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Joshua 19-21Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Land for Simeon

19 Then Joshua gave all the families in the tribe of Simeon their share of the land. The land they got was inside the area that belonged to Judah. This is the land that was given to that tribe: Beersheba (also called Sheba), Moladah, Hazar Shual, Balah, Ezem, Eltolad, Bethul, Hormah, Ziklag, Beth Marcaboth, Hazar Susah, Beth Lebaoth, and Sharuhen. There were 13 towns and all the fields around them.

They also got the towns of Ain, Rimmon, Ether, and Ashan. There were four towns and all the fields around them. They also got all the fields around the cities as far as Baalath Beer (Ramah in the Negev). So this was the area that was given to the tribe of Simeon. Each family got its land. Simeon’s share of land was within the area that Judah got. The people of Judah had more land than they needed, so the people of Simeon got part of their land.

Land for Zebulun

10 The next tribe to get their land was Zebulun. Each family in Zebulun got the land that was promised to them. The border of Zebulun went as far as Sarid. 11 Then the border went west to Maralah and just touched Dabbesheth. Then it went along the ravine near Jokneam. 12 Then the border turned to the east. It went from Sarid to Kisloth Tabor. Then it went on to Daberath and to Japhia. 13 Then the border continued to the east to Gath Hepher and Eth Kazin. It ended at Rimmon. Then it turned and went to Neah. 14 At Neah the border turned again, went north to Hannathon, and then continued to the Valley of Iphtah El. 15 Inside this border were the cities of Kattath, Nahalal, Shimron, Idalah, and Bethlehem. In all, there were twelve towns and all the fields around them.

16 So these are the towns and fields around them that were given to Zebulun. Each family in Zebulun got its part of the land.

Land for Issachar

17 The fourth part of the land was given to the tribe of Issachar. Each family in that tribe got its part of the land. 18 This is the land that was given to that tribe: Jezreel, Kesulloth, Shunem, 19 Hapharaim, Shion, Anaharath, 20 Rabbith, Kishion, Ebez, 21 Remeth, En Gannim, En Haddah, and Beth Pazzez.

22 The border of their land touched Tabor, Shahazumah, and Beth Shemesh. It ended at the Jordan River. In all, there were 16 towns and the fields around them. 23 These cities and towns were part of the land that was given to the tribe of Issachar. Each family got its part of the land.

Land for Asher

24 The fifth part of land was given to the tribe of Asher. Each family in that tribe got its part of the land. 25 This is the land that was given to that tribe: Helkath, Hali, Beten, Acshaph, 26 Allammelech, Amad, and Mishal.

The western border continued to Mount Carmel and Shihor Libnath. 27 Then the border turned to the east. It went to Beth Dagon. The border touched Zebulun and the Valley of Iphtah El. Then it went north of Beth Emek and Neiel. It passed north of Cabul. 28 Then the border went to Abdon,[a] Rehob, Hammon, and Kanah. It continued to the Greater Sidon area. 29 Then the border went back south to Ramah. It continued to the strong city of Tyre. Then the border turned and went to Hosah. It ended at the sea, near Aczib, 30 Ummah, Aphek, and Rehob.

In all there were 22 towns and the fields around them. 31 These cities and the fields around them were given to the tribe of Asher. Each family in that tribe got its share of the land.

Land for Naphtali

32 The sixth part of land was given to the tribe of Naphtali. Each family in that tribe got its share of the land. 33 The border of their land started at the large tree near Zaanannim. This is near Heleph. Then the border went through Adami Nekeb and Jabneel. It continued to Lakkum and ended at the Jordan River. 34 Then the border went to the west through Aznoth Tabor. It ended at Hukkok. The southern border touched Zebulun and the western border touched Asher. The border went to Judah, at the Jordan River to the east. 35 There were some very strong cities inside these borders. They were Ziddim, Zer, Hammath, Rakkath, Kinnereth, 36 Adamah, Ramah, Hazor, 37 Kedesh, Edrei, En Hazor, 38 Iron, Migdal El, Horem, Beth Anath, and Beth Shemesh. In all, there were 19 towns and all the fields around them.

39 These cities and the fields around them were given to the tribe of Naphtali. Each family in that tribe got its land.

Land for Dan

40 Then land was given to the tribe of Dan. Each family in that tribe got its land. 41 This is the land that was given to them: Zorah, Eshtaol, Ir Shemesh, 42 Shaalabbin, Aijalon, Ithlah, 43 Elon, Timnah, Ekron, 44 Eltekeh, Gibbethon, Baalath, 45 Jehud, Bene Berak, Gath Rimmon, 46 Me Jarkon, Rakkon, and the area near Joppa.

47 But the people of Dan had trouble taking their land. There were strong enemies there and the people of Dan could not easily defeat them. So the people of Dan went to the northern part of Israel and fought against Laish.[b] They defeated Laish and killed the people who lived there. So the people of Dan lived in the town of Laish. They changed the name to Dan because that was the name of the father of their tribe. 48 All these cities and fields around them were given to the tribe of Dan. Each family got its share of the land.

Land for Joshua

49 So the leaders finished dividing the land and giving it to the different tribes. After they finished, all the Israelites decided to give Joshua son of Nun some land too. This was land that was promised to him. 50 The Lord had commanded that he get this land. So they gave Joshua the town of Timnath Serah[c] in the hill country of Ephraim. This was the town that Joshua told them he wanted. So he built the town stronger and lived there.

51 All these lands were given to the different tribes of Israel. Eleazar the priest, Joshua son of Nun, and the leaders of each tribe met together at Shiloh to divide the land. They met before the Lord at the entrance of the Meeting Tent. So they finished dividing the land.

Cities of Safety

20 Then the Lord said to Joshua: “Through Moses, I told you to choose some cities to be cities of safety. Anyone who kills someone accidentally can go to a city of safety to hide from the relatives who want to kill him.

“If you accidentally kill someone and you run away to one of those cities, you must stop at the entrance of the city and tell the leaders of the people what happened. Then the leaders can allow you to enter the city. They will give you a place to live among them. If someone chases you and follows you to that city, the leaders of the city must not give you up. They must protect you because you came to them for safety after killing someone by accident—you were not angry and did not plan to kill the person. It was something that just happened. You should stay in that city until the court has judged you and until the high priest dies. Then you may go back to your hometown.”

So the Israelites chose some cities to be called cities of safety. These are the cities: Kedesh in Galilee in the hill country of Naphtali; Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim; Kiriath Arba (Hebron) in the hill country of Judah; Bezer, east of the Jordan River across from Jericho, in the desert area in the land of Reuben; Ramoth in Gilead in the land of Gad; and Golan in Bashan in the land of Manasseh.

All Israelites or any foreigners living among them who killed someone by accident were allowed to run away to one of these cities of safety. They could be safe there and not be killed by anyone chasing them. The court in that city would judge them.

Towns for Priests and Levites

21 The family rulers of the Levite tribe went to talk to Eleazar the priest, to Joshua son of Nun, and to the rulers of the other tribes of Israel. At Shiloh in the land of Canaan, the Levite rulers said to them, “The Lord gave Moses a command. He commanded that you give us towns to live in and that you give us fields where our animals can eat.” So the Israelites obeyed this command from the Lord and gave the Levites these towns and the land around them for their animals:

The Kohath family groups were descendants of Aaron the priest from the tribe of Levi. Part of the Kohath family was given 13 towns in the areas that belonged to Judah, Simeon, and Benjamin.

The other Kohath families were given ten towns in the areas that belonged to Ephraim, Dan, and half of Manasseh.

The people from the Gershon family were given 13 towns. These towns were in the areas that belonged to Issachar, Asher, Naphtali, and the half of Manasseh that was in Bashan.

The people from the Merari family were given 12 towns. These towns came from the areas that belonged to Reuben, Gad, and Zebulun.

So the Israelites gave the Levites these towns and the fields around them, just as the Lord had told Moses.

These are the names of the towns that were in the areas that belonged to Judah and Simeon. 10 The first choice of towns was given to the Levites from the Kohath family group. 11 They gave them Kiriath Arba. (This is Hebron. It was named for a man named Arba. Arba was the father of Anak.) They also gave them some land near the town for their animals. 12 But the fields and the small towns around the city of Kiriath Arba belonged to Caleb son of Jephunneh. 13 So they gave the city of Hebron to Aaron’s descendants. (Hebron was a city of safety.) They also gave Aaron’s descendants the towns of Libnah, 14 Jattir, Eshtemoa, 15 Holon, Debir, 16 Ain, Juttah, and Beth Shemesh. They also gave them some of the land near these towns for their animals. These two tribes gave them nine towns.

17 They also gave Aaron’s descendants cities that belonged to the tribe of Benjamin. These cities were Gibeon, Geba, 18 Anathoth, and Almon. They gave them these four towns and some of the land near the towns for their animals. 19 In all, they gave 13 towns to the priests. (All priests were descendants of Aaron.) They also gave them some land near each town for their animals.

20 The other people from the Kohathite family groups were given towns that were in the areas that belonged to the tribe of Ephraim. They got these towns: 21 the city of Shechem from the hill country of Ephraim (which was a city of safety), Gezer, 22 Kibzaim, and Beth Horon. In all, Ephraim gave them four towns and some land around each town for their animals.

23 The tribe of Dan gave them Eltekeh, Gibbethon, 24 Aijalon, and Gath Rimmon. In all, Dan gave them four towns and some land around each town for their animals.

25 Half the tribe of Manasseh gave them Taanach and Gath Rimmon. In all, this half of Manasseh gave them two towns and some land around each town for their animals.

26 In all, the rest of the people from the Kohath family groups got ten towns and some land around each town for their animals.

27 The Gershon family groups were also from the tribe of Levi. They got these towns:

Half the tribe of Manasseh gave them Golan in Bashan. (Golan was a city of safety.) Manasseh also gave them Be Eshtarah. In all, this half of Manasseh gave them two towns and some land around each town for their animals.

28 The tribe of Issachar gave them Kishion, Daberath, 29 Jarmuth, and En Gannim. In all, Issachar gave them four towns and some land around each town for their animals.

30 The tribe of Asher gave them Mishal, Abdon, 31 Helkath, and Rehob. In all, Asher gave them four towns and some land around each town for their animals.

32 The tribe of Naphtali gave them Kedesh in Galilee. (Kedesh was a city of safety.) Naphtali also gave them Hammoth Dor and Kartan. In all, Naphtali gave them three towns and some land around each town for their animals.

33 In all, the Gershon family groups got 13 towns and some land around each town for their animals.

34-39 The other Levite group was the Merari family group. They were given these towns: The tribe of Zebulun gave them Jokneam, Kartah, Dimnah, and Nahalal. In all, Zebulun gave them four towns and some land around each town for their animals. The tribe of Reuben gave them Bezer, Jahaz, Kedemoth, and Mephaath. In all, Reuben gave them four towns and some land around each town for their animals. The tribe of Gad gave them Ramoth in Gilead. (Ramoth was a city of safety.) They also gave them Mahanaim, Heshbon, and Jazer. In all, Gad gave them four towns and some land around each town for their animals.

40 In all, the last family of Levites, the Merari family, got 12 towns.

41 So the Levites were given a total of 48 towns and some land around each town for their animals. All these towns were in areas that belonged to the other tribes. 42 Each of these towns had some land in it for their animals. That was true for every town.

43 So the Lord kept the promise that he had made to the Israelites and gave the people all the land that he had promised. The people took the land and lived there. 44 And the Lord allowed them to have peace on all sides of their land, just as he had promised their ancestors. None of their enemies defeated them. The Lord allowed the Israelites to defeat every enemy. 45 The Lord kept every promise that he made to the Israelites. There were no promises that he failed to keep. Every promise came true.

Footnotes:

  1. Joshua 19:28 Abdon Or “Ebron.”
  2. Joshua 19:47 Laish Or “Leshem.”
  3. Joshua 19:50 Timnath Serah Or “Timnath Heres.”
Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Copyright © 2006 by Bible League International

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