Judges 20
A Faithful Version

1Then all the children of Israel went out, and the congregation was gathered together as one man, from Dan even to Beersheba, with the land of Gilead, to the LORD in Mizpeh. 2And the leaders of all the people, of all the tribes of Israel, presented themselves in the assembly of the people of God, four hundred thousand footmen that drew the sword. 3And the children of Benjamin heard that the children of Israel had gone up to Mizpeh. And the children of Israel said, "Speak. How did this evil happen?" 4And the Levite, the husband of the woman who was slain, answered and said, "I came into Gibeah of Benjamin to stay the night, my concubine and I. 5And the men of Gibeah rose up against me and set upon the house all around me at night. They intended to kill me. And they raped my concubine, and she is dead. 6And I took my concubine and cut her in pieces, and sent her throughout all the land of the inheritance of Israel, for they have committed evil and folly in Israel. 7Behold, you are all children of Israel. Give here your advice and counsel."

8And all the people rose as one man, saying, "Let no man go to his tent, and do not let any of us turn to his house. 9And now this is the thing which we will do to Gibeah, going against it by lot. 10And we will take ten men of a hundred of all the tribes of Israel, and a hundred of a thousand, and a thousand out of ten thousand, to bring food for the people, so that when they come to Gibeah of Benjamin, they may recompense all the folly which they have done in Israel." 11And every man of Israel was gathered against the city, all together as one man.

12And the tribes of Israel sent men through all the tribe of Benjamin saying, "What wickedness is this that is done among you? 13Now, therefore, deliver the men, the perverted men, who are in Gibeah, so that we may put them to death and put away evil from Israel." But Benjamin would not listen to the voice of their brethren, the children of Israel. 14And the children of Benjamin gathered out of the cities to Gibeah to go out to battle against the children of Israel. 15And the children of Benjamin were numbered on that day out of the cities twenty-six thousand men who drew sword, besides the inhabitants of Gibeah, who were numbered seven hundred chosen men. 16Among all this people were seven hundred chosen men, left-handed. Every one could sling stones at a hair's breadth, and not miss.

17And the men of Israel, besides Benjamin, were numbered four hundred thousand men who drew the sword. All these were men of war.

18And the children of Israel rose and went up to the house of God and asked counsel of God, and said, "Which of us shall go up first to the battle against the children of Benjamin?" And the LORD said, "Judah first."

19And the children of Israel rose up early in the morning and camped against Gibeah. 20And the men of Israel went out to battle against Benjamin. And the men of Israel put themselves in order, ready to fight against them at Gibeah 21And the children of Benjamin came forth out of Gibeah and destroyed to the earth twenty-two thousand men of the Israelites that day. 22And the people, the men of Israel, encouraged themselves and set their battle in order again in the place where they put themselves in order the first day. 23And the children of Israel went up and wept before the LORD until evening, and asked counsel from the LORD saying, "Shall I go up again to battle against the children of Benjamin my brother?" And the LORD said, "Go up against him."

24And the children of Israel came near against the children of Benjamin the second day. 25And Benjamin went forth to meet them again from Gibeah the second day and again destroyed to the earth eighteen thousand men of the children of Israel. All these drew the sword. 26And all the children of Israel, and all the people, went up and came to the house of God and wept, and sat there before the LORD and fasted that day until evening, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD. 27And the children of Israel inquired of the LORD (for the ark of the covenant of God was there in those days, 28And Phinehas the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron stood before it in those days,) saying, "Shall I yet again go out to battle against the children of Benjamin my brother, or shall I stop? And the LORD said, "Go up, for tomorrow I will deliver them into your hand."

29And Israel set ambushers all around Gibeah. 30And the children of Israel went up against the children of Benjamin on the third day, and put themselves in order against Gibeah, as at other times. 31And the children of Benjamin went out against the people, and were drawn away from the city. And they began to strike some of the people and to kill, as at other times, in the highways--one of which goes up to the house of God, and the other to Gibeah in the field--about thirty men of Israel. 32And the children of Benjamin said, "They are beaten before us as at the first." But the children of Israel said, "Let us flee and draw them from the city to the highways." 33And all the men of Israel rose up out of their place and marshalled at Baal Tamar. And the ambush of Israel broke forth from their place, from the plains of Gibeah. 34And there came against Gibeah ten thousand chosen men out of all Israel, and the battle was heavy. But the children of Benjamin did not know that evil was near them. 35And the LORD struck Benjamin before Israel. And the children of Israel destroyed in Benjamin twenty-five thousand and a hundred men that day. All these drew the sword.

36So the children of Benjamin saw that they were beaten, for the men of Israel gave place to Benjamin because they trusted in the men in ambush which they had set against Gibeah. 37And the men in ambush hurried and rushed against Gibeah. And the men in ambush marched and struck all the city with the edge of the sword. 38And a sign was set between the men of Israel and the men in ambush that they should make a great flame with smoke rising up from the city. 39And when the men of Israel retired in the battle, Benjamin began to strike and kill of the men of Israel about thirty persons, for they said, "Surely they are stricken down before us as in the first battle." 40And the rising of a pillar of smoke began to go up out of the city. And Benjamin turned behind them, and behold, the whole city had gone up toward the heavens. 41And the men of Israel turned again, and the men of Benjamin were amazed, for they saw that evil had touched them. 42And they turned their backs on the men of Israel, to the way of the wilderness. But the battle overtook them. And those who came out of the cities they destroyed in the midst of them. 43They encircled Benjamin and they chased them without rest, and trod them down until they were against Gibeah toward the sunrise. 44And there fell from Benjamin eighteen thousand. All these were men of war. 45And they turned and fled toward the wilderness to the rock of Rimmon. And they gleaned of them in the highways five thousand men, and pursued hard after them to Gidom and killed two thousand men of them. 46So that all who fell that day of Benjamin were twenty-five thousand men who drew the sword. All of these were men of war. 47But six hundred men turned and fled to the wilderness to the rock Rimmon, and they stayed in the rock Rimmon four months. 48And the children of Israel turned again to the children of Benjamin and struck them with the edge of the sword, from the entire city to livestock, to all that was found. Also they set on fire all the cities that they came to.

A Faithful Version

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