Numbers Chapter 21  PDF  MSWord

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Go to Commentary on Num 21
Canaanite King Defeated

1When the Canaanite, the king of Arad who lived in the Negev, heard that Israel was coming by the Atharim Road; and he fought against Israel and took some of them captive.
  2Israel vowed a vow to Yahweh and said, “If you will indeed deliver this people into my hand, then I will utterly destroy their cities.”
  3Yahweh listened to the voice of Israel and gave over the Canaanites, and they utterly destroyed them and their cities, and the name of the place was called Hormah.

The Bronze Serpent

4They traveled from Mount Hor by the road to the Red Sea to go around the land of Edom, and the soul of the people was very discouraged because of the road.
  5And the people spoke against God and against Moses, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no bread and there is no water, and our soul loathes this miserable bread.”
  6So Yahweh sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people and many people of Israel died.

7So the people came to Moses and said, “We have sinned because we have spoken against Yahweh and against you. Pray to Yahweh, that he take away the serpents from us.” And Moses prayed for the people.

8Then Yahweh said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent and set it on a pole. And it will be that everyone who is bitten, when he looks upon it, will live.”
  9So Moses made a serpent of bronze and set it on a pole, and it came to pass that if a serpent had bitten anyone, when he looked at the serpent of bronze, he lived.

Journey around Moab

10And the children of Israel traveled, and encamped in Oboth.
  11They traveled from Oboth, and encamped at Iye-abarim in the desert that is before Moab, toward the sunrise.
  12From there they traveled and encamped in the valley of Zered.
  13From there they traveled and encamped on the other side of the Arnon River that is in the desert, that extends from the border of the Amorites; for the Arnon is the border of Moab between Moab and the Amorites.
  14Therefore it is said in the book of the Wars of Yahweh, “Vaheb in Suphah, the valleys of the Arnon,
  15the slope of the valleys that incline toward the dwelling of Ar, leans on the border of Moab.”

16From there they traveled to Beer, that is the well of which Yahweh said to Moses, “Gather the people together and I will give them water.”
  17Then Israel sang this song: “Spring up, well, sing to it;
  18the well that the leaders dug, that the nobles of the people dug with the scepter and with their poles.” From the desert they traveled to Mattanah,
  19and from Mattanah to Nahaliel, and from Nahaliel to Bamoth,
  20and from Bamoth to the valley that is in the field of Moab, to the top of Pisgah that looks down on the desert.

Defeat of Sihon and Og

21And Israel sent messengers to Sihon, king of the Amorites, saying,
  22“Let me pass through your land: we will not turn aside into any field or vineyard; we will not drink of the water of the wells. We will travel on the king’s highway until we have passed your border.”
  23But Sihon would not allow Israel to pass through his territory. Sihon gathered all his people together and went out against Israel into the wilderness and came to Jahaz; and he fought against Israel.
  24Israel struck him with the mouth of the sword and took possession of his land from the Arnon to the Jabbok, and as far east as the children of Ammon; for the border of the children of Ammon was strong.

25And Israel took all these cities, and Israel lived in all the cities of the Amorites, in Heshbon and in all its towns.
  26For Heshbon was the city of Sihon the king of the Amorites who had fought against the former king of Moab and taken all his land out of his hand, even to the Arnon Gorge.
  27Therefore those who speak in proverbs say, “Come to Heshbon. Let the city of Sihon be built and established;
  28for a fire has gone out of Heshbon, a flame from the city of Sihon. It has devoured Ar of Moab; the lords of the high places of the Arnon.
  29Woe to you, Moab! You are undone, people of Chemosh! He has given his sons as fugitives and his daughters into captivity to Sihon king of the Amorites.
  30We have shot at them. Heshbon has perished even to Dibon. We have laid waste even to Nophah, that reaches to Medeba.”

31Thus Israel lived in the land of the Amorites.
  32Moses sent to spy out Jazer; and they took its towns and drove out the Amorites who were there.

33They turned and went up by the road to Bashan. And Og, the king of Bashan, went out against them, he and all his people, to battle at Edrei.
  34Yahweh said to Moses, “Do not fear him: for I have given him into your hand, and all his people and his land; and you are to do to him as you did to Sihon king of the Amorites who lived at Heshbon.”
  35So they struck him and his sons and all his people until there was none left him remaining, and they took possession of his land.

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