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Numbers 31 :: New Living Translation (NLT)

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Conquest of the Midianites
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:1 - Then the LORD said to Moses,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:2 - “On behalf of the people of Israel, take revenge on the Midianites for leading them into idolatry. After that, you will die and join your ancestors.”
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:3 - So Moses said to the people, “Choose some men, and arm them to fight the LORD’s war of revenge against Midian.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:4 - From each tribe of Israel, send 1,000 men into battle.”
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:5 - So they chose 1,000 men from each tribe of Israel, a total of 12,000 men armed for battle.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:6 - Then Moses sent them out, 1,000 men from each tribe, and Phinehas son of Eleazar the priest led them into battle. They carried along the holy objects of the sanctuary and the trumpets for sounding the charge.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:7 - They attacked Midian as the LORD had commanded Moses, and they killed all the men.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:8 - All five of the Midianite kings—Evi, Rekem, Zur, Hur, and Reba—died in the battle. They also killed Balaam son of Beor with the sword.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:9 - Then the Israelite army captured the Midianite women and children and seized their cattle and flocks and all their wealth as plunder.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:10 - They burned all the towns and villages where the Midianites had lived.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:11 - After they had gathered the plunder and captives, both people and animals,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:12 - they brought them all to Moses and Eleazar the priest, and to the whole community of Israel, which was camped on the plains of Moab beside the Jordan River, across from Jericho.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:13 - Moses, Eleazar the priest, and all the leaders of the community went to meet them outside the camp.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:14 - But Moses was furious with all the generals and captains[fn] who had returned from the battle.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:15 - “Why have you let all the women live?” he demanded.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:16 - “These are the very ones who followed Balaam’s advice and caused the people of Israel to rebel against the LORD at Mount Peor. They are the ones who caused the plague to strike the LORD’s people.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:17 - So kill all the boys and all the women who have had intercourse with a man.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:18 - Only the young girls who are virgins may live; you may keep them for yourselves.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:19 - And all of you who have killed anyone or touched a dead body must stay outside the camp for seven days. You must purify yourselves and your captives on the third and seventh days.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:20 - Purify all your clothing, too, and everything made of leather, goat hair, or wood.”
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:21 - Then Eleazar the priest said to the men who were in the battle, “The LORD has given Moses this legal requirement:
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:22 - Anything made of gold, silver, bronze, iron, tin, or lead—
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:23 - that is, all metals that do not burn—must be passed through fire in order to be made ceremonially pure. These metal objects must then be further purified with the water of purification. But everything that burns must be purified by the water alone.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:24 - On the seventh day you must wash your clothes and be purified. Then you may return to the camp.”
Division of the Plunder
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:25 - And the LORD said to Moses,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:26 - “You and Eleazar the priest and the family leaders of each tribe are to make a list of all the plunder taken in the battle, including the people and animals.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:27 - Then divide the plunder into two parts, and give half to the men who fought the battle and half to the rest of the people.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:28 - From the army’s portion, first give the LORD his share of the plunder—one of every 500 of the prisoners and of the cattle, donkeys, sheep, and goats.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:29 - Give this share of the army’s half to Eleazar the priest as an offering to the LORD.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:30 - From the half that belongs to the people of Israel, take one of every fifty of the prisoners and of the cattle, donkeys, sheep, goats, and other animals. Give this share to the Levites, who are in charge of maintaining the LORD’s Tabernacle.”
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:31 - So Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the LORD commanded Moses.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:32 - The plunder remaining from everything the fighting men had taken totaled 675,000 sheep and goats,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:33 - 72,000 cattle,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:34 - 61,000 donkeys,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:35 - and 32,000 virgin girls.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:36 - Half of the plunder was given to the fighting men. It totaled 337,500 sheep and goats,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:37 - of which 675 were the LORD’s share;
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:38 - 36,000 cattle, of which 72 were the LORD’s share;
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:39 - 30,500 donkeys, of which 61 were the LORD’s share;
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:40 - and 16,000 virgin girls, of whom 32 were the LORD’s share.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:41 - Moses gave all the LORD’s share to Eleazar the priest, just as the LORD had directed him.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:42 - Half of the plunder belonged to the people of Israel, and Moses separated it from the half belonging to the fighting men.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:43 - It totaled 337,500 sheep and goats,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:44 - 36,000 cattle,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:45 - 30,500 donkeys,
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:46 - and 16,000 virgin girls.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:47 - From the half-share given to the people, Moses took one of every fifty prisoners and animals and gave them to the Levites, who maintained the LORD’s Tabernacle. All this was done as the LORD had commanded Moses.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:48 - Then all the generals and captains came to Moses
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:49 - and said, “We, your servants, have accounted for all the men who went out to battle under our command; not one of us is missing!
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:50 - So we are presenting the items of gold we captured as an offering to the LORD from our share of the plunder—armbands, bracelets, rings, earrings, and necklaces. This will purify our lives before the LORD and make us right with him.[fn]
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:51 - So Moses and Eleazar the priest received the gold from all the military commanders—all kinds of jewelry and crafted objects.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:52 - In all, the gold that the generals and captains presented as a gift to the LORD weighed about 420 pounds.[fn]
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:53 - All the fighting men had taken some of the plunder for themselves.
Unchecked Copy BoxNum 31:54 - So Moses and Eleazar the priest accepted the gifts from the generals and captains and brought the gold to the Tabernacle[fn] as a reminder to the LORD that the people of Israel belong to him.
NLT Footnotes
Hebrew the commanders of thousands, and the commanders of hundreds; also in 31:48, 52, 54.
Or will make atonement for our lives before the LORD.
Hebrew 16,750 shekels [191 kilograms].
Hebrew the Tent of Meeting.

Holy Bible, New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Full copyright information is provided here. Visit the New Living Translation website.

For more information on this translation, see the NLT Preface.

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