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Joshua 22

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 1 Then Joshua called 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 obeyed my voice in all that I commanded you.

 3 You have not left 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 promised them; therefore now return, and get to your tents, and to the land of your possession, which Moses the servant of the LORD gave you on the other side Jordan.

 5 But take diligent heed to do the commandment and the law, which Moses the servant of the LORD charged you, to love the LORD your God, and to walk in all his ways, and to keep his commandments, and to cleave [adhere, unite] to him, and to 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 of the tribe of Manasseh, Moses had given possession in Bashan; but the other half was given by Joshua to their tribal brothers on this side of the Jordan westward. And as Joshua also sent them away to their tents, he blessed them,

 8 And he spoke to them, saying, "Return with much riches to your tents, and with very much cattle, with silver, and with gold, and with brass, and with iron, and with very much raiment; divide the spoil of your enemies with your brothers."

 9 And the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh returned, and departed from the children of Israel out of Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan, to go to the country of Gilead, to the land of their possession, that they had possessed, according to the word of the LORD by the hand of Moses.

 10 And when they came to the borders of Jordan, that are in the land of Canaan, the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh built an altar there by the Jordan, which was a great altar to be seen.

 11 And the children of Israel heard say, "Behold, the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh have built an altar over against the land of Canaan, in the borders of Jordan, at the passage of the children of Israel."

 12 And when the children of Israel heard of it, the whole congregation of the children of Israel gathered themselves together at Shilo to go up to war against them.

 13 And the children of Israel sent to the children of Reuben, and to the children 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 princes, each prince of a chief house throughout all the tribes of Israel; and each one was a head of the house of their fathers among the thousands of Israel.

 15 And they came to the children of Reuben, to the children of Gad, and to the half tribe of Manasseh, in the land of Gilead; and they spoke with them, saying,

 16 "Thus said the whole congregation of the LORD, 'What trespass is this that you have committed against the God of Israel, to turn away this day from following the LORD, in that you have built you an altar, that you might rebel this day against the LORD?

 17 Is the iniquity of Peor too little for us, from which we are not yet cleansed even until this day, although there was a plague in the congregation of the LORD,

 18 But that you must turn away this day from following the LORD? And it will be, seeing you rebel today against the LORD, that tomorrow the Lord will be angry with the whole congregation of Israel.

 19 Notwithstanding, if the land of your possession is unclean, then pass over to the land of the possession of the LORD, in which the LORD's tabernacle exists, and take possession among us; but do not rebel against the LORD, nor rebel against us by building yourselves an altar in addition to the altar of the LORD our God.

 20 Did not Achan the son of Zerah commit a trespass in the accursed thing, and wrath fell on all the congregation of Israel? And others perished with that man in his iniquity.'"

 21 Then the children of Reuben , the children of Gad, and the half tribe of Manasseh answered, saying to the heads of the thousands of Israel,

 22 "The LORD God of gods, the LORD God of gods, he knows, and Israel shall know. If the altar is in rebellion or in transgression against the LORD, do not spare us this day,

 23 Whether we have built us an altar to turn from following the LORD, or if to offer on it burnt offering or meat offering, or if to offer peace offerings on it; may the LORD himself exact vengeance ;

 24 And if rather have we not built an altar for fear that in the future your children might speak to our children, saying, 'What do you have have to do with the LORD God of Israel?

 25 For since the LORD has made Jordan a border between us and you, you children of Reuben and children of Gad; you have no part in the LORD. So shall your children might make our children cease from fearing the LORD.'

 26 Therefore we decided to prepare and build us an altar, not for burnt offering, nor for sacrifice;

 27 But that it may be a witness between us, and you, and our generations after us, that we might do the service of the LORD before him with our burnt offerings, and with our sacrifices, and with our peace offerings; that your children may not say to our children in time to come, 'You have no part in the LORD.'

 28 Therefore we decided that when you or your children should so say to us or to our generations in time to come, that we would say again, 'Behold the pattern of the altar of the LORD, which our fathers made, not for burnt offerings, nor for sacrifices; but as a witness between us and you.'

 29 God forbid that we should rebel against the LORD, and turn this day from following the LORD, to build an altar for burnt offerings, for meat offerings, or for sacrifices, beside the altar of the LORD our God that is before his tabernacle."

 30 And when Phinehas the priest, and the princes of the congregation and heads of the thousands of Israel that were with him heard the words that the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the children of Manasseh spoke, it pleased them.

 31 And Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest said to the children of Reuben, and to the children of Gad, and to the children of Manasseh, "We understand that in this day the LORD is among us because you have not committed this trespass against the LORD; now you have delivered the children of Israel out of the hand of the LORD."

 32 And Phinehas, the son of Eleazar the priest, and the princes, returned from the children of Reuben and of Gad from the land of Gilead to the land of Canaan, back to the children of Israel, bringing them a report of their words.

 33 And the result pleased the children of Israel; and the children of Israel blessed God, and no longer planned to go up against them in battle, to destroy the land in which the children of Reuben and Gad dwelled.

 34 And the children of Reuben and the children of Gad called the altar Ed, for it shall be a witness between us that the LORD is God.


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