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Deuteronomy 1 Modern English Version (MEV)

The Command to Leave Horeb

These are the words which Moses spoke to all Israel on the other side of the Jordan in the wilderness, in the plain opposite Suph, between Paran and Tophel and Laban and Hazeroth and Dizahab. (It is an eleven-day journey from Horeb by the way of Mount Seir to Kadesh Barnea.)

In the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first day of the month, Moses spoke to the children of Israel, according to all that the Lord had commanded him to give to them. It was after he had slain Sihon the king of the Amorites, who lived in Heshbon, and Og the king of Bashan, who lived at Ashtaroth in Edrei.

Across the Jordan, in the land of Moab, Moses began to declare this law, saying: The Lord our God spoke to us in Horeb, saying, “You have dwelt long enough at this mountain. Turn, and take your journey, and go to the mountains of the Amorites, and to all their neighbors, in the plain, in the mountains and in the lowland, in the Negev and by the seacoast, to the land of the Canaanites and to Lebanon, as far as the great river, the River Euphrates. See, I have set the land before you. Go in and possess the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give to them and to their descendants after them.”

Leaders Appointed

I spoke to you at that time, saying, “I am not able to bear you by myself. 10 The Lord your God has multiplied you, and surely you are this day as numerous as the stars of heaven. 11 May the Lord, the God of your fathers, make you a thousand times more numerous and bless you, just as He has promised you! 12 How can I myself bear your load and your burden and your strife? 13 Choose wise, discerning, and knowing men, among your tribes, and I will appoint them as leaders over you.”

14 You answered me, and said, “The thing which you have said is good for us to do.”

15 So I took the leaders of your tribes, wise and well-known men, and appointed them as leaders over you, leaders over thousands, and leaders over hundreds, and leaders over fifties, and leaders over tens, and officers among your tribes. 16 I charged your judges at that time, saying, “Hear the issues between your countrymen, and judge righteously between every man and his fellow countryman, and the foreigner that is with him. 17 You shall not show partiality in judgment, but you shall hear the small as well as the great. You shall not be afraid in any man’s presence, for the judgment is God’s. The case that is too hard for you, you shall bring it to me, and I will hear it.” 18 At that time, I commanded you all the things you should do.

Israel Sends Spies

19 When we departed from Horeb, we went through all that great and terrible wilderness, which you saw by the way of the mountain of the Amorites, as the Lord our God commanded us, and we came to Kadesh Barnea. 20 I said to you, “You have come to the mountains of the Amorites, which the Lord our God is giving to us. 21 See, the Lord your God has set the land before you. Go up and possess it, just as the Lord, the God of your fathers, spoke to you. Do not fear or be discouraged.”

22 So all of you came near to me and said, “Let us send men before us, so that they shall scout out the land, and bring back to us word concerning what way we should go up and into what cities we shall come.”

23 The thing pleased me, and I took twelve men from you, one out of each tribe. 24 They turned and went up into the hill country and came to the Valley of Eshkol and scouted it out. 25 They took the fruit of the land in their hands, and brought it down to us, and brought us word again, and said, “It is a good land which the Lord our God is giving us.”

Israel Rebels

26 Yet you were not willing to go up, but rebelled against the commandment of the Lord your God. 27 You murmured in your tents, and said, “Because the Lord hates us, He has brought us out of the land of Egypt to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites to destroy us. 28 Where shall we go up? Our brothers have discouraged our hearts, saying, ‘The people are greater and taller than we. The cities are great and walled up to heaven. And moreover, we have seen the sons of the Anakites there.’ ”

29 Then I said to you, “Do not be terrified, or afraid of them. 30 The Lord your God who goes before you, He shall fight for you, just as all that He did for you in Egypt before your eyes, 31 and in the wilderness, where you saw how the Lord your God carried you, as a man carries his son, in all the way that you went, until you came to this place.”

32 Yet in this thing you did not believe the Lord your God, 33 who went in the way before you, to find you a place to pitch your tents, in fire by night and in a cloud by day, to show you by what way you should go.

34 The Lord heard the sound of your words, and was angry, and vowed, saying, 35 “Not one of these men of this evil generation will see the good land which I swore to give to your fathers. 36 The exception will be Caleb the son of Jephunneh. He shall see it, and to him I will give the land upon which he has walked, and to his children, because he has wholly followed the Lord.”

37 Also the Lord was angry with me on your account, saying, “You also shall not go in. 38 But Joshua the son of Nun, who stands before you, he shall go in. Encourage him, for he will cause Israel to inherit it. 39 Moreover, your little ones, who you said would be a prey, and your children, who in that day had no knowledge between good and evil, they shall go in, and to them will I give it, and they shall possess it. 40 But as for you, turn around, and take your journey into the wilderness by the way of the Red Sea.”

41 Then you answered and said to me, “We have sinned against the Lord. We will go up and fight, just as the Lord our God commanded us.” So each of you girded on his weapons of war and you thought it easy to go up into the hill country.

42 Then the Lord said to me, “Tell them, ‘Do not go up nor fight, for I am not among you; lest you be defeated before your enemies.’ ”

43 So I spoke to you, but you would not listen. Instead, you rebelled against the commandment of the Lord and went presumptuously up into the hill country. 44 The Amorites, who lived in the hill country, came out against you, and chased you as bees do, and destroyed you in Seir as far as Hormah. 45 Then you returned and wept before the Lord, but the Lord would neither listen to your voice nor give ear to you. 46 So you dwelt in Kadesh many days, according to the days you dwelt there.

Modern English Version (MEV)

The Holy Bible, Modern English Version. Copyright © 2014 by Military Bible Association. Published and distributed by Charisma House.

Deuteronomy 1 New International Version (NIV)

The Command to Leave Horeb

These are the words Moses spoke to all Israel in the wilderness east of the Jordan—that is, in the Arabah—opposite Suph, between Paran and Tophel, Laban, Hazeroth and Dizahab. (It takes eleven days to go from Horeb to Kadesh Barnea by the Mount Seir road.)

In the fortieth year, on the first day of the eleventh month, Moses proclaimed to the Israelites all that the Lord had commanded him concerning them. This was after he had defeated Sihon king of the Amorites, who reigned in Heshbon, and at Edrei had defeated Og king of Bashan, who reigned in Ashtaroth.

East of the Jordan in the territory of Moab, Moses began to expound this law, saying:

The Lord our God said to us at Horeb, “You have stayed long enough at this mountain. Break camp and advance into the hill country of the Amorites; go to all the neighboring peoples in the Arabah, in the mountains, in the western foothills, in the Negev and along the coast, to the land of the Canaanites and to Lebanon, as far as the great river, the Euphrates. See, I have given you this land. Go in and take possession of the land the Lord swore he would give to your fathers—to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob—and to their descendants after them.”

The Appointment of Leaders

At that time I said to you, “You are too heavy a burden for me to carry alone. 10 The Lord your God has increased your numbers so that today you are as numerous as the stars in the sky. 11 May the Lord, the God of your ancestors, increase you a thousand times and bless you as he has promised! 12 But how can I bear your problems and your burdens and your disputes all by myself? 13 Choose some wise, understanding and respected men from each of your tribes, and I will set them over you.”

14 You answered me, “What you propose to do is good.”

15 So I took the leading men of your tribes, wise and respected men, and appointed them to have authority over you—as commanders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens and as tribal officials. 16 And I charged your judges at that time, “Hear the disputes between your people and judge fairly, whether the case is between two Israelites or between an Israelite and a foreigner residing among you. 17 Do not show partiality in judging; hear both small and great alike. Do not be afraid of anyone, for judgment belongs to God. Bring me any case too hard for you, and I will hear it.” 18 And at that time I told you everything you were to do.

Spies Sent Out

19 Then, as the Lord our God commanded us, we set out from Horeb and went toward the hill country of the Amorites through all that vast and dreadful wilderness that you have seen, and so we reached Kadesh Barnea. 20 Then I said to you, “You have reached the hill country of the Amorites, which the Lord our God is giving us. 21 See, the Lord your God has given you the land. Go up and take possession of it as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, told you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”

22 Then all of you came to me and said, “Let us send men ahead to spy out the land for us and bring back a report about the route we are to take and the towns we will come to.”

23 The idea seemed good to me; so I selected twelve of you, one man from each tribe. 24 They left and went up into the hill country, and came to the Valley of Eshkol and explored it. 25 Taking with them some of the fruit of the land, they brought it down to us and reported, “It is a good land that the Lord our God is giving us.”

Rebellion Against the Lord

26 But you were unwilling to go up; you rebelled against the command of the Lord your God. 27 You grumbled in your tents and said, “The Lord hates us; so he brought us out of Egypt to deliver us into the hands of the Amorites to destroy us. 28 Where can we go? Our brothers have made our hearts melt in fear. They say, ‘The people are stronger and taller than we are; the cities are large, with walls up to the sky. We even saw the Anakites there.’”

29 Then I said to you, “Do not be terrified; do not be afraid of them. 30 The Lord your God, who is going before you, will fight for you, as he did for you in Egypt, before your very eyes, 31 and in the wilderness. There you saw how the Lord your God carried you, as a father carries his son, all the way you went until you reached this place.”

32 In spite of this, you did not trust in the Lord your God, 33 who went ahead of you on your journey, in fire by night and in a cloud by day, to search out places for you to camp and to show you the way you should go.

34 When the Lord heard what you said, he was angry and solemnly swore: 35 “No one from this evil generation shall see the good land I swore to give your ancestors, 36 except Caleb son of Jephunneh. He will see it, and I will give him and his descendants the land he set his feet on, because he followed the Lord wholeheartedly.

37 Because of you the Lord became angry with me also and said, “You shall not enter it, either. 38 But your assistant, Joshua son of Nun, will enter it. Encourage him, because he will lead Israel to inherit it. 39 And the little ones that you said would be taken captive, your children who do not yet know good from bad—they will enter the land. I will give it to them and they will take possession of it. 40 But as for you, turn around and set out toward the desert along the route to the Red Sea.[a]

41 Then you replied, “We have sinned against the Lord. We will go up and fight, as the Lord our God commanded us.” So every one of you put on his weapons, thinking it easy to go up into the hill country.

42 But the Lord said to me, “Tell them, ‘Do not go up and fight, because I will not be with you. You will be defeated by your enemies.’”

43 So I told you, but you would not listen. You rebelled against the Lord’s command and in your arrogance you marched up into the hill country. 44 The Amorites who lived in those hills came out against you; they chased you like a swarm of bees and beat you down from Seir all the way to Hormah. 45 You came back and wept before the Lord, but he paid no attention to your weeping and turned a deaf ear to you. 46 And so you stayed in Kadesh many days—all the time you spent there.

Footnotes:

  1. Deuteronomy 1:40 Or the Sea of Reeds
New International Version (NIV)

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