we finally turned and went into the desert, along the road to the Gulf of Aqaba, as the LORD had commanded, and we spent a long time wandering about in the hill country of Edom.
2“Then the LORD told me 3that we had spent enough time wandering about in those hills and that we should go north. 4
He told me to give you the following instructions: ‘You are about to go through the hill country of Edom, the territory of your distant relatives, the descendants of Esau. They will be afraid of you, 5but you must not start a war with them, because I am not going to give you so much as a square metre of their land. I have given Edom to Esau's descendants. 6You may buy food and water from them.’
7“Remember how the LORD your God has blessed you in everything that you have done. He has taken care of you as you wandered through this vast desert. He has been with you these forty years, and you have had everything you needed.
8“So we moved on and left the road that goes from the towns of Elath and Eziongeber to the Dead Sea, and we turned north-east towards Moab. 9
The LORD said to me, ‘Don't trouble the people of Moab, the descendants of Lot, or start a war against them. I have given them the city of Ar, and I am not going to give you any of their land.’ ”
10(A mighty race of giants called the Emim used to live in Ar. They were as tall as the Anakim, another race of giants. 11Like the Anakim they were also known as Rephaim; but the Moabites called them Emim. 12The Horites used to live in Edom, but the descendants of Esau chased them out, destroyed their nation, and settled there themselves, just as the Israelites later chased their enemies out of the land that the LORD gave them.)
13“Then we crossed the River Zered as the LORD told us to do. 14
This was 38 years after we had left Kadesh Barnea. All the fighting men of that generation had died, as the LORD had said they would. 15The LORD kept on opposing them until he had destroyed them all.
16“After they had all died, 17the LORD said to us, 18‘Today you are to pass through the territory of Moab by way of Ar. 19
You will then be near the land of the Ammonites, the descendants of Lot. Don't trouble them or start a war against them, because I am not going to give you any of the land that I have given them.’ ”
20(This territory is also known as the land of the Rephaim, the name of the people who used to live there; the Ammonites called them Zamzummim. 21They were as tall as the Anakim. There were many of them, and they were a mighty race. But the LORD destroyed them, so that the Ammonites took over their land and settled there. 22The LORD had done the same thing for the Edomites, the descendants of Esau, who live in the hill country of Edom. He destroyed the Horites, so that the Edomites took over their land and settled there, where they still live. 23The land along the Mediterranean coast had been settled by people from the island of Crete. They had destroyed the Avvim, the original inhabitants, and had taken over all their land as far south as the city of Gaza.)
24“After we had passed through Moab, the LORD said to us, ‘Now, start out and cross the River Arnon. I am placing in your power Sihon, the Amorite king of Heshbon, along with his land. Attack him, and begin occupying his land. 25From today on I will make people everywhere afraid of you. Everyone will tremble with fear at the mention of your name.’
26“Then I sent messengers from the desert of Kedemoth to King Sihon of Heshbon with the following offer of peace: 27‘Let us pass through your country. We will go straight through and not leave the road. 28We will pay for the food we eat and the water we drink. All we want to do is to pass through your country, 29until we cross the River Jordan into the land that the LORD our God is giving us. The descendants of Esau, who live in Edom, and the Moabites, who live in Ar, allowed us to pass through their territory.’
30“But King Sihon would not let us pass through his country. The LORD your God had made him stubborn and rebellious, so that we could defeat him and take his territory, which we still occupy.
31“Then the LORD said to me, ‘Look, I have made King Sihon and his land helpless before you; take his land and occupy it.’ 32Sihon came out with all his men to fight us near the town of Jahaz, 33but the LORD our God put him in our power, and we killed him, his sons, and all his men. 34At the same time we captured and destroyed every town, and put everyone to death, men, women, and children. We left no survivors. 35We took the livestock and plundered the towns. 36The LORD our God let us capture all the towns from Aroer, on the edge of the valley of the Arnon, and the city in the middle of that valley, all the way to Gilead. No town had walls too strong for us. 37But we did not go near the territory of the Ammonites or to the banks of the River Jabbok or to the towns of the hill country or to any other place where the LORD our God had commanded us not to go.
31“Next, we moved north towards the region of Bashan, and King Og came out with all his men to fight us near the town of Edrei. 2But the LORD said to me, ‘Don't be afraid of him. I am going to give him, his men, and all his territory to you. Do the same to him as you did to Sihon the Amorite king who ruled in Heshbon.’
3“So the LORD also placed King Og and his people in our power, and we slaughtered them all. 4At the same time we captured all his towns — there was not one that we did not take. In all we captured sixty towns — the whole region of Argob, where King Og of Bashan ruled. 5All these towns were fortified with high walls, gates, and bars to lock the gates, and there were also many villages without walls. 6We destroyed all the towns and put to death all the men, women, and children, just as we did in the towns that belonged to King Sihon of Heshbon. 7We took the livestock and plundered the towns.
8“At that time we took from those two Amorite kings the land east of the River Jordan, from the River Arnon to Mount Hermon. 9(Mount Hermon is called Sirion by the Sidonians, and Senir by the Amorites.) 10We took all the territory of King Og of Bashan: the cities on the plateau, the regions of Gilead and of Bashan, as far east as the towns of Salecah and Edrei.”
11(King Og was the last of the Rephaim. His coffin,3.11 coffin; or bed. made of stone,3.11 stone; or iron. was four metres long and almost two metres wide according to standard measurements. It can still be seen in the Ammonite city of Rabbah.)
12“When we took possession of the land, I assigned to the tribes of Reuben and Gad the territory north of the town of Aroer near the River Arnon and part of the hill country of Gilead, along with its towns. 13To half the tribe of Manasseh I assigned the rest of Gilead and also all of Bashan, where Og had ruled, that is, the entire Argob region.”
(Bashan was known as the land of the Rephaim. 14Jair, from the tribe of Manasseh, took the entire region of Argob, that is, Bashan, as far as the border of Geshur and Maacah. He named the villages after himself, and they are still known as the villages of Jair.)
15“I assigned Gilead to the clan of Machir of the tribe of Manasseh. 16And to the tribes of Reuben and Gad I assigned the territory from Gilead to the River Arnon. The middle of the river was their southern boundary, and their northern boundary was the River Jabbok, part of which formed the Ammonite border. 17On the west their territory extended to the River Jordan, from Lake Galilee in the north down to the Dead Sea in the south and to the foot of Mount Pisgah on the east.
“At the same time, I gave them the following instructions: ‘The LORD our God has given you this land east of the Jordan to occupy. Now arm your fighting men and send them across the Jordan ahead of the other tribes of Israel, to help them to occupy their land. 19Only your wives, children, and livestock — I know you have a lot of livestock — will remain behind in the towns that I have assigned to you. 20Help your fellow-Israelites until they occupy the land that the LORD is giving them west of the Jordan and until the LORD lets them live there in peace, as he has already done here for you. After that, you may return to this land which I have assigned to you.’
21“Then I instructed Joshua: ‘You have seen all that the LORD your God did to those two kings, Sihon and Og; and he will do the same to everyone else whose land you invade. 22Don't be afraid of them, for the LORD your God will fight for you.’
“At that time I earnestly prayed, 24‘Sovereign LORD, I know that you have shown me only the beginning of the great and wonderful things you are going to do. There is no god in heaven or on earth who can do the mighty things that you have done! 25Let me cross the River Jordan, LORD, and see the fertile land on the other side, the beautiful hill country and the Lebanon Mountains.’
26“But because of you people the LORD was angry with me and would not listen. Instead, he said, ‘That's enough! Don't mention this again! 27Go to the peak of Mount Pisgah and look to the north and to the south, to the east and to the west. Look carefully at what you see, because you will never go across the Jordan. 28Give Joshua his instructions. Strengthen his determination, because he will lead the people across to occupy the land that you see.’
29“So we remained in the valley opposite the town of Bethpeor.”
41Then Moses said to the people, “Obey all the laws that I am teaching you, and you will live and occupy the land which the LORD, the God of your ancestors, is giving you. 2
Do not add anything to what I command you, and do not take anything away. Obey the commands of the LORD your God that I have given you. 3
You yourselves saw what the LORD did at Mount Peor. He destroyed everyone who worshipped Baal there, 4but those of you who were faithful to the LORD your God are still alive today.
5“I have taught you all the laws, as the LORD my God told me to do. Obey them in the land that you are about to invade and occupy. 6Obey them faithfully, and this will show the people of other nations how wise you are. When they hear of all these laws, they will say, ‘What wisdom and understanding this great nation has!’
7“No other nation, no matter how great, has a god who is so near when they need him as the LORD our God is to us. He answers us whenever we call for help. 8No other nation, no matter how great, has laws so just as those that I have taught you today. 9Be on your guard! Make certain that you do not forget, as long as you live, what you have seen with your own eyes. Tell your children and your grandchildren 10about the day you stood in the presence of the LORD your God at Mount Sinai,4.10 Sinai; or Horeb. when he said to me, ‘Assemble the people. I want them to hear what I have to say, so that they will learn to obey me as long as they live and so that they will teach their children to do the same.’
“Tell your children how you went and stood at the foot of the mountain which was covered with thick clouds of dark smoke and fire blazing up to the sky. 12Tell them how the LORD spoke to you from the fire, how you heard him speaking but did not see him in any form at all. 13
He told you what you must do to keep the covenant he made with you — you must obey the Ten Commandments, which he wrote on two stone tablets. 14
The LORD told me to teach you all the laws that you are to obey in the land that you are about to invade and occupy.
15“When the LORD spoke to you from the fire on Mount Sinai, you did not see any form. For your own good, then, make certain 16
that you do not sin by making for yourselves an idol in any form at all — whether man or woman, 17
animal or bird, 18reptile or fish. 19Do not be tempted to worship and serve what you see in the sky — the sun, the moon, and the stars. The LORD your God has given these to all other peoples for them to worship. 20
But you are the people he rescued from Egypt, that blazing furnace. He brought you out to make you his own people, as you are today. 21
Because of you the LORD your God was angry with me and solemnly declared that I would not cross the River Jordan to enter the fertile land which he is giving you. 22I will die in this land and never cross the river, but you are about to go across and occupy that fertile land. 23Be certain that you do not forget the covenant that the LORD your God made with you. Obey his command not to make yourselves any kind of idol, 24
because the LORD your God is like a flaming fire; he tolerates no rivals.
25“Even when you have been in the land a long time and have children and grandchildren, do not sin by making for yourselves an idol in any form at all. This is evil in the LORD's sight, and it will make him angry. 26I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you today that, if you disobey me, you will soon disappear from the land. You will not live very long in the land across the Jordan that you are about to occupy. You will be completely destroyed. 27
The LORD will scatter you among other nations, where only a few of you will survive. 28There you will serve gods made by human hands, gods of wood and stone, gods that cannot see or hear, eat or smell. 29
There you will look for the LORD your God, and if you search for him with all your heart, you will find him. 30When you are in trouble and all those things happen to you, then you will finally turn to the LORD and obey him. 31He is a merciful God. He will not abandon you or destroy you, and he will not forget the covenant that he himself made with your ancestors.
32“Search the past, the time before you were born, all the way back to the time when God created humanity on the earth. Search the entire earth. Has anything as great as this ever happened before? Has anyone ever heard of anything like this? 33Have any people ever lived after hearing a god speak to them from a fire, as you have? 34Has any god ever dared to go and take a people from another nation and make them his own, as the LORD your God did for you in Egypt? Before your very eyes he used his great power and strength; he brought plagues and war, worked miracles and wonders, and caused terrifying things to happen. 35
The LORD has shown you this, to prove to you that he alone is God and that there is no other. 36He let you hear his voice from heaven so that he could instruct you; and here on earth he let you see his holy fire, and he spoke to you from it. 37Because he loved your ancestors, he chose you, and by his great power he himself brought you out of Egypt. 38As you advanced, he drove out nations greater and more powerful than you, so that he might bring you in and give you their land, the land which still belongs to you. 39So remember today and never forget: the LORD is God in heaven and on earth. There is no other god. 40Obey all his laws that I have given you today, and all will go well with you and your descendants. You will continue to live in the land which the LORD your God is giving you to be yours for ever.”
Then Moses set aside three cities east of the River Jordan 42to which a man could escape and be safe if he had accidentally killed someone who had not been his enemy. He could escape to one of these cities and not be put to death. 43For the tribe of Reuben there was the city of Bezer, on the desert plateau; for the tribe of Gad there was Ramoth, in the territory of Gilead; and for the tribe of Manasseh there was Golan, in the territory of Bashan.
44Moses gave God's laws and teachings to the people of Israel. 45-46It was after they had come out of Egypt and were in the valley east of the River Jordan, opposite the town of Bethpeor, that he gave them these laws. This was in the territory that had belonged to King Sihon of the Amorites, who had ruled in the town of Heshbon. Moses and the people of Israel defeated him when they came out of Egypt. 47They occupied his land and the land of King Og of Bashan, the other Amorite king who lived east of the Jordan. 48This land extended from the town of Aroer, on the edge of the River Arnon, all the way north to Mount Sirion,4.48 One ancient translation Sirion; Hebrew Sion. that is, Mount Hermon. 49It also included all the region east of the River Jordan as far south as the Dead Sea and east to the foot of Mount Pisgah.