Numbers 31–33; Psalm 51

Vengeance on Midian

31 The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, nAvenge the people of Israel on the Midianites. Afterward you shall obe gathered to your people. So Moses spoke to the people, saying, Arm men from among you for the war, that they may go against Midian to execute the Lord’s vengeance on Midian. You shall send a thousand from each of the tribes of Israel to the war. So there were provided, out of the thousands of Israel, a thousand from each tribe, twelve thousand parmed for war. And Moses sent them to the war, a thousand from each tribe, together with Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, with the vessels of the sanctuary and qthe trumpets for the alarm in his hand. They warred against Midian, as the Lord commanded Moses, and rkilled every male. They killed the kings of Midian with the rest of their slain, sEvi, Rekem, tZur, Hur, and Reba, the five kings of Midian. And they also killed uBalaam the son of Beor with the sword. And the people of Israel took captive the women of Midian and their little ones, and they took as plunder all their cattle, their flocks, and all their goods. 10 All their cities in the places where they lived, and all their vencampments, they burned with fire, 11 wand took all the spoil and all the plunder, both of man and of beast. 12 Then they brought the captives and the plunder and the spoil to Moses, and to Eleazar the priest, and to the congregation of the people of Israel, at the camp on xthe plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho.

13 Moses and Eleazar the priest and all the chiefs of the congregation went to meet them outside the camp. 14 And Moses was angry with ythe officers of the army, the commanders of thousands and the commanders of hundreds, who had come from service in the war. 15 Moses said to them, Have you zlet all the women live? 16 Behold, athese, bon Balaam’s advice, caused the people of Israel to act treacherously against the Lord in the incident of cPeor, and so dthe plague came among the congregation of the Lord. 17 Now therefore, ekill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman who has known man by lying with him. 18 But all the young girls who have not known man by lying with him fkeep alive for yourselves. 19 gEncamp outside the camp seven days. Whoever of you has killed any person and hwhoever has touched any slain, purify yourselves and your captives on the third day and on the seventh day. 20 You shall purify every garment, every article of skin, all work of goats’ hair, and every article of wood.

21 Then Eleazar the priest said to the men in the army who had gone to battle: This is the statute of the law that the Lord has commanded Moses: 22 only the gold, the silver, the bronze, the iron, the tin, and the lead, 23 everything that can stand the fire, you shall pass through the fire, and it shall be clean. Nevertheless, it shall also be purified iwith the water for impurity. And whatever cannot stand the fire, you shall pass through the water. 24 You must jwash your clothes on the seventh day, and you shall be clean. And afterward you may come into the camp.

25 The Lord said to Moses, 26 Take the count of the plunder that was taken, both of man and of beast, you and Eleazar the priest and the heads of the fathers’ houses of the congregation, 27 and kdivide the plunder into two parts between the warriors who went out to battle and all the congregation. 28 And levy for the Lord a tribute from the men of war who went out to battle, lone out of five hundred, of the people and of the oxen and of the donkeys and of the flocks. 29 Take it from their half and give it to Eleazar the priest as a contribution to the Lord. 30 And from the people of Israel’s half you shall take mone drawn out of every fifty, of the people, of the oxen, of the donkeys, and of the flocks, of all the cattle, and give them to the Levites nwho keep guard over the tabernacle of the Lord. 31 And Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the Lord commanded Moses.

32 Now the plunder remaining of the spoil that the army took was 675,000 sheep, 33 72,000 cattle, 34 61,000 donkeys, 35 and 32,000 persons in all, women who had not known man by lying with him. 36 And the half, the portion of those who had gone out in the army, numbered 337,500 sheep, 37 and othe Lord’s tribute of sheep was 675. 38 The cattle were 36,000, of which the Lord’s tribute was 72. 39 The donkeys were 30,500, of which the Lord’s tribute was 61. 40 The persons were 16,000, of which the Lord’s tribute was 32 persons. 41 And Moses gave the tribute, which was the contribution for the Lord, to Eleazar the priest, pas the Lord commanded Moses.

42 From the people of Israel’s half, which Moses separated from that of the men who had served in the army 43 now the congregation’s half was 337,500 sheep, 44 36,000 cattle, 45 and 30,500 donkeys, 46 and 16,000 persons 47 qfrom the people of Israel’s half Moses took one of every 50, both of persons and of beasts, and gave them to the Levites who kept guard over the tabernacle of the Lord, as the Lord commanded Moses.

48 Then rthe officers who were over the thousands of the army, the commanders of thousands and the commanders of hundreds, came near to Moses 49 and said to Moses, Your servants have counted the men of war who are under our command, and there is not a man missing from us. 50 And we have brought the Lord’s offering, what each man found, articles of gold, armlets and bracelets, signet rings, earrings, and beads, sto make atonement for ourselves before the Lord. 51 And Moses and Eleazar the priest received from them the gold, all crafted articles. 52 And all the gold of the contribution that they presented to the Lord, from the commanders of thousands and the commanders of hundreds, was 16,750 shekels.1 53 t(The men in the army had each taken plunder for himself.) 54 And Moses and Eleazar the priest received the gold from the commanders of thousands and of hundreds, and brought it into the tent of meeting, uas a memorial for the people of Israel before the Lord.

Reuben and Gad Settle in Gilead

32 Now the people of Reuben and the people of Gad had a very great number of livestock. And they saw the land of vJazer and the land of Gilead, and behold, the place was a place for livestock. So the people of Gad and the people of Reuben came and said to Moses and to Eleazar the priest and to the chiefs of the congregation, wAtaroth, xDibon, Jazer, Nimrah, Heshbon, Elealeh, Sebam, yNebo, and Beon, the land zthat the Lord struck down before the congregation of Israel, is a land for livestock, and your servants have livestock. And they said, If we have found favor in your sight, let this land be given to your servants for a possession. Do not take us across the Jordan.

But Moses said to the people of Gad and to the people of Reuben, Shall your brothers go to the war while you sit here? Why will you discourage the heart of the people of Israel from going over into the land that the Lord has given them? Your fathers did this, awhen I sent them from Kadesh-barnea to see the land. For when they went up to the Valley of Eshcol and saw the land, they discouraged the heart of the people of Israel from going into the land that the Lord had given them. 10 bAnd the Lord’s anger was kindled on that day, and he swore, saying, 11 Surely none of the men who came up out of Egypt, cfrom twenty years old and upward, shall see the land that I swore to give dto Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, because they have not wholly followed me, 12 none except Caleb the son of Jephunneh the eKenizzite and Joshua the son of Nun, for fthey have wholly followed the Lord. 13 And the Lord’s anger was kindled against Israel, and he made them gwander in the wilderness forty years, until hall the generation that had done evil in the sight of the Lord was gone. 14 And behold, you have risen in your fathers’ place, a brood of sinful men, to increase still more the fierce anger of the Lord against Israel! 15 For if you iturn away from following him, he will again abandon them in the wilderness, and you will destroy all this people.

16 Then they came near to him and said, jWe will build sheepfolds here for our livestock, and cities for our little ones, 17 but kwe will take up arms, ready to go before the people of Israel, until we have brought them to their place. And our little ones shall live in the fortified cities because of the inhabitants of the land. 18 lWe will not return to our homes until each of the people of Israel has gained his inheritance. 19 For we will not inherit with them on the other side of the Jordan and beyond, mbecause our inheritance has come to us on this side of the Jordan to the east. 20 So nMoses said to them, If you will do this, if you will take up arms to go before the Lord for the war, 21 and every armed man of you will pass over the Jordan before the Lord, until he has odriven out his enemies from before him 22 and the land is subdued before the Lord; then after that you shall return and be free of obligation to the Lord and to Israel, and pthis land shall be your possession before the Lord. 23 But if you will not do so, behold, you have sinned against the Lord, and qbe sure your sin will find you out. 24 rBuild cities for your little ones and folds for your sheep, and do what you have promised. 25 And the people of Gad and the people of Reuben said to Moses, Your servants will do as my lord commands. 26 sOur little ones, our wives, our livestock, and all our cattle shall remain there in the cities of Gilead, 27 tbut your servants will pass over, every man who is uarmed for war, before the Lord to battle, as my lord orders.

28 So vMoses gave command concerning them to Eleazar the priest and to wJoshua the son of Nun and to the heads of the fathers’ houses of the tribes of the people of Israel. 29 And Moses said to them, If the people of Gad and the people of Reuben, every man who is armed to battle before the Lord, will pass with you over the Jordan and the land shall be subdued before you, then you shall give them the land of Gilead for a possession. 30 However, if they will not pass over with you armed, they shall have possessions among you in the land of Canaan. 31 And the people of Gad and the people of Reuben answered, What the Lord has said to your servants, we will do. 32 We will pass over armed before the Lord into the land of Canaan, and the possession of our inheritance shall remain with us beyond the Jordan.

33 And xMoses gave to them, to the people of Gad and to the people of Reuben and to the half-tribe of Manasseh the son of Joseph, the kingdom of Sihon king of the Amorites and the kingdom of Og king of Bashan, the land and its cities with their territories, the cities of the land throughout the country. 34 And the people of Gad built yDibon, zAtaroth, aAroer, 35 Atroth-shophan, bJazer, Jogbehah, 36 cBeth-nimrah and Beth-haran, dfortified cities, and folds for sheep. 37 And the people of Reuben built eHeshbon, yElealeh, Kiriathaim, 38 fNebo, and gBaal-meon (htheir names were changed), and cSibmah. And they gave other names to the cities that they built. 39 And the sons of iMachir the son of Manasseh went to Gilead and captured it, and dispossessed the Amorites who were in it. 40 And Moses jgave Gilead to Machir the son of Manasseh, and he settled in it. 41 And kJair the son of Manasseh went and captured their villages, and called them Havvoth-jair.2 42 And Nobah went and captured Kenath and its villages, and called it Nobah, after his own name.

Recounting Israel’s Journey

33 These are the stages of the people of Israel, when they went out of the land of Egypt by their companies under the leadership of Moses and Aaron. Moses wrote down their starting places, lstage by stage, by command of the Lord, and these are their stages according to their starting places. They mset out from Rameses in nthe first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month. On the day after the Passover, the people of Israel went out otriumphantly in the sight of all the Egyptians, while the Egyptians were burying all their firstborn, pwhom the Lord had struck down among them. qOn their gods also the Lord executed judgments.

So the people of Israel set out from Rameses and camped at rSuccoth. And they set out from Succoth and camped at sEtham, which is on the edge of the wilderness. And they set out from Etham and turned back to tPi-hahiroth, which is east of Baal-zephon, and they camped before Migdol. And they set out from before Hahiroth3 and upassed through the midst of the sea into the wilderness, and they vwent a three days’ journey in the wilderness of Etham and camped at Marah. And they set out from Marah and came to wElim; at Elim there were twelve springs of water and seventy palm trees, and they camped there. 10 And they set out from Elim and camped by the Red Sea. 11 And they set out from the Red Sea and camped in xthe wilderness of Sin. 12 And they set out from the wilderness of Sin and camped at Dophkah. 13 And they set out from Dophkah and camped at Alush. 14 And they set out from Alush and camped at yRephidim, where there was no water for the people to drink. 15 And they set out from Rephidim and camped in the zwilderness of Sinai. 16 And they set out from the wilderness of Sinai and camped at aKibroth-hattaavah. 17 And they set out from Kibroth-hattaavah and camped at bHazeroth. 18 And they cset out from Hazeroth and camped at Rithmah. 19 And they set out from Rithmah and camped at Rimmon-perez. 20 And they set out from Rimmon-perez and camped at Libnah. 21 And they set out from Libnah and camped at Rissah. 22 And they set out from Rissah and camped at Kehelathah. 23 And they set out from Kehelathah and camped at Mount Shepher. 24 And they set out from Mount Shepher and camped at Haradah. 25 And they set out from Haradah and camped at Makheloth. 26 And they set out from Makheloth and camped at Tahath. 27 And they set out from Tahath and camped at Terah. 28 And they set out from Terah and camped at Mithkah. 29 And they set out from Mithkah and camped at Hashmonah. 30 And they set out from Hashmonah and camped at Moseroth. 31 And they set out from Moseroth and camped at dBene-jaakan. 32 And they set out from Bene-jaakan and camped at eHor-haggidgad. 33 And they set out from Hor-haggidgad and camped at eJotbathah. 34 And they set out from Jotbathah and camped at Abronah. 35 And they set out from Abronah and camped at fEzion-geber. 36 And they set out from Ezion-geber and camped in the gwilderness of Zin (that is, Kadesh). 37 And they set out from hKadesh and camped at iMount Hor, on the edge of the land of Edom.

38 And Aaron the priest went up jMount Hor at the command of the Lord and died there, in the fortieth year after the people of Israel had come out of the land of Egypt, on the first day of the fifth month. 39 And Aaron was k123 years old when he died on Mount Hor.

40 And lthe Canaanite, the king of Arad, who lived in the Negeb in the land of Canaan, heard of the coming of the people of Israel.

41 And they set out from Mount Hor and camped at Zalmonah. 42 And they set out from Zalmonah and camped at Punon. 43 And they set out from Punon and camped at mOboth. 44 And they set out from Oboth and camped at nIye-abarim, in the territory of Moab. 45 And they set out from Iyim and camped at oDibon-gad. 46 And they set out from Dibon-gad and camped at Almon-diblathaim. 47 And they set out from Almon-diblathaim pand camped in the mountains of Abarim, before Nebo. 48 And they set out from the mountains of Abarim and camped in qthe plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho; 49 they camped by the Jordan from Beth-jeshimoth as far as rAbel-shittim in the plains of Moab.

Drive Out the Inhabitants

50 And the Lord spoke to Moses in the plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho, saying, 51 Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, sWhen you pass over the Jordan into the land of Canaan, 52 then tyou shall drive out uall the inhabitants of the land from before you and destroy all their vfigured stones and destroy all their metal images and demolish all their high places. 53 And you shall take possession of the land and settle in it, for I have given the land to you to possess it. 54 wYou shall inherit the land by lot according to your clans. xTo a large tribe you shall give a large inheritance, and to a small tribe you shall give a small inheritance. Wherever the lot falls for anyone, that shall be his. According to the tribes of your fathers you shall inherit. 55 But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then those of them whom you let remain shall be as ybarbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they shall trouble you in the land where you dwell. 56 And I will do to you zas I thought to do to them.


Create in Me a Clean Heart, O God

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David, when vNathan the prophet went to him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba.

51  wHave mercy on me,1 O God,

according to your steadfast love;

according to your xabundant mercy

yblot out my transgressions.

zWash me thoroughly from my iniquity,

and acleanse me from my sin!

bFor I know my transgressions,

and my sin is ever before me.

cAgainst you, you only, have I sinned

and done what is evil din your sight,

eso that you may be justified in your words

and blameless in your judgment.

Behold, fI was brought forth in iniquity,

and in sin did my mother conceive me.

Behold, you delight in truth in gthe inward being,

and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.

Purge me hwith hyssop, and I shall be clean;

zwash me, and I shall be iwhiter than snow.

Let me hear joy and gladness;

jlet the bones kthat you have broken rejoice.

lHide your face from my sins,

and yblot out all my iniquities.

10  mCreate in me a nclean heart, O God,

and orenew a right2 spirit within me.

11  pCast me not away from your presence,

and take not qyour Holy Spirit from me.

12  Restore to me the joy of your salvation,

and uphold me with a willing spirit.

13  Then I will teach transgressors your ways,

and sinners will rreturn to you.

14  Deliver me from sbloodguiltiness, O God,

O tGod of my salvation,

and umy tongue will sing aloud of your vrighteousness.

15  O Lord, open my lips,

and my mouth will declare your praise.

16  wFor you will not delight in sacrifice, or I would give it;

you will not be pleased with a burnt offering.

17  The sacrifices of God are xa broken spirit;

a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.

18  yDo good to Zion in your good pleasure;

zbuild up the walls of Jerusalem;

19  then will you delight in aright sacrifices,

in burnt offerings and bwhole burnt offerings;

then bulls will be offered on your altar.