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Forty-eight Cities of the Levites 21:1 Then the heads of households of the Levites approached Eleazar the priest, and Joshua the son of Nun, and the heads of households of the tribes of the sons of Israel.
2 They spoke to them at Shiloh in the land of Canaan, saying, “The LORD commanded through Moses to give us cities to live in, with their pasture lands for our cattle.”
3 So the sons of Israel gave the Levites from their inheritance these cities with their pasture lands, according to the command of the LORD.
4 Then the lot came out for the families of the Kohathites. And the sons of Aaron the priest, who were of the Levites, received thirteen cities by lot from the tribe of Judah and from the tribe of the Simeonites and from the tribe of Benjamin.
5 The rest of the sons of Kohath received ten cities by lot from the families of the tribe of Ephraim and from the tribe of Dan and from the half-tribe of Manasseh.
6 The sons of Gershon received thirteen cities by lot from the families of the tribe of Issachar and from the tribe of Asher and from the tribe of Naphtali and from the half-tribe of Manasseh in Bashan.
7 The sons of Merari according to their families received twelve cities from the tribe of Reuben and from the tribe of Gad and from the tribe of Zebulun.
8 Now the sons of Israel gave by lot to the Levites these cities with their pasture lands, as the LORD had commanded through Moses.
9 They gave these cities which are here mentioned by name from the tribe of the sons of Judah and from the tribe of the sons of Simeon;
10 and they were for the sons of Aaron, one of the families of the Kohathites, of the sons of Levi, for the lot was theirs first.
11 Thus they gave them Kiriath-arba, Arba being the father of Anak (that is, Hebron), in the hill country of Judah, with its surrounding pasture lands.
12 But the fields of the city and its villages they gave to Caleb the son of Jephunneh as his possession.
13 So to the sons of Aaron the priest they gave Hebron, the city of refuge for the manslayer, with its pasture lands, and Libnah with its pasture lands,
14 and Jattir with its pasture lands and Eshtemoa with its pasture lands,
15 and Holon with its pasture lands and Debir with its pasture lands,
16 and Ain with its pasture lands and Juttah with its pasture lands and Beth-shemesh with its pasture lands; nine cities from these two tribes.
17 From the tribe of Benjamin, Gibeon with its pasture lands, Geba with its pasture lands,
18 Anathoth with its pasture lands and Almon with its pasture lands; four cities.
19 All the cities of the sons of Aaron, the priests, were thirteen cities with their pasture lands.
20 Then the cities from the tribe of Ephraim were allotted to the families of the sons of Kohath, the Levites, even to the rest of the sons of Kohath.
21 They gave them Shechem, the city of refuge for the manslayer, with its pasture lands, in the hill country of Ephraim, and Gezer with its pasture lands,
22 and Kibzaim with its pasture lands and Beth-horon with its pasture lands; four cities.
23 From the tribe of Dan, Elteke with its pasture lands, Gibbethon with its pasture lands,
24 Aijalon with its pasture lands, Gath-rimmon with its pasture lands; four cities.
25 From the half-tribe of Manasseh, they allotted Taanach with its pasture lands and Gath-rimmon with its pasture lands; two cities.
26 All the cities with their pasture lands for the families of the rest of the sons of Kohath were ten.
27 To the sons of Gershon, one of the families of the Levites, from the half-tribe of Manasseh, they gave Golan in Bashan, the city of refuge for the manslayer, with its pasture lands, and Be-eshterah with its pasture lands; two cities.
28 From the tribe of Issachar, they gave Kishion with its pasture lands, Daberath with its pasture lands,
29 Jarmuth with its pasture lands, En-gannim with its pasture lands; four cities.
30 From the tribe of Asher, they gave Mishal with its pasture lands, Abdon with its pasture lands,
31 Helkath with its pasture lands and Rehob with its pasture lands; four cities.
32 From the tribe of Naphtali, they gave Kedesh in Galilee, the city of refuge for the manslayer, with its pasture lands and Hammoth-dor with its pasture lands and Kartan with its pasture lands; three cities.
33 All the cities of the Gershonites according to their families were thirteen cities with their pasture lands.
34 To the families of the sons of Merari, the rest of the Levites, they gave from the tribe of Zebulun, Jokneam with its pasture lands and Kartah with its pasture lands.
35 Dimnah with its pasture lands, Nahalal with its pasture lands; four cities.
36 From the tribe of Reuben, they gave Bezer with its pasture lands and Jahaz with its pasture lands,
37 Kedemoth with its pasture lands and Mephaath with its pasture lands; four cities.
38 From the tribe of Gad, they gave Ramoth in Gilead, the city of refuge for the manslayer, with its pasture lands and Mahanaim with its pasture lands,
39 Heshbon with its pasture lands, Jazer with its pasture lands; four cities in all.
40 All these were the cities of the sons of Merari according to their families, the rest of the families of the Levites; and their lot was twelve cities.
41 All the cities of the Levites in the midst of the possession of the sons of Israel were forty-eight cities with their pasture lands.
42 These cities each had its surrounding pasture lands; thus it was with all these cities.
43 So the LORD gave Israel all the land which He had sworn to give to their fathers, and they possessed it and lived in it.
44 And the LORD gave them rest on every side, according to all that He had sworn to their fathers, and no one of all their enemies stood before them; the LORD gave all their enemies into their hand.
45 Not one of the good promises which the LORD had made to the house of Israel failed; all came to pass.
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Tribes beyond Jordan Return 22:1 Then Joshua summoned the Reubenites and the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh,
2 and said to them, “You have kept all that Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you, and have listened to my voice in all that I commanded you.
3 You have not forsaken your brothers these many days to this day, but have kept the charge of the commandment of the LORD your God.
4 And now the LORD your God has given rest to your brothers, as He spoke to them; therefore turn now and go to your tents, to the land of your possession, which Moses the servant of the LORD gave you beyond the Jordan.
5 Only be very careful to observe the commandment and the law which Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you, to love the LORD your God and walk in all His ways and keep His commandments and hold fast to Him and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul.”
6 So Joshua blessed them and sent them away, and they went to their tents.
7 Now to the one half-tribe of Manasseh Moses had given a possession in Bashan, but to the other half Joshua gave a possession among their brothers westward beyond the Jordan. So when Joshua sent them away to their tents, he blessed them,
8 and said to them, “Return to your tents with great riches and with very much livestock, with silver, gold, bronze, iron, and with very many clothes; divide the spoil of your enemies with your brothers.”
9 The sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh returned home and departed from the sons of Israel at Shiloh which is in the land of Canaan, to go to the land of Gilead, to the land of their possession which they had possessed, according to the command of the LORD through Moses.
The Offensive Altar 10 When they came to the region of the Jordan which is in the land of Canaan, the sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh built an altar there by the Jordan, a large altar in appearance.
11 And the sons of Israel heard it said, “Behold, the sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh have built an altar at the frontier of the land of Canaan, in the region of the Jordan, on the side belonging to the sons of Israel.”
12 When the sons of Israel heard of it, the whole congregation of the sons of Israel gathered themselves at Shiloh to go up against them in war.
13 Then the sons of Israel sent to the sons of Reuben and to the sons of Gad and to the half-tribe of Manasseh, into the land of Gilead, Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest,
14 and with him ten chiefs, one chief for each father’s household from each of the tribes of Israel; and each one of them was the head of his father’s household among the thousands of Israel.
15 They came to the sons of Reuben and to the sons of Gad and to the half-tribe of Manasseh, to the land of Gilead, and they spoke with them saying,
16 “Thus says the whole congregation of the LORD, ‘What is this unfaithful act which you have committed against the God of Israel, turning away from following the LORD this day, by building yourselves an altar, to rebel against the LORD this day?
17 Is not the iniquity of Peor enough for us, from which we have not cleansed ourselves to this day, although a plague came on the congregation of the LORD,
18 that you must turn away this day from following the LORD? If you rebel against the LORD today, He will be angry with the whole congregation of Israel tomorrow.
19 If, however, the land of your possession is unclean, then cross into the land of the possession of the LORD, where the LORD’S tabernacle stands, and take possession among us. Only do not rebel against the LORD, or rebel against us by building an altar for yourselves, besides the altar of the LORD our God.
20 Did not Achan the son of Zerah act unfaithfully in the things under the ban, and wrath fall on all the congregation of Israel? And that man did not perish alone in his iniquity.’”
21 Then the sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh answered and spoke to the heads of the families of Israel.
22 “The Mighty One, God, the LORD, the Mighty One, God, the LORD! He knows, and may Israel itself know. If it was in rebellion, or if in an unfaithful act against the LORD do not save us this day!
23 If we have built us an altar to turn away from following the LORD, or if to offer a burnt offering or grain offering on it, or if to offer sacrifices of peace offerings on it, may the LORD Himself require it.
24 But truly we have done this out of concern, for a reason, saying, ‘In time to come your sons may say to our sons, “What have you to do with the LORD, the God of Israel?
25 For the LORD has made the Jordan a border between us and you, you sons of Reuben and sons of Gad; you have no portion in the LORD.” So your sons may make our sons stop fearing the LORD.’
26 “Therefore we said, ‘Let us build an altar, not for burnt offering or for sacrifice;
27 rather it shall be a witness between us and you and between our generations after us, that we are to perform the service of the LORD before Him with our burnt offerings, and with our sacrifices and with our peace offerings, so that your sons will not say to our sons in time to come, “You have no portion in the LORD.”’
28 Therefore we said, ‘It shall also come about if they say this to us or to our generations in time to come, then we shall say, “See the copy of the altar of the LORD which our fathers made, not for burnt offering or for sacrifice; rather it is a witness between us and you.”’
29 Far be it from us that we should rebel against the LORD and turn away from following the LORD this day, by building an altar for burnt offering, for grain offering or for sacrifice, besides the altar of the LORD our God which is before His tabernacle.”
30 So when Phinehas the priest and the leaders of the congregation, even the heads of the families of Israel who were with him, heard the words which the sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the sons of Manasseh spoke, it pleased them.
31 And Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest said to the sons of Reuben and to the sons of Gad and to the sons of Manasseh, “Today we know that the LORD is in our midst, because you have not committed this unfaithful act against the LORD; now you have delivered the sons of Israel from the hand of the LORD.”
32 Then Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest and the leaders returned from the sons of Reuben and from the sons of Gad, from the land of Gilead to the land of Canaan, to the sons of Israel, and brought back word to them.
33 The word pleased the sons of Israel, and the sons of Israel blessed God; and they did not speak of going up against them in war to destroy the land in which the sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad were living.
34 The sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad called the altar Witness; “For,” they said, “it is a witness between us that the LORD is God.”
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Contrast the Upright and the Wicked14:1 The wise woman builds her house, But the foolish tears it down with her own hands.
2 He who walks in his uprightness fears the LORD, But he who is devious in his ways despises Him.
3 In the mouth of the foolish is a rod for his back, But the lips of the wise will protect them.
4 Where no oxen are, the manger is clean, But much revenue comes by the strength of the ox.
5 A trustworthy witness will not lie, But a false witness utters lies.
6 A scoffer seeks wisdom and finds none, But knowledge is easy to one who has understanding.
7 Leave the presence of a fool, Or you will not discern words of knowledge.
8 The wisdom of the sensible is to understand his way, But the foolishness of fools is deceit.
9 Fools mock at sin, But among the upright there is good will.
10 The heart knows its own bitterness, And a stranger does not share its joy.
11 The house of the wicked will be destroyed, But the tent of the upright will flourish.
12 There is a way which seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death.
13 Even in laughter the heart may be in pain, And the end of joy may be grief.
14 The backslider in heart will have his fill of his own ways, But a good man will be satisfied with his.
15 The naive believes everything, But the sensible man considers his steps.
16 A wise man is cautious and turns away from evil, But a fool is arrogant and careless.
17 A quick-tempered man acts foolishly, And a man of evil devices is hated.
18 The naive inherit foolishness, But the sensible are crowned with knowledge.
19 The evil will bow down before the good, And the wicked at the gates of the righteous.
20 The poor is hated even by his neighbor, But those who love the rich are many.
21 He who despises his neighbor sins, But happy is he who is gracious to the poor.
22 Will they not go astray who devise evil? But kindness and truth will be to those who devise good.
23 In all labor there is profit, But mere talk leads only to poverty.
24 The crown of the wise is their riches, But the folly of fools is foolishness.
25 A truthful witness saves lives, But he who utters lies is treacherous.
26 In the fear of the LORD there is strong confidence, And his children will have refuge.
27 The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, That one may avoid the snares of death.
28 In a multitude of people is a king’s glory, But in the dearth of people is a prince’s ruin.
29 He who is slow to anger has great understanding, But he who is quick-tempered exalts folly.
30 A tranquil heart is life to the body, But passion is rottenness to the bones.
31 He who oppresses the poor taunts his Maker, But he who is gracious to the needy honors Him.
32 The wicked is thrust down by his wrongdoing, But the righteous has a refuge when he dies.
33 Wisdom rests in the heart of one who has understanding, But in the hearts of fools it is made known.
34 Righteousness exalts a nation, But sin is a disgrace to any people.
35 The king’s favor is toward a servant who acts wisely, But his anger is toward him who acts shamefully.
« Psalm 43 | Psalm 44 | Psalm 45 »
Former Deliverances and Present Troubles.
For the choir director. A Maskil of the sons of Korah.44:1 O God, we have heard with our ears, Our fathers have told us The work that You did in their days, In the days of old.
2 You with Your own hand drove out the nations; Then You planted them; You afflicted the peoples, Then You spread them abroad.
3 For by their own sword they did not possess the land, And their own arm did not save them, But Your right hand and Your arm and the light of Your presence, For You favored them.
4 You are my King, O God; Command victories for Jacob.
5 Through You we will push back our adversaries; Through Your name we will trample down those who rise up against us.
6 For I will not trust in my bow, Nor will my sword save me.
7 But You have saved us from our adversaries, And You have put to shame those who hate us.
8 In God we have boasted all day long, And we will give thanks to Your name forever. Selah.
9 Yet You have rejected us and brought us to dishonor, And do not go out with our armies.
10 You cause us to turn back from the adversary; And those who hate us have taken spoil for themselves.
11 You give us as sheep to be eaten And have scattered us among the nations.
12 You sell Your people cheaply, And have not profited by their sale.
13 You make us a reproach to our neighbors, A scoffing and a derision to those around us.
14 You make us a byword among the nations, A laughingstock among the peoples.
15 All day long my dishonor is before me And my humiliation has overwhelmed me,
16 Because of the voice of him who reproaches and reviles, Because of the presence of the enemy and the avenger.
17 All this has come upon us, but we have not forgotten You, And we have not dealt falsely with Your covenant.
18 Our heart has not turned back, And our steps have not deviated from Your way,
19 Yet You have crushed us in a place of jackals And covered us with the shadow of death.
20 If we had forgotten the name of our God Or extended our hands to a strange god,
21 Would not God find this out? For He knows the secrets of the heart.
22 But for Your sake we are killed all day long; We are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.
23 Arouse Yourself, why do You sleep, O Lord? Awake, do not reject us forever.
24 Why do You hide Your face And forget our affliction and our oppression?
25 For our soul has sunk down into the dust; Our body cleaves to the earth.
26 Rise up, be our help, And redeem us for the sake of Your lovingkindness.
« Psalm 44 | Psalm 45 | Psalm 46 »
A Song Celebrating the King’s Marriage.
For the choir director; according to the Shoshannim. A Maskil of the sons of Korah. A Song of Love.45:1 My heart overflows with a good theme; I address my verses to the King; My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.
2 You are fairer than the sons of men; Grace is poured upon Your lips; Therefore God has blessed You forever.
3 Gird Your sword on Your thigh, O Mighty One, In Your splendor and Your majesty!
4 And in Your majesty ride on victoriously, For the cause of truth and meekness and righteousness; Let Your right hand teach You awesome things.
5 Your arrows are sharp; The peoples fall under You; Your arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.
6 Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; A scepter of uprightness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
7 You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of joy above Your fellows.
8 All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia; Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You glad.
9 Kings’ daughters are among Your noble ladies; At Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.
10 Listen, O daughter, give attention and incline your ear: Forget your people and your father’s house;
11 Then the King will desire your beauty. Because He is your Lord, bow down to Him.
12 The daughter of Tyre will come with a gift; The rich among the people will seek your favor.
13 The King’s daughter is all glorious within; Her clothing is interwoven with gold.
14 She will be led to the King in embroidered work; The virgins, her companions who follow her, Will be brought to You.
15 They will be led forth with gladness and rejoicing; They will enter into the King’s palace.
16 In place of your fathers will be your sons; You shall make them princes in all the earth.
17 I will cause Your name to be remembered in all generations; Therefore the peoples will give You thanks forever and ever.
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