Dan stay in ships? Asher sat at the seashore, and remained in his breaches.
18 Zebulun and Naphtali; betrothed in their lives to death, even on the high places of the field.
19 The kings came to fight; they fought the kings of Canaan at Taanach, near the waters of Megiddo; they took no gain of money.
20 From heaven was the fight; the stars in their courses fought against Sisera.
21 The river of Kishon swept them away; the ancient river, the river Kishon. O my soul, you have trodden down strength.
22 Then the horse hoofs beat down with the prancing; the prancing of their might.
23 ‘Curse Meroz,’ said the angel of YEHOWAH, ‘Bitterly curse the inhabitants thereof, because they came not to the help of YEHOWAH; to the help of YEHOWAH against the warriors.’
24 Blessed above women shall Jael, the wife of Heber the Kenite be; blessed above women in the tent.
25 He asked for water, she gave him milk; in a noble’s bowl she brought him curds.
26 She reached out her hand for the tent stake, and her right hand for the workmen’s hammer. Then she struck Sisera; she struck his head; she struck and pierced his temples.
27 At her feet he bowed; he fell, he lay; at her feet he bowed, he fell; where he bowed, there he fell dead.
28 The mother of Sisera looked out of the window, and cried through the lattice, ‘Why is his chariot so long in coming? Why do the wheels of his chariot delay?’
29 The wisest of her princesses answer her, indeed she repeats her words to herself,
30 ‘Have they not found, have they not divided the spoil? To every man a maiden or two; to Sisera a spoil of dyed work; a spoil of dyed work embroidered; dyed work of double embroidery on the neck of the spoiler?’
31 Thus let all Your enemies perish, O YEHOWAH, but let those who love Him be like the rising of the sun in its might.” And the land had rest for forty years.
And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of YEHOWAH, and YEHOWAH gave them into the hands of Midian seven years.
2 The hand of Midian prevailed against Israel, and because of Midian, the children of Israel made for themselves the dens that are in the mountains, and the caves and the strongholds.
3 For it was when Israel was sowing, that the Midianites would come up, with the Amalekites and the children of the east, and come up against them.
4 And they encamped against them and destroyed the increase of the earth as far as Gaza, and left no sustenance in Israel; as well as any sheep, ox, or ass.
5 For they would come up with their cattle and their tents; they would come in like locusts for number, both they and their camels were without number, and they came into the land to destroy it.
6 So Israel was greatly impoverished because of Midian, and the children of Israel cried to YEHOWAH.
7 Now it came about when the children of Israel cried out to YEHOWAH on account of Midian,
8 that YEHOWAH sent a prophet to the children of Israel, and he said to them, “Thus says YEHOWAH, the Elohim of Israel, ‘It was I Who brought you up from Egypt, and brought you out from the house of bondage.
9 I delivered you from the hands of the Egyptians and from the hands of all your oppressors, and drove them out from before you and gave you their land,
10 and I said to you, “I am YEHOWAH your Elohim; you shall not fear the elohim of the Amorites in whose land you live. But you have not obeyed Me.”‘”
11 Then the angel of YEHOWAH came and sat under the oak that was in Ophrah, which belonged to Yehoash the Abiezrite, as his son Gideon was threshing wheat in the wine press, in order to hide from the Midianites.
12 And the angel of YEHOWAH appeared to him and said to him, “YEHOWAH is with you, O mighty man of valor.”
13 Then Gideon said to him, “O my lord, if YEHOWAH is with us, why then has all this fallen upon us? And where are all His miracles that our fathers told us about, saying, ‘Did not YEHOWAH bring us up from Egypt?’ But now, YEHOWAH has abandoned us and given us into the hand of the Midian.”
14 And YEHOWAH looked upon him and said, “Go in this your might and deliver Israel from the hand of Midian. Have I not sent you?”
15 He said to Him, “O Master, how shall I deliver Israel? Behold, my family is the least in Manasseh, and I am the youngest in my father’s house.”
16 But YEHOWAH said to him, “Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat Midian as one man.”
17 And he said to Him, “If now I have found favor in Your sight, then show me a sign that it is You Who speaks with me.
18 Depart not from here, please, until I return to You, and bring out my offering and lay it before You.” And He said, “I will remain until you return.”
19 And Gideon went and prepared a young goat and unleavened cakes from an ephah of flour. He put the meat in a basket and the broth in a pot, and brought out to him under the oak and presented it.
20 And the angel of Elohim said to him, “Take the meat and the unleavened cakes and lay them on this rock, and pour forth the broth.” And he did so.
21 Then the angel of YEHOWAH put forth the end of the staff that was in his hand and touched the meat and the unleavened cakes, and fire rose up from the rock and consumed the meat and the unleavened cakes. Then the angel of YEHOWAH disappeared from his sight.
22 When Gideon saw that he was the angel of YEHOWAH, he said, “Alas, O Master YEHOWAH! For now I have seen the angel of YEHOWAH face to face.”
23 YEHOWAH said to him, “Peace to you, do not fear; you shall not die.”
24 Then Gideon built an altar there to YEHOWAH and named it YEHOWAH-SHALOM. To this day it is still in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
25 And it came to pass on the same night, YEHOWAH said to him, “Take your father’s bull and a second bull seven years old, and pull down the altar of Baal that belongs to your father, and cut down the Asherah that is beside it;
26 and build an altar to YEHOWAH your Elohim on the top of this stronghold in an ordered manner. And take the second bull, and offer a burnt offering with the wood of the Asherah, which you shall cut down.”
27 Then Gideon took ten men of his servants and did as YEHOWAH had commanded him; and because he feared his father’s household and the men of the city, to do it by day, he did it by night.
28 And when the men of the city rose up early in the morning, behold, the altar of Baal was pulled down, and the Asherah that was beside it was cut down, and the second bull was offered on the altar that had been built.
29 And they said to one another, “Who has done this thing?” And when they inquired and searched, they said, “Gideon the son of Yehoash did this thing.”
30 Then the men of the city said to Yehoash, “Bring out your son, that he may die, for he has pulled down the altar of Baal; and indeed, he has cut down the Asherah that was beside it.”
31 But Yehoash said to all who stood against him, “Will you contend for Baal, or will you deliver him? Whoever will plead for him shall be put to death by morning. If he is an elohim, let him contend for himself, because someone has torn down his altar.”
32 And on that day they named him Jerubbaal, saying, “Let Baal contend against him,” because he had pulled down his altar.
33 Then all the Midianites and the Amalekites and the children of the east assembled themselves, and they crossed over and encamped in the valley of Jezreel.
34 But The Spirit of YEHOWAH came upon Gideon, and he blew a trumpet, and the Abiezrites were gathered after him.
35 And he sent messengers throughout Manasseh, and they also were gathered after him; and he sent messengers to Asher, and to Zebulun, and to Naphtali, and they came up to meet them.
36 And Gideon said to Elohim, “If You will deliver Israel by my hand, as You have said,
37 behold, I will put a fleece of wool on the threshing floor. If there is dew on the fleece only, and it is dry on all the ground, then I will know that You will deliver Israel by my hand, as You have said.”
38 And it was so. When he rose up early the next morning and pressed the fleece together, he wrung the dew from the fleece; a bowl full of water.
39 Then Gideon said to Elohim, “Do not let Your anger be hot against me, that I may speak but once; but let me prove, please, once more with the fleece, let it now be dry only on the fleece, and let there be dew on all the ground.”
40 And Elohim did so that night, for it was dry only on the fleece, and dew was on all the ground.
Then Jerubbaal, who is Gideon, and all the people who were with him, rose up early and encamped beside the well of Harod. And the encampment of Midian was on the north side of them, by the hill of Moreh in the valley.
2 And YEHOWAH said to Gideon, “The people who are with you are too many for Me to give Midian into their hands, lest Israel be boastful, saying, ‘My own power has delivered me.’
3 Now therefore go, proclaim in the ears of the people, saying, ‘Whoever is afraid and trembling, let them return and depart early from Mount Gilead.'” So twenty two thousand people returned, but ten thousand remained.
4 And YEHOWAH said to Gideon, “The people are still too many. Bring them down to the water and I will refine them for you there. And it shall be that of whom I shall say to you, ‘This shall go with you,’ the same shall go with you; and whomsoever I shall say, ‘This shall not go with you,’ the same shall not go.”
5 So he brought the people down to the water. And YEHOWAH said to Gideon, “Every one that laps of the water with their tongue, as a dog laps, them you shall set by themselves; likewise everyone who bows down on their knees to drink.”
6 And the number of those that lapped, putting their hand to their mouth, was three hundred men; but all the rest of the people bowed down on their knees to drink water.
7 And YEHOWAH said to Gideon, “By the three hundred men that lapped will I save you, and give Midian into your hand; and let all the other people go, each one to their place.”
8 So they took the people’s provisions in their hands, and their trumpets, and Gideon sent all the other men of Israel, each to his place, but retained the three hundred men. Now the encampment of Midian was below him in the valley.
9 And it came to pass the same night, that YEHOWAH said to him, “Rise up, go down against the camp, for I have given it into your hands.
10 But if you fear to go down, go with Purah your servant down to the camp,
11 and you will hear what they say; and afterward shall your hands be strengthened, that you may go down against the camp.” So he went with Purah his servant down to the outer edge of the army that was in the camp.
12 And the Midianites and the Amalekites and all the children of the east, lay in the valley as numerous as locusts, and their camels were without number; as numerous as the sand on the seashore.
13 When Gideon came, behold, a man was telling a dream to his friend. And he said, “Behold, I dreamed a dream: A cake of barley bread tumbled into the camp of Midian, and it came to the tent and struck it so that it fell, and turned it upside down so that the tent lay fallen.”
14 His friend answered and said, “This is nothing less than the sword of Gideon the son of Yehoash, a man of Israel; Elohim has given Midian and all the army into his hand.”
15 And it came to pass, when Gideon heard the telling of the dream, and its interpretation, that he worshiped; and returning to the encampment of Israel he said, “Rise up, for YEHOWAH has given the army of Midian into your hands.”
16 And he divided the three hundred men into three companies, and he put trumpets and empty pitchers into the hands of all of them, with torches inside the pitchers.
17 And he said to them, “Look at me and do likewise. And behold, when I come to the outer edge of the camp, do as I do.
18 When I blow with the trumpet, I and all who are with me, then you also shall blow the trumpets around the whole camp, and shall say, ‘For YEHOWAH and for Gideon.'”
19 So Gideon and the hundred men who were with him came to the outer edge of the camp at the beginning of the middle watch, and they had newly set the watch; and they blew the trumpets and broke the pitchers that were in their hands.
20 When the three companies blew the trumpets and broke the pitchers, they held the torches in their left hands and the trumpets in their right hands to blow, and cried, “A sword for YEHOWAH and for Gideon!”
21 And they stood every man in his place round about the camp; and all the army ran, crying out as they fled.
22 And when they blew the three hundred trumpets, YEHOWAH set the sword of one against another even throughout the whole army; and the army fled as far as Beth-shittah toward Zererath; as far as the edge of Abel-meholah, by Tabbath.
23 And the men of Israel were called together from Naphtali and Asher and all Manasseh, and they pursued Midian.
24 And Gideon sent messengers throughout the hill country of Ephraim, saying, “Come down against Midian and take before them the waters of Beth-barah and the Jordan.” So all the men of Ephraim were gathered together, and they took the waters as far as Beth-barah and the Jordan.
25 And they captured the two leaders of Midian, Oreb and Zeeb, and they killed Oreb at the rock of Oreb, and they killed Zeeb at the wine press of Zeeb, while they pursued Midian; and they brought the heads of Oreb and Zeeb to Gideon from across the Jordan.
And the men of Ephraim said to him, “What is this thing you have done to us, that you called us not, when you went to fight against Midian?” And they contended with him sharply.
2 And he said to them, “What have I done now in comparison to you? Are not the gleanings of Ephraim better than the vintage of Abiezer?
3 Elohim has delivered into your hands the princes of Midian; Oreb and Zeeb, and what was I able to do in comparison with you?” Then their anger was abated toward him when he said that.
4 Then Gideon came to the Jordan, and crossed over; he and the three hundred men who were with him, weary yet pursuing.
5 And he said to the men of Succoth, “Give, please, loaves of bread to the people who follow me, for they are weary, and I am pursuing Zebah and Zalmunna, the kings of Midian.”
6 The leaders of Succoth said, “Are the hands of Zebah and Zalmunna already in your hands, that we should give bread to your army?”
7 Gideon said, “Therefore, when YEHOWAH has given Zebah and Zalmunna into my hand, then I will tear your flesh with the thorns of the wilderness and with briers.”
8 And he went up from there to Peniel and spoke to them in like manner; and the men of Peniel answered him as the men of Succoth had answered.
9 So he spoke also to the men of Peniel, saying, “When I return safely, I will pull down this tower.”
10 Now Zebah and Zalmunna were in Karkor, and their army with them, about fifteen thousand men; all who remained of the entire army of the children of the east, for the fallen were one hundred twenty thousand swordsmen.
11 And Gideon went up by the way of those who dwelled in tents on the east of Nobah and Jogbehah, and attacked the encampment when the army felt secure.
12 When Zebah and Zalmunna fled, he pursued them and captured the two kings of Midian; Zebah and Zalmunna, and brought fear to the whole army.
13 Then Gideon the son of Yehoash returned from the battle by the ascent of Heres.
14 And he caught a young man from Succoth and questioned him. And the young man described for him the princes of Succoth and its elders, seventy-seven men.
15 And he came to the men of Succoth and said, “Behold Zebah and Zalmunna, concerning whom you taunted me, saying, ‘Are the hands of Zebah and Zalmunna already in your hand, that we should give bread to your men who are weary?'”
16 Then he took the elders of the city, and thorns of the wilderness and briers, and with them he taught the men of Succoth.
17 And he pulled down the tower of Peniel and killed the men of the city.
18 Then he said to Zebah and Zalmunna, “What manner of men were they whom you killed at Tabor?” And they said, “As are you, so were they, each one resembling the child of a king.”
19 And he said, “They were my brothers, the sons of my mother. As YEHOWAH lives, if you had saved them alive, I would not kill you.”
20 So he said to Jether his firstborn, “Rise up, kill them.” But the youth did not draw his sword, for he feared, because he was still a youth.
21 Then Zebah and Zalmunna said, “Rise up you, and fall upon us; for as is the man, so is his strength.” So Gideon rose up and killed Zebah and Zalmunna, and took the ornaments that were on their camels’ necks.
22 Then the men of Israel said to Gideon, “Rule over us, both you and your son, and your son’s son, for you have delivered us from the hand of Midian.”
23 But Gideon said to them, “I will not rule over you, nor shall my son rule over you; YEHOWAH shall rule over you.”
24 And Gideon said to them, “I would request of you, give me, each of you, an earring from his spoil.” For they had gold earrings, because they were Ishmaelites.
25 And they said, “We will surely give.” So they spread out a garment, and every one of them did throw an earring from his spoil.
26 And the weight of the gold earrings that he requested was one thousand seven hundred shekels of gold, besides the ornaments and the pendants and the purple robes that were on the kings of Midian, and besides the chains that were about their camels’ necks.
27 And Gideon made it into an ephod, and placed it in his city, in Ophrah, and all Israel whored after it, so that it became a snare to Gideon and his household.
28 Thus was Midian subdued before the children of Israel, and they lifted up their heads no more. And the land had rest for forty years in the days of Gideon.
29 Then Jerubbaal the son of Yehoash went and lived in his own house.
30 Now Gideon had seventy sons who were of his body begotten, for he had many wives.
31 And his concubine, who was in Shechem, also begat him a son, and he named him Abimelech.
32 And Gideon the son of Yehoash died at a ripe old age, and was buried in the tomb of his father Yehoash, in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
33 And it came to pass, as soon as Gideon was dead, that the children of Israel turned again and whored after Baal, and made Baal-berith their elohim.
34 Thus the children of Israel did not remember YEHOWAH their Elohim, Who had delivered them from the hands of all their enemies on every side;
35 nor did they show kindness to the household of Jerubbaal-Gideon, in accord with all the good that he had done to Israel.
And Abimelech, the son of Jerubbaal, went to Shechem to his mother’s brethren, and spoke to them and to the whole tribe of the house of his mother’s father, saying,
2 “Speak now, please, in the hearing of all the men of Shechem, ‘Which is better for you, that seventy men, all the children of Jerubbaal, rule over you, or that one man rule over you?’ Remember also, that I am your bone and your flesh.”
3 And his mother’s brethren spoke all these words on his behalf in the ears of all the men of Shechem, and they were inclined to follow Abimelech, for they said, “He is our brethren.”
4 And they gave him seventy pieces of silver from the house of Baal-berith, from which Abimelech hired worthless and unimportant men, and they followed him.
5 And he went to his father’s house at Ophrah and killed his brothers; the children of Jerubbaal; seventy men, on one stone. But Yehtham the youngest son of Jerubbaal was left, for he hid himself.
6 And all the men of Shechem, and all Beth-millo gathered together, and they went and made Abimelech king, by the oak of the pillar that was in Shechem.
7 And when they told Yehtham, he went and stood on the top of Mount Gerizim, and lifted his voice and cried, saying to them, “Listen to me, O men of Shechem, that Elohim may listen to you.
8 The trees once went forth to anoint a king over them, and they said to the olive tree, ‘Reign over us!’
9 But the olive tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my fatness with which Elohim and men are honored, and go to wave over the trees?’
10 Then the trees said to the fig tree, ‘You come, reign over us!’
11 But the fig tree said to them, ‘Shall I leave my sweetness and my good fruit, and go to wave over the trees?’
12 Then the trees said to the vine, ‘You come, reign over us!’
13 But the vine said to them, ‘Shall I leave my new wine, which cheers Elohim and men, and go to wave over the trees?’
14 Then said all the trees said to the bramble, ‘You come, reign over us!’
15 And the bramble said to the trees, ‘If in truth you anoint me king over you, come and take refuge in my shadow, but if not, may fire come out from the bramble and consume the cedars of Lebanon.’
16 Now therefore, if you have dealt truly and sincerely in making Abimelech king, and if you have dealt well with Jerubbaal and his house, and have dealt with him according to the deserving of his hands,
17 for my father fought for you and endangered his life and delivered you from the hand of Midian;
18 but you have risen up against my father’s house this day, and have killed his sons; seventy men on one stone, and have made Abimelech, the son of his maidservant, king over the men of Shechem, because he is your brethren,
19 if then you have dealt truly and sincerely with Jerubbaal and his house this day, rejoice in Abimelech, and let him also rejoice in you.
20 But if not, let fire come out from Abimelech and consume the men of Shechem and the house of Millo; and let fire come out from the men of Shechem and from Beth-millo, and consume Abimelech.”
21 And Yehtham escaped and fled, and went to Beer, and remained there because of Abimelech his brother.
22 And Abimelech ruled over Israel three years.
23 Then Elohim sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and the men of Shechem, and the men of Shechem dealt treacherously with Abimelech,
24 so that the violence done against the seventy sons of Jerubbaal might come, and their blood might be laid on Abimelech their brother, who killed them, and upon the men of Shechem, who strengthened his hands to kill his brothers.
25 And the men of Shechem set in ambush against him on the tops of the mountains, and they robbed all who might pass by them along the road. And it was told to Abimelech.
26 Now Gaal the son of Ebed came with his brethren, and crossed over into Shechem, and the men of Shechem put their trust in him,
27 and they went out into the field and gathered their vineyards and trod them, and made merry. And they went into the house of their elohim, and did eat and drink, and cursed Abimelech.
28 And Gaal the son of Ebed said, “Who is Abimelech, and who is Shechem, that we should serve him? Is he not the son of Jerubbaal, and Zebul his overseer? Serve the men of Hamor the father of Shechem, but why should we serve him?
29 “O, that this people were under my hand! Then I would remove Abimelech.” And he said to Abimelech, “Increase your army and come out.”
30 When Zebul, the ruler of the city, heard the words of Gaal the son of Ebed, his anger was kindled,
31 and he sent messengers to Abimelech deceitfully, saying, “Behold, Gaal the son of Ebed and his brethren have come to Shechem, and behold, they fortify the city against you.
32 Now therefore, rise up by night, you and the people with you, and lie in ambush in the field,
33 and in the morning, as the sun rises up, you shall rise early and fall upon the city. And behold, when he and the people with him come out against you, you shall do to them as you shall find occasion.”
34 So Abimelech and all the people with him rose up by night, and lay in ambush against Shechem in four companies.
35 Now Gaal the son of Ebed went out and stood in the entrance of the city gate, and Abimelech and the people with him rose up from the ambush.
36 When Gaal saw the people, he said to Zebul, “Look, people are coming down from the tops of the mountains.” But Zebul said to him, “You are seeing the shadow of the mountains as men.”
37 Gaal spoke again and said, “Behold, people are coming down from the highest part of the land, and one company comes by the way of the diviners’ oak.”
38 Then Zebul said to him, “Where is now your mouth, with which you said, ‘Who is Abimelech that we should serve him?’ Is this not the people whom you despised? Go out now, I beseech you, and fight with them!”
39 So Gaal went out before the men of Shechem and fought with Abimelech.
40 And Abimelech pursued him, and he fled before him, and there fell many wounded, even up to the entrance of the gate.
41 And Abimelech remained at Arumah, but Zebul drove out Gaal and his brethren, so that they could not remain in Shechem.
42 And it came about on the next day that the people went out to the field, and it was told to Abimelech.
43 So he took his people and divided them into three companies, and lay in ambush in the field. When he looked and saw the people coming out from the city, he rose up against them and killed them.
44 Then Abimelech and the company who was with him rushed forward and stood in the entrance of the city gate, and the other two companies then dashed against all who were in the field, and killed them.
45 And Abimelech fought against the city all that day, and he captured the city and killed all the people in it. Then he beat down the city and sowed it with salt.
46 When all the citizens of the tower of Shechem heard, they entered into the hold of the temple of El-berith.
47 And it was told Abimelech that all the citizens of the tower of Shechem were gathered together.
48 So Abimelech went up to Mount Zalmon; he and all the people with him, and Abimelech took an axe in his hand and cut down a branch from the trees, and lifted it and laid it on his shoulder. Then he said to the people with him, “What you have seen me do, hurry and do likewise.”
49 And all the people likewise cut down each one his branch and followed Abimelech, and put them to the hold, and set the hold on fire, over those inside, so that all the citizens of the tower of Shechem also died; about a thousand men and women.
50 Then Abimelech went to Thebez, and he encamped against Thebez and took it,
51 but there was a strong tower in the midst of the city, and all the men and women, with all the leaders of the city, fled there and shut themselves in; and they went up on the roof of the tower.
52 So Abimelech came to the tower and fought against it, and came near to the entrance of the tower to burn it with fire.
53 But a certain woman threw down an upper millstone on Abimelech’s head, crushing his skull.
54 Then he called quickly to the young man that carried his armor, and said to him, “Draw your sword and kill me, so that it will not be said of me, ‘A woman killed him.'” So the young man thrust him through, and he died.
55 And when the men of Israel saw that Abimelech was dead, each departed to his place.
56 Thus Elohim rendered back the wickedness of Abimelech, which he had done to his father in killing his seventy brothers.
57 And all the evil of the men of Shechem, did Elohim render back upon their heads; and upon them came the curse of Yehtham the son of Jerubbaal.
And after Abimelech, Tola the son of Puah, the son of Dodo, a man of Issachar, rose up to save Israel, and he dwelt in Shamir in the hill country of Ephraim.
2 And he judged Israel twenty-three years. Then he died and was buried in Shamir.
3 And after him arose Jair, a Gileadite, who judged Israel twenty-two years.
4 He had thirty sons who rode on thirty asses, and they had thirty cities in the land of Gilead that are called Havvoth-jair to this day.
5 And Jair died and was buried in Camon.
6 Then the children of Israel again did evil in the sight of YEHOWAH, serving Baalim and the Ashtaroth, the elohim of Syria; the elohim of Sidon; the elohim of Moab; the elohim of the children of Ammon, and the elohim of the Philistines. Thus they forsook YEHOWAH and did not serve Him.
7 And the anger of YEHOWAH was hot against Israel, and He sold them into the hands of the Philistines, and into the hands of the children of Ammon.
8 And they oppressed and crushed the children of Israel that year; and for eighteen years they oppressed all the children of Israel who were beyond the Jordan, in Gilead; in the land of the Amorites.
9 Moreover, the children of Ammon crossed the Jordan to fight also against Yehudah, Benyehmin, and the house of Ephraim, so that Israel was greatly distressed.
10 Then the children of Israel cried out to YEHOWAH, saying, “We have sinned against You, for indeed, we have forsaken our Elohim and served the Baalim.”
11 And YEHOWAH said to the children of Israel, “Did I not deliver you from the Egyptians, the Amorites, the children of Ammon, and the Philistines?
12 Also when the Sidonians, the Amalekites and the Maonites oppressed you, you cried out to Me, and I delivered you from their hands.
13 Yet you have forsaken Me and served other elohim. Therefore, I will deliver you no more.
14 Go and cry out to the elohim that you have chosen; let them deliver you in the time of your distress.”
15 And the children of Israel said to YEHOWAH, “We have sinned, do to us whatever seems good to You; only deliver us, please, this day.”
16 And they put away the foreign elohim from among them and served YEHOWAH. And His Soul was grieved for the misery of Israel.
17 Then the children of Ammon gathered together and encamped in Gilead, and the children of Israel gathered together and encamped in Mizpah.
18 And the people and the leaders of Gilead said to one another, “Who is the man who will begin to fight against the children of Ammon? He shall become head over all the inhabitants of Gilead.”
Now Jephthah the Gileadite was a mighty man of valor, but he was the son of a harlot, and Gilead begat Jephthah.
2 And Gilead’s wife begat him sons, and when his wife’s sons were grown, they drove Jephthah out and said to him, “You shall not inherit in our father’s house, for you are the son of another woman.”
3 Then Jephthah fled from his brothers and dwelt in the land of Tob; and there were gathered unto Jephthah worthless fellows, and they went out with him.
4 And it came to pass after some time, that the children of Ammon made war against Israel.
5 And so it was, when the children of Ammon made war against Israel, the elders of Gilead went to fetch Jephthah from the land of Tob,
6 and they said to Jephthah, “Come and be our leader that we may fight against the children of Ammon.”
7 And Jephthah said to the elders of Gilead, “Did you not hate me and expel me from my father’s house? Why have you come to me now when you are in trouble?”
8 The elders of Gilead said to Jephthah, “Therefore have we returned to you now, that you may go with us, and fight with the children of Ammon, and become head over all the inhabitants of Gilead.”
9 So Jephthah said to the elders of Gilead, “If you take me back to fight against the children of Ammon, and YEHOWAH delivers them up before me, shall I become your head?”
10 And the elders of Gilead said to Jephthah, “YEHOWAH is witness between us, if we do not do so according as you have said.”
11 Then Jephthah went with the elders of Gilead, and the people made him head and ruler over them, and Jephthah spoke all his words before YEHOWAH at Mizpah.
12 And Jephthah sent messengers to the king of the children of Ammon, saying, “What have you to do with me, that you have come against me to fight in my land?”
13 And the king of the children of Ammon said to the messengers of Jephthah, “Because Israel took away my land when they came up from Egypt; from the Arnon as far as the Jabbok and the Jordan. Now therefore, return them peaceably.”
14 But Jephthah sent messengers again to the king of the children of Ammon,
15 and they said to him, “Thus says Jephthah, ‘Israel took not away the land of Moab, nor the land of the children of Ammon,
16 but when Israel came up from Egypt, and walked through the wilderness to the Red Sea, and came to Kadesh,
17 then Israel sent messengers to the king of Edom, saying, “Let me, please, pass through your land,” but the king of Edom would not listen. And they also sent to the king of Moab, but he would not consent. So Israel remained at Kadesh.
18 Then they went through the wilderness and around the land of Edom, and around the land of Moab, and came to the east side of the land of Moab, and they encamped beyond the Arnon; but came not within the border of Moab, for the Arnon is the border of Moab.
19 And Israel sent messengers to Sihon king of the Amorites; the king of Heshbon, and Israel said to him, “Let us pass, please, through your land to our place,”
20 but Sihon did not trust Israel to pass through his territory. So Sihon gathered all his people and encamped in Jahaz, and fought with Israel.
21 And YEHOWAH, the Elohim of Israel, gave Sihon and all his people into the hand of Israel, and they defeated them; so Israel possessed all the land of the Amorites; the inhabitants of that country.
22 And they possessed all the territory of the Amorites, from the Arnon as far as the Jabbok, and from the wilderness as far as the Jordan.
23 Since now YEHOWAH, the Elohim of Israel, drove out the Amorites from before His people Israel, are you then to possess it?
24 Do you not possess what Chemosh your elohim gives you to possess? So whatever YEHOWAH our Elohim has dispossessed from before us, we will possess.
25 And now, are you any better than Balak the son of Zippor, king of Moab? Did he ever strive against Israel, or did he ever fight against them?
26 While Israel dwelt in Heshbon and its villages, and in Aroer and its villages, and in all the cities that are on the banks of the Arnon; three hundred years, why did you not recover them within that time?
27 Therefore I have not sinned against you, but it is you who do me wrong by making war against me. YEHOWAH, the Judge, judge this day between the children of Israel`and the children of Ammon.'”
28 But the king of the children of Ammon listened not to the message that Jephthah sent.
29 And The Spirit of YEHOWAH came upon Jephthah, so that he passed over Gilead and Manasseh; then he passed over Mizpah of Gilead, and from Mizpah of Gilead he passed over the children of Ammon.
30 And Jephthah vowed a vow to YEHOWAH and said, “If You will indeed give the children of Ammon into my hand,
31 then it shall be that whatever comes out of the doors of my house to meet me, when I return in peace from the children of Ammon, it shall be YEHOWAH’S, and I will offer it up as a burnt offering.”
32 So Jephthah crossed over to the children of Ammon to fight against them, and YEHOWAH gave them into his hand.
33 And he struck them with a very great slaughter, from Aroer to the entrance of Minneth; twenty cities, and as far as Abel-keramim. So the children of Ammon were subdued before the children of Israel.
34 And when Jephthah came to his house at Mizpah, behold, his daughter came out to meet him with tambourines and with dancing. And she was his only child; besides her he had neither son nor daughter.
35 And it came to pass, when he saw her, he tore his clothes and said, “Alas, my daughter! You have brought me very low, and you are among those who trouble me, for I have opened my mouth unto YEHOWAH, and I cannot go back.”
36 And she said to him, “My father, if you have opened your mouth unto YEHOWAH, do to me according to that which has proceeded from your mouth, for YEHOWAH has avenged you of your enemies; the children of Ammon.”
37 And she said to her father, “Let this thing be done for me: Leave me alone two months, that I may go up and down to the mountains and weep because of my virginity; I and my companions.”
38 And he said, “Go.” And he sent her away for two months. And she went with her companions, and wept on the mountains because of her virginity.
39 At the end of two months she returned to her father, who did to her according to the vow that he vowed; and she knew no man. And it became a custom in Israel,
40 that from year to year, the daughters of Israel go to lament the daughter of Jephthah the Gileadite; four days in the year.
And the men of Ephraim gathered themselves together and they crossed to Zaphon, and said to Jephthah, “Why did you cross over to fight against the children of Ammon without calling us to go with you? We will burn your house down on you.”
2 Jephthah said to them, “I and my people were at great strife with the children of Ammon; when I called you, you delivered me not from their hand.
3 And when I saw that you would deliver me not, I put my life in my hands and crossed over against the children of Ammon, and YEHOWAH gave them into my hand. Why then have you come up to me this day to fight against me?”
4 Then Jephthah gathered all the men of Gilead and fought Ephraim; and the men of Gilead struck Ephraim, because they said, “You are fugitives of Ephraim, O Gileadites, in the midst of Ephraim and in the midst of Manasseh.”
5 And the Gileadites captured the fords of the Jordan opposite Ephraim. And it happened when those of Ephraim who had escaped said, “Let me cross over,” the men of Gilead would ask him, “Are you an Ephraimite?” If he said, “No,”
6 then they would say to him, “Say now, ‘Shibboleth,'” but he said, “Sibboleth,” for he could not pronounce it correctly. Then they seized him and slew him at the fords of the Jordan. Thus there fell at that time forty two thousand of Ephraim.
7 And Jephthah judged Israel six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died and was buried in a city of Gilead.
8 And after him Ibzan of Bethlehem judged Israel,
9 and He had thirty sons, and thirty daughters whom he gave in marriage outside, and he brought in thirty daughters from outside for his sons. And he judged Israel seven years.
10 Then Ibzan died and was buried in Bethlehem.
11 And after him Elon the Zebulunite judged Israel; and he judged Israel ten years.
12 Then Elon the Zebulunite died and was buried at Aijalon, in the land of Zebulun.
13 And after him Abdon the son of Hillel the Pirathonite judged Israel,
14 and he had forty sons and thirty grandsons who rode on seventy asses; and he judged Israel eight years.
15 Then Abdon the son of Hillel the Pirathonite died and was buried at Pirathon in the land of Ephraim; in the hill country of the Amalekites.
And the children of Israel again did evil in the sight of YEHOWAH, so that YEHOWAH gave them into the hands of the Philistines forty years.
2 There was a certain man of Zorah, of the family of the Danites, whose name was Manoah, and his wife was barren and had begat no children.
3 And the angel of YEHOWAH appeared to the woman and said to her, “Behold, you are now barren and have born not, but you shall conceive and beget a son.
4 Now therefore, please, take heed to not drink wine or strong drink, nor eat any unclean thing,
5 for behold, you shall conceive and beget a son, and no razor shall come upon his head, for the boy shall be a Nazirite unto Elohim from the womb; and he shall begin to deliver Israel from the hands of the Philistines.”
6 And the woman came and told her husband, saying, “A man of Elohim came to me, and his appearance was like the appearance of the angel of Elohim; very awesome. And I did not ask him where he came from, nor did he tell me his name.
7 But he said to me, ‘Behold, you shall conceive and beget a son, and now you shall not drink wine or strong drink, nor eat any unclean thing, for the boy shall be a Nazirite unto Elohim from the womb to the day of his death.'”
8 Then Manoah entreated YEHOWAH and said, “O Master, please let the man of Elohim whom You have sent come to us again, that he may teach us what to do for the boy who is to be born.”
9 And Elohim listened to the voice of Manoah, and the angel of Elohim came again to the woman as she sat in the field, but Manoah her husband was not with her.
10 So the woman hastened and ran and told her husband, “Behold, the man has appeared to me who came the other day.”
11 Then Manoah rose up and followed his wife, and when he came to the man he said to him, “Are you the man who spoke to the woman?” And he said, “I am.”
12 And Manoah said, “When your words come to pass, what shall be the boy’s manner and his doing?”
13 And the angel of YEHOWAH said to Manoah, “Of all that I said to the woman, let her take heed,
14 for she shall not eat anything that comes from the vine nor drink wine or strong drink, nor eat any unclean thing. Let her observe all that I commanded.”
15 Then Manoah said to the angel of YEHOWAH, “Please let us detain you, so that we may prepare a young goat for you.”
16 And the angel of YEHOWAH said to Manoah, “Though you detain me, I will not eat your food, but if you prepare a burnt offering, offer it to YEHOWAH.” For Manoah did not know that he was the angel of YEHOWAH.
17 Manoah said to the angel of YEHOWAH, “What is your name, so that when your words come to pass, we may honor you?”
18 But the angel of YEHOWAH said to him, “Why do you ask my name, seeing it is wonderful?”
19 So Manoah took the young goat with the bloodless offering and offered it on a rock unto YEHOWAH, and He performed wonders while Manoah and his wife looked on.
20 And it came to pass, when the flame went up from the altar toward heaven, the angel of YEHOWAH ascended in the flame of the altar. When Manoah and his wife saw, they fell on their faces to the ground.
21 Now the angel of YEHOWAH did not appear to Manoah or his wife again; and Manoah knew that he was the angel of YEHOWAH.
22 So Manoah said to his wife, “We will surely die, for we have seen Elohim.”
23 But his wife said to him, “If YEHOWAH were pleased to kill us, He would not have accepted a burnt offering and a bloodless offering from our hands, nor would He have shown us all these things, nor would He have told us this at this time.”
24 And the woman gave birth to a son and named him Samson; and the child grew up and YEHOWAH blessed him.
25 And The Spirit of YEHOWAH began to stir him in the encampment of Dan, between Zorah and Eshtaol.
Then Samson went down to Timnah and saw a woman in Timnah, of the daughters of the Philistines.
2 And he came up and told his father and mother, “I have seen a woman in Timnah, a daughter of the Philistines; now therefore, get her for me as a wife.”
3 Then his father and his mother said to him, “Is there no woman among the daughters of your brethren, or among all our people, that you go to take a wife from the uncircumcised Philistines?” But Samson said to his father, “Get her for me, for she pleases me well.”
4 But his father and mother knew not that it was of YEHOWAH, for He was seeking an occasion against the Philistines, for at that time the Philistines were ruling over Israel.
5 Then Samson went down to Timnah with his father and mother, and came as far as the vineyards of Timnah, and behold, a young lion roared against him.
6 And The Spirit of YEHOWAH came upon him mightily, so that he tore it as one tears a young goat, though he had nothing in his hand; but he told not his father or mother what he had done.
7 So he went down and talked to the woman, and she pleased Samson well.
8 And after a time he returned to take her, and he turned aside to see the carcass of the lion, and behold, a swarm of bees and honey were in the body of the lion.
9 And he took it out in his hands, and went on, eating as he went. When he came to his father and mother, he gave to them and they ate, but he did not tell them that he had taken the honey out of the body of the lion.
10 Then his father went down to the woman, and Samson made a feast there, for so the young men used to do.
11 And it came to pass, when they saw him, they brought thirty companions to be with him.
12 And Samson said to them, “Let me now propound a riddle to you; if you can clearly explain it to me within the seven days of the feast, and find it out, then I will give you thirty shirts and thirty changes of garments.
13 But if you are unable to tell me, then you shall give me thirty shirts and thirty changes of garments.” And they said to him, “Propound your riddle, that we may hear it.”
14 So he said to them, “Out of the eater came something to eat, and out of the strong came something sweet.” But they could not tell the riddle in three days.
15 And it came about on the seventh day that they said to Samson’s wife, “Entice your husband, so that he will tell us the riddle, or we will burn you and your father’s house with fire. Have you invited us to impoverish us? No?”
16 Samson’s wife wept before him and said, “You do but hate me, and you do not love me. You have propounded a riddle to the children of my people, and have not told me.” And he said to her, “Behold, I have not told my father or mother, so should I tell you?”
17 However she wept before him seven days, while their feast lasted. And on the seventh day he told her because she pressed hard upon him. She then told the riddle to the children of her people.
18 And the men of the city said to him on the seventh day, before the sun went down, “What is sweeter than honey? And what is stronger than a lion?” And he said to them, “If you had not plowed with my heifer, you would not have found out my riddle.”
19 Then The Spirit of YEHOWAH came upon him mightily, and he went down to Ashkelon and killed thirty of them and took their spoil and gave the changes to those who told the riddle. And his anger was hot, and he went up to his father’s house.
20 But Samson’s wife was given to his companion, who had been his friend.
And it came to pass, after a time, in the days of the wheat harvest, Samson visited his wife with a young goat, and said, “I will go in to my wife into her chamber.” But her father would not let him enter,
2 for her father said, “I truly thought that you utterly hated her, so I gave her to your companion. Is not her younger sister more beautiful than she? Let her, please, be yours instead of her.”
3 Samson then said to them, “Now I shall be blameless toward the Philistines, though I do them harm.”
4 And Samson went and caught three hundred foxes, and took torches, and turned them tail-to-tail, and put one torch in the middle between two tails.
5 And when he had set fire to the torches, he released the foxes into the standing grain of the Philistines, thus burning up both the shocks and the standing grain, along with the vineyards and olives.
6 Then the Philistines said, “Who has done this?” And they said, “Samson, the son-in-law of the Timnite, because he took his wife and gave her to his companion.” So the Philistines came up and burned her and her father with fire.
7 And Samson said to them, “Since you have done this, I will avenge myself on you, and then I will cease.”
8 And he struck them high and low with a great slaughter, and he went down and dwelt in the cleft of the rock of Etam.
9 Then the Philistines went up and encamped in Yehudah, and spread out in Lehi.
10 The men of Yehudah said, “Why have you come up against us?” And they said, “We have come up to bind Samson, to do to him as he has done to us.”
11 Then three thousand men of Yehudah went down to the cleft of the rock of Etam and said to Samson, “Do you not know that the Philistines are rulers over us? What then is this that you have done to us?” And he said to them, “As they did to me, so I have done to them.”
12 And they said to him, “We have come down to bind you, that we may deliver you into the hands of the Philistines.” And Samson said to them, “Swear to me that you will not kill me.”
13 And they said to him, “No, but we will bind you fast and deliver you into their hands; but surely we will not kill you.” Then they bound him with two new ropes and brought him up from the rock.
14 When he came to Lehi, the Philistines shouted against him, and The Spirit of YEHOWAH came upon him mightily so that the ropes that were on his arms became as flax that was burned with fire, and his bonds dropped off his hands.
15 And he found a fresh jawbone of an ass, so he reached out and took it and killed a thousand men with it.
16 Then Samson said, “With the jawbone of an ass, heaps upon heaps; with the jawbone of an ass I have killed a thousand men.”
17 And it came to pass, when he had finished speaking, he threw the jawbone from his hand, and he named that place Ramath-lehi.
18 Then he became very thirsty, and he called unto YEHOWAH and said, “You have given this great deliverance by the hand of Your servant, and now shall I die of thirst and fall into the hands of the uncircumcised?”
19 But Elohim cleaved a hollow place in Lehi, and water came out of it. When he drank, his strength came back and he revived. Therefore he named it En-hakkore, which is in Lehi to this day.
20 And he judged Israel in the days of the Philistines twenty years.
And Samson went to Gaza and saw there a whore, and went in to her.
2 And the Gazites said, “Samson has come here.” So they surrounded him, and lay in wait for him all night at the city gate. And they kept silent all night, saying, “At morning light, then we will kill him.”
3 And Samson lay until midnight, and at midnight he rose up and took hold of the doors of the city gate and the two posts, and pulled them up along with the bars; then he put them on his shoulders and carried them up to the top of the mountain which faces Hebron.
4 And it came to pass after this, that he loved a woman in the valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah.
5 And the lords of the Philistines came up to her and said to her, “Entice him, and see wherein his great strength lies, and by what means we may overpower him, that we may bind him to afflict him. And we will give you, each of us, eleven hundred pieces of silver.”
6 So Delilah said to Samson, “Tell me, please, wherein your great strength lies, and how you may be bound to afflict you.”
7 And Samson said to her, “If they bind me with seven green cords that have never been dried, then I will become weak and be like any man.”
8 Then the lords of the Philistines brought up to her seven green cords that had never been dried, and she bound him with them.
9 Now she had men lurking in ambush in an inner chamber, and she said to him, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” But he broke the cords as a thread of tow snaps when it touches fire. So his strength was not revealed.
10 Then Delilah said to Samson, “Behold, you have deceived me and told me lies; now tell me, please, how you may be bound.”
11 And he said to her, “If they bind me fast with new ropes, which have never been used, then I will become weak and be like any man.”
12 So Delilah took new ropes and bound him with them and said to him, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson,” for they lurked in ambush in the inner chamber, but he snapped the ropes from his arms like a thread.
13 Then Delilah said to Samson, “Thus far you have deceived me and told me lies; tell me how you may be bound.” And he said to her, “If you weave the seven locks of my hair with the web, and fasten it with a pin, I will become weak and be like any man.”
14 So as he slept, Delilah took the seven locks of his hair and wove them into a web, and she fastened it with a pin and said, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” But he awoke from his sleep and pulled out the pin of the loom and the web.
15 Then she said to him, “How can you say, ‘I love you,’ when your heart is not with me? You have deceived me these three times and have not told me where your great strength lies.”
16 And it came to pass, when she pressed him daily with her words and urged him, that his soul was troubled to death;
17 and he told her everything in his heart and said to her, “A razor has never come upon my head, for I have been a Nazirite to Elohim from my mother’s womb. If I am shaved, then my strength will leave me and I will become weak and be like any man.”
18 When Delilah saw that he had told her everything in his heart, she sent and called the lords of the Philistines, saying, “Come up once more, for he has told me everything in his heart.” Then the lords of the Philistines came up to her and brought the money in their hands.
19 And she made him sleep upon her knees, and called for a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his hair; and she began to afflict him, and his strength went from him.
20 And she said, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” And he awoke from his sleep and said, “I will go out as before, and shake myself free.” But he did not know that YEHOWAH had departed from him.
21 And the Philistines seized him and put out his eyes. And they brought him down to Gaza, and bound him with brass fetters, and he was a grinder of meal in the prison house.
22 But the hair of his head began to grow after it was shaved.
23 And the lords of the Philistines gathered together, to offer a great sacrifice to Dagon their el, and to rejoice, for they said, “Our el has given Samson, our enemy, into our hands.”
24 When the people saw him, they praised their el, for they said, “Our el has given our enemy into our hands; even the destroyer of our country, who has slain many of us.”
25 And it came to pass, when they were merry, they said, “Call for Samson, that he may make us laugh.” So they called for Samson from the prison house, and he made them laugh, and they stood him between the pillars.
26 Then Samson said to the boy who held him by the hand, “Allow me to feel the pillars on which the house rests, that I may lean against them.”
27 Now the house was full of men and women, and all the lords of the Philistines were there. And about three thousand men and women were on the roof looking on as Samson brought them laughter.
28 Then Samson called to YEHOWAH and said, “O Master YEHOWAH, remember me, I pray unto You, and please strengthen me just this time, O Elohim, that I may at once be avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes.”
29 And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars on which the house rested, and propped himself against them, the one with his right hand and the other with his left,
30 and Samson said, “Let me die with the Philistines!” And he stretched out with all his might so that the house fell on the lords and all the people who were in it. So the dead that he killed at his death were more than those that he killed in his life.
31 Then his brethren, and all his father’s household, came down, took him, brought him up and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol in the tomb of Manoah his father. Thus he judged Israel twenty years.
Now there was a man of the hill country of Ephraim whose name was Mikyeh.
2 And he said to his mother, “The eleven hundred silver pieces that were taken from you, about which you did curse and speak of in my ears, behold, the silver is with me; I took it.” And his mother said, “Blessed be my son of YEHOWAH.”
3 And he returned the eleven hundred silver pieces to his mother, and his mother said, “I wholly dedicate the silver from my hand to YEHOWAH; for my son to make a graven image and a molten image. Now therefore, I return it to you.”
4 So he returned the silver to his mother, and his mother took two hundred silver pieces and gave them to the refiner who made them into a graven image and a molten image, and they were in the house of Mikyeh.
5 And the man Mikyeh had a house of elohim, and he made an ephod and teraphim, and consecrated one of his sons, that he might become his priest.
6 In those days there was no king in Israel; every man did what was right in his own eyes.
7 And there was a young man from Bethlehem in Yehudah, of the family of Yehudah, who was a Levite; and he sojourned there.
8 And the man departed from the city; from Bethlehem in Yehudah, to sojourn wherever he might; and as he journeyed, he came to the hill country of Ephraim to the house of Mikyeh.
9 And Mikyeh said to him, “From where do you come?” And he said to him, “I am a Levite from Bethlehem in Yehudah, and I am going to sojourn wherever I may find.”
10 Mikyeh then said to him, “Dwell with me and be unto me a father and a priest, and I will give you ten silver pieces a year, a suit of garments, and your sustenance.” So the Levite entered.
11 And the Levite was content to dwell with the man, and the young man was to him like one of his sons.
12 So Mikyeh consecrated the Levite, and the young man became his priest and lived in the house of Mikyeh.
13 Then Mikyeh said, “Now I know that YEHOWAH will do me good, seeing I have a Levite as priest.”
In those days there was no king in Israel; and in those days the tribe of the Danites sought for themselves an inheritance to dwell in, for to that day an inheritance had not been allotted to them as a possession among the tribes of Israel.
2 So the children of Dan sent from their family five men from their territory; valiant men from Zorah and Eshtaol, to spy out the land and to search it. And they said to them, “Go, search the land.” And they came to the hill country of Ephraim, to the house of Mikyeh, and lodged there.
3 When they neared the house of Mikyah, they knew the voice of the young man; the Levite, and they turned aside there and said to him, “Who brought you here? And what are you doing here? And what do you have here?”
4 And he said to them, “Thus and thus has Mikyah done to me, and he has hired me, and I am his priest.”
5 They said to him, “Inquire of Elohim, please, that we may know whether the way on which we go will be prosperous.”
6 And the priest said to them, “Go in peace, the way in which you go has YEHOWAH’S approval.”
7 Then the five men departed and came to Laish and saw the people therein dwelling securely, after the manner of the Sidonians; quiet and secure, for there was no magistrate in the land who might reproach them for anything. And they were far from the Sidonians and had no dealings with any man.
8 And they came back to their brethren at Zorah and Eshtaol, and their brethren said to them, “What say you?”
9 And they said, “Rise up, and let us go up against them, for we have seen the land, and behold, it is very good. And are you silent? Do not be slothful to go; to enter and to possess the land.
10 And when you go, you will come to a secure people in a broad land, for Elohim has given it into your hand, a place where there is no lack of anything that is on the earth.”
11 And there went from there, from the family of the Danites; from Zorah and from Eshtaol, six hundred men armed with weapons of war.
12 And they went up and encamped at Kirjath-jearim in Yehudah. Therefore they called that place Mahaneh-dan to this day. Behold, it is west of Kirjath-jearim.
13 And they passed from there to the hill country of Ephraim, and came to the house of Mikyeh.
14 Then the five men who went to spy out the country of Laish said to their brethren, “Do you know that there are in these houses an ephod and teraphim, and a graven image and a molten image? Now therefore, consider what you should do.”
15 And they turned therein, and came to the house of the young man, the Levite, to the house of Mikyah, and asked of his welfare,
16 while the six hundred men armed with their weapons of war, who were of the children of Dan, stood by the entrance of the gate.
17 And the five that had gone to spy out the land went up, entered there, took the graven image, the ephod, the teraphim and the molten image, while the priest stood by the entrance of the gate with the six hundred men armed with weapons of war.
18 And when these went into Mikyah’s house and took the graven image, the ephod and teraphim and the molten image, the priest said to them, “What are you doing?”
19 They said to him, “Hold your peace, put your hand over your mouth and come with us, and be to us a father and a priest. Is it better for you to be a priest to the house of one man, or to be priest to a tribe and a family in Israel?”
20 And the priest’s heart was glad, and he took the ephod, teraphim and the graven image and went among the people.
21 So they turned and departed, and put the little ones and the livestock and the carriage in front of them.
22 When they had gone some distance from the house of Mikyah, the men who were in the houses near Mikyah’s house gathered together and overtook the children of Dan,
23 and they cried to the children of Dan, who turned around and said to Mikyah, “What is with you, that you have gathered together?”
24 And he said, “You have carried away my elohim, which I made, and the priest, and have gone away, and what do I have besides? So how can you say to me, ‘What is with you?'”
25 And the children of Dan said to him, “Do not let your voice be heard among us, lest some of these fierce men fall upon you and you lose your life, with the lives of your household.”
26 And the children of Dan went their way, and when Mikyah saw that they were too strong for him, he turned and went back to his house.
27 Then they took what Mikyah had made, and the priest who had belonged to him, and came to Laish; to a people quiet and secure, and struck them with the edge of the sword, and they burned the city with fire.
28 And there was no deliverer, because it was far from Sidon, and they had no dealings with any man, and it was in the valley that is near Beth-rehob. And they built the city and dwelt therein.
29 And they called the name of the city Dan, after the name of Dan their father who was born in Israel. However, the name of the city formerly was Laish.
30 And the children of Dan set up for themselves the graven image, and Yehnathan, the son of Gershom, the son of Manasseh; he and his sons were priests to the tribe of the Danites until the day of the captivity of the land,
31 and they set up for themselves Mikyah’s graven image, which he had made, all the time that the house of Elohim was at Shiloh.
And it came to pass in those days, when there was no king in Israel, that there was a certain Levite sojourning on the further side of the hill country of Ephraim, who took a concubine for himself from Bethlehem in Yehudah.
2 And his concubine played the whore against him, and went away from him to her father’s house in Bethlehem in Yehudah, and was there four full months.
3 And her husband rose up and went after her; to speak tenderly to her, in order to bring her back, taking with him his servant and a pair of asses. And she brought him into her father’s house, and when the father of the maiden saw him, he rejoiced to meet him.
4 And his father-in-law, the maiden’s father, prevailed upon him, and he remained with him three days. So they ate and drank and lodged there.
5 And it came to pass on the fourth day, they got up early in the morning, and he prepared to go, and the maiden’s father said to his son-in-law, “Comfort your heart with a morsel of bread, and then go your way.”
6 So they sat down and ate and drank together. And the maiden’s father said to the man, “Be content, please, and pass the night, and let your heart be merry,”
7 and when the man rose up to go, his father-in-law urged him, therefore he lodged there again.
8 And he rose early on the fifth day to go, and the maiden’s father said, “Comfort your heart, please, and tarry until afternoon;” so they both ate.
9 When the man rose up to go; he and his concubine and his servant, his father-in-law, the maiden’s father, said to him, “Behold now, the day draws to dusk, please spend the night. Lo, the day is coming to an end; lodge here, that your heart may be merry. Then tomorrow you may rise early for your journey; that you may go home.”
10 But the man would not tarry that night, but he rose up and departed and came opposite Jebus, which is Jerusalem. And there were with him two saddled asses; his concubine also was with him.
11 When they neared Jebus, the day was far spent, and the servant said to his lord, “Come, please, and let us turn aside into this city of the Jebusites and lodge therein.”
12 But his lord said to him, “We will not turn aside into a city of foreigners, who are not of the children of Israel, but we will pass over to Gibeah.”
13 And he said to his servant, “Come and let us draw near to one of these places, and we will spend the night in Gibeah or in Ramah.”
14 So they passed on and went their way, and the sun set as they neared Gibeah of Benyehmin.
15 And they turned aside there to go in and lodge in Gibeah; and he went in and sat down in the open place of the city, for no man took them into his house to lodge.
16 And behold, there came an old man from his work out of the field at evening, and the man was of the hill country of Ephraim, and he sojourned in Gibeah. But the men of the place were Benyehminites.
17 And he lifted up his eyes and saw the traveler in the open place of the city, and the old man said, “Where are you going, and where do you come from?”
18 And he said to him, “We are passing from Bethlehem in Yehudah to the rear side of the hill country of Ephraim. I am from there, and I went to Bethlehem in Yehudah, but I now go to the house of YEHOWAH; but no man will take me into his house.
19 Yet there is both straw and fodder for our asses, and also bread and wine for me, your maidservant, and for the young man with your servants; there is no lack of anything.”
20 And the old man said, “Peace to you. Only let all your wants lie upon me; only lodge not in the open space.”
21 So he took him into his house and gave the asses fodder, and they washed their feet and ate and drank.
22 And while they were making their hearts merry, behold, the men of the city, certain sons of Belial, surrounded the house, beating at the door; and they spoke to the lord of the house, the old man, saying, “Bring out the man who came into your house that we may know him.”
23 And the man, the lord of the house, went out to them and said to them, “No, my brethren, please do not act wickedly; since this man has come into my house, do not this villainy.
24 “Behold, my daughter, a virgin, and his concubine. Please let me bring them out that you may humble them and do to them whatever seems good in your sight, but to this man, do not commit so vile a thing.”
25 But the men would not hear him. So the man seized his concubine and brought her forth to them; and they knew her and abused her all night until morning, then let her go when the morning dawn arose.
26 And the woman came, at the dawning of the day, and fell down at the doorway of the man’s house where her lord was, until daylight.
27 When her lord rose up in the morning, and opened the doors of the house, and went out to go on his way, then behold, there lay the woman; his concubine, at the doorway of the house with her hands upon the threshold.
28 And he said to her, “Rise up and let us go,” but none answered. Then he placed her on the ass, and the man rose up and went to his home.
29 And when he was come into his house, he took a knife and laid hold of his concubine, and cut her in twelve pieces, limb by limb, and sent her throughout the borders of Israel.
30 And all who saw said, “There was no such deed done nor seen, from the day when the children of Israel came up from the land of Egypt to this day. Consider it, take counsel and speak up!”
Then all the children of Israel went forth, and the assembly gathered together as one man from Dan to Beersheba, including the land of Gilead, unto YEHOWAH at Mizpah.
2 And the chiefs of all the people; of all the tribes of Israel, took their stand in the assembly of the people of Elohim; four hundred thousand foot men who drew the sword,
3 and the children of Benyehmin heard that the children of Israel had gone up to Mizpah. And the children of Israel said, “Tell how this wickedness happened.”
4 And the Levite, the husband of the woman who was murdered, said, “I came to Gibeah of Benyehmin; I with my concubine to lodge.
5 But the men of Gibeah rose up against me and surrounded the house at night because of me. They intended to kill me, instead they forced my concubine so that she died.
6 And I took my concubine and cut her in pieces, and sent her throughout the borders of Israel’s inheritance, for they have committed lewdness and villainy in Israel.
7 Behold, all you sons of Israel, give here your advice and your counsel.”
8 Then all the people arose as one man, saying, “Not one of us will go to his tent, nor will any of us return to his house.
9 “But now, this thing which we will do to Gibeah; will be against it by lot.
10 And we will take ten men out of one hundred throughout the tribes of Israel, and one hundred out of one thousand, and one thousand out of ten thousand to supply food for the people, that they may do, when they come to Gibeah of Benyehmin, according to all the disgraceful acts that they have committed in Israel.”
11 So all the men of Israel were gathered against the city; knit together as one man.
12 Then the tribes of Israel sent men through the entire tribe of Benyehmin, saying, “What is this wickedness that has been done among you?
13 Now then, deliver the men; the sons of Belial who are in Gibeah, that we may put them to death and put away evil from Israel.” But the children of Benyehmin would not listen to the voice of their brothers, the children of Israel.
14 And the children of Benyehmin gathered themselves together from the cities to Gibeah; to go out to battle against the children of Israel.
15 And the children of Benyehmin were numbered at that time from the cities, twenty six thousand men that drew the sword, besides the inhabitants of Gibeah who were numbered, seven hundred chosen men.
16 Among all these people, seven hundred choice men were left-handed; all who could sling a stone at a hair and not miss.
17 And the men of Israel, besides Benyehmin, were numbered, four hundred thousand men that draw the sword; all these were men of war.
18 And the children of Israel rose up and went to Bethel, and inquired of Elohim and said, “Which of us shall go up first to battle against the children of Benyehmin?” And YEHOWAH said, “Yehudah first.”
19 And the children of Israel rose in the morning and encamped against Gibeah.
20 And the men of Israel went out to battle against Benyehmin, and the men of Israel arrayed for battle against them at Gibeah.
21 And the children of Benyehmin came out of Gibeah and destroyed to the ground on that day twenty two thousand men of Israel.
22 But the people, the men of Israel, encouraged themselves and set their battle again in the place where they had arrayed themselves the first day.
23 The children of Israel went up and wept before YEHOWAH until evening, and asked counsel of YEHOWAH, saying, “Shall we go up again to battle against the children of Benyehmin my brother?” And YEHOWAH said, “Go up against him.”
24 And the children of Israel came near against the children of Benyehmin the second day.
25 And Benyehmin went forth against them from Gibeah the second day, and destroyed to the ground, of the children of Israel again, eighteen thousand men of the sons of Israel; all these drew the sword.
26 Then all the children of Israel and all the people went up and came to Bethel and wept; thus they remained there before YEHOWAH, and fasted that day until evening. And they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before YEHOWAH.
27 And the children of Israel inquired of YEHOWAH (for the Ark of the Covenant of Elohim was there in those days,
28 and Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron, stood before it in those days), saying, “Shall I yet again go out to battle against the children of my brother Benyehmin, or shall I cease?” And YEHOWAH said, “Go up, for tomorrow I will deliver them into your hand.”
29 And Israel set men in ambush around Gibeah.
30 And the children of Israel went up against the children of Benyehmin on the third day, and put themselves in array against Gibeah as at other times.
31 The children of Benyehmin went out against the people, and were drawn away from the city, and they began to strike and kill some of the people, as at other times, on the highways, of which one leads to Bethel, and the other to Gibeah; and in the field, about thirty men of Israel.
32 And the children of Benyehmin said, “They are struck down before us, as at the first,” but the children of Israel said, “Let us flee that we might draw them from the city to the highways.”
33 And all the men of Israel rose up from their place and arrayed themselves at Baal-tamar; and the men of Israel in ambush broke out of their place, even out of Maareh-geba.
34 And there came against Gibeah ten thousand choice men from all Israel, and the battle was severe, but they knew not that disaster was upon them.
35 And YEHOWAH struck Benyehmin before Israel, and the children of Israel destroyed of Benyehmin that day twenty five thousand one hundred men; all who drew the sword.
36 So the children of Benyehmin saw that they were defeated, for the men of Israel gave ground to Benyehmin, because they trusted the men in ambush whom they had set against Gibeah,
37 and the men in ambush hasted and rushed against Gibeah; the men in ambush also drew along and struck all the city with the edge of the sword.
38 Now the appointed sign, between the men of Israel and the men in ambush, was that they would make a great flame with smoke rise from the city.
39 And when the men of Israel turned away in the battle, and Benyehmin began to strike and kill about thirty men of Israel, for they said, “Surely they are defeated before us, as in the first battle.”
40 But when the flame began to rise from the city in a pillar of smoke, Benyehmin looked behind them, and behold, the flame of the whole city was going up to heaven.
41 Then the men of Israel turned, and the men of Benyehmin trembled, for they saw that disaster had come upon them.
42 Therefore, they turned away before the men of Israel, to the way of the wilderness, but the battle overtook them, and those who came out of the cities destroyed them in the midst of them.
43 They encircled Benyehmin, pursued them without rest, and trod them down opposite Gibeah toward the east.
44 And there fell of Benyehmin eighteen thousand men; all of these were men of valor.
45 And they turned and fled toward the wilderness unto the rock of Rimmon, but they gleaned of them five thousand on the highways, and overtook them at Gidom, and killed two thousand of them.
46 So that all who fell that day of Benyehmin were twenty five thousand men who drew the sword; all these were men of valor.
47 But six hundred men turned and fled to the wilderness, to the rock of Rimmon, and they abode in the rock of Rimmon four months.
48 And the men of Israel turned again upon the children of Benyehmin, and struck them with the edge of the sword, as well the men of the city, with the cattle and all that they found; they also set on fire all the cities which they found.
Now the men of Israel had sworn in Mizpah, saying, “There shall not any of us give his daughter to any in Benyehmin as wife.”
2 So the people came to Bethel and sat there before Elohim until evening, and lifted up their voices and wept bitterly.
3 And said, “O YEHOWAH, Elohim of Israel, why has this come about in Israel, that there should be one tribe lacking today in Israel?”
4 And it came to pass on the next day, that the people rose up early, and built there an altar, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings.
5 And the children of Israel said, “Who is there among all the tribes of Israel that came not up in the assembly unto YEHOWAH?” For they had made a great oath concerning him who did not come up to YEHOWAH at Mizpah, saying, “He shall surely be put to death.”
6 And the children of Israel repented for their brother Benyehmin and said, “One tribe is cut off from Israel today.
7 What shall we do for wives for them that remain, seeing we have sworn by YEHOWAH not to give them our daughters as wives?”
8 And they said, “What one is there of the tribes of Israel that came not up to YEHOWAH at Mizpah?” And behold, no one had come to the camp from Jabesh-gilead to the assembly.
9 For the people were numbered and, behold, none of the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead was there.
10 And the assembly sent twelve thousand of the men of valor there, and commanded them, saying, “Go and strike the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead with the edge of the sword, with the women and the little ones.
11 And this is the thing that you shall do: You shall utterly destroy every male and every woman that has lain with a man.”
12 And they found among the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead four hundred young virgins, who had not known a man by lying with him. And they brought them to the camp at Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan.
13 Then the whole assembly sent to speak to the sons of Benyehmin who were at the rock of Rimmon; to proclaim peace to them.
14 And Benyehmin came again at that time, and they gave them wives of the women whom they had kept alive from Jabesh-gilead; yet they were not sufficient for them.
15 And the people repented for Benyehmin, because YEHOWAH had made a breach in the tribes of Israel.
16 Then the elders of the assembly said, “What shall we do for wives for those of them who remain, since the women are destroyed out of Benyehmin?”
17 And they said, “There must be an inheritance for them that have escaped of Benyehmin, that a tribe be not destroyed out of Israel.
18 But we cannot give them wives of our daughters.” For the children of Israel had sworn, saying, “Cursed is he who gives a wife to Benyehmin.
19 So they said, “Behold, there is a feast of YEHOWAH in Shiloh from year to year, which is on the north side of Bethel, on the east side of the highway that goes up from Bethel to Shechem, and on the south side of Lebonah.”
20 Therefore, they commanded the sons of Benyehmin, saying, “Go and lie in wait in the vineyards,
21 and see; and behold, if the daughters of Shiloh come out to take part in the dances, then you shall come out of the vineyards, and catch you every man his wife from the daughters of Shiloh, and go to the land of Benyehmin.
22 And it shall come to pass, when their fathers or their brothers come to complain to us, that we shall say to them, ‘Be favorable to them for our sake, because we did not reserve to each man his wife in the war, nor did you give them to them at this time, that you should be guilty.'”
23 And the sons of Benyehmin did so, and took wives according to their number of them that danced, whom they carried away. And they went and returned to their inheritance and rebuilt the cities and dwelt in them.
24 And the children of Israel departed from there at that time; every man to his tribe and family, and each one of them went out from there to his inheritance.
25 In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.