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13 And Moses, and Eleazar the priest, and all the princes of the congregation, went forth to meet them without the camp, to congratulate their victory, and to put them in mind of cleans-'

14 ing themselves. And Moses was wroth with the officers of the host, [with] the captajns over thousands, and captains

15 over hundreds, which came from the battle. And Moses

16 said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive? Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the Lord in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the

17 Lord.* Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with

18 him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves, to be your servants, or even wives, if they learn the knowledge of God, and become proselytes; which might be the case, as they were so

19 young. And do ye abide without the camp seven days: whosoever hath killed any person, and whosoever hath touched any slain, purify [both] yourselves and your captives, on the

20 third day, and on the seventh day.f And purify all [your] raiment, and all that is made of skins, and all work of goats^ [hair,] and all things made of wood, of the spoils which you have taken. (See ch. xix. 14, 16, 22.)

21 And Eleazar the priest said unto the men of war which went to the battle, This [is] the ordinance of the law which

22 the Lord commanded Moses; Only the gold, and the silver,

23 the brass, the iron, the tin, and the lead, Every thing that may abide the fire, ye shall make [it] go through the fire, and it shall be clean : nevertheless it shall be purified with the water of separation ; and all that abideth not the fire, ye shall make go through the water ; that is, what would bear the fire, was to pass through it, and other things through the

24 water. This was common among the heathen also. And ye • shall wash your clothes on the seventh day, and ye shall be

clean, and afterward ye shall come into the camp.

25 26 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Take the i sum of the prey that was taken, [both] of man and of beast,

thou and Eleazar the priest, and the chief fathers of the con

27 gregation: And divide the prey into two parts; between them that took the war upon them, who went out to bat

28 tie, and between all the congregation.J And levy a tribute

* Probably most of these very persons had been guilty, and, if they had been spared, night have been accessary to the sin and ruin of Israel.

+ Though the war was just and lawful, they contracted ceremonial pollution by shedding blood, and touching the dead; and purification was a practice common among heathen nations, on their return from war.

I The congregation were to have a share, because the warriors went out in tbeir name, and to make some reparation for what they had suffered by the Midianites, This was dene by particular directions, and ss all contests, were prevented.

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uuto the Lord of the men of war, which went out to battle s one soul of five hundred, [both] of the persons and of the

29 beeves, and of the asses, and of the sheep. Take [it] of their half, and give [it] unto Eleazar the priest, [for] an heave

SO offering of the Lord. And of the children of Israel's half, thou shalt take one portion of fifty, of the persons, of the beeves, of the asses, and of the flocks, of all manner of beasts, and give them unto the Levites, which keep the charge of the tabernacle of the Lord, that God might have his share; that is, a part out of fifty, from the congregation's share, for the Levites, and one out of five hundred of the soldiers', for the

31 priests. And Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the Lord

32 commanded Moses. And the booty [being] the rest of the prey which the men of war had caught, was six hundred

33 thousand and seventy thousand and five thousand sheep. And

34 threescore and twelve thousand beeves, And threescore and

35 one thousand asses, And thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him.

36 And the half [which was] the portion of them that went out to war, was in number three hundred thousand and seven and

37 thirty thousand and five hundred sheep ; And the Lord's tribute of the sheep was six hundred and threescore and fif

38 teen. And the beeves [were] thirty and six thousand, of

39 which the Lord's tribute [was] threescore and twelve. And the asses were thirty thousand and five hundred, of which

40 the Lord's tribute [was] threescore and one. And the persons [were] sixteen thousand, of which the Lord's tribute

41 [was] thirty and two persons. And Moses gave the tribute [which was] the Lord's heave offering, unto Eleazar the

42 priest, as the Lord commanded Moses. And of the chil

43 dren of Israel's half, which Moses divided from the men that warred, (Now the half [that pertained unto] the congregation, was three hundred thousand and thirty thousand

44 [and] seven thousand and five hundred sheep, And thirty and

45 six thousand beeves, And thirty thousand asses and five hun

46 47 dred, And sixteen thousand persons.) Even of the children of Israel's half, Moses took one portion of fifty, [both] of man and of beast, and gave them unto the Levites, which kept the charge of the tabernacle of the Lord; as the Lord commanded Moses.

48 And the officers which [were] over thousands of the host, the captains of thousands, and captains of hundreds, came

49 near unto Moses: And they said unto Moses, Thy servants have taken the sum of the men of war which [are] under our

50 charge, and there lacketh not one man of us.* We haye

• The reason they gave here was very remarkable, they had mt lest cne man. This would be a great encouragement to them in their wart against the Canaanites.

therefore brought an oblation for the Lord, what every man hath gotten, or found, of jewels of gold, chains, and bracelets, rings, earrings, and tablets, to make an atonement for our souls before the Lord ; for any instance of misconduct, espec

51 tally in sparing the -women, l$c. And Moses and Eleazar the priest took the gold of them, [even] all wrought jewels.

52 And all the gold of the offering that they offered up to the Lord, of the captains of thousands, and of the captains of hundreds, was sixteen thousand seven hundred and fifty

53 shekels, more than thirty thousand pounds. ([For] tha men of war had taken spoil every man for himself, beside the cattle abovementioned, which -were brought to the common stock.)

54 And Moses and Eleazar the priest took the gold of the captains of thousands, and of hundreds, and brought it into the tabernacle of'the congregation, [for] a memorial for the children of Israel before the Lord, of God's goodness to them, and their thankfulness to him.

• REFLECTIONS.

I. "\7t7" E learn hence, that it is our duty to avoid all occaV V sion of sin, and temptations to it. This is absolutely •necessary, if we desire to maintain our integrity, and keep ourselves pure. These abandoned women were dangerous guests; and therefore these were but necessary and wise ordinances which appointed their execution. May we keep at the remotest distance from sin, and abstain from every appearance of evil. We have need to pray, Lord, lead us not into temptation; and if we sincerely desire this, we must keep a constant watch over ourselves, and resolutely avoid those places and that company, which may tend to stir up the corruptions of the heart. Let us therefore watch and pray. Moses was a faithful guardian of Israel, was afraid they should be led away and enticed by their own lusts, if they had such companions as the Midianitish women. The wisdom and duty of parents, and others who have the care of youth, is to keep them from those w ho would be a snare to them, and lead them to sin.

2. It is fit, when God gives us success, that we should pay our thankful acknowledgments to him ; not only praise him with our lijis, which is very proper, and speak well of his name, but honour him with our substance. It is a maxim of the New Testament, and it would be well if it was regarded, thai every man should lay by in store as God hath prospered him, a fund for charitable uses; not to be alienated to any other purposes, but kept as a memorial of God's mercy, and in gratitude for his goodness. It is peculiarly proper in us, and pleasing to God, his ministers,

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12 lowed me: Save Caleb the son of Jephuhneh the Kenezite, and Joshua the son of Nun : for they have wholly

13 followed the Lord. And the Lord's anger was kindled against Israel, and he made them wander in the wilderness forty years, until all the generation that had done evil in the

14 sight of the Lord was consumed. And, behold, ye are risen up in your father's stead, an increase of sinful men to augment yet the fierce anger of the Lord toward Israel. Mosea thought their proposal "would discourage their brethren, and introduce confusion by other requests of a similar nature; he sets before them the conduct of their fathers in distrusting God, and its dreadful punishment ; and charges them with acting like their fathers, which would again bring down the anger of God

15 upon Israel. For if ye turn away from after him, as your fathers did, he will yet again leave them in the wilderness, and ye shall destroy all this people, occasion their destruction, by drawing them into sin,

16 And they came near unto him, and said, We will build '" Sheepfolds here for our cattle, and cities for our little ones;

will repair those cities which are ruined, that our little ones and

17 cattle may dwell safely. But we ourselves, so many of us as are needful, will go ready armed before the children of Israel, until we have brought them unto their place: and our little ones shall dwell in the fenced cities, because of the inhabitants

18 of the land.* We will not return unto our houses, until the children of Israel have inherited every man his inheritance:

19 For we will not inherit with them on yonder side Jordan, or forward; because our inheritance is fallen to us on this side Jordan eastward.t

80 And Moses said unto them, If ye will do this thing, if ye will go armed before the Lord to war, that is, before the arfo in

81 your usual place, And will go all of you, as many as are necessary for the expedition, armed over Jordan before the Lord, until he hath driven out Ms enemies from before him,

it And the land be subdued before the Lord: then afterward ye shall return, and be guiltless before the Lord, and before Israel; that is, God will approve of it, and so will Israel; and

23 this land shall be your possession before the Lord. But if ye wijl not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the Lord: and be sure your sin will find you out, the punishment of it will

24 overtake you one way or other. Build ye cities for your little ones, and folds for your sheep; and do that which hath pro.

* Accordingly, forty thousand went with them; their whole number of fighting men was above an hundred thousand.

t It does not appear that this was their first intention, but upon consulting together they came to this resolution, to go over and fight with their brethren till they had con. .ouered, and to have no share of their land, but be content with their own on this side Jordan. *

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