19 Simeon was the second tribe chosen to receive land, and the region for its clans was inside Judah’s borders. 2-6 In one region of Simeon’s tribal land there were the following thirteen towns with their surrounding villages:
Beersheba, Shema,[a] Moladah, Hazar-Shual, Balah, Ezem, Eltolad, Bethul, Hormah, Ziklag, Beth-Marcaboth, Hazar-Susah, Beth-Lebaoth, and Sharuhen.
7 In another region, Simeon had the following four towns with their surrounding villages:
8 Simeon’s land also included all the other towns and villages as far south as Baalath-Beer, which is also called Ramah of the South.
9 Simeon’s tribal land was actually inside Judah’s territory. Judah had received too much land for the number of people in its tribe, so part of Judah’s land was given to Simeon.
10-12 Zebulun was the third tribe chosen to receive land. The southern border for its clans started in the west at the edge of the gorge near Jokneam. It went east to the edge of the land that belongs to the town of Dabbesheth, and continued on to Maralah and Sarid. It took in the land that belongs to Chislothtabor, then ended at Daberath.
The eastern border went up to Japhia 13 and continued north to Gath-Hepher, Ethkazin, and Rimmonah,[d] where it curved[e] toward Neah 14 and became the northern border. Then it curved south around Hannathon and went as far west as Iphtahel Valley.
16 This is the tribal land, and these are the towns and villages of the Zebulun clans.
17-23 Issachar was the fourth tribe chosen to receive land. The northern border for its clans went from Mount Tabor east to the Jordan River. Their land included the following sixteen towns with their surrounding villages:
24-26 Asher was the fifth tribe chosen to receive land, and the region for its clans included the following towns:
Helkath, Hali, Beten, Achshaph, Allammelech, Amad, and Mishal.
Asher’s southern border ran from the Mediterranean Sea southeast along the Shihor-Libnath River at the foot of Mount Carmel, 27 then east to Beth-Dagon. On the southeast, Asher shared a border with Zebulun along the Iphtahel Valley. On the eastern side their border ran north to Beth-Emek, went east of Cabul, and then on to Neiel, 28 Abdon,[k] Rehob, Hammon, Kanah, and as far north as the city of Sidon. 29-31 Then it turned west to become the northern border and went to Ramah[l] and the fortress-city of Tyre.[m] Near Tyre it turned toward Hosah and ended at the Mediterranean Sea.
32-34 Naphtali was the sixth tribe chosen to receive land. The southern border for its clans started in the west, where the tribal lands of Asher and Zebulun meet near Hukkok. From that point it ran east and southeast along the border with Zebulun as far as Aznoth-Tabor. From there the border went east to Heleph, Adami-Nekeb, Jabneel,[p] then to the town called Oak in Zaanannim,[q] and Lakkum. The southern border ended at the Jordan River, at the edge of the town named Jehudah.[r] Naphtali shared a border with Asher on the west.
35-39 The Naphtali clans received this region as their tribal land, and it included nineteen towns with their surrounding villages. The following towns had walls around them:
40-46 Dan was the seventh tribe chosen to receive land, and the region for its clans included the following towns:
Dan’s tribal land[x] went almost as far as Joppa. 47-48 Its clans received this land and these towns with their surrounding villages.
Later, when enemies[y] forced them to leave their tribal land, they went to the town of Leshem. They attacked the town, captured it, and killed the people who lived there. Then they settled there themselves and renamed the town Dan after their ancestor.
49-51 The Israelites were still gathered in Shiloh in front of the sacred tent,[z] when Eleazar the priest, Joshua, and the family leaders of Israel finished giving out the land to the tribes. The Lord had told the people to give Joshua whatever town he wanted. So Joshua chose Timnath-Serah in the hill country of Ephraim, and the people gave it to him. Joshua went to Timnath-Serah, rebuilt it, and lived there.
The Safe Towns
20 One day the Lord told Joshua:
2 When Moses was still alive, I had him tell the Israelites about the Safe Towns. Now you tell them that it is time to set up these towns. 3-4 If a person accidentally kills someone and the victim’s relatives say it was murder, they might try to take revenge.[aa] Anyone accused of murder can run to one of the Safe Towns and be safe from the victim’s relatives. The one needing protection will stand at the entrance to the town gate and explain to the town leaders what happened. Then the leaders will bring that person in and provide a place to live in their town.
5 One of the victim’s relatives might come to the town, looking for revenge. But the town leaders must not simply hand over the person accused of murder. After all, the accused and the victim had been neighbors, not enemies. 6 The citizens of that Safe Town must come together and hold a trial. They may decide that the victim was killed accidentally and that the accused is not guilty of murder.
Everyone found not guilty[ab] must still live in the Safe Town until the high priest dies. Then they can go back to their own towns and their homes that they had to leave behind.
7 The Israelites decided that the following three towns west of the Jordan River would be Safe Towns:
Kedesh in Galilee in Naphtali’s hill country, Shechem in Ephraim’s hill country, and Kiriath-Arba in Judah’s hill country. Kiriath-Arba is now called Hebron.
8 The Israelites had already decided on the following three towns east of the Jordan River:
Bezer in the desert flatlands of Reuben, Ramoth in Gilead, which was a town that belonged to Gad, and Golan in Bashan, which belonged to Manasseh.
9 These Safe Towns were set up, so that if Israelites or even foreigners who lived in Israel accidentally killed someone, they could run to one of these towns. There they would be safe until a trial could be held, even if one of the victim’s relatives came looking for revenge.
- 19.2-6 Shema: One ancient translation and some manuscripts of another ancient translation (see also the list at 15.21-32); Hebrew and some manuscripts of one ancient translation “Sheba.” The list in 1 Chronicles 4.28 does not have either “Shema” or “Sheba.”
- 19.7 Enrimmon: Some Hebrew manuscripts and one ancient translation; most Hebrew manuscripts “Ain, Rimmon.”
- 19.7 Tachan: Some manuscripts of one ancient translation; the Hebrew text does not have this word.
- 19.13 Rimmonah: Or “Rimmon.”
- 19.13 Rimmonah. . . curved: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
- 19.15 Jiralah: Some Hebrew manuscripts and two ancient translations; most Hebrew manuscripts “Idalah.”
- 19.15 Bethlehem: This town is different from the Bethlehem in 15.58,59.
- 19.17-23 Debirath: One ancient translation; Hebrew “Rabbith.” Debirath is probably the same place as Daberath in verse 12.
- 19.17-23 Mount Tabor. . . Tabor: In Hebrew the name “Tabor” is used only once. It was probably intended as the name of a town located at the foot of Mount Tabor and which formed one point on the northern border of Issachar.
- 19.17-23 Beth-Shemesh: Not the same Beth-Shemesh as in 15.10 or 19.35-39.
- 19.28 Abdon: A few Hebrew manuscripts and one ancient translation; most Hebrew manuscripts “Ebron.”
- 19.29-31 Ramah: Not the same “Ramah” as in 18.25-28 or 19.35-39.
- 19.29-31 fortress-city of Tyre: Tyre was a walled city built on an island about half a mile from shore.
- 19.29-31 Mahalab: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
- 19.29-31 Acco: One ancient translation; Hebrew “Ummah.”
- 19.32-34 Jabneel: This town is not the same Jabneel as in 15.11.
- 19.32-34 the town. . . Zaanannim: Or “the oak tree in the town of Zaanannim.”
- 19.32-34 at. . . Jehudah: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
- 19.35-39 Ramah: Not the same “Ramah” as in 18.25-28 or 19.29-31.
- 19.35-39 Edrei: Not the same Edrei as the town in Bashan east of the Jordan River where King Og had lived (see 12.4; 13.11,12,30,31).
- 19.35-39 Beth-Shemesh: Not the same Beth-Shemesh as in 15.10 or 19.17-23.
- 19.40-46 Ir-Shemesh: Possibly the same town as the Beth-Shemesh of 15.10.
- 19.40-46 Azor: Some manuscripts of one ancient translation; the Hebrew text does not have this word.
- 19.40-46 Gath-Rimmon, Mejarkon, and Rakkon. Dan’s tribal land: Or “Gath-Rimmon, and Rakkon. Dan’s tribal land also included the Yarkon River and.”
- 19.47,48 enemies: Probably the Philistines.
- 19.49-51 sacred tent: Or “meeting tent.”
- 20.3,4 revenge: At this time in Israel’s history, the clan could appoint a close male relative to find and kill a person who had killed a member of their clan.
- 20.6 not guilty: If the person was found to be guilty of murder, the citizens of the Safe Town were to let the victim’s relatives kill the murderer (see Deuteronomy 19.11-13).
Jesus Enters Jerusalem
28 When Jesus had finished saying all this, he went on toward Jerusalem. 29 As he was getting near Bethphage and Bethany on the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples on ahead. 30 He told them, “Go into the next village, where you will find a young donkey that has never been ridden. Untie the donkey and bring it here. 31 If anyone asks why you are doing that, just say, ‘The Lord[a] needs it.’”
32 They went off and found everything just as Jesus had said. 33 While they were untying the donkey, its owners asked, “Why are you doing that?”
34 They answered, “The Lord[b] needs it.”
35 Then they led the donkey to Jesus. They put some of their clothes on its back and helped Jesus get on. 36 And as he rode along, the people spread clothes on the road[c] in front of him. 37 When Jesus was starting down the Mount of Olives, his large crowd of disciples were happy and praised God because of all the miracles they had seen. 38 They shouted,
“Blessed is the king who comes
in the name of the Lord!
Peace in heaven
and glory to God.”
39 Some Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, make your disciples stop shouting!”
40 But Jesus answered, “If they keep quiet, these stones will start shouting.”
41 When Jesus came closer and could see Jerusalem, he cried 42 and said:
It is too bad that today your people don’t know what will bring them peace! Now it is hidden from them. 43 Jerusalem, the time will come when your enemies will build walls around you to attack you. Armies will surround you and close in on you from every side. 44 They will level you to the ground and kill your people. Not one stone in your buildings will be left on top of another. This will happen because you did not see that God had come to save you.[d]
Jesus in the Temple
45 When Jesus entered the temple, he started chasing out the people who were selling things. 46 He told them, “The Scriptures say, ‘My house should be a place of worship.’ But you have made it a place where robbers hide!”
47 Each day, Jesus kept on teaching in the temple. So the chief priests, the teachers of the Law of Moses, and some other important people tried to have him killed. 48 But they could not find a way to do it, because everyone else was eager to listen to him.
- 19.31,34 The Lord: Or “The master of the donkey.”
- 19.31,34 The Lord: Or “The master of the donkey.”
- 19.36 spread clothes on the road: This was one way that the Jewish people welcomed a famous person.
- 19.44 that God had come to save you: The Jewish people looked for the time when God would come and rescue them from their enemies. But when Jesus came, many of them refused to obey him.
(A song and a psalm by the people of Korah for the music leader. To the tune “Mahalath Leannoth.”[a] A special psalm by Heman the Ezrahite.)
A Prayer When You Can’t Find the Way
88 You keep me safe, Lord God.
So when I pray at night,
2 please listen carefully
to each of my concerns.
3 I am deeply troubled
and close to death;
4 I am as good as dead
and completely helpless.
5 I am no better off
than those in the grave,
those you have forgotten
and no longer help.
6 You have put me in the deepest
and darkest grave;
7 your anger rolls over me
like ocean waves.
8 You have made my friends turn
in horror from me.
I am a prisoner
who cannot escape,
9 and I am almost blind
because of my sorrow.
Each day I lift my hands
in prayer to you, Lord.
10 Do you work miracles
for the dead?
Do they stand up
and praise you?
11 Are your love and loyalty
in the world
of the dead?
12 Do they know of your miracles
or your saving power
in the dark world below
where all is forgotten?
13 Each morning I pray
to you, Lord.
14 Why do you reject me?
Why do you turn from me?
15 Ever since I was a child,
I have been sick
and close to death.
You have terrified me
and made me helpless.[b]
16 Your anger is like a flood!
And I am shattered
by your furious attacks
17 that strike each day
and from every side.
18 My friends and neighbors
have turned against me
because of you,
and now darkness
is my only companion.
12 Not getting what you want
can make you feel sick,
but a wish that comes true
is a life-giving tree.
13 If you reject God’s teaching,
you will pay the price;
if you obey his commands,
you will be rewarded.
14 Sensible instruction
is a life-giving fountain
that helps you escape
all deadly traps.