Numbers 32
Berean Study Bible

The Tribes East of the Jordan
(Deuteronomy 3:12–22; Joshua 13:8–14)

1Now the Reubenites and Gadites, who had very large herds and flocks, surveyed the lands of Jazer and Gilead, and they saw that the region was suitable for livestock. 2So the Gadites and Reubenites came to Moses, Eleazar the priest, and the leaders of the congregation, and said, 3“Ataroth, Dibon, Jazer, Nimrah, Heshbon, Elealeh, Sebam,a Nebo, and Beon, 4which the LORD conquered before the congregation of Israel, are suitable for livestock—and your servants have livestock.”

5“If we have found favor in your sight,” they said, “let this land be given to your servants as a possession. Do not make us cross the Jordan.”

6But Moses asked the Gadites and Reubenites, “Shall your brothers go to war while you sit here? 7Why are you discouraging the Israelites from crossing into the land that the LORD has given them? 8This is what your fathers did when I sent them from Kadesh-barnea to inspect the land.

9For when your fathers went up to the Valley of Eshcol and saw the land, they discouraged the Israelites from entering the land that the LORD had given them. 10So the anger of the LORD was kindled that day, and He swore an oath, saying, 11‘Because they did not follow Me wholeheartedly, not one of the men twenty years of age or older who came out of Egypt will see the land that I swore to give Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob— 12not one except Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite and Joshua son of Nun—because they did follow the LORD wholeheartedly.’ 13The anger of the LORD burned against Israel, and He made them wander in the wilderness forty years, until the whole generation who had done evil in His sight was gone.

14Now behold, you, a brood of sinners, have risen up in place of your fathers to further stoke the burning anger of the LORD against Israel. 15For if you turn away from following Him, He will once again leave this people in the wilderness, and you will be the cause of their destruction.”

16Then the Gadites and Reubenites approached Moses and said, “We want to build sheepfolds here for our livestock and cities for our little ones. 17But we will arm ourselves and be readyb to go ahead of the Israelites until we have brought them into their place. Meanwhile, our little ones will remain in the fortified cities for protection from the inhabitants of the land. 18We will not return to our homes until every Israelite has taken possession of his inheritance. 19Yet we will not have an inheritance with them across the Jordan and beyond, because our inheritance has come to us on the east side of the Jordan.”

20Moses replied, “If you will do this—if you will arm yourselves before the LORD for battle, 21and if every one of your armed men crosses the Jordan before the LORD, until He has driven His enemies out before Him, 22then when the land is subdued before the LORD, you may return and be free of obligation to the LORD and to Israel. And this land will belong to you as a possession before the LORD. 23But if you do not do this, you will certainly sin against the LORD—and be assured that your sin will find you out. 24Build cities for your little ones and folds for your flocks, but do what you have promised.”

25The Gadites and Reubenites said to Moses, “Your servants will do just as our lord commands. 26Our children, our wives, our livestock, and all our animals will remain here in the cities of Gilead. 27But your servants are equipped for war, and every man will cross over to the battle before the LORD, just as our lord says.”

28So Moses gave orders about them to Eleazar the priest, to Joshua son of Nun, and to the family leaders of the tribes of Israel. 29And Moses said to them, “If the Gadites and Reubenites cross the Jordan with you, with every man armed for battle before the LORD, and the land is subdued before you, then you are to give them the land of Gilead as a possession. 30But if they do not arm themselves and go across with you, then they must accept their possession among you in the land of Canaan.”

31The Gadites and Reubenites replied, “As the LORD has spoken to your servants, so we will do. 32We will cross over into the land of Canaan armed before the LORD, that we may have our inheritance on this side of the Jordan.”

33So Moses gave to the Gadites, to the Reubenites, and to the half-tribe of Manasseh son of Joseph the kingdom of Sihon king of the Amorites and the kingdom of Og king of Bashan—the land including its cities and the territory surrounding them.

34And the Gadites built up Dibon, Ataroth, Aroer, 35Atroth-shophan, Jazer, Jogbehah, 36Beth-nimrah, and Beth-haran as fortified cities, and they built folds for their flocks.

37The Reubenites built up Heshbon, Elealeh, Kiriathaim, 38as well as Nebo and Baal-meon (whose names were changed), and Sibmah. And they renamed the cities they rebuilt.

39The descendants of Machir son of Manasseh went to Gilead, captured it, and drove out the Amorites who were there. 40So Moses gave Gilead to the clan of Machir son of Manasseh, and they settled there. 41Jair, a descendant of Manasseh, went and captured their villages and called them Havvoth-jair.c 42And Nobah went and captured Kenath and its villages and called it Nobah, after his own name.

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Numbers 31
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