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Numbers 31Amplified Bible (AMP)

The Slaughter of Midian

31 The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Take vengeance for the Israelites on the Midianites; afterward you will be gathered to your people [in death].” Moses spoke to the people, saying, “Arm men from among you for war, so that they may go against Midian to execute the Lord’s vengeance on Midian [for seducing Israel to participate in idolatry]. A thousand [fighting men] from each tribe of all the tribes of Israel you shall send to the war.” So out of the thousands of Israel, a thousand from each tribe were selected, twelve thousand armed for war. Moses sent them, a thousand from each tribe, to the war, and Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, to war with them, and the sacred vessels [of the sanctuary] and the trumpets to blow the alarm in his hand. They made war against Midian, just as the Lord had commanded Moses, and they killed every male. They killed the kings of Midian along with the rest of their slain: Evi and Rekem and Zur [the father of Cozbi] and Hur and Reba, the five kings of Midian; also Balaam the son of Beor they killed with the sword. The sons of Israel captured the women of Midian and their children; and all their cattle, all their livestock, and all their property they took as spoil [of war]. 10 They burned all the cities where they lived, and all their encampments with fire. 11 They took all the plunder and all the spoils of war, both people and livestock. 12 Then they brought the captives, the spoils, and the plunder to Moses and to Eleazar the priest and to the congregation of the Israelites at the camp on the plains of Moab by the Jordan [River] across from Jericho.

13 Moses and Eleazar the priest and all the leaders of the congregation went out to meet them outside the camp. 14 But Moses was angry with the officers of the army, the commanders of thousands and of hundreds, who served in the war. 15 And Moses said to them, “Have you let all the women live? 16 Look, these [are the women who] caused the Israelites, by the counsel of Balaam, to trespass against the Lord in the matter of Peor, and so a plague came among the congregation of the Lord. 17 Now therefore, kill every male among the children, and kill every woman who is not a virgin. 18 But all the young girls who have not known a man intimately, keep alive for yourselves [to marry]. 19 Camp outside the camp for seven days; whoever has killed any person and whoever has touched any dead body, purify yourselves and your captives, on the third day and on the seventh day. 20 You shall purify every garment and every article made of leather and all the things made of goats’ hair, and every article made of wood.”

21 Then Eleazar the priest said to the men of war who had gone to battle, “This is the statute of the law which the Lord has commanded Moses: 22 only the gold, the silver, the bronze, the iron, the tin, and the lead, 23 everything that can stand fire, you shall pass through fire, and it shall be clean. Nevertheless, it shall also be purified with the water of purification [to remove its impurity]; and all that cannot stand fire [such as fabrics] you shall pass through water. 24 And you shall wash your clothes on the seventh day and be clean, and afterward you may come into the camp.”

Division of the Spoil of War

25 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 26 “You and Eleazar the priest and the leaders of the fathers’ households of the congregation are to take a count of the spoil of war that was captured, both people and livestock. 27 Divide the spoil into two [equal] parts between those who were involved in the war, that is, those who went out to battle and all [the rest of] the congregation. 28 Levy a tax for the Lord from the warriors who went to battle, one in five hundred of the persons, the oxen, the donkeys, and the flocks. 29 Take this tribute from the warriors’ half and give it to Eleazar the priest as an offering to the Lord. 30 From the Israelites’ half [of the spoil] you shall take one out of every fifty of the persons, the oxen, the donkeys, the flocks, and of all the livestock, and give them to the Levites who are in charge of the tabernacle of the Lord.” 31 Moses and Eleazar the priest did just as the Lord had commanded Moses.

32 The plunder that remained from the spoil of war which the warriors had taken, was 675,000 sheep, 33 and 72,000 cattle, 34 and 61,000 donkeys, 35 and 32,000 persons in all, of the [Midianite] women who were virgins.

36 The half share, the portion of those who went to war, was 337,500 sheep in number, 37 and the Lord’s levy (tax) of the sheep was 675; 38 the cattle were 36,000, from which the Lord’s levy was 72; 39 the donkeys were 30,500, from which the Lord’s levy was 61; 40 the persons were 16,000, from whom the Lord’s levy was 32 persons. 41 Moses gave the levy which was the Lord’s offering to Eleazar the priest, just as the Lord had commanded Moses.

42 As for the Israelites’ half, which Moses separated from that of the warriors— 43 now the congregation’s half was 337,500 sheep, 44 and 36,000 cattle, 45 and 30,500 donkeys, 46 and 16,000 people— 47 and from the Israelites’ half, Moses took one out of every fifty, both of persons and animals, and gave them to the Levites, who were in charge of the tabernacle of the Lord, just as the Lord had commanded Moses.

48 Then the officers who were over the thousands of the army, the commanders of thousands and hundreds, approached Moses, 49 and they said to him, “Your servants have counted the warriors under our command, and not one man of us is missing. 50 So we have brought as an offering to the Lord what each man obtained—articles of gold, armlets, bracelets, signet rings, earrings, necklaces—to make atonement for ourselves before the Lord.” 51 Moses and Eleazar the priest took the gold from them, all the handmade articles. 52 All the gold of the offering which they presented to the Lord from the commanders of thousands and of hundreds was 16,750 shekels. 53 For the men of war had taken plunder, every man for himself. 54 So Moses and Eleazar the priest received the gold from the commanders of thousands and of hundreds, and brought it into the Tent of Meeting (tabernacle) as a memorial for the sons of Israel before the Lord.

Amplified Bible (AMP)

Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

Numbers 31New International Version (NIV)

Vengeance on the Midianites

31 The Lord said to Moses, “Take vengeance on the Midianites for the Israelites. After that, you will be gathered to your people.

So Moses said to the people, “Arm some of your men to go to war against the Midianites so that they may carry out the Lord’s vengeance on them. Send into battle a thousand men from each of the tribes of Israel.” So twelve thousand men armed for battle, a thousand from each tribe, were supplied from the clans of Israel. Moses sent them into battle, a thousand from each tribe, along with Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest, who took with him articles from the sanctuary and the trumpets for signaling.

They fought against Midian, as the Lord commanded Moses, and killed every man. Among their victims were Evi, Rekem, Zur, Hur and Reba—the five kings of Midian. They also killed Balaam son of Beor with the sword. The Israelites captured the Midianite women and children and took all the Midianite herds, flocks and goods as plunder. 10 They burned all the towns where the Midianites had settled, as well as all their camps. 11 They took all the plunder and spoils, including the people and animals, 12 and brought the captives, spoils and plunder to Moses and Eleazar the priest and the Israelite assembly at their camp on the plains of Moab, by the Jordan across from Jericho.

13 Moses, Eleazar the priest and all the leaders of the community went to meet them outside the camp. 14 Moses was angry with the officers of the army—the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds—who returned from the battle.

15 “Have you allowed all the women to live?” he asked them. 16 “They were the ones who followed Balaam’s advice and enticed the Israelites to be unfaithful to the Lord in the Peor incident, so that a plague struck the Lord’s people. 17 Now kill all the boys. And kill every woman who has slept with a man, 18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

19 “Anyone who has killed someone or touched someone who was killed must stay outside the camp seven days. On the third and seventh days you must purify yourselves and your captives. 20 Purify every garment as well as everything made of leather, goat hair or wood.

21 Then Eleazar the priest said to the soldiers who had gone into battle, “This is what is required by the law that the Lord gave Moses: 22 Gold, silver, bronze, iron, tin, lead 23 and anything else that can withstand fire must be put through the fire, and then it will be clean. But it must also be purified with the water of cleansing. And whatever cannot withstand fire must be put through that water. 24 On the seventh day wash your clothes and you will be clean. Then you may come into the camp.

Dividing the Spoils

25 The Lord said to Moses, 26 “You and Eleazar the priest and the family heads of the community are to count all the people and animals that were captured. 27 Divide the spoils equally between the soldiers who took part in the battle and the rest of the community. 28 From the soldiers who fought in the battle, set apart as tribute for the Lord one out of every five hundred, whether people, cattle, donkeys or sheep. 29 Take this tribute from their half share and give it to Eleazar the priest as the Lord’s part. 30 From the Israelites’ half, select one out of every fifty, whether people, cattle, donkeys, sheep or other animals. Give them to the Levites, who are responsible for the care of the Lord’s tabernacle. 31 So Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the Lord commanded Moses.

32 The plunder remaining from the spoils that the soldiers took was 675,000 sheep, 33 72,000 cattle, 34 61,000 donkeys 35 and 32,000 women who had never slept with a man.

36 The half share of those who fought in the battle was:

337,500 sheep, 37 of which the tribute for the Lord was 675;

38 36,000 cattle, of which the tribute for the Lord was 72;

39 30,500 donkeys, of which the tribute for the Lord was 61;

40 16,000 people, of whom the tribute for the Lord was 32.

41 Moses gave the tribute to Eleazar the priest as the Lord’s part, as the Lord commanded Moses.

42 The half belonging to the Israelites, which Moses set apart from that of the fighting men— 43 the community’s half—was 337,500 sheep, 44 36,000 cattle, 45 30,500 donkeys 46 and 16,000 people. 47 From the Israelites’ half, Moses selected one out of every fifty people and animals, as the Lord commanded him, and gave them to the Levites, who were responsible for the care of the Lord’s tabernacle.

48 Then the officers who were over the units of the army—the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds—went to Moses 49 and said to him, “Your servants have counted the soldiers under our command, and not one is missing. 50 So we have brought as an offering to the Lord the gold articles each of us acquired—armlets, bracelets, signet rings, earrings and necklaces—to make atonement for ourselves before the Lord.”

51 Moses and Eleazar the priest accepted from them the gold—all the crafted articles. 52 All the gold from the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds that Moses and Eleazar presented as a gift to the Lord weighed 16,750 shekels.[a] 53 Each soldier had taken plunder for himself. 54 Moses and Eleazar the priest accepted the gold from the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds and brought it into the tent of meeting as a memorial for the Israelites before the Lord.

Footnotes:

  1. Numbers 31:52 That is, about 420 pounds or about 190 kilograms
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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