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Joshua 4-6 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 4

Memorial Stones. After the entire nation had completed the crossing of the Jordan, the Lord said to Joshua: Choose twelve men from the people, one from each tribe, and command them, “Take up twelve stones from this spot in the Jordan riverbed where the priests have been standing. Carry them over with you, and place them where you are to stay tonight.”

Summoning the twelve men he had selected from among the Israelites, one from each tribe, Joshua said to them: “Go to the Jordan riverbed in front of the ark of the Lord, your God; lift to your shoulders one stone apiece, so that they will equal in number the tribes of the Israelites. In the future, these are to be a sign among you. When your children ask you,[a] ‘What do these stones mean to you?’ you shall answer them, ‘The waters of the Jordan ceased to flow before the ark of the covenant of the Lord when it crossed the Jordan.’ Thus these stones are to serve as a perpetual memorial to the Israelites.” The twelve Israelites did as Joshua had commanded: they took up twelve stones from the Jordan riverbed as the Lord had said to Joshua, one for each of the tribes of the Israelites. They carried them along to the camp site, and there they placed them. Joshua set up the twelve stones that had been in the Jordan riverbed on the spot where the priests stood who were carrying the ark of the covenant. They are there to this day.

10 [b]The priests carrying the ark stood in the Jordan riverbed until everything had been done that the Lord had commanded Joshua to tell the people, just as Moses had commanded Joshua. The people crossed over quickly, 11 and when all the people had completed the crossing, the ark of the Lord also crossed; and the priests were now in front of them. 12 The Reubenites, Gadites, and half-tribe of Manasseh, armed, marched in the vanguard of the Israelites, as Moses had ordered. 13 About forty thousand troops, equipped for battle, crossed over before the Lord to the plains of Jericho for war.

14 That day the Lord exalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel, and so during his whole life they feared him as they had feared Moses.

15 Then the Lord said to Joshua: 16 Command the priests carrying the ark of the covenant to come up from the Jordan. 17 Joshua commanded the priests, “Come up from the Jordan,” 18 and when the priests carrying the ark of the covenant of the Lord had come up from the Jordan riverbed, as the soles of their feet regained the dry ground, the waters of the Jordan resumed their course and as before overflowed all its banks.

19 The people came up from the Jordan on the tenth day of the first month, and camped in Gilgal on the eastern limits of Jericho. 20 At Gilgal Joshua set up the twelve stones that had been taken from the Jordan, 21 saying to the Israelites, “In the future, when your children ask their parents, ‘What do these stones mean?’ 22 you shall inform them, ‘Israel crossed the Jordan here on dry ground.’ 23 For the Lord, your God, dried up the waters of the Jordan in front of you until you crossed over, just as the Lord, your God, had done at the Red Sea, drying it up in front of us until we crossed over, 24 in order that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, and that you may fear the Lord, your God, forever.”

Chapter 5

Rites at Gilgal. When all the kings of the Amorites to the west of the Jordan and all the kings of the Canaanites by the sea heard that the Lord had dried up the waters of the Jordan before the Israelites until they crossed over, their hearts melted and they were utterly dispirited because of the Israelites.

On this occasion the Lord said to Joshua: Make flint knives and circumcise Israel for the second time. So Joshua made flint knives and circumcised the Israelites at Gibeath-haaraloth.[c] This was the reason for the circumcision: Of all the people who had come out of Egypt, every male of military age had died in the wilderness during the journey after they came out of Egypt. Though all the men who came out were circumcised, none of those born in the wilderness during the journey after the departure from Egypt were circumcised. Now the Israelites wandered forty years in the wilderness, until all the warriors among the people that came forth from Egypt died off because they had not listened to the voice of the Lord. For the Lord swore that he would not let them see the land he had sworn to their ancestors to give us, a land flowing with milk and honey. It was the children God raised up in their stead whom Joshua circumcised, for these were yet with foreskins, not having been circumcised on the journey. When the circumcision of the entire nation was complete, they remained in camp where they were, until they recovered. Then the Lord said to Joshua: Today I have removed the reproach of Egypt from you. Therefore the place is called Gilgal[d] to the present day.

10 While the Israelites were encamped at Gilgal on the plains of Jericho, they celebrated the Passover on the evening of the fourteenth day of the month.[e] 11 On the day after the Passover they ate of the produce of the land in the form of unleavened cakes and parched grain. On that same day 12 after they ate of the produce of the land, the manna ceased. No longer was there manna for the Israelites, who that year ate of the yield of the land of Canaan.

Siege at Jericho. 13 [f]While Joshua was near Jericho, he raised his eyes and saw one who stood facing him, drawn sword in hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, “Are you one of us or one of our enemies?” 14 He replied, “Neither. I am the commander[g] of the army of the Lord: now I have come.” Then Joshua fell down to the ground in worship, and said to him, “What has my lord to say to his servant?” 15 The commander of the army of the Lord replied to Joshua, “Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did so.

Chapter 6

Now Jericho was in a state of siege because of the presence of the Israelites. No one left or entered. And to Joshua the Lord said: I have delivered Jericho, its king, and its warriors into your power. Have all the soldiers circle the city, marching once around it. Do this for six days, with seven priests carrying ram’s horns ahead of the ark. On the seventh day march around the city seven times, and have the priests blow the horns. When they give a long blast on the ram’s horns and you hear the sound of the horn, all the people shall shout aloud. The wall of the city will collapse, and the people shall attack straight ahead.

Summoning the priests, Joshua, son of Nun, said to them, “Take up the ark of the covenant with seven of the priests carrying ram’s horns in front of the ark of the Lord.” And he ordered the people, “Proceed and surround the city, with the picked troops marching ahead of the ark of the Lord.” When Joshua spoke to the people, the seven priests who carried the ram’s horns before the Lord marched and blew their horns, and the ark of the covenant of the Lord followed them. In front of the priests with the horns marched the picked troops; the rear guard followed the ark, and the blowing of horns was kept up continually as they marched. 10 But Joshua had commanded the people, “Do not shout or make any noise or outcry until I tell you, ‘Shout!’ Then you must shout.” 11 So he had the ark of the Lord circle the city, going once around it, after which they returned to camp for the night.

12 Early the next morning, Joshua had the priests take up the ark of the Lord. 13 The seven priests bearing the ram’s horns marched in front of the ark of the Lord, blowing their horns. Ahead of these marched the picked troops, while the rear guard followed the ark of the Lord, and the blowing of horns was kept up continually. 14 On this second day they again marched around the city once before returning to camp; and for six days in all they did the same.

15 On the seventh day, beginning at daybreak, they marched around the city seven times in the same manner; on that day only did they march around the city seven times. 16 The seventh time around, the priests blew the horns and Joshua said to the people, “Now shout, for the Lord has given you the city. 17 The city and everything in it is under the ban. Only Rahab the prostitute and all who are in the house with her are to live, because she hid the messengers we sent. 18 But be careful not to covet or take anything that is under the ban;[h] otherwise you will bring upon the camp of Israel this ban and the misery of it. 19 All silver and gold, and the articles of bronze or iron, are holy to the Lord. They shall be put in the treasury of the Lord.”

The Fall of Jericho. 20 As the horns blew, the people began to shout. When they heard the sound of the horn, they raised a tremendous shout. The wall collapsed,[i] and the people attacked the city straight ahead and took it. 21 They observed the ban by putting to the sword all living creatures in the city: men and women, young and old, as well as oxen, sheep and donkeys.

22 To the two men who had spied out the land, Joshua said, “Go into the prostitute’s house and bring out the woman with all her family, as you swore to her you would do.” 23 The spies entered and brought out Rahab, with her father, mother, brothers, and all her family; her entire family they led forth and placed outside the camp of Israel. 24 The city itself they burned with all that was in it; but the silver, gold, and articles of bronze and iron they placed in the treasury of the house of the Lord. 25 [j]Because Rahab the prostitute had hidden the messengers whom Joshua had sent to reconnoiter Jericho, Joshua let her live, along with her father’s house and all her family, who dwell in the midst of Israel to this day.

26 On that occasion Joshua imposed the oath: Cursed before the Lord be the man who attempts to rebuild this city, Jericho. At the cost of his firstborn will he lay its foundation, and at the cost of his youngest son will he set up its gates.[k]

27 Thus the Lord was with Joshua so that his fame spread throughout the land.


  1. 4:6 When your children ask you: reminiscent of the question and response at the Passover meal, Ex 12:26–27.
  2. 4:10–18 After the digression about the memorial stones, the author resumes the narrative by briefly repeating the story of the crossing, which had already been told in 3:14–17.
  3. 5:3 Gibeath-haaraloth: “Hill of the Foreskins.”
  4. 5:9 The place is called Gilgal: by popular etymology, because of the similarity of sound with the Hebrew word gallothi, “I have removed.” Gilgal probably means “circle,” i.e., the place of the circle of standing stones. Cf. 4:4–8.
  5. 5:10 The month: the first month of the year, later called Nisan; see note on 3:15. The crossing of the Jordan occurred, therefore, about the same time of the year as did the crossing of the Red Sea; cf. Ex 12–14.
  6. 5:13–6:26 The account of the siege of Jericho embraces: (1) the command of the Lord to Joshua (5:13–6:5); (2) Joshua’s instructions to the Israelites, with a brief summary of how these orders were carried out (6:6–11); (3) a description of the action on each of the first six days (6:12–14); (4) the events on the seventh day (6:15–26).
  7. 5:14 Commander: the leader of the heavenly army of the Lord of hosts is either the Lord or an angelic warrior; if the latter, he is a messenger who speaks in the person of the one who sent him. I have come: the solemn language of theophany; cf., e.g., Ps 50:3; 96:13.
  8. 6:18 Under the ban: doomed to destruction; see notes on Lv 27:28; Nm 18:14; 21:3.
  9. 6:20 The blowing of the horns and the shouting, features of the ritual procession with the ark of the covenant (cf. 1 Chr 15:28; 2 Chr 5:11–14), are the people’s counterpart of the Lord’s theophany; cf. note on Jgs 5:4–5; and Jgs 7:15–22; 2 Chr 13:15. The Lord gives the victory; this is the theological point of the story.
  10. 6:25 The genealogy of Jesus in Matthew (1:2–16) presents Rahab the prostitute as the wife of Salmon (1:5) and so the ancestor of David (Ru 4:18–22) and of Jesus.
  11. 6:26 At the cost of his firstborn…its gates: this curse was fulfilled when Hiel rebuilt Jericho as a fortified city during the reign of Ahab, king of Israel; cf. 1 Kgs 16:34.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Psalm 106 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Psalm 106[a]

Israel’s Confession of Sin



Give thanks to the Lord, who is good,
    whose mercy endures forever.
Who can recount the mighty deeds of the Lord,
    proclaim in full God’s praise?
Blessed those who do what is right,
    whose deeds are always just.
Remember me, Lord, as you favor your people;
    come to me with your saving help,
That I may see the prosperity of your chosen ones,
    rejoice in the joy of your people,
    and glory with your heritage.


We have sinned like our ancestors;
    we have done wrong and are guilty.


Our ancestors in Egypt
    did not attend to your wonders.
They did not remember your manifold mercy;
    they defied the Most High at the Red Sea.
Yet he saved them for his name’s sake
    to make his power known.
He roared at the Red Sea and it dried up.
    He led them through the deep as through a desert.
10 He rescued them from hostile hands,
    freed them from the power of the enemy.
11 The waters covered their oppressors;
    not one of them survived.
12 Then they believed his words
    and sang his praise.


13 But they soon forgot all he had done;
    they had no patience for his plan.
14 In the desert they gave in to their cravings,
    tempted God in the wasteland.
15 So he gave them what they asked
    and sent a wasting disease against them.


16 In the camp they challenged Moses
    and Aaron, the holy one of the Lord.
17 The earth opened and swallowed Dathan,
    it closed on the followers of Abiram.
18 Against their company the fire blazed;
    flames consumed the wicked.


19 At Horeb they fashioned a calf,
    worshiped a metal statue.
20 They exchanged their glory[b]
    for the image of a grass-eating bull.
21 They forgot the God who had saved them,
    who had done great deeds in Egypt,
22 Amazing deeds in the land of Ham,
    fearsome deeds at the Red Sea.
23 He would have decreed their destruction,
    had not Moses, his chosen one,
Withstood him in the breach[c]
    to turn back his destroying anger.


24 Next they despised the beautiful land;
    they did not believe the promise.
25 In their tents they complained;
    they did not heed the voice of the Lord.
26 So with raised hand he swore
    he would destroy them in the desert,
27 And scatter their descendants among the nations,
    disperse them in foreign lands.


28 They joined in the rites of Baal of Peor,
    ate food sacrificed to the dead.
29 They provoked him by their actions,
    and a plague broke out among them.
30 Then Phinehas rose to intervene,
    and the plague was brought to a halt.
31 This was counted for him as a righteous deed
    for all generations to come.


32 At the waters of Meribah they angered God,
    and Moses suffered because of them.[d]
33 They so embittered his spirit
    that rash words crossed his lips.


34 They did not destroy the peoples
    as the Lord had commanded them,
35 But mingled with the nations
    and imitated their ways.
36 They served their idols
    and were ensnared by them.
37 They sacrificed to demons[e]
    their own sons and daughters,
38 Shedding innocent blood,
    the blood of their own sons and daughters,
Whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan,
    desecrating the land with bloodshed.
39 They defiled themselves by their actions,
    became adulterers by their conduct.
40 So the Lord grew angry with his people,
    abhorred his own heritage.
41 He handed them over to the nations,
    and their adversaries ruled over them.
42 Their enemies oppressed them,
    kept them under subjection.
43 Many times did he rescue them,
    but they kept rebelling and scheming
    and were brought low by their own guilt.
44 Still God had regard for their affliction
    when he heard their wailing.
45 For their sake he remembered his covenant
    and relented in his abundant mercy,
46 Winning for them compassion
    from all who held them captive.


47 Save us, Lord, our God;
    gather us from among the nations
That we may give thanks to your holy name
    and glory in praising you.
48 [f]Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,
    from everlasting to everlasting!
    Let all the people say, Amen!


  1. Psalm 106 Israel is invited to praise the God whose mercy has always tempered judgment of Israel (Ps 106:1–3). The speaker, on behalf of all, seeks solidarity with the people, who can always count on God’s fidelity despite their sin (Ps 106:4–5). Confident of God’s mercy, the speaker invites national repentance (Ps 106:6) by reciting from Israel’s history eight instances of sin, judgment, and forgiveness. The sins are the rebellion at the Red Sea (Ps 106:6–12; see Ex 14–15), the craving for meat in the desert (Ps 106:13–15; see Nm 11), the challenge to Moses’ authority (Ps 106:16–18; see Nm 16), the golden calf episode (Ps 106:19–23; see Ex 32–34), the refusal to take Canaan by the southern route (Ps 106:24–27; see Nm 13–14 and Dt 1–2), the rebellion at Baal-Peor (Ps 106:28–31; see Nm 25:1–10), the anger of Moses (Ps 106:32–33; see Nm 20:1–13), and mingling with the nations (Ps 106:34–47). The last, as suggested by its length and generalized language, may be the sin that invites the repentance of the present generation. The text gives the site of each sin: Egypt (Ps 106:7), the desert (Ps 106:14), the camp (Ps 106:16), Horeb (Ps 106:19), in their tents (Ps 106:25), Baal-Peor (Ps 106:28), the waters of Meribah (Ps 106:32), Canaan (Ps 106:38).
  2. 106:20 Their glory: meant as a reference to God.
  3. 106:23 Withstood him in the breach: the image is that of Moses standing in a narrow break made in the wall to keep anyone from entering.
  4. 106:32 Moses suffered because of them: Moses was not allowed to enter the promised land because of his rash words (Nm 20:12). According to Dt 1:37, Moses was not allowed to cross because of the people’s sin, not his own.
  5. 106:37 Demons: Hebrew shedim occurs in parallelism with “gods” in an important inscription from Transjordan and hence can also be translated “the gods.”
  6. 106:48 A doxology ending Book IV of the Psalter. It is not part of the Psalm.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

1 Thessalonians 5 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 5

Vigilance. Concerning times and seasons, brothers, you have no need for anything to be written to you. For you yourselves know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief at night. When people are saying, “Peace and security,” then sudden disaster comes upon them, like labor pains upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.

But you, brothers, are not in darkness, for that day to overtake you like a thief. For all of you are children of the light[a] and children of the day. We are not of the night or of darkness. Therefore, let us not sleep as the rest do, but let us stay alert and sober. Those who sleep go to sleep at night, and those who are drunk get drunk at night. But since we are of the day, let us be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love and the helmet that is hope for salvation. For God did not destine us for wrath, but to gain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep we may live together with him.[b] 11 Therefore, encourage one another and build one another up, as indeed you do.

Church Order. 12 We ask you, brothers, to respect those who are laboring among you and who are over you in the Lord and who admonish you, 13 and to show esteem for them with special love on account of their work. Be at peace among yourselves.

14 We urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, cheer the fainthearted, support the weak, be patient with all. 15 See that no one returns evil for evil; rather, always seek what is good [both] for each other and for all. 16 Rejoice always. 17 Pray without ceasing. 18 In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. 19 [c]Do not quench the Spirit. 20 Do not despise prophetic utterances. 21 Test everything; retain what is good. 22 Refrain from every kind of evil.

Concluding Prayer. 23 [d]May the God of peace himself make you perfectly holy and may you entirely, spirit, soul, and body, be preserved blameless for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 The one who calls you is faithful, and he will also accomplish it. 25 Brothers, pray for us [too].

IV. Final Greeting

26 Greet all the brothers with a holy kiss.[e] 27 I adjure you by the Lord that this letter be read to all the brothers. 28 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.


  1. 5:5 Children of the light: that is, belonging to the daylight of God’s personal revelation and expected to achieve it (an analogous development of imagery that appears in Jn 12:36).
  2. 5:10 Characteristically, Paul plays on words suggesting ultimate and anticipated death and life. Union with the crucified and risen Lord at his parousia is anticipated in some measure in contrasted states of our temporal life. The essential element he urges is our indestructible personal union in Christ’s own life (see Rom 5:1–10).
  3. 5:19–21 Paul’s buoyant encouragement of charismatic freedom sometimes occasioned excesses that he or others had to remedy (see 1 Cor 14; 2 Thes 2:1–15; 2 Pt 3:1–16).
  4. 5:23 Another possible translation is, “May the God of peace himself make you perfectly holy and sanctify your spirit fully, and may both soul and body be preserved blameless for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” In either case, Paul is not offering an anthropological or philosophical analysis of human nature. Rather, he looks to the wholeness of what may be called the supernatural and natural aspects of a person’s service of God.
  5. 5:26 Kiss: the holy embrace (see Rom 16:16; 1 Cor 16:20; 2 Cor 13:12; 1 Pt 5:14) was a greeting of respect and affection, perhaps given during a liturgy at which Paul’s letter would have been read.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.


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