Bamidbar (Numbers): Chukat > Ch 21

Canaanite king of Arad attacks Israel and captures a prisoner. Israel vows to G-d that they will consecrate Arad’s cities if they are able to capture them. G-d gives Israel a complete victory and destroys the Canaanite.

  • The Canaanite king of Arad, who lived in the south, heard that Israel had come by the route of the spies, and he waged war against Israel and took from them a captive. Israel made a vow to the Lord, and said, "If You deliver this people into my hand, I shall consecrate their cities." The Lord heard Israel's voice and delivered the Canaanite. He destroyed them and [consecrated] their cities, and he called the place Hormah.

Israelites journey to Mount Hor, going around the land of Edom. The journey is difficult and they complain against G-d & Moses. G-d sends venomous snakes that kill many Israelites.

  • They journeyed from Mount Hor by way of the Red Sea to circle the land of Edom, and the people became disheartened because of the way. The people spoke against G-d and against Moses, "Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in this desert, for there is no bread and no water, and we are disgusted with this rotten bread." The Lord sent against the people the venomous snakes, and they bit the people, and many people of Israel died.

Israelites ask Moses for forgiveness. G-d tells Moses to make a serpent on a pole. Those who are bitten by a snake look at the pole and live.

  • The people came to Moses and said, "We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord and against you. Pray to the Lord that He remove the snakes from us." So Moses prayed on behalf of the people. The Lord said to Moses, "Make yourself a serpent and put it on a pole, and let whoever is bitten look at it and live. Moses made a copper snake and put it on a pole, and whenever a snake bit a man, he would gaze upon the copper snake and live.

Israelites journey through the desert. They ask Sihon, king of the Amorites, to allow them passage through his land. Sihon attacks Israel. Israelites smite him and take possession of his land. Israelites settle in the land of the Amorites

  • The children of Israel journeyed on and camped in Oboth. They journeyed from Oboth and camped in the wasteland passes in the wilderness, which faced Moab, toward the rising sun. From there they journeyed, and they encamped along the stream of Zered. From there they journeyed, and they encamped on the other side of the Arnon, which was in the desert, extending from the Amorite border, for Arnon was the Moabite border between Moab and the Amorites. Concerning this it is told in the account of the Wars of the Lord, "What He gave at the [Sea of] Reeds and the streams of Arnon. And the spilling of the streams that turned to settle at Ar and leaned toward the border of Moab.
  • From there to the well; that is the well of which the Lord said to Moses, 'Gather the people, and I will give them water.'" Then Israel sang this song: "'Ascend, O well,' sing to it! A well dug by princes, carved out by nobles of the people, through the lawgiver with their staffs, and from the desert, a gift. From the gift, to the streams, and from the streams to the heights. From the heights to the valley in the field of Moab, at the top of the peak, that overlooks the wastelands."
  • Israel sent messengers to Sihon the king of the Amorites, saying: "Let me pass through your land. We will not turn into fields or vineyards, nor drink well water. We shall walk along the king's road, until we have passed through your territory." But Sihon did not permit Israel to pass through his territory, and Sihon gathered all his people and went out to the desert toward Israel. He arrived at Jahaz and fought against Israel.
  • Israel smote him with the sword, and took possession of his land from Arnon to Jabbok, as far as the children of Ammon, for the border of the children of Ammon was strong. Israel took all these cities, and the Israelites dwelt in all the cities of the Amorites, in Heshbon and all its villages. For Heshbon was the city of Sihon, king of the Amorites, and he had fought against the first king of Moab, taking all his land from his possession, as far as Arnon.
  • Concerning this, those who speak in parables say, "Come to Heshbon, may it be built and established as the city of Sihon. For fire went forth from Heshbon, a flame from the city of Sihon; it consumed Ar of Moab, the masters of the high places of Arnon. Woe is to you, Moab; you are lost, people of Chemosh. His sons he has given over as refugees and his daughters into captivity, to Sihon, king of the Amorites. Their kingdom is destroyed from Heshbon; it has been removed from Dibon; we laid them waste as far as Nophah which is near Medeba."
  • Israel settled in the land of the Amorites. Moses sent [men] to spy out Jaazer and they captured its villages, driving out the Amorites who lived there.

Israelites go north toward Bashan. The king of Bashan attacks them. G-d tells Israelites to smite his people. Israelites smite them leaving no survivors and take possession of the land

  • Then they turned and headed north toward the Bashan. Og, the king of Bashan, came out toward them with all his people, to wage war at Edrei. The Lord said to Moses, "Do not fear him, for I have delivered him, his people, and his land into your hand. You shall do to him as you did to Sihon the king of the Amorites who dwells in Heshbon. They smote him, his sons and all his people, until there was no survivor, and they took possession of his land.