Judges 19-21 Young’s Literal Translation

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The Levite and His Concubine

19 1  And it cometh to pass, in those days, when there is no king in Israel, that there is a man a Levite, a sojourner in the sides of the hill-country of Ephraim, and he taketh to him a wife, a concubine, out of Beth-Lehem-Judah; 2  and commit whoredom against him doth his concubine, and she goeth from him unto the house of her father, unto Beth-Lehem-Judah, and is there days—four months. 3  And her husband riseth and goeth after her, to speak unto her heart, to bring her back, and his young man 'is' with him, and a couple of asses; and she bringeth him into the house of her father, and the father of the young woman seeth him, and rejoiceth to meet him. 4  And keep hold on him doth his father-in-law, father of the young woman, and he abideth with him three days, and they eat and drink, and lodge there. 5  And it cometh to pass, on the fourth day, that they rise early in the morning, and he riseth to go, and the father of the young woman saith unto his son-in-law, 'Support thy heart with a morsel of bread, and afterward ye go on.' 6  And they sit and eat both of them together, and drink, and the father of the young woman saith unto the man, 'Be willing, I pray thee, and lodge all night, and let thy heart be glad.' 7  And the man riseth to go, and his father-in-law presseth on him, and he turneth back and lodgeth there. 8  And he riseth early in the morning, on the fifth day, to go, and the father of the young woman saith, 'Support, I pray thee, thy heart;' and they have tarried till the turning of the day, and they eat, both of them. 9  And the man riseth to go, he and his concubine, and his young man, and his father-in-law, father of the young woman, saith to him, 'Lo, I pray thee, the day hath fallen toward evening, lodge all night, I pray thee; lo, the declining of the day! lodge here, and let thine heart be glad—and ye have risen early to-morrow for your journey, and thou hast gone to thy tent.' 10  And the man hath not been willing to lodge all night, and he riseth, and goeth, and cometh in till over-against Jebus (It 'is' Jerusalem), and with him 'are' a couple of asses saddled; and his concubine 'is' with him. 11  They 'are' near Jebus, and the day hath gone greatly down, and the young man saith unto his lord, 'Come, I pray thee, and we turn aside unto this city of the Jebusite, and lodge in it.' 12  And his lord saith unto him, 'Let us not turn aside unto the city of a stranger, that is not of the sons of Israel, thither, but we have passed over unto Gibeah.' 13  And he saith to his young man, 'Come, and we draw near to one of the places, and have lodged in Gibeah, or in Ramah.' 14  And they pass over, and go on, and the sun goeth in upon them near Gibeah, which is to Benjamin; 15  and they turn aside there to go in to lodge in Gibeah, and he goeth in and sitteth in a broad place of the city, and there is no man gathering them into the house to lodge.

16  And lo, a man, an aged one, hath come from his work from the field in the evening, and the man 'is' of the hill-country of Ephraim, and he 'is' a sojourner in Gibeah, and the men of the place 'are' Benjamites. 17  And he lifteth up his eyes, and seeth the man, the traveller, in a broad place of the city, and the aged man saith, 'Whither goest thou? and whence comest thou?' 18  And he saith unto him, 'We are passing over from Beth-Lehem-Judah unto the sides of the hill-country of Ephraim—thence I 'am', and I go unto Beth-Lehem-Judah; and to the house of Jehovah I am going, and there is no man gathering me into the house, 19  and both straw and provender are for our asses, and also bread and wine there are for me, and for thy handmaid, and for the young man with thy servants; there is no lack of anything.' 20  And the old man saith, 'Peace to thee; only, all thy lack 'is' on me, only in the broad place lodge not.' 21  And he bringeth him in to his house, and mixeth 'food' for the asses, and they wash their feet, and eat and drink.

22  They are making their heart glad, and lo, men of the city, men—sons of worthlessness—have gone round about the house, beating on the door, and they speak unto the old man, the master of the house, saying, 'Bring out the man who hath come unto thine house, and we know him.' 23  And the man, the master of the house, goeth out unto them, and saith unto them, 'Nay, my brethren, do not evil, I pray you, after that this man hath come in unto my house, do not this folly; 24  lo, my daughter, the virgin, and his concubine, let me bring them out, I pray you, and humble ye them, and do to them that which is good in your eyes, and to this man do not this foolish thing.' 25  And the men have not been willing to hearken to him, and the man taketh hold on his concubine, and bringeth 'her' out unto them without, and they know her, and roll themselves upon her all the night, till the morning, and send her away in the ascending of the dawn; 26  and the woman cometh in at the turning of the morning, and falleth at the opening of the man's house, where her lord 'is', till the light. 27  And her lord riseth in the morning, and openeth the doors of the house, and goeth out to go on his way, and lo, the woman, his concubine, is fallen at the opening of the house, and her hands 'are' on the threshold, 28  and he saith unto her, 'Rise, and we go;' and there is none answering, and he taketh her on the ass, and the man riseth and goeth to his place, 29  and cometh in unto his house, and taketh the knife, and layeth hold on his concubine, and cutteth her in pieces to her bones—into twelve pieces, and sendeth her into all the border of Israel. 30  And it hath come to pass, every one who seeth hath said, 'There hath not been—yea, there hath not been seen like this, from the day of the coming up of the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt till this day; set your 'heart' upon it, take counsel, and speak.'

The War against the Benjamites

20 1  And all the sons of Israel go out, and the company is assembled as one man, from Dan even unto Beer-Sheba, and the land of Gilead, unto Jehovah, at Mizpeh. 2  And the chiefs of all the people, of all the tribes of Israel, station themselves in the assembly of the people of God, four hundred thousand footmen drawing sword. 3  And the sons of Benjamin hear that the sons of Israel have gone up to Mizpeh. And the sons of Israel say, 'Speak ye, how hath this evil been?' 4  And the man, the Levite, husband of the woman who hath been murdered, answereth and saith, 'Into Gibeah (which 'is' to Benjamin) I have come, I and my concubine, to lodge; 5  and rise against me do the masters of Gibeah—and they go round the house against me by night—me they thought to slay, and my concubine they have humbled, and she dieth; 6  and I lay hold on my concubine, and cut her in pieces, and send her into all the country of the inheritance of Israel; for they have done wickedness and folly in Israel; 7  lo, ye 'are' all sons of Israel; give for you a word and counsel here.' 8  And all the people rise as one man, saying, 'None of us doth go to his tent, and none of us doth turn aside to his house; 9  and now, this 'is' the thing which we do to Gibeah—against it by lot! 10  and we have taken ten men of a hundred, of all the tribes of Israel, and a hundred of a thousand, and a thousand of a myriad, to receive provision for the people, to do, at their coming to Gibeah of Benjamin, according to all the folly which it hath done in Israel.' 11  And every man of Israel is gathered unto the city, as one man—companions.

12  And the tribes of Israel send men among all the tribes of Benjamin, saying, 'What 'is' this evil which hath been among you? 13  And now, give up the men—sons of worthlessness—which 'are' in Gibeah, and we put them to death, and we put away evil from Israel.' And 'the sons of' Benjamin have not been willing to hearken to the voice of their brethren, the sons of Israel; 14  and the sons of Benjamin are gathered out of the cities to Gibeah, to go out to battle with the sons of Israel. 15  And the sons of Benjamin number themselves on that day; out of the cities 'are' twenty and six thousand men drawing sword, apart from the inhabitants of Gibeah, 'who' numbered themselves, seven hundred chosen men; 16  among all this people 'are' seven hundred chosen men, bound of their right hand, each of these slinging with a stone at the hair, and he doth not err. 17  And the men of Israel numbered themselves, apart from Benjamin, four hundred thousand men, drawing sword, each of these a man of war.

18  And they rise and go up to Beth-El, and ask of God, and the sons of Israel say, 'Who doth go up for us at the commencement to battle with the sons of Benjamin?' and Jehovah saith, 'Judah—at the commencement.' 19  And the sons of Israel rise in the morning, and encamp against Gibeah, 20  and the men of Israel go out to battle with Benjamin, and the men of Israel set themselves in array with them, 'for' battle against Gibeah, 21  and the sons of Benjamin come out from Gibeah, and destroy in Israel on that day two and twenty thousand men—to the earth. 22  And the people, the men of Israel, strengthen themselves, and add to set the battle in array in the place where they arranged themselves on the first day. 23  And the sons of Israel go up and weep before Jehovah till the evening, and ask of Jehovah, saying, 'Do I add to draw nigh to battle with the sons of Benjamin, my brother?' And Jehovah saith, 'Go up against him.' 24  And the sons of Israel draw near unto the sons of Benjamin on the second day, 25  and Benjamin cometh out to meet them from Gibeah on the second day, and destroy among the sons of Israel again eighteen thousand men—to the earth; all these are drawing sword.

26  And all the sons of Israel go up, even all the people, and come in to Beth-El, and weep, and sit there before Jehovah, and fast on that day till the evening, and cause to ascend burnt-offerings and peace-offerings before Jehovah. 27  And the sons of Israel ask of Jehovah,—and there 'is' the ark of the covenant of God in those days, 28  and Phinehas son of Eleazar, son of Aaron, is standing before it in those days—saying, 'Do I add again to go out to battle with the sons of Benjamin, my brother, or do I cease?' And Jehovah saith, 'Go up, for to-morrow I give him into thy hand.' 29  And Israel setteth liers in wait against Gibeah, round about, 30  and the sons of Israel go up against the sons of Benjamin, on the third day, and arrange themselves against Gibeah, as time by time. 31  And the sons of Benjamin come out to meet the people; they have been drawn away out of the city, and begin to smite 'some' of the people—wounded as time by time, in the highways (of which one is going up to Beth-El, and the other to Gibeah in the field), 'are' about thirty men of Israel. 32  And the sons of Benjamin say, 'They are smitten before us as at the beginning;' but the sons of Israel said, 'Let us flee, and draw them away out of the city, unto the highways.' 33  And all the men of Israel have risen from their place, and arrange themselves at Baal-Tamar, and the ambush of Israel is coming forth out of its place, out of the meadow of Gibeah. 34  And they come in over against Gibeah—ten thousand chosen men out of all Israel—and the battle 'is' grievous, and they have not known that the evil is striking against them. 35  And Jehovah smiteth Benjamin before Israel, and the sons of Israel destroy in Benjamin, on that day, twenty and five thousand, and a hundred men; all these 'are' drawing sword. 36  And the sons of Benjamin see that they have been smitten—and the men of Israel give place to Benjamin, for they have trusted unto the ambush which they had set against Gibeah, 37  and the ambush have hasted, and push against Gibeah, and the ambush draweth itself out, and smiteth the whole of the city by the mouth of the sword. 38  And there was the appointed sign to the men of Israel with the ambush—their causing to go up a great volume of smoke from the city. 39  And the men of Israel turn in battle, and Benjamin hath begun to smite the wounded among the men of Israel, about thirty men, for they said, 'Surely they are utterly smitten before us, as 'at' the first battle; 40  and the volume hath begun to go up from the city—a pillar of smoke—and Benjamin turneth behind, and lo, gone up hath the perfection of the city toward the heavens. 41  And the men of Israel have turned, and the men of Benjamin are troubled, for they have seen that the evil hath stricken against them— 42  and they turn before the men of Israel unto the way of the wilderness, and the battle hath followed them; and those who 'are' from the city are destroying them in their midst; 43  they have compassed the Benjamites—they have pursued them—with ease they have trodden them down till over-against Gibeah, at the sun-rising. 44  And there fall of Benjamin eighteen thousand men—the whole of these 'are' men of valour; 45  and they turn and flee toward the wilderness, unto the rock of Rimmon; and they glean of them in the highways five thousand men, and follow after them unto Gidom, and smite of them two thousand men. 46  And all those falling of Benjamin are twenty and five thousand men drawing sword, on that day—the whole of these 'are' men of valour; 47  and there turn and flee into the wilderness, unto the rock of Rimmon six hundred men, and they dwell in the rock Rimmon four months. 48  And the men of Israel have turned back unto the sons of Benjamin, and smite them by the mouth of the sword out of the city,—men unto cattle, unto all that is found; also all the cities which are found they have sent into fire.

Wives for the Benjamites

21 1  And the men of Israel have sworn in Mizpeh, saying, 'None of us doth give his daughter to Benjamin for a wife.' 2  And the people come in to Beth-El, and sit there till the evening before God, and lift up their voice, and weep—a great weeping, 3  and say, 'Why, O Jehovah, God of Israel, hath this been in Israel—to be lacking to-day, from Israel, one tribe?' 4  And it cometh to pass on the morrow, that the people rise early, and build there an altar, and cause to ascend burnt-offerings and peace-offerings. 5  And the sons of Israel say, 'Who 'is' he that hath not come up in the assembly out of all the tribes of Israel unto Jehovah?' for the great oath hath been concerning him who hath not come up unto Jehovah to Mizpeh, saying, 'He is surely put to death.' 6  And the sons of Israel repent concerning Benjamin their brother, and say, 'There hath been to-day cut off one tribe from Israel, 7  what do we do for them—for those who are left—for wives, and we—we have sworn by Jehovah not to give to them of our daughters for wives?' 8  And they say, 'Who is 'that' one out of the tribes of Israel who hath not come up unto Jehovah to Mizpeh?' and lo, none hath come in unto the camp from Jabesh-Gilead—unto the assembly. 9  And the people numbered themselves, and lo, there is not there a man of the inhabitants of Jabesh-Gilead. 10  And the company send there twelve thousand men of the sons of valour, and command them, saying, 'Go—and ye have smitten the inhabitants of Jabesh-Gilead by the mouth of the sword, even the women and the infants. 11  And this 'is' the thing which ye do; every male, and every woman knowing the lying of a male, ye devote.' 12  And they find out of the inhabitants of Jabesh-Gilead four hundred young women, virgins, who have not known man by the lying of a male, and they bring them in unto the camp at Shiloh, which 'is' in the land of Canaan. 13  And all the company send, and speak, unto the sons of Benjamin who 'are' in the rock Rimmon, and proclaim to them peace; 14  and Benjamin turneth back at that time, and they give to them the women whom they have kept alive of the women of Jabesh-Gilead, and they have not found for 'all of' them so. 15  And the people repented concerning Benjamin, for Jehovah had made a breach among the tribes of Israel.

16  And the elders of the company say, 'What do we do to the remnant for wives—for the women have been destroyed out of Benjamin?' 17  And they say, 'A possession of an escaped party 'is' to Benjamin, and a tribe is not blotted out from Israel; 18  and we—we are not able to give to them wives out of our daughters, for the sons of Israel have sworn, saying, Cursed 'is' he who is giving a wife to Benjamin.' 19  And they say, 'Lo, a festival of Jehovah 'is' in Shiloh, from time to time, which 'is' on the north of Beth-El, at the rising of the sun, by the highway which is going up from Beth-El to Shechem, and on the south of Lebonah.' 20  And they command the sons of Benjamin, saying, 'Go—and ye have laid wait in the vineyards, 21  and have seen, and lo, if the daughters of Shiloh come out to dance in dances—then ye have gone out from the vineyards, and caught for you each his wife out of the daughters of Shiloh, and gone to the land of Benjamin; 22  and it hath been, when their fathers or their brethren come in to plead unto us, that we have said unto them, Favour us 'by' them, for we have not taken 'to' each his wife in battle, for ye—ye have not given to them at this time 'that' ye are guilty.' 23  And the sons of Benjamin do so, and take women according to their number, out of the dancers whom they have taken violently away; and they go, and turn back unto their inheritance, and build the cities, and dwell in them. 24  And the sons of Israel go up and down thence at that time, each to his tribe, and to his family; and they go out thence each to his inheritance. 25  In those days there is no king in Israel; each doth that which is right in his own eyes.

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