Numbers 31-32

Thursday Evening Bible Study

May 20, 2010

Introduction

We are getting close to the finish of the forty years in the wilderness.

Do people see Jesus? Is the gospel preached? Does it speak to the broken hearted? Does it build up the church? Milk – Meat – Manna Preach for a decision

Numbers 31

31:1-11 Vengeance on Midianites

:1 And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying:

:2 “Take vengeance on the Midianites for the children of Israel. Afterward you shall be gathered to your people.”

:2 Midianites – descendants of Abraham from his last wife Keturah. 

The land of Midian is typically located along the Red Sea on the Arabian Peninsula, though we have seen Midianites living as far north as the land of Moab.

It was Midianite traders that Joseph’s brothers sold him to who in turn took him to Egypt.

When Moses fled from Pharoah, he lived in the land of Midian with the priest of Midian (Jethro), and married one of his daughters.

The Midianites had formed an alliance with the Moabites and were responsible for hiring Balaam to come and curse Israel.

When he was unable to lay a curse on Israel, he came up with a brilliant idea.  At Baal Peor Balaam counseled the Moabites and Midianites to send in their foxy young girls to seduce the Israelite men into having sex and following after their gods with them.  Then God would get mad at them and the Moabites and Midianites would come out victorious.

24,000 Israelites died from the plague that followed.

:2  you shall be gathered to your people

Moses will die when this war is over.

:3 So Moses spoke to the people, saying, “Arm some of yourselves for war, and let them go against the Midianites to take vengeance for the LORD on Midian.

:4 A thousand from each tribe of all the tribes of Israel you shall send to the war.”

:5 So there were recruited from the divisions of Israel one thousand from each tribe, twelve thousand armed for war.

:6 Then Moses sent them to the war, one thousand from each tribe; he sent them to the war with Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, with the holy articles and the signal trumpets in his hand.

:6 one thousand from each tribe

There was going to be a relatively small fighting force.

Out of an army of 600,000, only 12,000 would go on this mission.
This would be a war led by God.

:6 holy articles

The priest Phinehas and the “holy articles” were a picture of God’s direction and presence.  Some have suggested this meant the Ark of the Covenant was carried into battle.  Others think the holy articles are the trumpets.

:6 signal trumpets – these were the metal trumpets, not the ram’s horns (shofar).

:3 take vengeance – literally “avenge an avenging”

There is a reason for this act of war.  They are going to exact punishment on the Midianites because of their involvement with the Moabites in hiring Balaam.

At the incident at Baal Peor, it was a Midianite woman named Cozbi, the daughter of a Midianite leader, who was seducing the Israelite man.
(Nu 25:16–18 NKJV) —16 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 17 “Harass the Midianites, and attack them; 18 for they harassed you with their schemes by which they seduced you in the matter of Peor and in the matter of Cozbi, the daughter of a leader of Midian, their sister, who was killed in the day of the plague because of Peor.”
God was very serious about the great damage that the Midianites had brought to His people.
The great sin that had spread through the camp of Israel had resulted in a plague where 24,000 had died.

Lesson:

Let God be the judge.
The Bible says:

(Ro 12:17–19 NKJV) —17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. 18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. 19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.

Is this contradictory to what Moses is going to do?

Absolutely not!

When the Scripture says “Never take your own revenge”, it doesn’t mean that vengeance will never be taken.  It only means that you better be sure that you aren’t taking YOUR revenge.  Let God handle the matter.

In our passage, God has decided that it’s time for vengeance to come against the Midianites.  God has decided.  God has ordered.

If you are in doubt whether or not the vengeance is yours, don't!
Keep in mind, I'm not too sure how Moses must have felt.  After all, these are the people of his father-in-law and his wife!

:7 And they warred against the Midianites, just as the LORD commanded Moses, and they killed all the males.

There would be a victory of the Midianites they faced, but apparently there were other Midianites somewhere else.  It would be Midianites who would keep stealing the crops from the Israelites during the time of Gideon (Judg. 6).

:8 They killed the kings of Midian with the rest of those who were killed— Evi, Rekem, Zur, Hur, and Reba, the five kings of Midian. Balaam the son of Beor they also killed with the sword.

:8 BalaamEven though it looked as if Balaam had gone back to his home in Syria, at some point he turned around and was living with the Midianites, apparently as a king.

:9 And the children of Israel took the women of Midian captive, with their little ones, and took as spoil all their cattle, all their flocks, and all their goods.

:10 They also burned with fire all the cities where they dwelt, and all their forts.

:11 And they took all the spoil and all the booty—of man and beast.

31:12-24 Return from the War

:12 Then they brought the captives, the booty, and the spoil to Moses, to Eleazar the priest, and to the congregation of the children of Israel, to the camp in the plains of Moab by the Jordan, across from Jericho.

:12 the plains of Moab – (Play “Moab Plains” map video) this has become their base of operations. This is where Balaam tried to curse them.  This is where they conquered Sihon and Og from.

:13 And Moses, Eleazar the priest, and all the leaders of the congregation, went to meet them outside the camp.

:14 But Moses was angry with the officers of the army, with the captains over thousands and captains over hundreds, who had come from the battle.

:15 And Moses said to them: “Have you kept all the women alive?

:16 Look, these women caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to trespass against the LORD in the incident of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD.

:15 Have you kept all the women alive?

Lesson:

Deal with root issues

When I was a kid, sometimes my chores involved weeding out in the backyard.  I learned that you can do it the easy way, or the better way.  If you just pull the tops of the weeds off, you parents might think you’ve weeded.  But the weeds grow back.  If you use your weeder and get the roots out, then the weeds don’t come back so quick.
God prefers that we learn to get to the root of the matter.
When a rich young ruler came to Jesus asking what he should do to obtain eternal life, Jesus reviewed the Ten Commandments with him.  The young man said that he had kept all these.  Then Jesus said –
(Mt 19:21 NKJV) Jesus said to him, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”
Jesus knew what the man’s real problem was.  It was that his money was more important to him than God was.  He got to the root issue.

It’s like having a headache.  The doctor does tests and determines you need new glasses.  Do you just keep taking Tylenol for the headache, or do you go to get new glasses?

It’s kind of like an alcoholic who has been losing clients in his business because he keeps showing up late to appointments.  So he works at making himself notes, he buys himself a smart phone, he tries to get organized.  But he really needs to just quit drinking.

Are you paying attention to the root issues?
The cause of the Israelite problems, the Midianite women, were the very ones that they had spared.

:17 Now therefore, kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman who has known a man intimately.

:18 But keep alive for yourselves all the young girls who have not known a man intimately.

:17 every male

Little boys grow up to avenge their fathers

:17 every woman who has known a man

Some of these were the women who had led the Israelite men astray.

Lesson

Serious about sin

In one sense, we are responsible for the things we do.
You can’t go through life blaming other people for the things that you choose to do.
But there are things in our lives that contribute to us sinning.
We ought to be serious about removing the things that cause us to stumble.
I am not advocating that we literally actually “kill” anybody.  The principle is about getting “serious”.
Look at how “cruel” Jesus recommended us to be to ourselves:
(Mt 5:29–30 NKJV) —29 If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. 30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.

I don’t think Jesus is actually recommending that we all cut our hands off.  He’s exaggerating to make a point – get serious about your sin.

Paul wrote,
(Ro 8:13 NKJV) —13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.
(Col 3:5 NKJV) —5 Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.

“Putting to death” is a serious step.  It’s doing what’s necessary.

:19 And as for you, remain outside the camp seven days; whoever has killed any person, and whoever has touched any slain, purify yourselves and your captives on the third day and on the seventh day.

:20 Purify every garment, everything made of leather, everything woven of goats’ hair, and everything made of wood.”

:21 Then Eleazar the priest said to the men of war who had gone to the battle, “This is the ordinance of the law which the LORD commanded Moses:

:22 “Only the gold, the silver, the bronze, the iron, the tin, and the lead,

:23 everything that can endure fire, you shall put through the fire, and it shall be clean; and it shall be purified with the water of purification. But all that cannot endure fire you shall put through water.

:24 And you shall wash your clothes on the seventh day and be clean, and afterward you may come into the camp.”

:23 the water of purification – water mixed with the ashes of the red heifer.  This was intended to be a ceremonial cleansing from the “uncleanness” associated with touching a dead body.

These soldiers that had come back from war needed to go through a time of cleansing.  All the spoils of the war needed to be ceremonially cleansed.

Metalic spoils were put through the fire.
Flammable spoil was purified with water.

Note:  There is a difference between war and murder.

In the old King James, the sixth commandment read:

(Exo 20:13 KJV)  Thou shalt not kill.

Some have taken this to mean that war is wrong.
But the Hebrew word is ratsach, which means specifically "murder", not just a general "killing".
(Ex 20:13 NKJV) —13 “You shall not murder.

31:25-54 Dividing the Plunder

There is going to be a lot of “plunder” from this war.  God gives instructions as to how it is to be divided up.

:25 Now the LORD spoke to Moses, saying:

:26 “Count up the plunder that was taken—of man and beast—you and Eleazar the priest and the chief fathers of the congregation;

:27 and divide the plunder into two parts, between those who took part in the war, who went out to battle, and all the congregation.

The plunder was to be divided in half.  Half went to the men who fought the battle.  The other half was divided among the rest of the nation.

A portion from each half would be given to the Levites as an offering to the Lord.

:28 And levy a tribute for the LORD on the men of war who went out to battle: one of every five hundred of the persons, the cattle, the donkeys, and the sheep;

:29 take it from their half, and give it to Eleazar the priest as a heave offering to the LORD.

:30 And from the children of Israel’s half you shall take one of every fifty, drawn from the persons, the cattle, the donkeys, and the sheep, from all the livestock, and give them to the Levites who keep charge of the tabernacle of the LORD.”

:28 levy a tribute for the LORD

From both “halves”, God would be given a portion.

The soldiers would give God one part out of 500.

The nation would give God one part out of 50.

Both the nation and the warriors were to take part of their plunder and give it to God.

Lesson

Remember who helped you.

The people are learning a valuable lesson.  They are learning to acknowledge that God was the one who had helped them.
Remember that only 12,000 Israelites faced a very likely larger force.     
In the end, there will be 32,000 young women left alive.  It’s probably not a difficult stretch to think that the army of the Midianites might have been at least 32,000 men.
And God gave them the victory.
(Dt 8:18 NKJV) “And you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.

How do we remember the Lord?  By giving back to Him.

:31 So Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the LORD commanded Moses.

They did all the math and the portions divided up like this:

 

Sheep

 

Cattle

 

Donkeys

 

People

 

Soldiers’ portion

337,500

 

36,000

 

30,500

 

16,000

 

God’s portion (1/500)

 

-    675

 

-    72

 

-    61

 

-    32

 

Soldiers’ net portion

336,825

 

35,928

 

30,439

 

15,968

 

 

 

 

 

 

People’s portion

 

337,500

 

36,000

 

30,500

 

16,000

 

God’s portion (1/50)

 

-  6,750

 

-   720

 

-   610

 

-  320

 

People’s net portion

 

330,750

 

35,280

 

29,890

 

15,680

 

Total

 

675,000

 

72,000

 

61,000

 

32,000

 

 

Note the number of “people”.  These were the virgin women, they would become slaves.

:32 The booty remaining from the plunder, which the men of war had taken, was six hundred and seventy-five thousand sheep,

:33 seventy-two thousand cattle,

:34 sixty-one thousand donkeys,

:35 and thirty-two thousand persons in all, of women who had not known a man intimately.

:36 And the half, the portion for those who had gone out to war, was in number three hundred and thirty-seven thousand five hundred sheep;

:37 and the LORD’s tribute of the sheep was six hundred and seventy-five.

:38 The cattle were thirty-six thousand, of which the LORD’s tribute was seventy-two.

:39 The donkeys were thirty thousand five hundred, of which the LORD’s tribute was sixty-one.

:40 The persons were sixteen thousand, of which the LORD’s tribute was thirty-two persons.

:41 So Moses gave the tribute which was the LORD’s heave offering to Eleazar the priest, as the LORD commanded Moses.

:42 And from the children of Israel’s half, which Moses separated from the men who fought—

:43 now the half belonging to the congregation was three hundred and thirty-seven thousand five hundred sheep,

:43 the half belonging to the congregation

How come they get some of the spoil when they didn't do any of the fighting?

David had a similar experience in the battle to recover Ziklag. (1Sam.30)
The Amalekites had raided the city while David and his men were gone.  They took all the women, children, everything.
In pursuing the Amalekites, some of the guys couldn’t keep up, so they stayed back with the supplies.  When it came time to divide up the spoil, some of the men didn’t think it right that those who stayed behind get anything.

(1 Sa 30:23–24 NKJV) —23 But David said, “My brethren, you shall not do so with what the Lord has given us, who has preserved us and delivered into our hand the troop that came against us. 24 For who will heed you in this matter? But as his part is who goes down to the battle, so shall his part be who stays by the supplies; they shall share alike.”

Lesson:

Even those who stay behind get a reward

You may not be able to go out into the front lines of the mission field.
You may not be gifted in street evangelism.
You may not be able to pull off going to Russia.
But when you support, pray for, and encourage those who do, you share in the spoil (the rewards in heaven!)!

:44 thirty-six thousand cattle,

:45 thirty thousand five hundred donkeys,

:46 and sixteen thousand persons—

:47 and from the children of Israel’s half Moses took one of every fifty, drawn from man and beast, and gave them to the Levites, who kept charge of the tabernacle of the LORD, as the LORD commanded Moses.

31:48-54 God’s Protection Remembered

:48 Then the officers who were over thousands of the army, the captains of thousands and captains of hundreds, came near to Moses;

:49 and they said to Moses, “Your servants have taken a count of the men of war who are under our command, and not a man of us is missing.

:49 not a man of us is missing

Lesson:

Vengeance is safest in God’s hands.

God had commanded Moses to take His vengeance on the Midianites. It wasn’t Moses’ idea, it was God’s.
And as a result, no Israelite soldiers lost their lives in the battle.
Keep in mind, there were only 12,000 Israeli warriors against at least 30,000 Midianite warriors.
The problem is that we often take vengeance into our own hands, and then it gets kind of messy.
At one point in his life Moses took vengeance into his own hands –

(Ac 7:24 NKJV) —24 And seeing one of them suffer wrong, he defended and avenged him who was oppressed, and struck down the Egyptian.

Moses ended up spending forty years in the wilderness, fleeing from Pharaoh, all because he took vengeance into his own hands.

Let God take care of it.
Sometimes He will direct you to do something appropriate.
Sometimes He wants you to just drop it.

:50 Therefore we have brought an offering for the LORD, what every man found of ornaments of gold: armlets and bracelets and signet rings and earrings and necklaces, to make atonement for ourselves before the LORD.”

:51 So Moses and Eleazar the priest received the gold from them, all the fashioned ornaments.

:52 And all the gold of the offering that they offered to the LORD, from the captains of thousands and captains of hundreds, was sixteen thousand seven hundred and fifty shekels.

:53 (The men of war had taken spoil, every man for himself.)

:54 And Moses and Eleazar the priest received the gold from the captains of thousands and of hundreds, and brought it into the tabernacle of meeting as a memorial for the children of Israel before the LORD.

:52 16,750 shekels – about 420 pounds, or 6,720 ounces

Today (with our record gold prices, $1,100 per ounce) that would be worth $18,425,000

Numbers 32

32:1-42 The Eastern Tribes

:1 Now the children of Reuben and the children of Gad had a very great multitude of livestock; and when they saw the land of Jazer and the land of Gilead, that indeed the region was a place for livestock,

:2 the children of Gad and the children of Reuben came and spoke to Moses, to Eleazar the priest, and to the leaders of the congregation, saying,

:3 “Ataroth, Dibon, Jazer, Nimrah, Heshbon, Elealeh, Shebam, Nebo, and Beon,

:4 the country which the LORD defeated before the congregation of Israel, is a land for livestock, and your servants have livestock.”

:5 Therefore they said, “If we have found favor in your sight, let this land be given to your servants as a possession. Do not take us over the Jordan.”

:1 children of Reuben – The tribes of Reuben and Gad (eventually ˝ of Manasseh will join them) have had their eyes on the territory east of the Jordan that the Israelites have already conquered.

These were the territories that they had taken from the kings Sihon and Og (Num. 21).

The lands were good for taking care of livestock, and since they had lots of livestock, they wanted to settle in these lands.

Are they settling for second best?

You could make the point that they want to settle down before they enter God’s Promised Land.

How can I say that this land wasn’t their Promised Land?
Moses was told he would never make it into the Promised Land.

(Num 20:12 KJV)  And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.

He would get to see it, but not go in.

(Num 27:12-13 KJV)  And the LORD said unto Moses, Get thee up into this mount Abarim, and see the land which I have given unto the children of Israel. {13} And when thou hast seen it, thou also shalt be gathered unto thy people, as Aaron thy brother was gathered.

But I’m not sure you could really make the case that their land is any “less” of the land of Israel.

Neither Moses nor God speak up and rebuke them for quitting too early.  Moses is just concerned that they don’t negatively affect the other tribes.

:6 And Moses said to the children of Gad and to the children of Reuben: “Shall your brethren go to war while you sit here?

:7 Now why will you discourage the heart of the children of Israel from going over into the land which the LORD has given them?

:8 Thus your fathers did when I sent them away from Kadesh Barnea to see the land.

:9 For when they went up to the Valley of Eshcol and saw the land, they discouraged the heart of the children of Israel, so that they did not go into the land which the LORD had given them.

:10 So the LORD’s anger was aroused on that day, and He swore an oath, saying,

:11 ‘Surely none of the men who came up from Egypt, from twenty years old and above, shall see the land of which I swore to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, because they have not wholly followed Me,

:12 except Caleb the son of Jephunneh, the Kenizzite, and Joshua the son of Nun, for they have wholly followed the LORD.’

:13 So the LORD’s anger was aroused against Israel, and He made them wander in the wilderness forty years, until all the generation that had done evil in the sight of the LORD was gone.

:14 And look! You have risen in your fathers’ place, a brood of sinful men, to increase still more the fierce anger of the LORD against Israel.

:15 For if you turn away from following Him, He will once again leave them in the wilderness, and you will destroy all these people.”

:7 why will you discourage

Lesson

I affect others

Moses is saying that if these tribes decide not to go across the Jordan, that the other tribes will become discouraged and not want to cross either, and they will be destroyed in the process.
(Lk 17:1–2 NKJV) —1 Then He said to the disciples, “It is impossible that no offenses should come, but woe to him through whom they do come! 2 It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
Though we are all accountable for our own sin, we still can have an influence on others.
Our bad example can encourage someone else to go down the wrong path.
(Ga 5:9 NKJV) A little leaven leavens the whole lump.
For yeast to do its thing in a lump of dough, all it takes is a little of it and just let it sit.
Illustration
There’s an email going around with a series of pictures about ducks.  A mother duck is walking on a sidewalk with six, small ducklings close behind her.
In the next picture you see the mother duck starting to walk across a grating in the pavement.
In the last frame, the mother duck only has one duckling with her, and she’s peering down in the grating looking for … her missing ducklings.
Who’s following you?
There are people who will follow our example.
Where are we going to lead them?
God’s desire is that we encourage and nudge each other towards God’s ways, not against His ways.
(Heb 3:12–13 NKJV) —12 Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; 13 but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

:16 Then they came near to him and said: “We will build sheepfolds here for our livestock, and cities for our little ones,

:17 but we ourselves will be armed, ready to go before the children of Israel until we have brought them to their place; and our little ones will dwell in the fortified cities because of the inhabitants of the land.

:18 We will not return to our homes until every one of the children of Israel has received his inheritance.

:19 For we will not inherit with them on the other side of the Jordan and beyond, because our inheritance has fallen to us on this eastern side of the Jordan.”

:20 Then Moses said to them: “If you do this thing, if you arm yourselves before the LORD for the war,

:21 and all your armed men cross over the Jordan before the LORD until He has driven out His enemies from before Him,

:22 and the land is subdued before the LORD, then afterward you may return and be blameless before the LORD and before Israel; and this land shall be your possession before the LORD.

:23 But if you do not do so, then take note, you have sinned against the LORD; and be sure your sin will find you out.

:23 your sin will find you out

Lesson

Sin discovered

Have you ever thought you were all by yourself and went and did something silly, only to find out that somebody was off in the corner watching you all along?
Play “Silly Cats” video.

The problem with our sin (as opposed to the cats), is that our sin is no laughing matter.  It’s pretty serious stuff.

The wicked person thinks he will not get caught.
(Ps 94:7 NKJV) Yet they say, “The Lord does not see, Nor does the God of Jacob understand.”
The truth is that God sees everything.
When Cain killed his brother Abel, he thought he could hide it from God.  Yet God found Cain …

(Ge 4:10 NKJV) And He said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood cries out to Me from the ground.

God sees us.  You can’t hide from Him!
Charles Spurgeon:
There is a singular poem by Hood, called “The Dream of Eugene Aram” --- a most remarkable piece it is indeed, illustrating the point on which we are now dwelling.  Aram had murdered a man, and cast his body into the river --- “a sluggish water, black as ink, the depth was so extreme.”  The next morning he visited the scene of his guilt—

“And sought the black accursed pool,

With a wild misgiving eye;

And he saw the dead in the river bed,

For the faithless stream was dry.”

Next he covered the corpse with heaps of leaves, but a mighty wind swept through the wood and left the secret bare before the sun ---

“Then down I cast me on my face,

And first began to weep,

For I knew my secret then was one

That earth refused to keep:

On land or sea though it should be

Ten thousand fathoms deep.”

He finally buried his victim in a cave and covered him with stones.  But years went by, the deed was discovered, and the murderer was put to death.
David wrote about what it is like when you try to hide your sin:
(Ps 32:3–5 NKJV) —3 When I kept silent, my bones grew old Through my groaning all the day long. 4 For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me; My vitality was turned into the drought of summer. 5 I acknowledged my sin to You, And my iniquity I have not hidden. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,” And You forgave the iniquity of my sin.

It’s better to admit your sin, turn from it, and find God’s forgiveness.

:24 Build cities for your little ones and folds for your sheep, and do what has proceeded out of your mouth.”

The good news is that these tribes will do what they promised.  They will help the other tribes conquer the Promised Land before returning to their families (Josh. 22:1-4).

(Jos 22:1–4 NKJV) —1 Then Joshua called the Reubenites, the Gadites, and half the tribe of Manasseh, 2 and said to them: “You have kept all that Moses the servant of the Lord commanded you, and have obeyed my voice in all that I commanded you. 3 You have not left your brethren these many days, up to this day, but have kept the charge of the commandment of the Lord your God. 4 And now the Lord your God has given rest to your brethren, as He promised them; now therefore, return and go to your tents and to the land of your possession, which Moses the servant of the Lord gave you on the other side of the Jordan.

:25 And the children of Gad and the children of Reuben spoke to Moses, saying: “Your servants will do as my lord commands.

:26 Our little ones, our wives, our flocks, and all our livestock will be there in the cities of Gilead;

:27 but your servants will cross over, every man armed for war, before the LORD to battle, just as my lord says.”

:28 So Moses gave command concerning them to Eleazar the priest, to Joshua the son of Nun, and to the chief fathers of the tribes of the children of Israel.

Moses knows he is not going to be around to see the end of this particular arrangement.  He makes sure that the next generation of leaders understands what agreements have been made.

:29 And Moses said to them: “If the children of Gad and the children of Reuben cross over the Jordan with you, every man armed for battle before the LORD, and the land is subdued before you, then you shall give them the land of Gilead as a possession.

:30 But if they do not cross over armed with you, they shall have possessions among you in the land of Canaan.”

If they don’t help out, they will lose the lands they wanted to have.

:31 Then the children of Gad and the children of Reuben answered, saying: “As the LORD has said to your servants, so we will do.

:32 We will cross over armed before the LORD into the land of Canaan, but the possession of our inheritance shall remain with us on this side of the Jordan.”

:33 So Moses gave to the children of Gad, to the children of Reuben, and to half the tribe of Manasseh the son of Joseph, the kingdom of Sihon king of the Amorites and the kingdom of Og king of Bashan, the land with its cities within the borders, the cities of the surrounding country.

:33 half the tribe of Manasseh

Half of Manasseh settled on the eastern side of the Jordan, while half of Manasseh settled on the west side of the Jordan.

(Jos 17:5–6 NKJV) —5 Ten shares fell to Manasseh, besides the land of Gilead and Bashan, which were on the other side of the Jordan, 6 because the daughters of Manasseh received an inheritance among his sons; and the rest of Manasseh’s sons had the land of Gilead.
These were the daughters of Zelophehad, who had earlier demanded a share of the inheritance.  Their father had died in the wilderness, and they didn’t think it was fair for them to lose out on the Promised Land.

Show map with the tribes of Gad, Reuben, and half of Manasseh.

Today, part of East Manasseh are in the land of Israel, the area known as the “Golan Heights”. The rest is in Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan.

Gad and Reuben are in the nation of Jordan.

:34 And the children of Gad built Dibon and Ataroth and Aroer,

We have a list of cities these tribes occupied.

:35 Atroth and Shophan and Jazer and Jogbehah,

:36 Beth Nimrah and Beth Haran, fortified cities, and folds for sheep.

:37 And the children of Reuben built Heshbon and Elealeh and Kirjathaim,

:38 Nebo and Baal Meon (their names being changed) and Shibmah; and they gave other names to the cities which they built.

:39 And the children of Machir the son of Manasseh went to Gilead and took it, and dispossessed the Amorites who were in it.

:40 So Moses gave Gilead to Machir the son of Manasseh, and he dwelt in it.

:41 Also Jair the son of Manasseh went and took its small towns, and called them Havoth Jair.

:42 Then Nobah went and took Kenath and its villages, and he called it Nobah, after his own name.

:32 We will cross over armed

Lesson

Helping others overcome

Not being selfish.
Not just thinking about your own victory.
In AA, one of the key components to gaining victory over your problem is learning to turn around and help others.
We are all in this together.