Numbers 10

The silver trumpets

1 The Lord said to Moses, 2 ‘Make two trumpets from one piece of silver. Use a hammer to make them in the right shape. Make a noise with them to tell the people that they must come together. Also, use the trumpets to tell the people that they must move the camp. 3 When the people hear the sound from both trumpets, all the people must meet you. They must meet you at the door of the Tent of Meeting. 4 But you may want only the leaders of Israel's tribes to meet you. If you want that, a priest should make the sound from only one trumpet. 5 But when the sound is one short sound, the tribes on the east side of the camp must start to travel. 6 When they hear the next short sound, the tribes on the south side of the camp must start to travel. Short sounds from the trumpet will tell the people that they must start to travel. 7 But when you want everyone to meet together, make a different sound with the trumpet.

8 The priests, the sons of Aaron, must use the trumpets to make a noise. This is a rule for you and for all your descendants. 9 Use the trumpets to tell everyone when an enemy is attacking you in your own country. Make a sound with the trumpets to tell the people that they must fight the enemy. Then the Lord your God will hear and he will save you from your enemies. 10 You must make sounds with the trumpets on your happy days, too. And you must make sounds with the trumpets at your regular festivals and on the first days of your months. And you must make sounds with the trumpets over your burnt-offerings, and over your friendship-offerings. God will hear and he will remember you. I am the Lord your God.’

The Israelites leave the Sinai desert

11 In the second year, in the second month, on the 20th day of the month, the cloud went up. It went away from God's Tent of Meeting. 12 So the Israelites started to travel on their journey away from the Sinai desert. Then the cloud stopped in the desert called Paran. 13 They started to travel for the first time, in the way that the Lord had told them to do, through Moses.

10:13The Israelites had been in the Sinai desert for nearly one year.

14 The flag of the camp of Judah's tribe, started to travel first, with all their armies. And Nahshon the son of Amminadab was over all their armies. 15 Nethanel, the son of Zuar, was over the army of the tribe of Issachar. 16 Eliab, the son of Helon, was over the army of the tribe of Zebulun. 17 Then the Levites packed God's Tent. Then Gershon's clan and Merari's clan, who were carrying God's Tent, started to travel.

18 Next the flag of the camp of Reuben started to travel, with all their armies. Elizur, the son of Shedeur, was over all their armies. 19 Shelumiel, the son of Zurishaddai, was over the army of the tribe of Simeon. 20 Eliasaph, the son of Deuel, was over the army of the tribe of Gad. 21 Then Kohath's clan started to travel. They were carrying the holy things. Before they arrived at the new camp, the other Levites would put up God's Tent.

22 Next the flag of the camp of the tribe of Ephraim started to travel, with all their armies. Elishama the son of Ammihud was over all their armies. 23 And Gamaliel the son of Pedahzur was over the army of the tribe of Manasseh. 24 And Abidan the son of Gideoni was over the army of the tribe of Benjamin.

25 Then the flag of the camp of the tribe of Dan started to travel last, with all their armies. They could keep the Israelites safe if an enemy attacked them from behind them. Ahiezer the son of Ammishaddai was over all their armies. 26 And Pagiel the son of Ocran was over the army of the tribe of Asher. 27 And Ahira the son of Enan was over the army of the tribe of Naphtali. 28 The Israelites marched out like that every time that they started to travel.

29 Moses spoke to Reuel's son, Hobab. He was the brother of Moses' wife. He was a Midianite. Moses said to Hobab, ‘We are leaving here now to go to another place. The Lord has said to us, “I will give that place to you.” The Lord has promised to help Israel's people with good things. So come with us and we will take care of you.’

30 But Hobab said to him, ‘I will not come. Instead, I will return to my own country and to my family there.’

31 Moses said, ‘Please do not leave us. You know good places for us to camp in the desert. So you can be our guide. 32 And if you come with us, we will share with you the good things that the Lord gives to us.’

33 So the Israelites left the Lord's mountain. They travelled for three days. During that time, the Levites carried the Lord's Covenant Box in front of them. That was so that the Lord could show them where to camp. 34 And the Lord's cloud was over them during the day, whenever they started to travel from the camp.

35 Each time that the Covenant Box started to travel Moses said, ‘Be ready, Lord! Cause your enemies to run away in every direction!’ 36 When they stopped travelling, Moses said, ‘Return, Lord, to be near to the thousands of Israel's people.’