1 And it came to
pass in those days, when there was no king in Israel, that there
was a certain Levite sojourning on the side of mount Ephraim,
who took to him a concubine out of Bethlehemjudah.
2 And his concubine played the whore against him, and went away
from him unto her father's house to Bethlehemjudah, and was
there four whole months.
3 And her husband arose, and went after her, to speak friendly
unto her, and to bring her again, having his servant with him,
and a couple of asses: and she brought him into her father's
house: and when the father of the damsel saw him, he rejoiced
to meet him.
4 And his father in law, the damsel's father, retained him;
and he abode with him three days: so they did eat and drink,
and lodged there.
5 And it came to pass on the fourth day, when they arose early
in the morning, that he rose up to depart: and the damsel's
father said unto his son in law, Comfort thine heart with a
morsel of bread, and afterward go your way.
6 And they sat down, and did eat and drink both of them together:
for the damsel's father had said unto the man, Be content, I
pray thee, and tarry all night, and let thine heart be merry.
7 And when the man rose up to depart, his father in law urged
him: therefore he lodged there again.
8 And he arose early in the morning on the fifth day to depart:
and the damsel's father said, Comfort thine heart, I pray thee.
And they tarried until afternoon, and they did eat both of them.
9 And when the man rose up to depart, he, and his concubine,
and his servant, his father in law, the damsel's father, said
unto him, Behold, now the day draweth toward evening, I pray
you tarry all night: behold, the day groweth to an end, lodge
here, that thine heart may be merry; and to morrow get you early
on your way, that thou mayest go home.
10 But the man would not tarry that night, but he rose up and
departed, and came over against Jebus, which is Jerusalem; and
there were with him two asses saddled, his concubine also was
11 And when they were by Jebus, the day was far spent; and the
servant said unto his master, Come, I pray thee, and let us
turn in into this city of the Jebusites, and lodge in it.
12 And his master said unto him, We will not turn aside hither
into the city of a stranger, that is not of the children of
Israel; we will pass over to Gibeah.
13 And he said unto his servant, Come, and let us draw near
to one of these places to lodge all night, in Gibeah, or in
14 And they passed on and went their way; and the sun went down
upon them when they were by Gibeah, which belongeth to Benjamin.
15 And they turned aside thither, to go in and to lodge in Gibeah:
and when he went in, he sat him down in a street of the city:
for there was no man that took them into his house to lodging.
16 And, behold, there came an old man from his work out of the
field at even, which was also of mount Ephraim; and he sojourned
in Gibeah: but the men of the place were Benjamites.
17 And when he had lifted up his eyes, he saw a wayfaring man
in the street of the city: and the old man said, Whither goest
thou? and whence comest thou?
18 And he said unto him, We are passing from Bethlehemjudah
toward the side of mount Ephraim; from thence am I: and I went
to Bethlehemjudah, but I am now going to the house of the LORD;
and there is no man that receiveth me to house.
19 Yet there is both straw and provender for our asses; and
there is bread and wine also for me, and for thy handmaid, and
for the young man which is with thy servants: there is no want
of any thing.
20 And the old man said, Peace be with thee; howsoever let all
thy wants lie upon me; only lodge not in the street.
21 So he brought him into his house, and gave provender unto
the asses: and they washed their feet, and did eat and drink.
22 Now as they were making their hearts merry, behold, the men
of the city, certain sons of Belial, beset the house round about,
and beat at the door, and spake to the master of the house,
the old man, saying, Bring forth the man that came into thine
house, that we may know him.
23 And the man, the master of the house, went out unto them,
Nay, my brethren, nay, I pray you, do not so wickedly; seeing
that this man is come into mine house, do not this folly.
24 Behold, here is my daughter a maiden, and his concubine;
them I will bring out now, and humble ye them, and do with them
what seemeth good unto you: but unto this man do not so vile
25 But the men would not hearken to him: so the man took his
concubine, and brought her forth unto them; and they knew her,
and abused her all the night until the morning: and when the
day began to spring, they let her go.
26 Then came the woman in the dawning of the day, and fell down
at the door of the man's house where her lord was, till it was
27 And her lord rose up in the morning, and opened the doors
of the house, and went out to go his way: and, behold, the woman
his concubine was fallen down at the door of the house, and
her hands were upon the threshold.
28 And he said unto her, Up, and let us be going. But none answered.
Then the man took her up upon an ass, and the man rose up, and
gat him unto his place.
29 And when he was come into his house, he took a knife, and
laid hold on his concubine, and divided her, together with her
bones, into twelve pieces, and sent her into all the coasts
30 And it was so, that all that saw it said, There was no such
deed done nor seen from the day that the children of Israel
came up out of the land of Egypt unto this day: consider of
it, take advice, and speak your minds.
1 Then all the
children of Israel went out, and the congregation was gathered
together as one man, from Dan even to Beer-sheba, with the land
of Gilead, unto the LORD in Mizpeh.
2 And the chief of all the people, even of all the tribes of
Israel, presented themselves in the assembly of the people of
God, four hundred thousand footmen that drew sword.
3 (Now the children of Benjamin heard that the children of Israel
were gone up to Mizpeh.) Then said the children of Israel, Tell
us, how was this wickedness?
4 And the Levite, the husband of the woman that was slain, answered
and said, I came into Gibeah that belongeth to Benjamin, I and
my concubine, to lodge.
5 And the men of Gibeah rose against me, and beset the house
round about upon me by night, and thought to have slain me:
and my concubine have they forced, that she is dead.
6 And I took my concubine, and cut her in pieces, and sent her
throughout all the country of the inheritance of Israel: for
they have committed lewdness and folly in Israel.
7 Behold, ye are all children of Israel; give here your advice
8 And all the people arose as one man, saying, We will not any
of us go to his tent, neither will we any of us turn into his
9 But now this shall be the thing which we will do to Gibeah;
we will go up by lot against it;
10 And we will take ten men of an hundred throughout all the
tribes of Israel, and an hundred of a thousand, and a thousand
out of ten thousand, to fetch victual for the people, that they
may do, when they come to Gibeah of Benjamin, according to all
the folly that they have wrought in Israel.
11 So all the men of Israel were gathered against the city,
knit together as one man.
12 And the tribes of Israel sent men through all the tribe of
Benjamin, saying, What wickedness is this that is done among
13 Now therefore deliver us the men, the children of Belial,
which are in Gibeah, that we may put them to death, and put
away evil from Israel. But the children of Benjamin would not
hearken to the voice of their brethren the children of Israel:
14 But the children of Benjamin gathered themselves together
out of the cities unto Gibeah, to go out to battle against the
children of Israel.
15 And the children of Benjamin were numbered at that time out
of the cities twenty and six thousand men that drew sword, beside
the inhabitants of Gibeah, which were numbered seven hundred
16 Among all this people there were seven hundred chosen men
lefthanded; every one could sling stones at an hair breadth,
and not miss.
17 And the men of Israel, beside Benjamin, were numbered four
hundred thousand men that drew sword: all these were men of
18 And the children of Israel arose, 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 shall go up first.
19 And the children of Israel rose up in the morning, and encamped
20 And the men of Israel went out to battle against Benjamin;
and the men of Israel put themselves in array to fight against
them at Gibeah.
21 And the children of Benjamin came forth out of Gibeah, and
destroyed down to the ground of the Israelites that day twenty
and two thousand men.
22 And the people the men of Israel encouraged themselves, and
set their battle again in array in the place where they put
themselves in array the first day.
23 (And the children of Israel went up and wept before the LORD
until even, and asked counsel of 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.)
24 And the children of Israel came near against the children
of Benjamin the second day.
25 And Benjamin went forth against them out of Gibeah the second
day, and destroyed down to the ground of the children of Israel
again eighteen thousand men; all these drew the sword.
26 Then all the children of Israel, and all the people, went
up, and came unto the house of God, and wept, and sat there
before the LORD, and fasted that day until even, and offered
burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD.
27 And the children of Israel enquired of the LORD, (for the
ark of the covenant of God was there in those days,
28 And 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 cease? And the LORD said, Go up; for to morrow I will deliver
them into thine hand.
29 And Israel set liers in wait round about Gibeah.
30 And the children of Israel went up against the children of
Benjamin on the third day, and put themselves in array against
Gibeah, as at other times.
31 And the children of Benjamin went out against the people,
and were drawn away from the city; and they began to smite of
the people, and kill, as at other times, in the highways, of
which one goeth up to the house of God, and the other to Gibeah
in the field, about thirty men of Israel.
32 And the children of Benjamin said, They are smitten down
before us, as at the first. But the children of Israel said,
Let us flee, and draw them from the city unto the highways.
33 And all the men of Israel rose up out of their place, and
put themselves in array at Baal-tamar: and the liers in wait
of Israel came forth out of their places, even out of the meadows
34 And there came against Gibeah ten thousand chosen men out
of all Israel, and the battle was sore: but they knew not that
evil was near them.
35 And the LORD smote Benjamin before Israel: and the children
of Israel destroyed of the Benjamites that day twenty and five
thousand and an hundred men: all these drew the sword.
36 So the children of Benjamin saw that they were smitten: for
the men of Israel gave place to the Benjamites, because they
trusted unto the liers in wait which they had set beside Gibeah.
37 And the liers in wait hasted, and rushed upon Gibeah; and
the liers in wait drew themselves along, and smote all the city
with the edge of the sword.
38 Now there was an appointed sign between the men of Israel
and the liers in wait, that they should make a great flame with
smoke rise up out of the city.
39 And when the men of Israel retired in the battle, Benjamin
began to smite and kill of the men of Israel about thirty persons:
for they said, Surely they are smitten down before us, as in
the first battle.
40 But when the flame began to arise up out of the city with
a pillar of smoke, the Benjamites looked behind them, and, behold,
the flame of the city ascended up to heaven.
41 And when the men of Israel turned again, the men of Benjamin
were amazed: for they saw that evil was come upon them.
42 Therefore they turned their backs before the men of Israel
unto the way of the wilderness; but the battle overtook them;
and them which came out of the cities they destroyed in the
midst of them.
43 Thus they inclosed the Benjamites round about, and chased
them, and trode them down with ease over against Gibeah toward
44 And there fell of Benjamin eighteen thousand men; all these
were men of valour.
45 And they turned and fled toward the wilderness unto the rock
of Rimmon: and they gleaned of them in the highways five thousand
men; and pursued hard after them unto Gidom, and slew two thousand
men of them.
46 So that all which fell that day of Benjamin were twenty and
five thousand men that drew the sword; all these were men of
47 But six hundred men turned and fled to the wilderness unto
the rock Rimmon, and abode in the rock Rimmon four months.
48 And the men of Israel turned again upon the children of Benjamin,
and smote them with the edge of the sword, as well the men of
every city, as the beast, and all that came to hand: also they
set on fire all the cities that they came to.
1 Now the men of
Israel had sworn in Mizpeh, saying, There shall not any of us
give his daughter unto Benjamin to wife.
2 And the people came to the house of God, and abode there till
even before God, and lifted up their voices, and wept sore;
3 And said, O LORD God of Israel, why is this come to pass in
Israel, that there should be to day one tribe lacking in Israel?
4 And it came to pass on the morrow, that the people rose early,
and built there an altar, and offered burnt offerings and peace
5 And the children of Israel said, Who is there among all the
tribes of Israel that came not up with the congregation unto
the LORD? For they had made a great oath concerning him that
came not up to the LORD to Mizpeh, saying, He shall surely be
put to death.
6 And the children of Israel repented them for Benjamin their
brother, and said, There is one tribe cut off from Israel this
7 How shall we do for wives for them that remain, seeing we
have sworn by the LORD that we will not give them of our daughters
8 And they said, What one is there of the tribes of Israel that
came not up to Mizpeh to the LORD? And, behold, there came none
to the camp from Jabesh-gilead to the assembly.
9 For the people were numbered, and, behold, there were none
of the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead there.
10 And the congregation sent thither twelve thousand men of
the valiantest, and commanded them, saying, Go and smite the
inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead with the edge of the sword, with
the women and the children.
11 And this is the thing that ye shall do, Ye shall utterly
destroy every male, and every woman that hath lain by man.
12 And they found among the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead four
hundred young virgins, that had known no man by lying with any
male: and they brought them unto the camp to Shiloh, which is
in the land of Canaan.
13 And the whole congregation sent some to speak to the children
of Benjamin that were in the rock Rimmon, and to call peaceably
14 And Benjamin came again at that time; and they gave them
wives which they had saved alive of the women of Jabesh-gilead:
and yet so they sufficed them not.
15 And the people repented them for Benjamin, because that the
LORD had made a breach in the tribes of Israel.
16 Then the elders of the congregation said, How shall we do
for wives for them that remain, seeing the women are destroyed
out of Benjamin?
17 And they said, There must be an inheritance for them that
be escaped of Benjamin, that a tribe be not destroyed out of
18 Howbeit we may not give them wives of our daughters: for
the children of Israel have sworn, saying, Cursed be he that
giveth a wife to Benjamin.
19 Then they said, Behold, there is a feast of the LORD in Shiloh
yearly in a place which is on the north side of Bethel, on the
east side of the highway that goeth up from Bethel to Shechem,
and on the south of Lebonah.
20 Therefore they commanded the children of Benjamin, saying,
Go and lie in wait in the vineyards;
21 And see, and, behold, if the daughters of Shiloh come out
to dance in dances, then come ye out of the vineyards, and catch
you every man his wife of the daughters of Shiloh, and go to
the land of Benjamin.
22 And it shall be, when their fathers or their brethren come
unto us to complain, that we will say unto them, Be favourable
unto them for our sakes: because we reserved not to each man
his wife in the war: for ye did not give unto them at this time,
that ye should be guilty.
23 And the children of Benjamin did so, and took them wives,
according to their number, of them that danced, whom they caught:
and they went and returned unto their inheritance, and repaired
the cities, and dwelt in them.
24 And the children of Israel departed thence at that time,
every man to his tribe and to his family, and they went out
from thence every man to his inheritance.
25 In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did
that which was right in his own eyes.