(Writer: Moses) (1473 B.C.E.)
1 These are the words Moses spoke to all Israel. He was on this side of the Jordan in the desert wilderness, in the plain near the Red Sea Suph, between Paran, Tophel, Laban, Hazeroth, and Dizahab.
2 It is only an eleven-day journey from Horeb by the way of Mount Seir to Kadesh-barnea.
3 It was the fortieth year, eleventh month, on the first day of the month. Moses spoke to the children of Israel, according to all the commandments Jehovah gave him for them.
4 After he killed Sihon king of the Amorites, who lived in Heshbon, and Og king of Bashan, who lived at Astaroth in Edrei:
5 On this side east of Jordan in the land of Moab, Moses declared the Law. He said:
6 »Jehovah our God spoke to us in Horeb. He said: You have lived long enough on this mountain.
7 »Leave this place and go to the mountain of the Amorites, and all the places near there in the plain, in the hills, and in the valley and in the south, and by the sea side, to the land of the Canaanites, and to Lebanon, to the great river, the river Euphrates.
8 »I have given you this land. Go in and possess the land Jehovah pledged to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and to their descendants offspring after them.
9 »I spoke to you then and said: I am not able to bear the burden of you alone.
10 »Jehovah your God has increased your numbers. Today you are more numerous than the stars of heaven.
11 »Jehovah the God of your fathers will make you a thousand times as many as you are, and bless you, as he promised you!
12 »How can I alone bear your encumbrance, your burden, and your strife?
13 »Take wise men with understanding, who are known among your tribes. I will make them rulers over you.
14 »You answered me: The thing you speak is good for us to do.
15 »So I took the chief of your tribes, wise men and known, and made them rulers over you. I made them captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, and captains over fifties, and captains over tens, and officers among your tribes.
16 »I charged your judges to hear the cases between your countrymen and judge righteously between every man and his brother, and the stranger with him.
17 »You will not show partiality in judgment. You shall hear the small and the great. You will not fear man for the judgment is God's. The case that is too hard for you, bring to me, and I will hear it.
18 I commanded you at that time all the things you should do.
19 »When we left Horeb, we went through that entire great and terrible wilderness. You saw it by way of the mountain of the Amorites, as Jehovah our God commanded us. We went to Kadesh-barnea.
20 »I said to you: You have arrived at the mountain of the Amorites. Jehovah gives this mountain to us.
21 »See, Jehovah your God give you this land. Possess it, for Jehovah the God of your fathers said to you: Do not fear. Do not be discouraged.
22 »Every one of you came near to me and said: We will send men before us. They will search the land. They will bring us word about the way we must go and what cities are there.
23 What you said pleased me very much. I took twelve of your men, one from each tribe.
24 They went up to the mountain to the valley of Eshcol, and explored it.
25 They picked the fruit of the land in their hands, and brought it down to us. They brought us word again. They said: It is a good land that Jehovah our God gives us.
26 Even so they were not willing to go. They rebelled against the command of Jehovah your God:
27 »You complained in your tents, and said: Jehovah hates us so he brought us out of the land of Egypt, to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, to destroy us.
28 »Where can we go up? Our brothers caused us to lose heart. They said: The people are stronger and taller than we are. The cities are large and the walls go up to the sky. Moreover we have seen the sons of the Anakims there.«
29 »I said to you: Do not be afraid of them.
30 »Jehovah your God leads you. He will fight for you just as he did for you in Egypt before your eyes!
31 »You saw how Jehovah your God carried you like a father carries his son all the way until you reached this place.
32 »Yet in all this you did not trust Jehovah your God.
33 »He went ahead of you to find places for you to camp. He offered fire by night and cloud by day to show you the way you should go.
34 »Jehovah heard what you said. He was angry and solemnly swore:
35 »Not one man of this evil generation will see that good land, which I swore to give your fathers,
36 »Except Caleb son of Jephunneh. He will see it. I will give him and his descendants the land he walks on. This is because he followed Jehovah wholeheartedly.
37 »Jehovah was angry with me because of you. He said to me: You will also not go there.
38 »Your assistant Joshua son of Nun will go there. He will lead the people into the land. Encourage him to go there.
39 »The little ones that you said would be taken captive will enter the land. Your children who do not know good from bad will go in. I will give it to them and they will possess it.
40 »But you must turn around and go back through the desert toward the Red Sea.
41 »You answered: We have sinned against Jehovah. We will fight just as Jehovah our God commanded us. When every man puts on his armor and weapons of war they will be ready to go to the mountain.
42 »But Jehovah said to me: Tell them, do not go and fight! I am not with you. Your enemies will defeat you.«
43 I told you, but you would not listen. You disobeyed Jehovahs command and proudly invaded the mountainous region.
44 The Amorites who lived there came out and attacked you. They chased you like a swarm of bees. They defeated you! They drove you back from Seir all the way to Hormah.
45 You returned and cried to Jehovah. Jehovah, however, did not listen to you. He turned a deaf ear to you!
46 That is why you stayed in Kadesh as long as you did.