Grumblers Will Not Enter the Land
14 All through that night, the entire community raised up their voices. The people wept. 2 All Bnei-Yisrael grumbled against Moses and Aaron and the whole community said, “If only we had died in Egypt! If only we had died in this wilderness! 3 Why is Adonai bringing us to this land to fall by the sword? Our wives and children will be like plunder! Wouldn’t it be better for us to return to Egypt?”
4 They said to each other, “Let’s choose a leader and let’s go back to Egypt!”
5 Then Moses and Aaron fell on their faces before the entire assembly of the community of Bnei-Yisrael. 6 Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had explored the land, tore their clothes. 7 They said to the whole assembly of Bnei-Yisrael, “The land through which we passed is an exceptionally good land! 8 If Adonai is pleased with us, He will lead us into that land and will give it to us—a land flowing with milk and honey. 9 Only don’t rebel against Adonai, and don’t be afraid of the people of the land. They will be food for us. The protection over them is gone. Adonai is with us! Do not fear them.”
10 But the whole assembly talked about violently stoning them.
Then the glory of Adonai appeared at the Tent of Meeting to all Bnei-Yisrael. 11 Adonai said to Moses, “How long will these people treat Me contemptibly? How long will they neglect to trust in Me—in spite of all the miraculous signs I have performed among them? 12 I will strike them with the plague. I will destroy them. But you I will make into a nation greater and stronger than they!”
13 Moses said to Adonai, “The Egyptians will hear about it, because You brought up this people by Your power from among them. 14 They will tell the residents of this land about it. Already they have heard that You, Adonai, are in the midst of this people, that You, Adonai, have been seen eye to eye, that Your cloud remains over them, and that in a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night You go before them. 15 If you kill these people all at once, the nations who have heard this report about You will say, 16 ‘Because Adonai was unable to bring this people to the land He had promised them, He has slaughtered them in the wilderness.’
17 “So please, let Adonai show His strength, just as You have spoken saying, 18 ‘Adonai is slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression. Still, He does not leave the guilty unpunished, bringing the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations.’ 19 Forgive now the guiltiness of this people in accordance with the greatness of Your lovingkindness, just as You have pardoned this people from Egypt until now!”
20 Adonai answered, “I have forgiven them just as you have spoken. 21 But as certainly as I live and as certainly as the glory of Adonai fills the entire earth, 22 none of the people who saw My glory and My miraculous signs I performed in Egypt and in the wilderness—yet tested Me these ten times and did not obey My Voice— 23 not one of them will see the land I promised to their forefathers. None of those who treated Me with contempt will see it! 24 However, My servant Caleb, because a different spirit is with him and he is wholeheartedly behind Me, I will bring him into the land where he went—his offspring will inherit it. 25 Now since the Amalekites and Canaanites are inhabiting the valley, turn back tomorrow and set out by the wilderness route toward the Sea of Reeds.”
26 Adonai then said to Moses and Aaron saying, 27 “How long will this wicked community be grumbling against Me? I have heard the complaints of Bnei-Yisrael grumbling against Me. 28 So tell them, ‘As surely as I live,’ says Adonai, ‘I will do to you just as I heard you say in My ears. 29 In this very wilderness your bodies will drop—every one of you 20 years of age and older who was numbered in the census and grumbled against Me. 30 Not one of you will enter the land about which I lifted My hand to make home for you—except Caleb son of Jephunneh and Joshua son of Nun.
31 “As for your children—whom you said would be like plunder—I will bring them in and they will experience the land that you spurned. 32 But your bodies will drop in this wilderness. 33 Your children will be herdsmen in the wilderness for 40 years. They will suffer because of your unfaithfulness until your corpses are consumed in the wilderness. 34 For 40 years, corresponding to the number of the 40 days you explored the land—one year for each day—you will suffer for your iniquities and know My hostility. 35 I, Adonai, have spoken and certainly will I do this to all this wicked community banding together against Me. In this wilderness they will meet their end and there they will die!”
36 Then the men whom Moses had sent to explore the land, who had returned and caused the whole community to grumble against him by spreading a bad report about the land, 37 these men, spreading the bad report about the land, died of the plague in Adonai’s presence. 38 Of those men who had gone to explore the land, only Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh survived.
39 When Moses related these things to all of Bnei-Yisrael, the people mourned bitterly. 40 They rose the next morning and went up to the high mountains, saying, “Look! Let’s go up to the place which Adonai promised. For we have sinned.”
41 But Moses said, “Why are you disobeying the mouth of Adonai? That will never succeed. 42 You should not go up, because Adonai will not be among you and you will be defeated before your enemies! 43 For the Amalekites and Canaanites are there in front of you, and you will fall by the sword. Adonai will not be with you, because you turned away from following Adonai.”
44 But presumptuously they went up to the high mountain country, though neither the Ark of Adonai’s covenant nor Moses moved from within the camp. 45 The Amalekites and Canaanites living in the mountain country came down, attacked them, and beat them down all the way to Hormah.
Fragrant Aromas to Adonai
15 Again Adonai spoke to Moses saying, 2 “Speak to Bnei-Yisrael and say to them: When you enter the land that I am giving you where you will make your homes, 3 and you are presenting a fire offering to Adonai—a burnt offering or a sacrifice to mark fulfilling a vow, a freewill offering, or during moadim[a]—to present a pleasing aroma to Adonai, from the herd or from the flock, 4 the one bringing the offering is to present a grain offering of a tenth of an ephah of fine flour mixed with a fourth of a hin of oil.
5 “Now with each lamb for the burnt offering or sacrifice, you are to prepare a fourth of a hin of wine as a drink offering. 6 With a ram, you are to prepare two tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with a third of a hin of oil, 7 and a third of a hin of wine as a drink offering. You are to offer it as a pleasing aroma to Adonai.
8 “Whenever you are to prepare a young bull for a burnt offering, a special vow offering, or a fellowship offering to Adonai, 9 bring with the young bull a grain offering of three tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with half a hin of oil. 10 You are to also offer as the drink offering half a hin of wine as a fire offering, a pleasing aroma to Adonai. 11 This is to be done for each bull or ram, for each young goat or lamb. 12 Do this for each one, for as many as you prepare.
13 “Everyone native-born is to do these things like so when bringing a fire offering as a pleasant aroma to Adonai. 14 Whenever an outsider resides with you, or whoever is among you for your generations to come, and he is to present a fire offering as a fragrant aroma to Adonai, as you do, he must do exactly the same as you are doing.
15 “The community will have the same rule for you as well as for the resident outsider. It will be a lasting statute throughout your generations. As for you, so for the outsider will it be before Adonai. 16 The same Torah and the same regulations will apply to both you and the outsider residing among you.”
17 Adonai spoke to Moses saying, 18 “Speak to Bnei-Yisrael. Say to them: When you enter the land to which I am taking you, 19 and you eat some of the food of the land, you are to offer a portion to Adonai. 20 You are to offer a cake from the first of your ground-up meal as an offering from your threshing floor—so you are to lift it up. 21 Throughout your generations to come, you are to give this offering from the first of your ground-up meal.
Unintentional Versus Defiant Sin
22 “If you unintentionally fail, not keeping any of these mitzvot that Adonai related to Moses 23 —that is, anything that Adonai commanded you through Moses’s hand, from the day Adonai commanded and onward throughout your generations— 24 and it is done unintentionally out of sight of the community, then the entire community is to offer one young bull from the herd for a burnt offering as a pleasing aroma to Adonai, along with its appropriate grain offering and drink offering, and one male goat as a sin offering. 25 So the kohen will make atonement for the entire community of Bnei-Yisrael, and they will be forgiven, for it was unintentional and they brought a fire offering and their sin offering to Adonai for their error. 26 So the whole community of Bnei-Yisrael along with the outsider residing among them will be forgiven, for all the people were involved in unintentional wrongdoing.
27 “If but one person should sin unintentionally, he is to bring a year-old female goat for a sin offering. 28 The kohen is to make atonement before Adonai for that person who erred by sinning without intent, and he is to be forgiven when atonement has been made for him. 29 Whether a native-born of Bnei-Yisrael or an outsider living among them, one Torah applies to you for the one sinning unintentionally.
30 “But the person who sins defiantly, whether native or outsider, reviles Adonai and that person is to be cut off from his people. 31 Because he has despised the word of Adonai and has broken His commandment, that person will certainly be cut off—his guilt will remain on him.”
32 While Bnei-Yisrael were in the wilderness, they found a man gathering wood on the Shabbat.
33 Those who found him gathering wood brought him to Moses, Aaron and the entire assembly. 34 They kept him under arrest, not being clear what was to be done to him.
35 Adonai said to Moses, “The man has to die. The whole assembly is to stone him with stones outside the camp.” 36 So the whole assembly took him outside the camp. They stoned him with stones. He died just as Adonai commanded Moses.
Tzitzit for Holiness
37 Adonai spoke to Moses saying, 38 “Speak to Bnei-Yisrael. Say to them that they are to make for themselves tzitzit on the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and they are to put a blue cord on each tzitzit. [b] 39 It will be your own tzitzit—so whenever you look at them, you will remember all the mitzvot of Adonai and do them and not go spying out after your own hearts and your own eyes, prostituting yourselves. 40 This way you will remember and obey all My mitzvot and you will be holy to your God. 41 I am Adonai your God. I brought you out of the land of Egypt to be your God. I am Adonai your God.”
Get a Heart of Wisdom
1 A prayer of Moses the man of God.
My Lord, You have been our dwelling
from generation to generation.
2 Before the mountains were born,
or You gave birth to the earth and the world,
even from everlasting to everlasting,
You are God!
3 You turn mankind back to dust, saying,
“Return, children of Adam!”
4 For a thousand years in Your sight
are like a day just passing by,
or like a watch in the night.
5 You sweep them away in their sleep.
In the morning they are like sprouting grass—
6 in the morning it flourishes and springs up,
by evening it withers and dries up.
7 For we are consumed by Your anger
and terrified by Your wrath.
8 You have set our iniquities before You,
our secret sins in the light of Your presence.
9 For all our days have passed away under Your wrath.
We spent our years like a sigh.
10 The span of our years is seventy
—or with strength, eighty—
yet at best they are trouble and sorrow.
For they are soon gone, and we fly away.
11 Who knows the power of Your anger?
Your fury leads to awe of you.
12 So teach us to number our days,
so that we may get a heart of wisdom.
13 Relent, Adonai! How long?
Have compassion on Your servants.
14 Satisfy us in the morning with Your love,
so we may sing for joy
and be glad all our days.
15 Gladden us for as many days as You have humbled us,
as many years as we have seen misery.
16 Let Your work appear to Your servants,
and Your splendor on their children.
17 Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us.
Establish the work of our hands for us—
yes, establish the work of our hands.