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Numbers 32

1 The people in the tribes of Reuben and Gad had very many animals. They saw that the land in Jazer and Gilead was good for their animals. 2 They came to Moses, Eleazar and the leaders of the tribes. 3 They said, ‘The land at Ataroth, Dibon, Jazer, Nimrah, Heshbon, Elealeh, Sebam, Nebo and Beon 4 is good for animals. We have very many animals. 5 Please let us take this land for our animals. Please do not take us across the River Jordan.’

32:5The Israelites were getting near to the country called Canaan from the south east. Already, they controlled much of the land east of the River Jordan.

6 Moses said to the men: ‘The Israelites are going to war. It seems that you want to watch them. But you want to stay here! 7 You should not tell the people in your tribes that they should not cross over the River Jordan. The LORD is giving this country to them. 8 Your fathers did the same thing when I sent them from Kadesh-Barnea to look at the country. 9 They went to the valley of Eshcol and they saw the country. But they told the Israelites that it was not a good idea to go into the country. So the Israelites did not go into the country that the LORD had given to them. 10 The LORD was angry with them. 11 He said, “They do not obey me. None of the men who came from Egypt will go into this country. If they are more than 20 years old, they will not go into this country. It is the country that I am giving to them. I promised the country to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. 12 Jephunneh's son Caleb and Joshua the son of Nun are the only men who will go into the country. It is the country that I am giving to the Israelites. Caleb and Joshua have obeyed the LORD. So they will go in.” 13 The LORD was angry with all the Israelites because of those men who would not go in. He caused them to walk about in the desert for 40 years. Then all the men who did not obey him were dead.

14 You are doing the same sins that your fathers did. You are making the LORD even more angry with the Israelites. 15 If you do not obey him, he will not let the people leave the desert. If they die, it will be because of you.’

16 The men said to Moses, ‘Let us build houses from stone for our animals, our women and our children. 17 Then we will be ready to go to war with the Israelites. When we are at war, our women and children will be safe. 18 We will not return to our homes until all the Israelites receive the land. It is the land that God is giving to them. 19 We will not receive any of the land on the other side of the River Jordan. Our land is here.’

20 Moses said to the men, ‘You must really do as you have said. You must go to war for the LORD. 21 You must cross over the River Jordan with the people to get power over the country. 22 If you really do that, you can return to this land. And the LORD will not be angry. The LORD will give this land to you.

23 But if you do not do it, you will have sinned against the LORD. And be sure that your sin will cause your punishment. 24 Build towns for your families and build pens for your animals. But then do the things that you have promised to do.’

25 The men in the tribes of Gad and Reuben said to Moses, ‘We will do what we promised to do. 26 Our women and children will stay here in Gilead. Our animals will stay here in Gilead. 27 But we are your servants. And we will cross over. Everyone among us who has weapons for war will cross over. And we will fight in the LORD's fight, as you have said, my master.’

28 Moses told Eleazar the priest what the men in Reuben's tribe and in Gad's tribe were doing. He also told Joshua the son of Nun and the leaders of the tribes. 29 He said to them, ‘The men in Reuben's tribe and in Gad's tribe must cross over the River Jordan to fight with you in front of the LORD. If they do, you must give the land called Gilead to them. 30 If they do not do that, they must build their houses in Canaan.’

31 The men in the tribes of Reuben and Gad said, ‘We will do what the LORD told us to do. 32 We will go in front of the LORD into Canaan to fight. But we will live in Gilead.’

33 So Moses gave to them all the kingdom of Sihon, king of the Amorites and Og, the king of Bashan. He gave to them the land with its towns and all the land round the towns near those towns. He gave it to the descendants of Gad and of Reuben and half of the tribe of Joseph's son Manasseh.

34 The men in the tribe of Gad built up again Dibon, Ataroth and Aroer. 35 They also built up again Atroth-Shophan, Jazer, Jogbehah, 36 Beth-Nimrah and Beth-Haran. They built houses for their families and their animals. 37 The men in the tribe of Reuben built Heshbon, Elealeh and Kiriathaim up again. 38 They built Nebo and Baal-Meon and Sibmah. They gave new names to the cities that they built up.

39 The descendants of Machir son of Manasseh attacked Gilead. They sent away the people who lived there. 40 So Moses gave Gilead to the descendants of Machir who was the son of Manasseh. And they lived there. 41 Jair, who was a descendant of Manasseh attacked some villages. He got power over them and he called them Havvoth-Jair. 42 Nobah attacked Kenath and the villages round it. He called it Nobah, like himself.