1 And the leaders of the families of Levi approached Eleazar, the priest, and Joshua, the son of Nun, and the rulers of the extended families of each of the tribes of the sons of Israel.
2 And they spoke to them at Shiloh, in the land of Canaan, and they said, “The Lord instructed, by the hand of Moses, that cities should be given to us as habitations, with their suburbs to nourish our cattle.”
3 And so the sons of Israel gave cities and their suburbs from their possessions, in accord with the order of the Lord.
4 And the lot went out for the family of Kohath, of the sons of Aaron, the priest, from the tribes of Judah and Simeon and Benjamin: thirteen cities.
5 And to the remainder of the sons of Kohath, that is, to the Levites who were left over, there went, from the tribes of Ephraim and Dan, and from the one half tribe of Manasseh, ten cities.
6 And next the lot went out to the sons of Gershon, so that they would receive, from the tribes of Issachar and Asher and Naphtali, and from the one half tribe of Manasseh at Bashan: the number of thirteen cities.
7 And to the sons of Merari, by their families, from the tribes of Reuben and Gad and Zebulun, there went twelve cities.
8 And so the sons of Israel gave cities and their suburbs to the Levites, just as the Lord instructed by the hand of Moses, distributing to each by lot.
9 From the tribes of the sons of Judah and Simeon, Joshua gave cities, whose names are these:
10 to the sons of Aaron, of the families of Kohath of the stock of Levi, (for the first lot went out for them,)
11 the city of Arba, the father of Anak, which is called Hebron, on the mountain of Judah, and its surrounding suburbs.
12 Yet truly, the fields and its villages he had given to Caleb, the son of Jephunneh, as a possession.
13 Therefore, he gave to the sons of Aaron the priest, Hebron as a city of refuge, as well as its suburbs, and Libnah, with its suburbs,
14 and Jattir, and Eshtemoa,
15 and Holon, and Debir,
16 and Ain, and Juttah, and Beth-shemesh, with their suburbs: nine cities from two tribes, just as has been said.
17 Then, from the tribe of the sons of Benjamin, he gave Gibeon, and Geba,
18 and Anathoth, and Almon, with their suburbs: four cities.
19 All the cities together of the sons of Aaron, the priest, were thirteen, with their suburbs.
20 Yet truly, the remainder of the families of the sons of Kohath, of the stock of Levi, were given this possession:
21 from the tribe of Ephraim, Shechem, one of the cities of refuge, with its suburbs, on mount Ephraim, and Gezer,
22 and Kibzaim, and Beth-horon, with their suburbs, four cities;
23 and from the tribe of Dan, Elteke and Gibbethon,
24 and Aijalon and Gath-Rimmon, with their suburbs, four cities;
25 then, from the one half tribe of Manasseh, Taanach and Gath-Rimmon, with their suburbs, two cities.
26 All the cities were ten, with their suburbs; these were given to the sons of Kohath, of the lesser degree.
27 Likewise, to the sons of Gershon, of the stock of Levi, from the one half tribe of Manasseh, went Golan in Bashan, one of the cities of refuge, and Bosra, with their suburbs, two cities;
28 also, from the tribe of Issachar, Kishion, and Daberath,
29 and Jarmuth, and Engannim, with their suburbs, four cities;
30 then, from the tribe of Asher, Mishal and Abdon,
31 and Helkath and Rehob, with their suburbs, four cities;
32 likewise, from the tribe of Naphtali, Kedesh in Galilee, one of the cities of refuge, and Hammoth-Dor, and Kartan, with their suburbs, three cities.
33 All the cities of the families of Gershon were thirteen, with their suburbs.
34 Then, to the sons of Merari, Levites of the lesser degree, by their families, were given, from the tribe of Zebulun, Jokneam and Kartah,
35 and Dimnah and Nahalal, four cities with their suburbs;
36 from the tribe of Reuben, beyond the Jordan, opposite Jericho, Bezer in the wilderness, one of the cities of refuge, Misor and Jazer, and Jethson and Mephaath, four cities with their suburbs;
37 from the tribe of Gad, Ramoth of Gilead, one of the cities of refuge, and Mahanaim and Heshbon and Jazer, four cities with their suburbs.
38 All the cities of the sons of Merari, by their families and extended families, were twelve.
39 And so all the cities of the Levites, in the midst of the possession of the sons of Israel, were forty-eight,
40 with their suburbs, each distributed by families.
41 And the Lord God gave to Israel all the land that he had sworn he would deliver to their fathers. And they possessed it, and they lived in it.
42 And he gave them peace with all the surrounding nations. And none of their enemies dared to stand against them; instead, they were brought under their sovereignty.
43 Indeed, not so much as one word that he had promised to provide for them was left empty; instead, everything was fulfilled.
1 In the same time, Joshua called the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the one half tribe of Manasseh.
2 And he said to them: “You have done all that Moses, the servant of the Lord, instructed you. You have also obeyed me in all things.
3 Neither have you forsaken your brothers during this long time, even to the present day, keeping the orders of the Lord your God.
4 Therefore, since the Lord your God has given your brothers peace and quiet, just as he promised: return, and go into your tents and into the land of your possession, which Moses, the servant of the Lord, delivered to you beyond the Jordan.
5 And may you continue to observe attentively, and to work to fulfill, the commandment and the law that Moses, the servant of the Lord, instructed to you, so that you may love the Lord your God, and walk in all his ways, and keep all his commandments, and cling to him, and serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.”
6 And Joshua blessed them, and he sent them away. And they returned to their tents.
7 Now to the one half tribe of Manasseh, Moses had given a possession in Bashan. And therefore, to the one half that was left over, Joshua gave a lot among the remainder of their brothers across the Jordan, in the western region. And when he had blessed them and dismissed them to their tents,
8 he said to them: “Return to your settlements with much substance and wealth, with silver and gold, brass and iron, and a multitude of garments. Divide the spoils of your enemies with your brothers.”
9 And the sons of Reuben, and the sons of Gad, and the one half tribe of Manasseh returned, and they went away from the sons of Israel at Shiloh, which is situated in Canaan, so that they might enter into Gilead, the land of their possession, which they had obtained according to the order of the Lord, by the hand of Moses.
10 And when they had arrived at the hills of the Jordan in the land of Canaan, they built an altar of immense magnitude beside the Jordan.
11 And when the sons of Israel had heard of it, and certain messengers had reported to them that the sons of Reuben, and of Gad, and of the one half tribe of Manasseh had built an altar in the land of Canaan, upon the hills of the Jordan, facing the sons of Israel,
12 they all assembled at Shiloh, so that they might go up and battle against them.
13 And in the interim, they sent to them, in the land of Gilead, Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the priest,
14 and ten leaders with him, one from each tribe.
15 And they went to the sons of Reuben, and of Gad, and of the one half tribe of Manasseh, in the land of Gilead, and they said to them:
16 All the people of the Lord declare this: What is this transgression? Why have you forsaken the Lord, the God of Israel, by building a sacrilegious altar, and by withdrawing from the worship of him?
17 Is it a small thing to you that you have sinned with Baal of Peor, and that the stain of that crime continues among us, even to the present day? And many of the people have fallen.
18 And yet you have forsaken the Lord today, and tomorrow his wrath will rage against all of Israel.
19 But if you consider the land of your possession to be unclean, cross over to the land in which is the tabernacle of the Lord, and live among us. But do not withdraw from the Lord, and from our fellowship, by building an altar contrary to the altar of the Lord our God.
20 Did not Achan, the son of Zerah, go against the commandment of the Lord, and so his wrath was laid over all the people of Israel? And he was only one man. If only he had perished in his wickedness alone!”
21 And the sons of Reuben, and of Gad, and of the one half tribe of Manasseh responded to the leaders of the delegation from Israel:
22 The Lord, the almighty God, the Lord, the almighty God, he knows, and also Israel will understand: If we have constructed this altar with intent of transgression, let him not preserve us, but instead punish us immediately.
23 And if we have acted with a mind so that we might present upon it holocausts, and sacrifice, and victims of peace offerings, let him inquire and judge.
24 Instead, we have acted with this greater thought and design, that we would say: Tomorrow your sons will say to our sons: ‘What is there between you and the Lord, the God of Israel?
25 The Lord has stationed the river Jordan as the border between us and you, O sons of Reuben, O sons of Gad. And therefore, you have no part in the Lord.’ And by this occasion, your sons would turn away our sons from the fear of the Lord. And so we sought something better,
26 and we said: Let us build us an altar, not for holocausts, and not to offer victims,
27 but as a testimony between us and you, and between our descendents and your progeny, so that we may serve the Lord, and so that it may be our right to offer holocausts, and victims, and peace offerings, and so that tomorrow your sons may not say to our sons: ‘You have no part in the Lord.’
28 And if they decide to say this, they shall respond to them: ‘Behold, the altar of the Lord, which our fathers made, not for holocausts, and not for sacrifice, but instead as a testimony between us and you.’
29 May this wickedness be far from us, such that we would withdraw from the Lord, and would forsake his paths, by constructing an altar to offer holocausts, and sacrifices, and victims, contrary to the altar of the Lord our God, which was built before his tabernacle.”
30 And when Phinehas, the priest, and the leaders of the delegation who were with him, had heard this, they were pleased. And they accepted very willingly the words of the sons of Reuben, and of Gad, and of the one half tribe of Manasseh.
31 And Phinehas, the priest, the son of Eleazar, said to them: “Now we know that the Lord is with us. For you are a stranger to this transgression. And so you have freed the sons of Israel from the hand of the Lord.”
32 And he returned with the leaders, from the sons of Reuben and of Gad, out of the land of Gilead, into the parts of Canaan, to the sons of Israel. And he reported to them.
33 And the word pleased all who heard it. And the sons of Israel praised God, and they no longer said that they would go up against them, and fight, and destroy the land of their possession.
34 And the sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad called the altar that they had built: Our testimony that the Lord himself is God.
1 ALEPH. O how a city once filled with people now sits alone! The Governess of the Gentiles has become like a widow. The Prince of the provinces has been placed under tribute.
2 BETH. Weeping, she has wept through the night, and her tears are on her cheeks. There is no one to be a comfort to her and to all her beloved. All her friends have spurned her, and they have become her enemies.
3 GHIMEL. Judah has migrated because of affliction and great servitude. She has lived among the nations and not found rest. All of her persecutors have apprehended her, amid torments.
4 DALETH. The pathways of Zion mourn, because there are none who approach for the solemnity. All her gates are destroyed. Her priests groan. Her virgins are filthy. And she is overwhelmed with bitterness.
5 HE. Her enemies have been made her leaders; her adversaries have been enriched. For the Lord has spoken against her, because of the multitude of her iniquities. Her little ones have been led into captivity before the face of the tribulator.
6 VAU. And all her elegance has departed, from the daughter of Zion. Her leaders have become like rams that cannot find pasture, and they have gone away without strength before the face of the pursuer.
7 ZAIN. Jerusalem has remembered the days of her affliction and the betrayal of all her desirable ones, whom she held from the days of antiquity, when her people fell into the hand of the enemy, and there was no one to be a helper. The enemies have looked upon her and mocked her Sabbaths.
8 HETH. Jerusalem has sinned a grievous sin. Because of this, she has become unstable. All who glorified her have spurned her, because they have looked upon her disgrace. Then she groaned and turned away again.
9 TETH. Her filth is on her feet, and her end has not been remembered. She has been vehemently put down, having no consolation. O Lord, look upon my affliction, for the adversary has been lifted up.
10 JOD. The enemy has sent his hand against all her desirable ones. For she has watched the Gentiles enter her sanctuary, even though you instructed that they should not enter into your church.
11 CAPH. All her people are groaning and seeking bread. They have given up whatever was precious in exchange for food, so as to remain alive. See, O Lord, and consider, for I have become vile.
12 LAMED. O all you who pass by the way, attend, and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow. For he has made me a vintage, just as the Lord has spoken in the day of his furious anger.
13 MEM. From on high, he has sent fire into my bones, and he has educated me. He has spread a net for my feet; he has turned me back. He has placed me in desolation, consumed by grief, all day long.
14 NUN. Vigilant is the yoke of my iniquities. They have been folded together in his hand and imposed on my neck. My virtue has been weakened. The Lord has given me into a hand, out of which I am not able to rise.
15 SAMECH. The Lord has taken away all of my great ones from my midst. He has called forth time against me, so as to crush my elect ones. The Lord has trampled the winepress, which was for the virgin daughter of Judah.
16 AIN. For this I weep, and my eyes bring forth water. For the consoler has been far away from me, changing my soul. My sons have become lost, because the enemy has prevailed.
17 PHE. Zion has reached out her hands; there is no one to console her. The Lord has given orders against Jacob; his enemies are all around him. Jerusalem among them is like a woman made unclean by menstruation.
18 SADE. The Lord is just, for it is I who has provoked his mouth to wrath. I beg all people to listen and to see my sorrow. My virgins and my youths have gone into captivity.
19 COPH. I called for my friends, but they deceived me. My priests and my elders have been consumed in the city. For they were seeking their food, so as to revive their life.
20 RES. See, O Lord, that I am in tribulation. My bowels have been disturbed, my heart has been subverted within me, for I am filled with bitterness. Outside, the sword puts to death, and at home there is a similar death.
21 SIN. They have heard that I groan and that there is no one to console me. All my enemies have heard of my misfortune; they have rejoiced that you caused it. You have brought in a day of consolation, and so they shall become like me.
22 THAU. Let all their evil enter before you. And make vintage of them, just as you made vintage of me, because of all my iniquities. For my sighs are many, and my heart is grieving.
1 Unto the end, in hymns, for David.
2 Hear, O God, my supplication: be attentive to my prayer,
3 To thee have I cried from the ends of the earth: when my heart was in anguish, thou hast exalted me on a rock. Thou hast conducted me;
32 And they said to one another, “Was not our heart burning within us, while he was speaking on the way, and when he opened the Scriptures to us?”
33 And rising up at that same hour, they returned to Jerusalem. And they found the eleven gathered together, and those who were with them,
34 saying: “In truth, the Lord has risen, and he has appeared to Simon.”
35 And they explained the things that were done on the way, and how they had recognized him at the breaking of the bread.
36 Then, while they were talking about these things, Jesus stood in their midst, And he said to them: “Peace be with you. It is I. Do not be afraid.”
37 Yet truly, they were very disturbed and terrified, supposing that they saw a spirit.
38 And he said to them: “Why are you disturbed, and why do these thoughts rise up in your hearts?
39 See my hands and feet, that it is I myself. Look and touch. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones, as you see that I have.”
40 And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet.
41 Then, while they were still in disbelief and in wonder out of joy, he said, “Do you have anything here to eat?”
42 And they offered him a piece of roasted fish and a honeycomb.
43 And when he had eaten these in their sight, taking up what was left, he gave it to them.
44 And he said to them: “These are the words that I spoke to you when I was still with you, because all things must be fulfilled which are written in the law of Moses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalms about me.”
45 Then he opened their mind, so that they might understand the Scriptures.
46 And he said to them: “For so it is written, and so it was necessary, for the Christ to suffer and to rise up from the dead on the third day,
47 and, in his name, for repentance and the remission of sins to be preached, among all the nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
48 And you are witnesses of these things.
49 And I am sending the Promise of my Father upon you. But you must stay in the city, until such time as you are clothed with power from on high.”
50 Then he led them out as far as Bethania. And lifting up his hands, he blessed them.
51 And it happened that, while he was blessing them, he withdrew from them, and he was carried up into heaven.
52 And worshiping, they returned to Jerusalem with great joy.
53 And they were always in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen.