The Bible in Its Traditions

Numbers 31:1–10

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And YHWH spoke unto Moses, saying

And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying,

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'Avenge the children of Israel of the Midianites; afterward shalt thou be gathered unto thy people.'

Avenge the wrongs of the children of Israel on the Madianites, and afterwards thou shalt be added to thy people.

“First, avenge the sons of Israel from the Midianites, and then you shall be gathered to your people.”

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And Moses spoke unto the people, saying: 'Arm ye men from among you for the war, that they may go against Midian, to execute YHWH'S vengeance on Midian.

And immediately Moses said: “Arm the men among you for a battle, so that they may be able to fulfill the retribution of the Lord on the Midianites.

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Of every tribe a thousand, throughout all the tribes of Israel, shall ye send to the war.'

Send a thousand of each tribe from all the tribes of the children of Israel to set themselves in array.

Let one thousand men be chosen from each tribe of Israel, who shall be sent to war.”

So there were delivered, out of the thousands of Israel, a thousand of every tribe, twelve thousand armed for war.

And they numbered of the thousands of Israel a thousand of each tribe, twelve thousands; these were armed for war.

And they gave one thousand from each tribe, that is, twelve thousand foot soldiers for battle.

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And Moses sent them, a thousand of every tribe, to the war, them and Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, to the war, with the holy vessels and the trumpets for the alarm in his hand.

And Moses sent them with Phinehas, the son of Eleazar the priest; also, he delivered to him the holy vessels, and the trumpets to sound.

Then Moses sent them to war, a thousand from each tribe, twelve thousand armed men, them and Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, to the army, with the holy vessels of the sanctuary and with trumpets to blow in his hand.

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And they warred against Midian, as YHWH commanded Moses; and they slew every male.

And they set themselves in array against Madian, as the Lord commanded Moses; and they slew every male.

And when they had fought against the Midianites and had prevailed, they killed all the men.

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And they slew the kings of Midian with the rest of their slain: Evi, and Rekem, and Zur, and Hur, and Reba, the five kings of Midian; Balaam also the son of Beor they slew with the sword.

And they put to death by the sword their kings: Evi, and Rekem, and Zur, and Hur, and Reba, the five leaders of the nation, and also Balaam the son of Beor.

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And the children of Israel took captive the women of Midian and their little ones; and all their cattle, and all their flocks, and all their goods, they took for a prey.

And they made a prey of the women of Madian, and their store, and their cattle, and all their possessions: and they spoiled their forces.

And they seized their women and little ones, and all their cattle, and all their goods; whatever they were able to have, they despoiled.

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10  And all their cities in the places wherein they dwelt, and all their encampments, they burnt with fire.

10  Both their cities and their villages, as well as their fortresses, they burned.