NASB — Judges 18 — KJV

Danites Seek Territory

1 aIn those days there was no king of Israel; and bin those days the tribe of the Danites was seeking an inheritance for themselves to live in, for until that day Ian inheritance had not IIbeen allotted to them as a possession among the tribes of Israel. 2 So the sons of Dan sent from their family five men out of their whole number, Ivaliant men from aZorah and Eshtaol, to spy out the land and to search it; and they said to them, “Go, search the land.” And they came to bthe hill country of Ephraim, to the house of Micah, and lodged there. 3 When they were near the house of Micah, they recognized the voice of the young man, the Levite; and they turned aside there and said to him, “Who brought you here? And what are you doing in this [place]? And what do you have here?” 4 He said to them, “Thus and so has Micah done to me, and he has hired me and aI have become his priest.” 5 They said to him, “Inquire of God, please, that we may know whether our way on which we are going will be prosperous.” 6 The priest said to them, “Go in peace; your way in which you are going Ihas the LORDS approval.”

[1] ILit it IILit fallen aJg 17:6; 19:1 bJsh 19:40-48
[2] ILit men, sons of valor aJg 13:25 bJg 17:1
[4] aJg 17:12
[6] ILit is before the LORD

7 ¶ Then the five men departed and came to aLaish and saw the people who were in it living in security, after the manner of the Sidonians, quiet and secure; for there was no Iruler humiliating [them] for anything in the land, and they were far from the Sidonians and had no dealings with anyone. 8 When they came back to their brothers at Zorah and Eshtaol, their brothers said to them, “What [do] you [report]?” 9 They said, “Arise, and let us go up against them; for we have seen the land, and behold, it is very good. And will you Isit still? Do not delay to go, to enter, to possess the land. 10 When you enter, you will come to a secure people with a spacious land; for God has given it into your hand, aa place where there is no lack of anything that is on the earth.”

[7] ILit possessor of restraint aJsh 19:47; Jg 18:29
[9] ILit be
[10] aDt 8:9

11 ¶ Then from the family of the Danites, from Zorah and from Eshtaol, six hundred men armed with weapons of war set out. 12 They went up and camped at Kiriath-jearim in Judah. Therefore they called that place IaMahaneh-dan to this day; behold, it is IIwest of Kiriath-jearim. 13 They passed from there to the hill country of Ephraim and came to the house of Micah.

[12] II.e. the camp of Dan IILit behind aJg 13:25

Danites Take Micah’s Idols

14 ¶ Then the five men who went to spy out the country of Laish said to their kinsmen, “Do you know that there are in these houses aan ephod and Ihousehold idols and a graven image and a molten image? Now therefore, consider what you should do.” 15 They turned aside there and came to the house of the young man, the Levite, to the house of Micah, and asked him of his welfare. 16 The six hundred men armed with their weapons of war, who were of the sons of Dan, stood by the entrance of the gate. 17 Now the five men who went to spy out the land went up [and] entered there, [and] took athe graven image and the ephod and Ihousehold idols and the molten image, while the priest stood by the entrance of the gate with the six hundred men armed with weapons of war. 18 When these went into Micah’s house and took the graven image, the ephod and Ihousehold idols and the molten image, the priest said to them, “What are you doing?” 19 They said to him, “Be silent, aput your hand over your mouth and come with us, and be to us ba father and a priest. Is it better for you to be a priest to the house of one man, or to be priest to a tribe and a family in Israel?” 20 The priest’s heart was glad, and he took the ephod and Ihousehold idols and the graven image and went among the people.

[14] IHeb teraphim aJg 17:5
[17] IHeb teraphim aGn 31:19, 30; Is 41:29; Mi 5:13
[18] IHeb teraphim
[19] aJb 21:5; 29:9; 40:4 bJg 17:10
[20] IHeb teraphim

21 ¶ Then they turned and departed, and put the little ones and the livestock and the valuables in front of them. 22 When they had gone some distance from the house of Micah, the men who [were] in the houses near Micah’s house assembled and overtook the sons of Dan. 23 They cried to the sons of Dan, who turned Iaround and said to Micah, “What is [the matter] with you, that you have assembled together?” 24 He said, “You have taken away my gods which I made, and the priest, and have gone away, and what do I have besides? So how can you say to me, ‘What is [the matter] with you?’” 25 The sons of Dan said to him, “Do not let your voice be heard among us, or else Ifierce men will fall upon you and you will IIlose your life, with the lives of your household.” 26 So the sons of Dan went on their way; and when Micah saw that they were too strong for him, he turned and went back to his house.

[23] ILit their faces
[25] ILit bitter of soul IILit gather

27 ¶ Then they took what Micah had made and the priest who had belonged to him, and came to aLaish, to a people quiet and secure, and struck them with the edge of the sword; and they burned the city with fire. 28 And there was no one to deliver [them], because it was far from Sidon and they had no dealings with anyone, and it was in the valley which is near aBeth-rehob. And they rebuilt the city and lived in it. 29 aThey called the name of the city Dan, after the name of Dan their father who was born in Israel; however, the name of the city formerly was Laish. 30 The sons of Dan set up for themselves athe graven image; and Jonathan, the son of bGershom, the son of IManasseh, ahe and his sons were priests to the tribe of the Danites until the day of the captivity of the land. 31 So they set up for themselves Micah’s graven image which he had made, all the time that the ahouse of God was at Shiloh.

[27] aJsh 19:47; Jg 18:7
[28] a2S 10:6
[29] aJsh 19:47
[30] ISome ancient versions read Moses aJg 17:3, 5 bEx 2:22; 18:3
[31] aJsh 18:1


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The Danites send five men to seek out an inheritance.

1 ¶ In those days [there was] no king in Israel: and in those days the tribe of the Danites sought¬ them an inheritance to dwell in;¬ for unto that day [all their] inheritance had not fallen¬ unto them among the tribes of Israel. 2 And the children of Dan sent¬ of their family five men from their coasts, men of valour, from Zorah, and from Eshtaol, to spy¬ out the land, and to search¬ it; and they said¬ unto them, Go,¬ search¬ the land: who when they came¬ to mount Ephraim, to the house of Micah, they lodged¬ there.

[1] Gn 36:31; Dt 33:5; Jsh 19:40; Jg 1:34; 17:6; 19:1; 21:25.
[2] Gn 42:9; Nu 13:17; Jsh 2:1; 17:15; 19:41; Jg 13:2, 25; 16:31; 17:1; 18:8, 11; 19:1, 18; Pv 20:18; Lk 14:31.

At the house of Micah they consult with Jonathan, and are encouraged in their way.

3 When they [were] by the house of Micah, they knew¬ the voice of the young man the Levite: and they turned in¬ thither, and said¬ unto him, Who brought¬ thee hither? and what makest¬ thou in this [place]? and what hast thou here? 4 And he said¬ unto them, Thus and thus dealeth¬ Micah with me, and hath hired¬ me, and I am his priest. 5 And they said¬ unto him, Ask counsel,¬ we pray thee, of God, that we may know¬ whether our way which we go¬ shall be prosperous.¬ 6 And the priest said¬ unto them, Go¬ in peace: before the LORD [is] your way wherein ye go.¬

[3] Gn 27:22; Jg 12:6; Is 22:16; Mt 26:73.
[4] Jg 17:10; Pv 28:21; Is 56:11; Ezk 13:19; Ho 4:8; Mal 1:10; Jn 10:12; Ac 8:18; 20:33; 1Ti 3:3; Tit 1:11; 2P 2:3, 14.
[5] Jg 17:5, 13; 18:14; 1K 22:5; 2K 16:15; Is 30:1; Ezk 21:21; Ho 4:12; Ac 8:10.
[6] Dt 11:12; 1K 22:6, 12, 15; Ps 33:18; Jr 23:21, 32; 1Th 3:11.

They search Laish, and bring back news of good hope.

7 ¶ Then the five men departed,¬ and came¬ to Laish, and saw¬ the people that [were] therein, how they dwelt¬ careless, after the manner of the Zidonians, quiet¬ and secure;¬ and [there was] no magistrate¬ in the land, that might put [them] to shame¬ in [any] thing; and they [were] far from the Zidonians, and had no business with [any] man. 8 And they came¬ unto their brethren to Zorah and Eshtaol: and their brethren said¬ unto them, What [say] ye? 9 And they said,¬ Arise,¬ that we may go up¬ against them: for we have seen¬ the land, and, behold, it [is] very good: and [are] ye still?¬ be not slothful¬ to go,¬ [and] to enter¬ to possess¬ the land. 10 When ye go,¬ ye shall come¬ unto a people secure,¬ and to a large land: for God hath given¬ it into your hands; a place where [there is] no want of any thing that [is] in the earth.

[7] Jsh 19:47; Jg 18:27; 1S 3:13; 1K 1:6; Ro 13:3; 1P 2:14; Rv 18:7.
[8] Jg 13:2; 16:31; 18:2, 11.
[9] Nu 13:30; 14:7; Jsh 2:23; 18:3; 1S 4:9; 2S 10:12; 1K 22:23; Jn 6:27; He 6:11; 2P 1:10.
[10] Ex 3:8; Dt 2:29; 4:1; 8:7; 11:11; Jsh 6:16; Jg 18:7, 27; Ezk 20:6; 1Ti 6:17.

Six hundred men are sent to surprise it.

11 ¶ And there went¬ from thence of the family of the Danites, out of Zorah and out of Eshtaol, six hundred men appointed¬ with weapons of war. 12 And they went up,¬ and pitched¬ in Kirjathjearim, in Judah: wherefore they called¬ that place Mahanehdan unto this day: behold, [it is] behind Kirjathjearim. 13 And they passed¬ thence unto mount Ephraim, and came¬ unto the house of Micah.

[11] Jg 18:11.
[12] Jsh 15:60; Jg 13:25; 1S 7:1; 1Ch 13:5; 2Ch 1:4.
[13] Jsh 24:30, 33; Jg 17:1; 18:2; 19:1.

In the way they rob Micah of his priest and his consecrate things.

14 ¶ Then answered¬ the five men that went¬ to spy out¬ the country of Laish, and said¬ unto their brethren, Do ye know¬ that there is in these houses an ephod, and teraphim, and a graven image, and a molten image? now therefore consider¬ what ye have to do.¬ 15 And they turned¬ thitherward, and came¬ to the house of the young man the Levite, [even] unto the house of Micah, and saluted¬ him. 16 And the six hundred men appointed¬ with their weapons of war, which [were] of the children of Dan, stood¬ by the entering of the gate. 17 And the five men that went¬ to spy out¬ the land went up,¬ [and] came in¬ thither, [and] took¬ the graven image, and the ephod, and the teraphim, and the molten image: and the priest stood¬ in the entering of the gate with the six hundred men [that were] appointed¬ with weapons of war. 18 And these went¬ into Micah's house, and fetched¬ the carved image, the ephod, and the teraphim, and the molten image. Then said¬ the priest unto them, What do¬ ye? 19 And they said¬ unto him, Hold thy peace,¬ lay¬ thine hand upon thy mouth, and go¬ with us, and be to us¬ a father and a priest: [is it] better for thee to be a priest unto the house of one man, or that thou be a priest unto a tribe and a family in Israel? 20 And the priest's heart was glad,¬ and he took¬ the ephod, and the teraphim, and the graven image, and went in¬ the midst of the people. 21 So they turned¬ and departed,¬ and put¬ the little ones and the cattle and the carriage before them.

[14] Jg 17:5; 18:3; 1S 14:28; Pv 19:27; Is 8:19.
[15] Gn 37:14; 43:27; 1S 17:22; 2K 4:26; Mt 10:12; Lk 10:4; Jn 14:27.
[16] Jg 18:11.
[17] Ex 32:20; Jg 6:31; 17:4; 18:2, 14; 1S 4:11; 6:2; 2K 19:18; Is 46:1, 7.
[19] Jg 17:10; 2K 6:21; 8:8; 13:14; Jb 21:5; 29:9; 40:4; Pv 30:32; Mi 7:16; Mt 23:9.
[20] Jg 17:10; Pv 30:15; Is 56:11; Ezk 13:19; Ho 4:3; Ac 20:33; Php 3:19; 2P 2:3, 15.
[21] Jg 18:21.

22 ¶ [And] when they were a good way¬ from the house of Micah, the men that [were] in the houses near to Micah's house were gathered together,¬ and overtook¬ the children of Dan. 23 And they cried¬ unto the children of Dan. And they turned¬ their faces, and said¬ unto Micah, What aileth thee, that thou comest with such a company?¬ 24 And he said,¬ Ye have taken away¬ my gods which I made,¬ and the priest, and ye are gone away:¬ and what have I more? and what [is] this [that] ye say¬ unto me, What aileth thee? 25 And the children of Dan said¬ unto him, Let not thy voice be heard¬ among us, lest angry fellows run¬ upon thee, and thou lose¬ thy life, with the lives of thy household. 26 And the children of Dan went¬ their way: and when Micah saw¬ that they [were] too strong for him, he turned¬ and went back¬ unto his house.

[23] Gn 21:17; 1S 11:5; 2S 14:5; 2K 6:28; Ps 114:5; Is 22:1.
[24] Jg 17:13; Ps 115:8; Is 44:18; Jr 50:38; 51:17; Ezk 23:5; Hab 2:18; Ac 19:26; Rv 17:2.
[25] 1S 30:6; 2S 17:8; Jb 3:5; 27:2.

They win Laish, and call it Dan.

27 And they took¬ [the things] which Micah had made,¬ and the priest which he had, and came¬ unto Laish, unto a people [that were] at quiet¬ and secure:¬ and they smote¬ them with the edge of the sword, and burnt¬ the city with fire. 28 And [there was] no deliverer,¬ because it [was] far from Zidon, and they had no business with [any] man; and it was in the valley that [lieth] by Bethrehob. And they built¬ a city, and dwelt¬ therein. 29 And they called¬ the name of the city Dan, after the name of Dan their father, who was born¬ unto Israel: howbeit the name of the city [was] Laish at the first.

[27] Dt 33:22; Jsh 11:11; 19:47; Jg 18:7, 10.
[28] Nu 13:21; Jsh 11:8; Jg 18:1, 7; 2S 10:6; 14:6; Ps 7:2; 50:22; Is 23:4, 12; Dn 3:15.
[29] Gn 14:14; 30:6; 32:28; Jsh 19:47; Jg 20:1; 2S 17:11; 1K 12:29; 15:20.

They set up idolatry, wherein Jonathan inheriteth the priesthood.

30 ¶ And the children of Dan set up¬ the graven image: and Jonathan, the son of Gershom, the son of Manasseh, he and his sons were priests to the tribe of Dan until the day of the captivity¬ of the land. 31 And they set them up¬ Micah's graven image, which he made,¬ all the time that the house of God was in Shiloh.

[30] Ex 20:4; Lv 26:1; Dt 17:2; 27:15; 31:16, 29; Jsh 19:40; Jg 13:1; 1S 4:2, 10; Ps 78:58, 60; 105:44.
[31] Jsh 18:1; Jg 19:18; 21:21; 1S 1:3; 4:4; Jr 7:12.


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