Israel’s History after the Exodus

These are the words that Moses spoke to all Israel (A)across the Jordan in the wilderness, in the (B)Arabah opposite [a]Suph, between Paran and Tophel, Laban, Hazeroth, and Dizahab. It is eleven days’ journey from (C)Horeb by way of Mount (D)Seir to (E)Kadesh-barnea. In the (F)fortieth year, on the first day of the eleventh month, Moses spoke to the sons of Israel, (G)in accordance with everything that the Lord had commanded him to declare to them, after he had [b](H)defeated Sihon the king of the Amorites, who lived in Heshbon, and (I)Og the king of Bashan, who lived in (J)Ashtaroth [c]and in Edrei. Across the Jordan in the land of Moab, Moses began to explain this Law, saying,

“The Lord our God (K)spoke to us at Horeb, saying, ‘You have stayed long enough at this mountain. Turn and set out on your journey, and go to (L)the hill country of the Amorites, and to all their neighbors in the Arabah, in the hill country, in the lowland, in (M)the [d]Negev, by the seacoast, the land of the Canaanites, and Lebanon, as far as the great river, the river Euphrates. See, I have placed the land before you; go in and take possession of the land which the Lord (N)swore to give to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, and their [e]descendants after them.’

“And I spoke to you at that time, saying, ‘(O)I am not able to endure you alone. 10 The Lord your God has (P)multiplied you, and behold, you are this day like the stars of heaven in number. 11 May the Lord, the God of your fathers increase you a thousand times more than you are, and bless you, (Q)just as He has [f]promised you! 12 How can I alone endure the burden and weight of you and your strife? 13 (R)Obtain for yourselves men who are wise, discerning, and informed from your tribes, and I will appoint them as your heads.’ 14 And you answered me and said, ‘The thing which you have said to do is good.’ 15 So I took the heads of your tribes, wise and informed men, and [g]appointed them as heads over you, commanders of thousands, [h]hundreds, [i]fifties, and [j]tens, and officers for your tribes.

16 “Then I ordered your judges at that time, saying, ‘Hear the cases between your fellow countrymen and (S)judge righteously between a person and his fellow countryman, or the stranger who is with him. 17 (T)You are not to [k]show partiality in judgment; you shall hear the small and the great alike. You are (U)not to be afraid of any person, for the judgment is God’s. (V)The case that is too difficult for you, you shall bring to me, and I will hear it.’ 18 At that time (W)I commanded you all the things that you were to do.

19 “Then we set out from (X)Horeb, and went through all that (Y)great and terrible wilderness that you saw on the way to the (Z)hill country of the Amorites, just as the Lord our God had commanded us; and we came to (AA)Kadesh-barnea. 20 And I said to you, ‘You have come to the hill country of the Amorites, which the Lord our God is about to give us. 21 See, the Lord your God has placed the land before you; go up, take possession, just as the Lord, the God of your fathers, has spoken to you. (AB)Do not fear or be dismayed.’

22 (AC)Then all of you approached me and said, ‘Let us send men ahead of us, so that they may spy out the land for us, and bring back to us word of the way by which we should go up, and the cities which we should enter.’ 23 The [l]plan pleased me, and I took twelve of your men, one man for each tribe. 24 Then (AD)they turned and went up into the hill country, and came to the Valley of Eshcol, and spied it out. 25 And they took some of the fruit of the land in their hands and brought it down to us. They also brought us back a report and said, ‘The land that the Lord our God is about to give us is good.’

26 (AE)Yet you were unwilling to go up; instead you (AF)rebelled against the [m]command of the Lord your God; 27 and (AG)you grumbled in your tents and said, ‘Because the Lord hates us, He has brought us out of the land of Egypt, to hand us over to the Amorites to destroy us. 28 Where can we go up? Our brothers have made our hearts melt, by saying, “The people are bigger and taller than we; the cities are large and fortified up to heaven. And besides, we saw (AH)the sons of the Anakim there.”’ 29 But I said to you, ‘Do not be terrified, nor fear them. 30 The Lord your God, who goes before you, will (AI)Himself fight for you, [n]just as He did for you in Egypt before your eyes, 31 and in the wilderness where you saw how (AJ)the Lord your God carried you, just as a man carries his son, on all of the road which you have walked until you came to this place.’ 32 Yet [o](AK)in spite of all this, you did not trust the Lord your God, 33 (AL)who goes before you on your way, (AM)to seek out a place for you to make camp, in the fire by night to show you the way by which you should go, and in the cloud by day.

34 “Then the Lord heard the sound of your words, and He was angry and (AN)swore an oath, saying, 35 (AO)Not one of these men, this evil generation, shall see the good land which I swore to give your fathers, 36 except Caleb the son of Jephunneh; he shall see it, and (AP)to him I will give the land on which he has set foot, and to his sons, because he has followed the Lord fully.’ 37 (AQ)The Lord was angry with me also on your account, saying, ‘(AR)Not even you shall enter there. 38 Joshua the son of Nun, who stands before you, (AS)shall himself enter there; encourage him, for (AT)he will give it to Israel as an inheritance. 39 Moreover, (AU)your little ones who, you said, would become plunder, and your sons, who this day have (AV)no knowledge of good and evil, shall enter there, and I will give it to them and they shall take possession of it. 40 But as for you, (AW)turn around and set out for the wilderness by the way of the [p]Red Sea.’

41 (AX)Then you replied to me, ‘We have sinned against the Lord; we ourselves will go up and fight, just as the Lord our God commanded us.’ And every man of you strapped on his weapons of war, and you viewed it as easy to go up into the hill country. 42 (AY)But the Lord said to me, ‘Say to them, “Do not go up nor fight, for I am not among you; otherwise you will be [q]defeated [r]by your enemies.”’ 43 So I spoke to you, but you would not listen. Instead, (AZ)you rebelled against the [s]command of the Lord, and acted presumptuously and went up into the hill country. 44 (BA)And the Amorites who lived in that hill country came out against you and chased you (BB)as bees do, and they scattered you from Seir to Hormah. 45 Then you returned and wept before the Lord; but the (BC)Lord did not listen to your voice, nor pay attention to you. 46 So you remained at (BD)Kadesh for many days, [t]the days that you spent there.

Wanderings in the Wilderness

(BE)Then we turned and set out for the wilderness by the way of the [u]Red Sea, as the Lord spoke to me, and we circled (BF)Mount Seir for many days. And the Lord spoke to me, saying, ‘You have circled this mountain long enough. Now turn north, (BG)and command the people, saying, “You are going to pass through the (BH)territory of your brothers the sons of Esau, who live in Seir; and (BI)they will be afraid of you. So be very careful; do not [v]provoke them, for I will not give you any of their land, not even as much as a [w]footprint, (BJ)because I have given Mount Seir to Esau as a possession. You are to buy food from them with money so that you may eat, and you shall also purchase water from them with money so that you may drink. For the Lord your God has blessed you in all [x]that you have done; He has known your [y]wandering through this (BK)great wilderness. These (BL)forty years the Lord your God has been with you; you have not lacked anything.”’

“So we passed beyond our brothers the sons of Esau, who live in Seir, away from the (BM)Arabah road, away from Elath and (BN)Ezion-geber. And we turned and passed through by the way of the wilderness of Moab. Then the Lord said to me, ‘Do not attack Moab, nor provoke them to war, for I will not give you any of [z]their land as a possession, because I have given (BO)Ar to (BP)the sons of Lot as a possession.’ 10 (The (BQ)Emim lived there previously, a people as great, numerous, and tall as the Anakim. 11 Like the Anakim, they too are regarded as (BR)Rephaim, but the Moabites call them Emim. 12 (BS)The Horites previously lived in Seir, but the sons of Esau dispossessed them and destroyed them from before [aa]them, and settled in their place; (BT)just as Israel did to the land of [ab]their possession which the Lord gave them.) 13 ‘Now arise and cross over the [ac]Wadi Zered yourselves.’ So we crossed over the [ad]Wadi Zered. 14 Now the [ae]time that it took for us to come from Kadesh-barnea until we crossed over the [af]Wadi Zered was (BU)thirty-eight years, until (BV)all the generation of the men of war perished from within the camp, just as (BW)the Lord had sworn to them. 15 (BX)Indeed, the hand of the Lord was against them, to destroy them from within the camp until they all perished.

16 “So it came about, when (BY)all the men of war had finally perished from among the people, 17 that the Lord spoke to me, saying, 18 ‘Today you shall cross over (BZ)Ar, the border of Moab. 19 When you come opposite the (CA)sons of Ammon, do not attack them nor provoke them, for I will not give you any of the land of the sons of Ammon as a possession, because I have given it to (CB)the sons of Lot as a possession.’ 20 (It is also regarded as the land of the (CC)Rephaim, because the Rephaim previously lived in it, but the Ammonites call them Zamzummin, 21 a people as great, numerous, and tall as the Anakim; but the Lord destroyed them before [ag]them. And they dispossessed them and settled in their place, 22 just as He did for the sons of Esau, who (CD)live in Seir, when He destroyed (CE)the Horites from before them; they dispossessed them and settled in their place, where they remain even to this day. 23 And as for the (CF)Avvim, who lived in villages as far as Gaza, the [ah](CG)Caphtorim, who came from [ai](CH)Caphtor, destroyed them and lived in their place.) 24 ‘Arise, set out, and pass through the [aj](CI)Valley of Arnon. Look! I have handed over to you Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and his land; start taking possession and plunge into battle with him. 25 This day I will begin to put (CJ)the dread and fear of you upon the faces of [ak]people everywhere, [al]who, when they hear the news of you, (CK)will tremble and be in anguish because of you.’

26 (CL)So I sent messengers from the wilderness of Kedemoth to Sihon king of Heshbon with words of peace, saying, 27 ‘Let me pass through your land; I will [am]travel only on the road. I will not turn aside to the right or to the left. 28 You will sell me food for money so that I may eat, and give me water for money so that I may drink, (CM)only let me pass through on [an]foot, 29 just as the sons of Esau who live in Seir and the Moabites who live in (CN)Ar did for me, until I cross over the Jordan into the land that the Lord our God is giving us.’ 30 But (CO)Sihon king of Heshbon was not willing for us to pass [ao]through his land; for the (CP)Lord your God hardened his spirit and made his heart obstinate, in order to hand him over to you, as he is today. 31 And the Lord said to me, ‘See, I have begun to turn Sihon and his land over [ap]to you. Begin taking possession, so that you may possess his land.’

32 “Then Sihon came out [aq]with all his people to meet us in battle at Jahaz. 33 And (CQ)the Lord our God turned him over [ar]to us, and we [as](CR)defeated him with his sons and all his people. 34 So we captured all his cities at that time and [at](CS)utterly destroyed [au]the men, women, and children of every city. We left no survivor. 35 We took (CT)only the animals as our plunder, and the spoils of the cities which we had captured. 36 From (CU)Aroer which is on the edge of the [av]Valley of Arnon and from the city which is in the [aw]valley, even to Gilead, there was no city that was too [ax]high for us; the Lord our God turned it all over [ay]to us. 37 (CV)Only you did not go near the land of the sons of Ammon, all along the [az]river (CW)Jabbok and the cities of the hill country, and wherever the Lord our God had commanded us to avoid.


  1. Deuteronomy 1:1 Perhaps the Red Sea
  2. Deuteronomy 1:4 Lit struck
  3. Deuteronomy 1:4 So ancient versions; MT omits and
  4. Deuteronomy 1:7 I.e., South country
  5. Deuteronomy 1:8 Lit seed
  6. Deuteronomy 1:11 Lit spoken to
  7. Deuteronomy 1:15 Lit gave them as
  8. Deuteronomy 1:15 Lit commanders of
  9. Deuteronomy 1:15 Lit commanders of
  10. Deuteronomy 1:15 Lit commanders of
  11. Deuteronomy 1:17 Lit recognize faces
  12. Deuteronomy 1:23 Lit word
  13. Deuteronomy 1:26 Lit mouth
  14. Deuteronomy 1:30 Lit according to all that
  15. Deuteronomy 1:32 Lit in this matter
  16. Deuteronomy 1:40 Lit Sea of Reeds
  17. Deuteronomy 1:42 Lit struck
  18. Deuteronomy 1:42 Lit before
  19. Deuteronomy 1:43 Lit mouth
  20. Deuteronomy 1:46 Lit as the days
  21. Deuteronomy 2:1 Lit Sea of Reeds
  22. Deuteronomy 2:5 Or engage in strife with
  23. Deuteronomy 2:5 Lit treading of a sole of a foot
  24. Deuteronomy 2:7 Lit the work of your hand
  25. Deuteronomy 2:7 Lit going
  26. Deuteronomy 2:9 Lit his
  27. Deuteronomy 2:12 I.e., the sons of Esau
  28. Deuteronomy 2:12 Lit his
  29. Deuteronomy 2:13 I.e., dry stream bed, except in the rainy season
  30. Deuteronomy 2:13 I.e., dry stream bed, except in the rainy season
  31. Deuteronomy 2:14 Lit days in which we went
  32. Deuteronomy 2:14 See note v 13
  33. Deuteronomy 2:21 I.e., the Ammonites
  34. Deuteronomy 2:23 I.e., Philistines
  35. Deuteronomy 2:23 I.e., Crete
  36. Deuteronomy 2:24 Or wadi
  37. Deuteronomy 2:25 Lit peoples under all the heavens
  38. Deuteronomy 2:25 Lit who will hear...and tremble
  39. Deuteronomy 2:27 Lit go on the road, on the road
  40. Deuteronomy 2:28 Lit my feet
  41. Deuteronomy 2:30 Lit by him
  42. Deuteronomy 2:31 Lit before you
  43. Deuteronomy 2:32 Lit he and
  44. Deuteronomy 2:33 Lit before us
  45. Deuteronomy 2:33 Lit struck
  46. Deuteronomy 2:34 Or put under the ban
  47. Deuteronomy 2:34 Lit every city of men...
  48. Deuteronomy 2:36 Or wadi
  49. Deuteronomy 2:36 Or wadi
  50. Deuteronomy 2:36 Or strong
  51. Deuteronomy 2:36 Lit before us
  52. Deuteronomy 2:37 Or wadi

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