Judges 21 - Prayer Tents



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Judges 21
New International Version (1984)

Wives for the Benjamites

21The men of Israel had taken an oath at Mizpah: "Not one of us will give his daughter in marriage to a Benjamite."H376H3478H7650H4709H559H376H5414H1323H1144H802 2The people went to Bethel, where they sat before God until evening, raising their voices and weeping bitterly.H5971H935H1004H430H1008H3427H6153H6440H430H5375H6963H1058H1065H1419 3"O LORD, the God of Israel," they cried, "why has this happened to Israel? Why should one tribe be missing from Israel today?"H559H3068H430H3478H3478H3117H259H7626H6485H3478 4Early the next day the people built an altar and presented burnt offerings and fellowship offerings.H4283H5971H7925H1129H4196H5927H5930H8002 5Then the Israelites asked, "Who from all the tribes of Israel has failed to assemble before the LORD?" For they had taken a solemn oath that anyone who failed to assemble before the LORD at Mizpah should certainly be put to death.H1121H3478H559H7626H3478H834H5927H6951H3068H1419H7621H5927H3068H4709H559H4191H4191 6Now the Israelites grieved for their brothers, the Benjamites. "Today one tribe is cut off from Israel," they said.H1121H3478H5162H1144H251H559H259H7626H1438H3478H3117 7"How can we provide wives for those who are left, since we have taken an oath by the LORD not to give them any of our daughters in marriage?"H6213H802H3498H7650H3068H5414H1323H802 8Then they asked, "Which one of the tribes of Israel failed to assemble before the LORD at Mizpah?" They discovered that no one from Jabesh Gilead had come to the camp for the assembly.H559H259H7626H3478H5927H4709H3068H935H376H4264H3003H1568H6951 9For when they counted the people, they found that none of the people of Jabesh Gilead were there.H5971H6485H376H3427H3003H1568 10So the assembly sent twelve thousand fighting men with instructions to go to Jabesh Gilead and put to the sword those living there, including the women and children.H5712H7971H8147H6240H505H376H1121H2428H6680H559H3212H5221H3427H3003H1568H6310H2719H802H2945 11"This is what you are to do," they said. "Kill every male and every woman who is not a virgin."H1697H6213H2763H2145H802H4904H3045 12They found among the people living in Jabesh Gilead four hundred young women who had never slept with a man, and they took them to the camp at Shiloh in Canaan.H4672H3427H3003H1568H702H3967H5291H1330H3045H376H4904H2145H935H4264H7887H776H3667 13Then the whole assembly sent an offer of peace to the Benjamites at the rock of Rimmon.H5712H7971H1696H1121H1144H5553H7417H7121H7965 14So the Benjamites returned at that time and were given the women of Jabesh Gilead who had been spared. But there were not enough for all of them.H1144H7725H6256H5414H802H2421H802H3003H1568H4672 15The people grieved for Benjamin, because the LORD had made a gap in the tribes of Israel.H5971H5162H1144H3068H6213H6556H7626H3478 16And the elders of the assembly said, "With the women of Benjamin destroyed, how shall we provide wives for the men who are left?H2205H5712H559H6213H802H3498H802H8045H1144 17The Benjamite survivors must have heirs," they said, "so that a tribe of Israel will not be wiped out.H559H3425H6413H1144H7626H4229H3478 18We can't give them our daughters as wives, since we Israelites have taken this oath: 'Cursed be anyone who gives a wife to a Benjamite.'H3201H5414H802H1323H1121H3478H7650H559H779H5414H802H1144 19But look, there is the annual festival of the LORD in Shiloh, to the north of Bethel, and east of the road that goes from Bethel to Shechem, and to the south of Lebonah."H559H2282H3068H7887H3117H3117H6828H1008H4217H8121H4546H5927H1008H7927H5045H3829 20So they instructed the Benjamites, saying, "Go and hide in the vineyardsH6680H1121H1144H559H3212H693H3754 21and watch. When the girls of Shiloh come out to join in the dancing, then rush from the vineyards and each of you seize a wife from the girls of Shiloh and go to the land of Benjamin.H7200H1323H7887H3318H2342H4246H3318H3754H2414H376H802H1323H7887H1980H776H1144 22When their fathers or brothers complain to us, we will say to them, 'Do us a kindness by helping them, because we did not get wives for them during the war, and you are innocent, since you did not give your daughters to them.'"H1H251H935H7378H559H2603H3947H376H802H4421H5414H6256H816 23So that is what the Benjamites did. While the girls were dancing, each man caught one and carried her off to be his wife. Then they returned to their inheritance and rebuilt the towns and settled in them.H1121H1144H6213H5375H802H4557H2342H1497H3212H7725H5159H1129H5892H3427 24At that time the Israelites left that place and went home to their tribes and clans, each to his own inheritance.H1121H3478H1980H6256H376H7626H4940H3318H376H5159 25In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as he saw fit.H3117H4428H3478H376H6213H3477H5869




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