The FarAboveAll translation of the Old Testament from the Masoretic Hebrew and Aramaic (WLC). See details on www.FarAboveAll.com.

Version 0.31.91, 20 November 2020

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Judges Chapter 21

1And the men of Israel swore in Mizpah and said, “None of our men will give his daughter to Benjamin as a wife.” 2And the people came to Beth-el and stayed there until the evening, before God, and they lifted up their voices and wept with great weeping. 3And they said, “Why, O Lord God of Israel, did this happen in Israel, for one tribe of Israel to be visited today?” 4And it came to pass on the next day that the people got up and built an altar there and offered burnt offerings and peace-offerings. 5And the sons of Israel said, “Who is there in the convocation of all the tribes of Israel who has not come up to the Lord?” For a great oath had taken place against whoever did not come up to the Lord in Mizpah, namely, that he should certainly be put to death. 6And the sons of Israel felt compassion for Benjamin their brother, and they said, “Today, one tribe of Israel was cut off. 7What shall we do for wives for them that remain? For we have sworn by the Lord not to give them any of our daughters as wives.” 8And they said, “What single person is there in the tribes of Israel who did not come up to the Lord in Mizpah?” And they ascertained that no-one had come up to the camp from Jabesh-gilead to the convocation. 9For the people had been counted, and it was seen that there was no man there of the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead. 10Then the congregation sent twelve thousand of the valiant men there, and they commanded them and said, “Go and strike down the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead with the edge of the sword, including the women and little ones. 11And this is what you will do: you will destroy every male and every woman who has known intercourse with a male.” 12And of the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead they found four hundred virgin girls who had not known a man by intercourse with a male, and they brought them to the camp at Shiloh which is in the land of Canaan. 13And the whole congregation sent word and spoke to the sons of Benjamin who were at the rock of Rimmon, and proclaimed peace to them. 14And Benjamin returned at that time, and they gave them the women whom they had let live from the women of Jabesh-gilead, but that was not sufficient for them. 15And the people had compassion on Benjamin, for the Lord had caused a rupture in the tribes of Israel. 16And the elders of the congregation said, “What shall we do for wives for those who remain? For the women have been obliterated from Benjamin.” 17And they said, “Benjamin must have an inheritance for the escaped remnant, so that a tribe is not wiped out from Israel. 18But we cannot give them wives from our daughters, because the sons of Israel have sworn and said, ‘Cursed is he who gives a wife to Benjamin.’ ” 19And they said, “Look, there is a festival to the Lord on these days when they occur, in Shiloh, which is north of Beth-el to the east of the highway which goes up from Beth-el to Shechem, and to the south of Lebonah.” 20And they commanded the sons of Benjamin and said, “Go and set an ambush in the vineyards. 21And watch, and this is the plan, when the daughters of Shiloh come out to dance in the dances, then you come out of the vineyards and seize each one a wife for yourselves from the daughters of Shiloh, and go to the land of Benjamin. 22And it will come to pass that if their fathers or their brothers come, to contest this with us, we will say to them, ‘Be gracious to us with them, because we did not take for each man his wife in battle, and because you are by no means giving them to them now, whereby you would incur guilt.’ ” 23And the sons of Benjamin did so, and they took wives according to their number from the dancers whom they snatched away, and they departed and returned to their inheritance, and they built cities and lived in them. 24And the sons of Israel walked away from there at that time – each man to his tribe and his family – and each man went out from there to his inheritance. 25In those days there was no king in Israel; each man did what was right in his own eyes.
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