Numbers 19-21 Amplified Bible (AMP)
Ordinance of the Red Heifer
19 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, 2 “This is the statute of the law which the Lord has commanded: ‘Tell the Israelites to bring you an unblemished red heifer in which there is no defect and on which a yoke has never been placed. 3 You shall give it to Eleazar the priest, and it shall be brought outside the camp and be slaughtered in his presence. 4 Next Eleazar the priest shall take some of its blood with his finger and sprinkle some of it toward the front of the Tent of Meeting (tabernacle) seven times. 5 Then the heifer shall be burned in his sight; its skin, its flesh, its blood, and its waste, shall be burned (reduced to ash). 6 The priest shall take cedar wood and [a]hyssop and scarlet [material] and cast them into the midst of the burning heifer. 7 Then the priest shall wash his clothes and bathe his body in water; and afterward come into the camp, but he shall be [ceremonially] unclean until evening. 8 The one who burns the heifer shall wash his clothes and bathe his body in water, and shall be unclean until evening. 9 Now a man who is [ceremonially] clean shall collect the ashes of the heifer and deposit them outside the camp in a clean place, and the congregation of the Israelites shall keep it for [b]water to remove impurity; it is [to be used for] purification from sin. 10 The one who gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes, and be unclean until evening. This shall be a perpetual statute to the Israelites and to the stranger who lives as a resident alien among them.
11 ‘The one who touches the dead body of any person shall be unclean for seven days. 12 That one shall purify himself from uncleanness with the water [made with the ashes of the burned heifer] on the third day and on the seventh day, and then he will be clean; but if he does not purify himself on the third day and on the seventh day, he will not be clean. 13 Whoever touches a corpse, the body of anyone who has died, and does not purify himself, defiles the tabernacle of the Lord; and that person shall be cut off from Israel [that is, excluded from the atonement made for them]. Because the water for impurity was not sprinkled on him, he shall be unclean; his uncleanness is still on him.
14 ‘This is the law when a man dies in a tent: everyone who comes into the tent and everyone who is in the tent shall be [ceremonially] unclean for seven days. 15 Every open container [in the tent], which has no covering tied down on it, is unclean. 16 Also, anyone in the open field who touches one who has been killed with a sword or who has died [of natural causes], or a human bone or a grave, shall be unclean for seven days. 17 Then for the unclean person they shall take some of the ashes of the heifer burnt for the purification from sin, and running water shall be added to them in a container. 18 A clean person shall take [c]hyssop and dip it in the water and sprinkle it on the tent and on all the furnishings and on the people who were there, and on the one who touched the bone or the one who was killed or the one who died [naturally] or the grave. 19 Then the clean person shall sprinkle [the water for purification] on the unclean person on the third day and on the seventh day, and on the seventh day the unclean man shall purify himself, and wash his clothes and bathe himself in water, and shall be [ceremonially] clean at evening.
20 ‘But the man who is unclean and does not purify himself, that person shall be cut off from among the assembly, because he has defiled the sanctuary of the Lord. The water for purification has not been sprinkled on him; he is unclean. 21 So it shall be a perpetual statute to them. He who sprinkles the water for impurity [on another] shall wash his clothes, and he who touches the water for impurity shall be unclean until evening. 22 Furthermore, anything the unclean person touches shall be unclean, and anyone who touches it shall be [ceremonially] unclean until evening.’”
Death of Miriam
20 Then the Israelites, the whole congregation, came into the Wilderness of Zin in the first month [in the fortieth year after leaving Egypt]. And the people lived in Kadesh. Miriam died there and was buried there.
2 Now there was no water for the congregation, and they gathered together against Moses and Aaron. 3 The people contended with Moses, and said, “If only we had perished when our brothers perished [in the plague] before the Lord! 4 Why have you brought up the assembly of the Lord into this wilderness to die here, we and our livestock? 5 Why have you made us come up from Egypt, to bring us to this wretched place? It is not a place of grain or of figs or of vines or of pomegranates, and there is no water to drink.” 6 Then Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly to the doorway of the Tent of Meeting (tabernacle) and fell on their faces [before the Lord in prayer]. Then the glory and brilliance of the Lord appeared to them; 7 and the Lord spoke to Moses, saying,
The Water of Meribah
8 “Take the rod; and you and your brother Aaron assemble the congregation and speak to the rock [d]in front of them, so that it will pour out its water. In this way you shall bring water for them out of the rock and let the congregation and their livestock drink [fresh water].”
9 So Moses took the rod from before the Lord, just as He had commanded him; 10 and Moses and Aaron gathered the assembly before the rock. Moses said to them, “Listen now, you rebels; must we bring you water out of this rock?” 11 Then Moses raised his hand [in anger] and with his rod he struck the rock twice [instead of speaking to the rock as the Lord had commanded]. And the water poured out abundantly, and the congregation and their livestock drank [fresh water]. 12 But the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you have not believed (trusted) Me, to treat Me as holy in the sight of the sons of Israel, you therefore [e]shall not bring this assembly into the land which I have given them.” 13 These are the waters of Meribah (contention, strife), where the sons of Israel contended with the Lord, and He showed Himself holy among them.
14 Moses sent messengers from Kadesh to the king of [f]Edom: “Thus says your brother Israel, ‘You know all the hardship that has come upon us [as a nation]; 15 that our fathers (ancestors) went down to Egypt, and we lived there for a long time, and the Egyptians treated [both] us and our fathers badly. 16 But when we cried out to the Lord [for help], He heard us and sent an angel and brought us out of Egypt. Now look, we are in Kadesh, a city on the edge of your territory. 17 Please let us pass through your land. We will not pass through a field or through a vineyard; we will not even drink water from a well. We will go along the [g]king’s highway, not turning [off-course] to the right or to the left until we have passed through your territory.’”
18 But [the king of] Edom said to him, “You shall not pass through my territory, or I will come out against you with the sword.” 19 Again, the Israelites said to him, “We will go by the highway [trade route], and if I and my livestock drink any of your water, then I will pay for it. Only let me pass through on foot, nothing else.” 20 But the king of Edom said, “You shall not pass through [my territory].” And Edom came out against Israel with many people and a strong hand. 21 Thus [the king of] Edom refused to give Israel passage through his territory, so Israel turned away from him.
22 Now when they set out from Kadesh, the Israelites, the whole congregation, came to Mount Hor.
Death of Aaron
23 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron at Mount Hor, by the border of the land of Edom, saying, 24 “Aaron will be gathered to his people [in death]; for he shall not enter the land which I have given to the children of Israel, because you [both] rebelled against My command at the waters of Meribah. 25 Take Aaron and Eleazar his son and bring them up to Mount Hor; 26 and strip Aaron of his garments and put them on Eleazar his son. So Aaron will be gathered to his fathers, and will die there.” 27 So Moses did just as the Lord had commanded; and they went up Mount Hor in the sight of all the congregation. 28 After Moses stripped Aaron of his [priestly] garments and put them on Eleazar his son, Aaron died there on the mountain top. Then Moses and Eleazar came down from the mountain. 29 When all the congregation saw that Aaron had died, all the house of Israel wept (mourned) for him thirty days.
21 When the Canaanite, the king of Arad, who lived in the Negev (the South country) heard that Israel was coming by the way of Atharim [the route traveled by the spies sent out by Moses], he fought against Israel and took some of them captive. 2 So Israel made a vow to the Lord, and said, “If You will indeed hand over these people to me, then I will utterly destroy their cities.” 3 The Lord heard the voice of Israel and handed over the Canaanites; then they utterly destroyed them and their cities. So the name of the place was called Hormah (dedicate to destruction).
4 Then they set out from Mount Hor by the way of the [branch of the] Red Sea [called the Gulf of Aqabah], to go around the land of Edom; and the people became impatient, because [of the challenges] of the journey. 5 So the people spoke against God and against Moses, “Why have you brought us out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no bread, nor is there any water, and we loathe this miserable food.”
The Bronze Serpent
6 Then the Lord sent fiery (burning) serpents among the people; and they bit the people, and many Israelites died. 7 So the people came to Moses, and said, “We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord and against you; pray to the Lord, so that He will remove the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people. 8 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent [of bronze] and set it on a pole; and everyone who is bitten will live when he looks at it.” 9 So Moses made a serpent of bronze and put it on the pole, and it happened that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he looked to the bronze serpent, he lived.
10 Now the sons of Israel moved out and camped at Oboth. 11 They journeyed on from Oboth and camped at Iye-abarim, in the wilderness facing Moab, toward the sunrise. 12 From there they set out and camped in the [h]Wadi Zered. 13 From there they journeyed on and camped on the other side of [the river] Arnon, which is in the wilderness that extends from the boundary of the Amorites; for [the river] Arnon is the boundary of Moab, between Moab and the Amorites. 14 That is why it is said in the [i]Book of the Wars of the Lord:
16 From there the Israelites went on to Beer, that is the well where the Lord said to Moses, “Gather the people together and I will give them water.”
17 Then Israel sang this song,
“Spring up, O well! Sing to it,
And from the wilderness Israel journeyed to Mattanah, 19 and from Mattanah to Nahaliel, and from Nahaliel to Bamoth, 20 and from Bamoth to the valley that is in the field of Moab, to the top of Pisgah which looks down on the wasteland.
21 Then Israel sent messengers to Sihon, king of the Amorites, saying, 22 “Let me pass through your land; we will not turn away [from the road] into field or vineyard; we will not drink the water of the wells. We will go by the king’s highway until we have crossed your border.” 23 But Sihon would not allow Israel to pass through his border. Instead Sihon gathered all his people together and went out against Israel into the wilderness, and came to Jahaz, and he fought against Israel. 24 Then Israel struck the king of the Amorites with the edge of the sword and took possession of his land from the Arnon to the Jabbok, as far as the Ammonites, for the boundary of the Ammonites was [m]strong. 25 Israel took all these cities, and settled in all the cities of the Amorites, in Heshbon and in all its towns. 26 For Heshbon was the city of Sihon, king of the Amorites, who had fought against the former king of Moab and had taken all his land out of his hand, as far as the Arnon. 27 That is why those who use proverbs say,
“Come to Heshbon,
31 Thus Israel settled in the land of the Amorites. 32 Now Moses sent men to spy out Jazer, and they overthrew its villages and dispossessed the Amorites who were there.
33 Then they turned and went up by the way of Bashan; and Og the king of Bashan went out against them, he and all his people, to battle at Edrei. 34 But the Lord said to Moses, “Do not fear him, for I have handed over him and all his people and his land to you; and you shall do to him just as you did to Sihon king of the Amorites, who lived at Heshbon.” 35 So the sons of Israel killed Og and his sons and all his people, until there was no survivor left to him; and they took possession of his land.
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