Through the Bible – Day 57

Bible text(s)

The LORD's command to conquer Canaan

50While Israel was camped in the lowlands of Moab across the River Jordan from Jericho, the LORD told Moses 51to give the people of Israel this message:

When you cross the River Jordan and enter Canaan, 52you must force out the people living there. Destroy their idols and tear down their altars. 53Then settle in the land—I have given it to you as your own.

54I will show you how to divide the land among the tribes, according to the number of clans in each one, so that the larger tribes will have more land than the smaller ones.

55If you don't force out all the people there, they will be like pointed sticks in your eyes and thorns in your back. They will always be trouble for you, 56and I will treat you as cruelly as I planned to treat them.

Israel's borders

1The LORD told Moses 2to tell the people of Israel that their land in Canaan would have the following borders:

3The southern border will be the Zin Desert and the north-west part of Edom. This border will begin at the south end of the Dead Sea. 4It will go west from there, but will turn southward to include Scorpion Pass, the village of Zin, and the town of Kadesh-Barnea. From there, the border will continue to Hazar-Addar and on to Azmon. 5It will run along the Egyptian Gorge and end at the Mediterranean Sea.

6The western border will be the Mediterranean Sea.

7The northern border will begin at the Mediterranean, then continue eastward to Mount Hor. 8After that, it will run to Lebo-Hamath and across to Zedad, which is the northern edge of your land. 9From Zedad, the border will continue east to Ziphron and end at Hazar-Enan.

10The eastern border will begin at Hazar-Enan in the north, then run south to Shepham, 11and on down to Riblah on the east side of Ain. From there, it will go south to the eastern hills of Lake Galilee, 12then follow the River Jordan down to the north end of the Dead Sea.

The land within those four borders will belong to you.

13Then Moses told the people, “You will receive the land inside these borders. It will be yours, but the LORD has commanded you to divide it among the nine and a half tribes. 14The tribes of Reuben, Gad, and East Manasseh have already been given their land 15across from Jericho, east of the River Jordan.”

The leaders who will divide the land

16The LORD said to Moses, 17“Eleazar the priest and Joshua son of Nun will divide the land for the Israelites. 18One leader from each tribe will help them, 19-28and here is the list of their names:

    Caleb son of Jephunneh from Judah,
    Shemuel son of Ammihud from Simeon,
    Elidad son of Chislon from Benjamin,
    Bukki son of Jogli from Dan,
    Hanniel son of Ephod from Manasseh,
    Kemuel son of Shiphtan from Ephraim,
    Elizaphan son of Parnach from Zebulun,
    Paltiel son of Azzan from Issachar,
    Ahihud son of Shelomi from Asher,
    and Pedahel son of Ammihud
    from Naphtali.”

29These are the men the LORD commanded to help Eleazar and Joshua divide the land for the Israelites.

The towns for the Levites

1While the people of Israel were still camped in the lowlands of Moab across the River Jordan from Jericho, the LORD told Moses 2to say to them:

When you receive your tribal lands, you must give towns and pastures to the Levi tribe. 3That way, the Levites will have towns to live in and pastures for their animals. 4-5The pasture around each of these towns must be in the shape of a square, with the town itself in the centre. The pasture is to measure nine hundred metres on each side, with four hundred and fifty metres of land outside each of the town walls. This will be the Levites' pasture land.

6Six of the towns you give them will be Safe Towns where a person who has accidentally killed someone can run for protection. But you will also give the Levites forty-two other towns, 7so they will have a total of forty-eight towns with their surrounding pastures.

8Since the towns for the Levites must come from Israel's own tribal lands, the larger tribes will give more towns than the smaller ones.

The Safe Towns

(Deuteronomy 19.1-13; Joshua 20.1-9)

9The LORD then told Moses 10to tell the people of Israel:

After you have crossed the River Jordan and are settled in Canaan, 11choose Safe Towns, where a person who has accidentally killed someone can run for protection. 12If the victim's relatives think it was murder, they might try to take revenge. Anyone accused of murder can run to one of these Safe Towns for protection and not be killed before a trial is held.

13There are to be six of these Safe Towns, 14three on each side of the River Jordan. 15They will be places of protection for anyone who lives in Israel and accidentally kills someone.

Laws about murder and accidental killing

The LORD said:

16-18Suppose you hit someone with a piece of iron or a large stone or a dangerous wooden tool. If that person dies, then you are a murderer and must be put to death 19by one of the victim's relatives. He will take revenge for his relative's death as soon as he finds you.

20-21Or suppose you get angry and kill someone by pushing or hitting or by throwing something. You are a murderer and must be put to death by one of the victim's relatives.

22-24But if you are not angry and accidentally kill someone in any of these ways, the townspeople must hold a trial and decide if you are guilty. 25If they decide that you are innocent, you will be protected from the victim's relative and sent to stay in one of the Safe Towns until the high priest dies. 26But if you ever leave the Safe Town 27and are killed by the victim's relative, he cannot be punished for killing you. 28You must stay inside the town until the high priest dies; only then can you go back home.

29The community of Israel must always obey these laws.

30Death is the penalty for murder. But no one accused of murder can be put to death unless there are at least two witnesses to the crime. 31You cannot give someone money to escape the death penalty; you must pay with your own life! 32And if you have been proved innocent of murder and are living in a Safe Town, you cannot pay to go back home; you must stay there until the high priest dies.

33-34I, the LORD, live among you people of Israel, so your land must be kept pure. But when a murder takes place, blood pollutes the land, and it becomes unclean. If that happens, the murderer must be put to death, so the land will be clean again. Keep murder out of Israel!

The laws about married women and land

1One day the family leaders from the Gilead clan of the Manasseh tribe went to Moses and the other family leaders of Israel 2and said, “Sir, the LORD has said that he will show what land each tribe will receive as their own. And the LORD has commanded you to give the daughters of our relative Zelophehad the land that he would have received. 3But if they marry men from other tribes of Israel, the land they receive will become part of that tribe's inheritance and will no longer belong to us. 4Even when land is returned to its original owner in the Year of Celebration, we will not get back Zelophehad's land—it will belong to the tribe into which his daughters married.”

5So Moses told the people that the LORD had said:

These men from the Manasseh tribe are right. 6I will allow Zelophehad's daughters to marry anyone, as long as those men belong to one of the clans of the Manasseh tribe.

7Tribal land must not be given to another tribe—it will remain the property of the tribe that received it. 8-9In the future, any daughter who inherits land must marry someone from her own tribe. Israel's tribal land is never to be passed from one tribe to another.

10-11Mahlah, Tirzah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Noah the daughters of Zelophehad obeyed the LORD and married their uncles' sons 12and remained part of the Manasseh tribe. So their land stayed in their father's clan.

13These are the laws that the LORD gave to Moses and the Israelites while they were camped in the lowlands of Moab across the River Jordan from Jericho.

Numbers 33:50-36:13CEVOpen in Bible reader

A man with evil spirits

1Jesus and his disciples crossed Lake Galilee and came to shore near the town of Gerasa. 2When he was getting out of the boat, a man with an evil spirit quickly ran to him 3from the graveyard where he had been living. No one was able to tie the man up any more, not even with a chain. 4He had often been put in chains and leg irons, but he broke the chains and smashed the leg irons. No one could control him. 5Night and day he was in the graveyard or on the hills, yelling and cutting himself with stones.

6When the man saw Jesus in the distance, he ran up to him and knelt down. 7He shouted, “Jesus, Son of God in heaven, what do you want with me? Promise me in God's name that you won't torture me!” 8The man said this because Jesus had already told the evil spirit to come out of him.

9Jesus asked, “What is your name?”

The man answered, “My name is Lots, because I have ‘lots’ of evil spirits.” 10He then begged Jesus not to send them away.

11Over on the hillside a large herd of pigs was feeding. 12So the evil spirits begged Jesus, “Send us into those pigs! Let us go into them.” 13Jesus let them go, and they went out of the man and into the pigs. The whole herd of about two thousand pigs rushed down the steep bank into the lake and drowned.

14The men taking care of the pigs ran to the town and the farms to spread the news. Then the people came out to see what had happened. 15When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had once been full of demons. He was sitting there with his clothes on and in his right mind, and they were terrified.

16Everyone who had seen what had happened told about the man and the pigs. 17Then the people started begging Jesus to leave their part of the country.

18When Jesus was getting into the boat, the man begged to go with him. 19But Jesus would not let him. Instead, he said, “Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you and how good he has been to you.”

20The man went away into the region near the ten cities known as Decapolis and began telling everyone how much Jesus had done for him. Everyone who heard what had happened was amazed.

Mark 5:1-20CEVOpen in Bible reader
Canadian Bible Societyv.4.21.8
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