Judges 13 – International Children’s Bible

January 10 (Year 3)

Again the people of Israel did what the Lord said was wrong. So he let the Philistines rule over them for 40 years.

There was a man named Manoah from the city of Zorah. Manoah was from the tribe of Dan. He had a wife, but she could not have children. The angel of the Lord appeared to Manoah’s wife. He said, “You have not been able to have children. But you will become pregnant and have a son! Don’t drink wine or beer. Don’t eat anything that is unclean. You will become pregnant and have a son. You must never cut his hair because he will be a Nazirite. He will be given to God from birth. He will begin the work of saving Israel from the power of the Philistines.”

Then Manoah’s wife went to him and told him what had happened. She said, “A man from God came to me. He looked like an angel from God. His appearance was frightening. I didn’t ask him where he was from. And he didn’t tell me his name. But he said to me, ‘You will be pregnant and will have a son. Don’t drink wine or beer. Don’t eat anything that is unclean. The reason is that the boy will be a Nazirite to God. He will be that from his birth until the day of his death.’”

Then Manoah said a prayer to the Lord: “Lord, I beg you to let the man of God come to us again. Let him teach us what we should do for the boy who will be born to us.”

God heard Manoah’s prayer. The angel of God came to Manoah’s wife again. This was while she was sitting in a field. But her husband Manoah was not with her. So she ran to tell him, “He is here! The man who appeared to me the other day is here!”

Manoah got up and followed his wife. When he came to the man, he said, “Are you the man who spoke to my wife?”

The man said, “I am.”

So Manoah asked, “When what you say happens, what kind of life should the boy live? What should he do?”

The angel of the Lord said, “Your wife must do everything I told her to do. She must not eat anything that grows on a grapevine. She must not drink any wine or beer. She must not eat anything that is unclean. She must do everything I have commanded her to do.”

Manoah said to the angel of the Lord, “We would like you to stay awhile. We want to cook a young goat for you.”

The angel of the Lord answered, “Even if I stay awhile, I would not eat your food. But if you want to prepare something, offer a burnt offering to the Lord.” (Manoah did not understand that the man was really the angel of the Lord.)

Then Manoah asked the angel of the Lord, “What is your name? We want to know. Then we may honor you when what you have said really happens.”

The angel of the Lord said, “Why do you ask my name? It is too wonderful for you to understand.” Then Manoah sacrificed a young goat on a rock. He also offered some grain as a gift to the Lord. The Lord did an amazing thing. Manoah and his wife watched what happened. The flames went up to the sky from the altar. As the fire burned, the angel of the Lord went up to heaven in the fire! When Manoah and his wife saw that, they bowed facedown on the ground. The angel of the Lord did not appear to them again. Then Manoah understood that the man was really the angel of the Lord. Manoah said, “We have seen God! Surely we will die because of this!”

But his wife said to him, “The Lord does not want to kill us. If he wanted to kill us, he would not have accepted our burnt offering or grain offering. He would not have shown us all these things. And he would not have told us all this.”

So the woman gave birth to a boy. She named him Samson. Samson grew, and the Lord blessed him. The Spirit of the Lord began to work in Samson. This was while he was in the city of Mahaneh Dan. It is between the cities of Zorah and Eshtaol.

Judges 12 – New American Standard Bible

January 8 (Year 3)

Now the men of Ephraim were summoned, and they crossed to Zaphon; and they said to Jephthah, “Why did you cross over to fight against the sons of Ammon without calling us to go with you? We will burn your house down on you!” So Jephthah said to them, “I and my people were in a major dispute with the sons of Ammon; and I did call you, but you did not save me from their hand. When I saw that you were no deliverer, I took my life in my hands and crossed over against the sons of Ammon, and the Lord handed them over to me. Why then have you come up to me this day to fight against me?” Then Jephthah gathered all the men of Gilead and fought Ephraim; and the men of Gilead defeated Ephraim, because they said, “You are survivors of Ephraim, you Gileadites, in the midst of Ephraim and in the midst of Manasseh.” And the Gileadites took control of the crossing places of the Jordan opposite Ephraim. And it happened whenever any of the survivors of Ephraim said, “Let me cross over,” that the men of Gilead would say to him, “Are you an Ephraimite?” If he said, “No,” then they would say to him, “Just say, ‘Shibboleth.’” But he said, “Sibboleth,” for he was not prepared to pronounce it correctly. Then they seized him and slaughtered him at the crossing places of the Jordan. So at that time forty-two thousand from Ephraim fell.

Jephthah judged Israel for six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died and was buried in one of the cities of Gilead.

Now Ibzan of Bethlehem judged Israel after him. He had thirty sons, and thirty daughters whom he gave in marriage outside the family, and he brought in thirty daughters from outside for his sons. And he judged Israel for seven years. Then Ibzan died and was buried in Bethlehem.

Now Elon the Zebulunite judged Israel after him; he judged Israel for ten years. Then Elon the Zebulunite died and was buried at Aijalon in the land of Zebulun.

Now Abdon the son of Hillel the Pirathonite judged Israel after him. He had forty sons and thirty grandsons who rode on seventy donkeys; and he judged Israel for eight years. 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.

Judges 1 – New International Version

November 12 (Year 2)

After the death of Joshua, the Israelites asked the Lord, “Who of us is to go up first to fight against the Canaanites?”

The Lord answered, “Judah shall go up; I have given the land into their hands.”

The men of Judah then said to the Simeonites their fellow Israelites, “Come up with us into the territory allotted to us, to fight against the Canaanites. We in turn will go with you into yours.” So the Simeonites went with them.

When Judah attacked, the Lord gave the Canaanites and Perizzites into their hands, and they struck down ten thousand men at Bezek. It was there that they found Adoni-Bezek and fought against him, putting to rout the Canaanites and Perizzites. Adoni-Bezek fled, but they chased him and caught him, and cut off his thumbs and big toes.

Then Adoni-Bezek said, “Seventy kings with their thumbs and big toes cut off have picked up scraps under my table. Now God has paid me back for what I did to them.” They brought him to Jerusalem, and he died there.

The men of Judah attacked Jerusalem also and took it. They put the city to the sword and set it on fire.

After that, Judah went down to fight against the Canaanites living in the hill country, the Negev and the western foothills. They advanced against the Canaanites living in Hebron (formerly called Kiriath Arba) and defeated Sheshai, Ahiman and Talmai. From there they advanced against the people living in Debir (formerly called Kiriath Sepher).

And Caleb said, “I will give my daughter Aksah in marriage to the man who attacks and captures Kiriath Sepher.” Othniel son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother, took it; so Caleb gave his daughter Aksah to him in marriage.

One day when she came to Othniel, she urged him to ask her father for a field. When she got off her donkey, Caleb asked her, “What can I do for you?”

She replied, “Do me a special favor. Since you have given me land in the Negev, give me also springs of water.” So Caleb gave her the upper and lower springs.

The descendants of Moses’ father-in-law, the Kenite, went up from the City of Palms with the people of Judah to live among the inhabitants of the Desert of Judah in the Negev near Arad.

Then the men of Judah went with the Simeonites their fellow Israelites and attacked the Canaanites living in Zephath, and they totally destroyed the city. Therefore it was called Hormah. Judah also took Gaza, Ashkelon and Ekron—each city with its territory.

The Lord was with the men of Judah. They took possession of the hill country, but they were unable to drive the people from the plains, because they had chariots fitted with iron. As Moses had promised, Hebron was given to Caleb, who drove from it the three sons of Anak. The Benjamites, however, did not drive out the Jebusites, who were living in Jerusalem; to this day the Jebusites live there with the Benjamites.

Now the tribes of Joseph attacked Bethel, and the Lord was with them. When they sent men to spy out Bethel (formerly called Luz), the spies saw a man coming out of the city and they said to him, “Show us how to get into the city and we will see that you are treated well.” So he showed them, and they put the city to the sword but spared the man and his whole family. He then went to the land of the Hittites, where he built a city and called it Luz, which is its name to this day.

But Manasseh did not drive out the people of Beth Shan or Taanach or Dor or Ibleam or Megiddo and their surrounding settlements, for the Canaanites were determined to live in that land. When Israel became strong, they pressed the Canaanites into forced labor but never drove them out completely. Nor did Ephraim drive out the Canaanites living in Gezer, but the Canaanites continued to live there among them. Neither did Zebulun drive out the Canaanites living in Kitron or Nahalol, so these Canaanites lived among them, but Zebulun did subject them to forced labor. Nor did Asher drive out those living in Akko or Sidon or Ahlab or Akzib or Helbah or Aphek or Rehob. The Asherites lived among the Canaanite inhabitants of the land because they did not drive them out. Neither did Naphtali drive out those living in Beth Shemesh or Beth Anath; but the Naphtalites too lived among the Canaanite inhabitants of the land, and those living in Beth Shemesh and Beth Anath became forced laborers for them. The Amorites confined the Danites to the hill country, not allowing them to come down into the plain. And the Amorites were determined also to hold out in Mount Heres, Aijalon and Shaalbim, but when the power of the tribes of Joseph increased, they too were pressed into forced labor. The boundary of the Amorites was from Scorpion Pass to Sela and beyond.

Joshua 23 – New King James Version

October 18 (Year 2)

Now it came to pass, a long time after the Lord had given rest to Israel from all their enemies round about, that Joshua was old, advanced in age. And Joshua called for all Israel, for their elders, for their heads, for their judges, and for their officers, and said to them:

“I am old, advanced in age. You have seen all that the Lord your God has done to all these nations because of you, for the Lord your God is He who has fought for you. See, I have divided to you by lot these nations that remain, to be an inheritance for your tribes, from the Jordan, with all the nations that I have cut off, as far as the Great Sea westward. And the Lord your God will expel them from before you and drive them out of your sight. So you shall possess their land, as the Lord your God promised you. Therefore be very courageous to keep and to do all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, lest you turn aside from it to the right hand or to the left, and lest you go among these nations, these who remain among you. You shall not make mention of the name of their gods, nor cause anyone to swear by them; you shall not serve them nor bow down to them, but you shall hold fast to the Lord your God, as you have done to this day. For the Lord has driven out from before you great and strong nations; but as for you, no one has been able to stand against you to this day. One man of you shall chase a thousand, for the Lord your God is He who fights for you, as He promised you. Therefore take careful heed to yourselves, that you love the Lord your God. Or else, if indeed you do go back, and cling to the remnant of these nations—these that remain among you—and make marriages with them, and go in to them and they to you, know for certain that the Lord your God will no longer drive out these nations from before you. But they shall be snares and traps to you, and scourges on your sides and thorns in your eyes, until you perish from this good land which the Lord your God has given you.

“Behold, this day I am going the way of all the earth. And you know in all your hearts and in all your souls that not one thing has failed of all the good things which the Lord your God spoke concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one word of them has failed. Therefore it shall come to pass, that as all the good things have come upon you which the Lord your God promised you, so the Lord will bring upon you all harmful things, until He has destroyed you from this good land which the Lord your God has given you. When you have transgressed the covenant of the Lord your God, which He commanded you, and have gone and served other gods, and bowed down to them, then the anger of the Lord will burn against you, and you shall perish quickly from the good land which He has given you.”

Joshua 22 – New Living Translation

October 16 (Year 2)

Then Joshua called together the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh. He told them, “You have done as Moses, the servant of the Lord, commanded you, and you have obeyed every order I have given you. During all this time you have not deserted the other tribes. You have been careful to obey the commands of the Lord your God right up to the present day. And now the Lord your God has given the other tribes rest, as he promised them. So go back home to the land that Moses, the servant of the Lord, gave you as your possession on the east side of the Jordan River. But be very careful to obey all the commands and the instructions that Moses gave to you. Love the Lord your God, walk in all his ways, obey his commands, hold firmly to him, and serve him with all your heart and all your soul.” So Joshua blessed them and sent them away, and they went home.

Moses had given the land of Bashan, east of the Jordan River, to the half-tribe of Manasseh. (The other half of the tribe was given land west of the Jordan.) As Joshua sent them away and blessed them, he said to them, “Go back to your homes with the great wealth you have taken from your enemies—the vast herds of livestock, the silver, gold, bronze, and iron, and the large supply of clothing. Share the plunder with your relatives.”

So the men of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh left the rest of Israel at Shiloh in the land of Canaan. They started the journey back to their own land of Gilead, the territory that belonged to them according to the Lord’s command through Moses.

But while they were still in Canaan, and when they came to a place called Geliloth near the Jordan River, the men of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh stopped to build a large and imposing altar.

The rest of Israel heard that the people of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh had built an altar at Geliloth at the edge of the land of Canaan, on the west side of the Jordan River. So the whole community of Israel gathered at Shiloh and prepared to go to war against them. First, however, they sent a delegation led by Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest, to talk with the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh. In this delegation were ten leaders of Israel, one from each of the ten tribes, and each the head of his family within the clans of Israel.

When they arrived in the land of Gilead, they said to the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh, “The whole community of the Lord demands to know why you are betraying the God of Israel. How could you turn away from the Lord and build an altar for yourselves in rebellion against him? Was our sin at Peor not enough? To this day we are not fully cleansed of it, even after the plague that struck the entire community of the Lord. And yet today you are turning away from following the Lord. If you rebel against the Lord today, he will be angry with all of us tomorrow.

“If you need the altar because the land you possess is defiled, then join us in the Lord’s land, where the Tabernacle of the Lord is situated, and share our land with us. But do not rebel against the Lord or against us by building an altar other than the one true altar of the Lord our God. Didn’t divine anger fall on the entire community of Israel when Achan, a member of the clan of Zerah, sinned by stealing the things set apart for the Lord? He was not the only one who died because of his sin.”

Then the people of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh answered the heads of the clans of Israel: “The Lord, the Mighty One, is God! The Lord, the Mighty One, is God! He knows the truth, and may Israel know it, too! We have not built the altar in treacherous rebellion against the Lord. If we have done so, do not spare our lives this day. If we have built an altar for ourselves to turn away from the Lord or to offer burnt offerings or grain offerings or peace offerings, may the Lord himself punish us.

“The truth is, we have built this altar because we fear that in the future your descendants will say to ours, ‘What right do you have to worship the Lord, the God of Israel? The Lord has placed the Jordan River as a barrier between our people and you people of Reuben and Gad. You have no claim to the Lord.’ So your descendants may prevent our descendants from worshiping the Lord.

“So we decided to build the altar, not for burnt offerings or sacrifices, but as a memorial. It will remind our descendants and your descendants that we, too, have the right to worship the Lord at his sanctuary with our burnt offerings, sacrifices, and peace offerings. Then your descendants will not be able to say to ours, ‘You have no claim to the Lord.’

“If they say this, our descendants can reply, ‘Look at this copy of the Lord’s altar that our ancestors made. It is not for burnt offerings or sacrifices; it is a reminder of the relationship both of us have with the Lord.’ Far be it from us to rebel against the Lord or turn away from him by building our own altar for burnt offerings, grain offerings, or sacrifices. Only the altar of the Lord our God that stands in front of the Tabernacle may be used for that purpose.”

When Phinehas the priest and the leaders of the community—the heads of the clans of Israel—heard this from the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh, they were satisfied. Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest, replied to them, “Today we know the Lord is among us because you have not committed this treachery against the Lord as we thought. Instead, you have rescued Israel from being destroyed by the hand of the Lord.”

Then Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest, and the other leaders left the tribes of Reuben and Gad in Gilead and returned to the land of Canaan to tell the Israelites what had happened. And all the Israelites were satisfied and praised God and spoke no more of war against Reuben and Gad.

The people of Reuben and Gad named the altar “Witness,” for they said, “It is a witness between us and them that the Lord is our God, too.”

Joshua 21 – Revised Standard Version

October 14 (Year 2)

Then the heads of the fathers’ houses of the Levites came to Elea′zar the priest and to Joshua the son of Nun and to the heads of the fathers’ houses of the tribes of the people of Israel; and they said to them at Shiloh in the land of Canaan, “The Lord commanded through Moses that we be given cities to dwell in, along with their pasture lands for our cattle.” So by command of the Lord the people of Israel gave to the Levites the following cities and pasture lands out of their inheritance.

The lot came out for the families of the Ko′hathites. So those Levites who were descendants of Aaron the priest received by lot from the tribes of Judah, Simeon, and Benjamin, thirteen cities.

And the rest of the Ko′hathites received by lot from the families of the tribe of E′phraim, from the tribe of Dan and the half-tribe of Manas′seh, ten cities.

The Gershonites received by lot from the families of the tribe of Is′sachar, from the tribe of Asher, from the tribe of Naph′tali, and from the half-tribe of Manas′seh in Bashan, thirteen cities.

The Merar′ites according to their families received from the tribe of Reuben, the tribe of Gad, and the tribe of Zeb′ulun, twelve cities.

These cities and their pasture lands the people of Israel gave by lot to the Levites, as the Lord had commanded through Moses.

Out of the tribe of Judah and the tribe of Simeon they gave the following cities mentioned by name, which went to the descendants of Aaron, one of the families of the Ko′hathites who belonged to the Levites; since the lot fell to them first. They gave them Kir′iath-ar′ba (Arba being the father of Anak), that is Hebron, in the hill country of Judah, along with the pasture lands round about it. But the fields of the city and its villages had been given to Caleb the son of Jephun′neh as his possession.

And to the descendants of Aaron the priest they gave Hebron, the city of refuge for the slayer, with its pasture lands, Libnah with its pasture lands, Jattir with its pasture lands, Eshtemo′a with its pasture lands, Holon with its pasture lands, Debir with its pasture lands, A′in with its pasture lands, Juttah with its pasture lands, Beth-she′mesh with its pasture lands—nine cities out of these two tribes; then out of the tribe of Benjamin, Gibeon with its pasture lands, Geba with its pasture lands, An′athoth with its pasture lands, and Almon with its pasture lands—four cities. The cities of the descendants of Aaron, the priests, were in all thirteen cities with their pasture lands.

As to the rest of the Ko′hathites belonging to the Ko′hathite families of the Levites, the cities allotted to them were out of the tribe of E′phraim. To them were given Shechem, the city of refuge for the slayer, with its pasture lands in the hill country of E′phraim, Gezer with its pasture lands, Kib′za-im with its pasture lands, Beth-hor′on with its pasture lands—four cities; and out of the tribe of Dan, El′teke with its pasture lands, Gib′bethon with its pasture lands, Ai′jalon with its pasture lands, Gath-rim′mon with its pasture lands—four cities; and out of the half-tribe of Manas′seh, Ta′anach with its pasture lands, and Gath-rim′mon with its pasture lands—two cities. The cities of the families of the rest of the Ko′hathites were ten in all with their pasture lands.

And to the Gershonites, one of the families of the Levites, were given out of the half-tribe of Manas′seh, Golan in Bashan with its pasture lands, the city of refuge for the slayer, and Be-esh′terah with its pasture lands—two cities; and out of the tribe of Is′sachar, Ki′shion with its pasture lands, Dab′erath with its pasture lands, Jarmuth with its pasture lands, En-gan′nim with its pasture lands—four cities; and out of the tribe of Asher, Mishal with its pasture lands, Abdon with its pasture lands, Helkath with its pasture lands, and Rehob with its pasture lands—four cities; and out of the tribe of Naph′tali, Kedesh in Galilee with its pasture lands, the city of refuge for the slayer, Ham′moth-dor with its pasture lands, and Kartan with its pasture lands—three cities. The cities of the several families of the Gershonites were in all thirteen cities with their pasture lands.

And to the rest of the Levites, the Merar′ite families, were given out of the tribe of Zeb′ulun, Jok′ne-am with its pasture lands, Kartah with its pasture lands, Dimnah with its pasture lands, Na′halal with its pasture lands—four cities; and out of the tribe of Reuben, Bezer with its pasture lands, Jahaz with its pasture lands, Ked′emoth with its pasture lands, and Meph′a-ath with its pasture lands—four cities; and out of the tribe of Gad, Ramoth in Gilead with its pasture lands, the city of refuge for the slayer, Mahana′im with its pasture lands, Heshbon with its pasture lands, Jazer with its pasture lands—four cities in all. As for the cities of the several Merar′ite families, that is, the remainder of the families of the Levites, those allotted to them were in all twelve cities.

The cities of the Levites in the midst of the possession of the people of Israel were in all forty-eight cities with their pasture lands. These cities had each its pasture lands round about it; so it was with all these cities.

Thus the Lord gave to Israel all the land which he swore to give to their fathers; and having taken possession of it, they settled there. And the Lord gave them rest on every side just as he had sworn to their fathers; not one of all their enemies had withstood them, for the Lord had given all their enemies into their hands. Not one of all the good promises which the Lord had made to the house of Israel had failed; all came to pass.

Joshua 20 – The Voice

October 12 (Year 2)

Then the Eternal One spoke to Joshua.

Eternal One: Tell the Israelites, “You must set apart cities of refuge, as I directed you through Moses, so that anyone who accidentally or unintentionally kills a person may flee there. These cities shall be set up as a refuge from anyone seeking blood revenge. If the slayer flees to one of these cities, he can stand at the entrance of the gate of the city and explain the case to the elders of that city; then the fugitive will be taken into the city and given a place, and he will live among them. If the person seeking to avenge in blood comes after him, the people of the city may not give up the slayer since the neighbor was killed by mistake and there was no premeditation or prior hatred. The slayer may remain in that city until there is a trial before the congregation. And when the high priest who currently holds the office dies, then the slayer may return home to the town from which he fled.”

God asks the people to set aside places of sanctuary. This is a violent time, and people often take justice into their own hands. But these cities of refuge are set aside as places where those who have accidentally killed someone might be safe from avenging relatives until a determination of guilt might be made.

So they set apart and consecrated Kedesh in Galilee (in the hill country of Naphtali), Shechem (in the hill country of Ephraim), and Kiriath-arba (Hebron, in the hill country of Judah). Beyond the Jordan, east of Jericho, they appointed Bezer (in the desert plateau from the tribe of Reuben), Ramoth in Gilead (from the tribe of Gad), and Golan in Bashan (from the tribe of Manasseh). These, then, were the cities set aside to be sanctuaries for all the Israelites and for the foreigners residing among them, so that anyone who killed a person accidentally could flee there and not die at the hands of someone seeking blood revenge until there was a trial before the congregation.

Joshua 19 – International Children’s Bible

October 10 (Year 2)

The second part of the land was given to the tribe of Simeon. Each family group received some of the land. It was inside the area of Judah. They received Beersheba (also called Sheba), Moladah, Hazar Shual, Balah, Ezem, Eltolad, Bethul and Hormah. They also received Ziklag, Beth Marcaboth, Hazar Susah, Beth Lebaoth and Sharuhen. There were 13 towns and all their fields.

They also received the towns of Ain, Rimmon, Ether and Ashan. There were 4 towns and all their fields. They also received all the very small areas with people living in them as far as Baalath Beer. (This is the same as Ramah in southern Canaan.) So these were the lands given to the tribe of Simeon. Each family group received some of the land. The land of the Simeonites was taken from part of the land of Judah. Judah had much more land than they needed. So the Simeonites received part of their land.

The third part of the land was given to the tribe of Zebulun. Each family group of Zebulun received some of the land. The border of Zebulun went as far as Sarid. Then it went west to Maralah and came near Dabbesheth. Then it went near Jokneam. Then it turned to the east. It went from Sarid to the area of Kisloth Tabor. From there it went on to Daberath and to Japhia. It continued eastward to Gath Hepher and Eth Kazin. Then it ended at Rimmon. Then the border turned and went toward Neah. At Neah it turned again and went to the north. It went to Hannathon and continued to the Valley of Iphtah El. Inside this border were the cities of Kattath, Nahalal, Shimron, Idalah and Bethlehem. There were 12 towns and all their fields.

So these are the towns and the areas that were given to Zebulun. Each family group received some of the land.

The fourth part of the land was given to the tribe of Issachar. Each family group of Issachar received some of the land. Their land included Jezreel, Kesulloth, Shunem, Hapharaim, Shion and Anaharath; Rabbith, Kishion, Ebez, Remeth, En Gannim, En Haddah and Beth Pazzez.

The border of their land touched the area called Tabor, Shahazumah and Beth Shemesh. It stopped at the Jordan River. There were 16 towns and their fields.

These cities and towns were part of the land that was given to the tribe of Issachar. Each family group received part of this land.

The fifth part of the land was given to the tribe of Asher. Each family group of Asher received some of the land. Their land included Helkath, Hali, Beten, Acshaph, Allammelech, Amad and Mishal.

The western border touched Mount Carmel and Shihor Libnath. Then it turned toward the east. It went to Beth Dagon. It touched Zebulun and the Valley of Iphtah El. Then it went north of Beth Emek and Neiel. It passed north to Cabul. Then it went to Abdon, Rehob, Hammon and Kanah. It continued to Greater Sidon. Then the border went back south toward Ramah. It continued to the strong, walled city of Tyre. Then it turned and went toward Hosah. It ended at the sea. This was in the area of Aczib, Ummah, Aphek and Rehob. There were 22 towns and their fields.

These cities and their fields were part of the land that was given to the tribe of Asher. Each family group in that tribe received some of this land.

The sixth part of the land was given to the tribe of Naphtali. Each family group of Naphtali received some of the land. The border of their land started at the large tree in the area of Zaanannim. This is near Heleph. Then it went through Adami Nekeb and Jabneel. It continued to the area of Lakkum and ended at the Jordan River. Then it went to the west through Aznoth Tabor. It stopped at Hukkok. It went to the area of Zebulun on the south. And it went to the area of Asher on the west. It went to Judah, at the Jordan River, on the east. There were some strong, walled cities inside these borders. Those cities were Ziddim, Zer, Hammath, Rakkath and Kinnereth; Adamah, Ramah, Hazor, Kedesh, Edrei and En Hazor; Iron, Migdal El, Horem, Beth Anath and Beth Shemesh. There were 19 towns and all their fields.

The cities and the towns around them were in the land that was given to the tribe of Naphtali. Each family group in that tribe got some of this land.

The seventh part of the land was given to the tribe of Dan. Each family group of Dan received some of the land. Their land included Zorah, Eshtaol, Ir Shemesh, Shaalabbin, Aijalon and Ithlah; Elon, Timnah, Ekron, Eltekeh, Gibbethon, Baalath, Jehud, Bene Berak and Gath Rimmon; Me Jarkon, Rakkon and the area near Joppa.

(But the Danites had trouble taking their land. There were strong enemies there. And the Danites could not easily defeat them. So the Danites went and fought against Leshem. They defeated Leshem and killed the people who lived there. So the Danites lived in the town of Leshem. They changed its name to Dan because he was the father of their tribe.) All of these cities and towns were given to the tribe of Dan. Each family group got part of this land.

So the Israelite leaders finished dividing the land and giving it to the different tribes. After they finished, all the Israelites decided to give Joshua son of Nun some land, too. This was land that had been promised to him. The Lord had commanded that he be given this land. So they gave Joshua the town of Timnath Serah in the mountains of Ephraim. This was the town that Joshua told them he wanted. So he built up the town and lived there.

So all of these lands were given to the different tribes of Israel. Eleazar the priest, Joshua son of Nun and the leaders of each tribe worked together. They divided up the land while they were at Shiloh. They met before the Lord at the entrance to the Meeting Tent to do this. Now they had finished dividing the land.

Joshua 18 – New American Standard Bible

October 8 (Year 2)

Then the whole congregation of the sons of Israel assembled at Shiloh, and set up the tent of meeting there; and the land was subdued before them.

But there remained among the sons of Israel seven tribes who had not divided their inheritance. So Joshua said to the sons of Israel, “How long will you put off entering to take possession of the land which the Lord, the God of your fathers, has given you? Provide for yourselves three men from each tribe so that I may send them, and that they may arise and walk through the land and write a description of it according to their inheritance; then they shall return to me. And they shall divide it into seven portions; Judah shall stay in its territory on the south, and the house of Joseph shall stay in their territory on the north. And you shall write a description of the land in seven divisions, and bring the description here to me. Then I will cast lots for you here before the Lord our God. For the Levites have no portion among you, because the priesthood of the Lord is their inheritance. Gad, Reuben, and the half-tribe of Manasseh also have received their inheritance eastward beyond the Jordan, which Moses the servant of the Lord gave them.”

Then the men arose and went, and Joshua commanded those who went to write a description of the land, saying, “Go and walk through the land and write a description of it, and return to me; then I will cast lots for you here before the Lord in Shiloh.” So the men went and passed through the land, and wrote a description of it by cities in seven divisions in a book; and they came to Joshua at the camp at Shiloh. Joshua then cast lots for them in Shiloh before the Lord, and there Joshua divided the land for the sons of Israel according to their divisions.

Now the lot of the tribe of the sons of Benjamin came up according to their families, and the territory of their lot lay between the sons of Judah and the sons of Joseph. Their border on the north side was from the Jordan, then the border went up to the side of Jericho on the north, and went up through the hill country westward, and it ended at the wilderness of Beth-aven. Then from there the border continued to Luz, to the side of Luz (that is, Bethel) southward; and the border went down to Ataroth-addar, near the hill which lies on the south of lower Beth-horon. And the border changed direction from there and turned around on the west side southward, from the hill which lies opposite Beth-horon southward; and it ended at Kiriath-baal (that is, Kiriath-jearim), a city of the sons of Judah. This was the west side. Then the south side was from the edge of Kiriath-jearim, and the border went westward and went to the fountain of the waters of Nephtoah. Then the border went down to the edge of the hill which is in the Valley of Ben-hinnom, which is in the Valley of Rephaim northward; and it went down to the Valley of Hinnom, to the slope of the Jebusite southward, and went down to En-rogel. Then it turned northward and went to En-shemesh, and went to Geliloth, which is opposite the ascent of Adummim, and it went down to the stone of Bohan the son of Reuben. And it continued to the side in front of the Arabah northward, and went down to the Arabah. Then the border continued to the side of Beth-hoglah northward; and the border ended at the north bay of the Salt Sea, at the south end of the Jordan. This was the southern border. Moreover, the Jordan was its border on the east side. This was the inheritance of the sons of Benjamin according to their families, and according to its borders all around.

Now the cities of the tribe of the sons of Benjamin according to their families were Jericho, Beth-hoglah, and Emek-keziz, Beth-arabah, Zemaraim, and Bethel, Avvim, Parah, and Ophrah, Chephar-ammoni, Ophni, and Geba; twelve cities with their villages. Gibeon, Ramah, and Beeroth, Mizpeh, Chephirah, and Mozah, Rekem, Irpeel, and Taralah, Zelah, Haeleph, the Jebusite city (that is, Jerusalem), Gibeah, Kiriath; fourteen cities with their villages. This is the inheritance of the sons of Benjamin according to their families.

Joshua 17 – New International Reader’s Version

October 6 (Year 2)

Land was given to the tribe of Manasseh. It was given to Makir. Manasseh was Joseph’s oldest son. Makir was Manasseh’s oldest son. The people of Gilead came from the family line of Makir. The people of Gilead had received the lands of Gilead and Bashan. That’s because the people of Makir were great soldiers. So land was given to the rest of the people of Manasseh. It was given to the family groups of Abiezer, Helek, Asriel, Shechem, Hepher and Shemida. They were the other men in the family line of Manasseh, the son of Joseph. Those were their names by their family groups.

Makir was the son of Manasseh. Gilead was the son of Makir. Hepher was the son of Gilead. And Zelophehad was the son of Hepher. Zelophehad didn’t have any sons. He only had daughters. Their names were Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milkah and Tirzah. The daughters of Zelophehad went to Eleazar the priest and to Joshua, the son of Nun. They also went to the other leaders. They said, “The Lord commanded Moses to give us our share of land among our male relatives.” So Joshua gave them land along with their male relatives. That was according to what the Lord had commanded. Manasseh’s share was made up of ten pieces of land. That land was in addition to Gilead and Bashan east of the Jordan River. So the five granddaughters of Hepher in the family line of Manasseh received land, just as the other five sons of Manasseh did. The land of Gilead belonged to the rest of the family line of Manasseh.

The territory of Manasseh reached from Asher to Mikmethath. Mikmethath was east of Shechem. The border ran south from Mikmethath. The people living at En Tappuah were inside the border. Manasseh had the land around Tappuah. But the town of Tappuah itself was on the border of Manasseh’s land. It belonged to the people of Ephraim. The border continued south to the Kanah Valley. Some of the towns that belonged to Ephraim were located among the towns of Manasseh. But the border of Manasseh was the north side of the valley. The border came to an end at the Mediterranean Sea. The land on the south belonged to Ephraim. The land on the north belonged to Manasseh. The territory of Manasseh reached the Mediterranean Sea. The tribe of Asher was the border on the north. The tribe of Issachar was the border on the east.

Inside the land given to Issachar and Asher, the towns of Beth Shan and Ibleam belonged to Manasseh. The towns of Dor, Endor, Taanach and Megiddo and their people also belonged to Manasseh. Manasseh was given all those towns and the settlements around them. The third town in the list was also called Naphoth Dor.

But the people of Manasseh weren’t able to take over those towns. That’s because the Canaanites had made up their minds to live in that area. The Israelites grew stronger. Then they forced the Canaanites to work hard for them. But they didn’t drive them out completely.

The people in the family line of Joseph spoke to Joshua. They said, “Why have you given us only one share of the land to have as our own? There are large numbers of us. The Lord has blessed us greatly.”

“That’s true,” Joshua said. “There are large numbers of you. And the hill country of Ephraim is too small for you. So go up into the forest. Clear out some land for yourselves in the territory of the Perizzites and Rephaites.”

The people in Joseph’s family line replied, “The hill country isn’t big enough for us. And all the Canaanites who live in the plains use chariots that have iron parts. They include the people of Beth Shan and its settlements. They also include the people who live in the Valley of Jezreel.”

Joshua spoke again to the people in Joseph’s family line. He said to the people of Ephraim and Manasseh, “There are large numbers of you. And you are very powerful. You will have more than one piece of land. You will also have the central hill country. It’s covered with trees. Cut them down and clear the land. That whole land from one end to the other will belong to you. The Canaanites use chariots that have iron parts. And those people are strong. But you can drive them out.”