1Yahweh spoke to Moses and said, 2'Exact the ful vengeance for the Israelites on the Midianites. Afterwards you will be gathered to yourpeople.' 3Moses said to the people, 'Some of you are to take up arms for Yahweh's campaign against Midian,to carry out the vengeance of Yahweh on Midian. 4You will put a thousand men in the field from each of the tribes of Israel.' 5In this way Israel's thousands provided twelve thousand men equipped for war, one thousand fromeach tribe: 6Moses put them in the field, one thousand from each tribe, with Phinehas, son of the priest Eleazar,to go with them carrying the sacred objects and the trumpets for the battle cry. 7They made war on Midian, as Yahweh had ordered Moses, and put every male to death. 8What is more, they kil ed the kings of Midian, Evi, Rekem, Zur, Hur and Reba, the five Midianite kings;they also put Balaam son of Beor to the sword. 9The Israelites took the Midianite women and their little ones captive and carried off al their cattle, altheir flocks and al their goods as booty. 10They set fire to the towns where they lived and to al their encampments. 11Then, taking al their booty, everything they had captured, human and animal, 12they brought the captives, spoil and booty to Moses, the priest Eleazar and the whole community ofIsraelites at the camp on the Plains of Moab, near the Jordan by Jericho. 13Moses, the priest Eleazar and al the leaders of the community went out of the camp to meet them. 14Moses was enraged with the officers of the army, the commanders of the thousands andcommanders of the hundreds, who had come back from this military expedition. 15He said, 'Why have you spared the life of al the women? 16They were the very ones who, on Balaam's advice, caused the Israelites to be unfaithful to Yahwehin the affair at Peor: hence the plague which struck Yahweh's community. 17So kil al the male children and kil al the women who have ever slept with a man; 18but spare the lives of the young girls who have never slept with a man, and keep them foryourselves. 19As for you, bivouac outside the camp for seven days, everyone who has kil ed anyone or touched acorpse. Purify yourselves and your prisoners on the third and seventh days, 20and purify al clothing, everything made of skin, everything woven of goat's hair and everythingmade of wood.' 21The priest Eleazar said to the soldiers who had come back from the campaign, 'This is an article ofthe Law which Yahweh prescribed to Moses: 22although gold, silver, bronze, iron, tin and lead, 23everything that can withstand fire can be cleaned by being passed through fire, it must stil bepurified with water for purification. Whatever cannot resist fire you must pass through water. 24'Wash your clothes on the seventh day and you wil then be clean. You may then re-enter the camp.' 25Yahweh spoke to Moses and said: 26'With the priest Eleazar and the heads of families in the community, take a count of the spoils andcaptives, human and animal. 27You wil then share out the spoil, half and half, between those who fought the campaign and the restof the community. 28From the share of the combatants who took part in the campaign, you wil set aside one out of everyfive hundred persons, oxen, donkeys and sheep as Yahweh's portion. 29You wil take this from the half share coming to them and give it to the priest Eleazar as the portionset aside for Yahweh. 30From the half coming to the Israelites, you will take one out of every fifty persons, oxen, donkeys,sheep, and al other animals, and give them to the Levites who are responsible for Yahweh's Dwel ing.' 31Moses and the priest Eleazar did as Yahweh had ordered Moses. 32The spoils, the remainder of the booty captured by the soldiers, came to six hundred and seventy-five thousand sheep and goats, 33seventy-two thousand head of cattle, 34sixty-one thousand donkeys, 35and in persons, women who had never slept with a man, thirty-two thousand in al . 36Half was assigned to those who had taken part in the war, namely three hundred and thirty-seventhousand five hundred sheep and goats, 37of which Yahweh's portion was six hundred and seventy-five, 38thirty-six thousand head of cattle, of which Yahweh's portion was seventy-two, 39thirty thousand five hundred donkeys, of which Yahweh's portion was sixty-one, 40and sixteen thousand persons, of which Yahweh's portion was thirty-two. 41Moses gave the priest Eleazar the portion set aside for Yahweh, as Yahweh had ordered Moses. 42As for the half coming to the Israelites which Moses had separated from that of the combatants, 43this half, the community's share, came to three hundred and thirty-seven thousand five hundredsheep and goats, 44thirty-six thousand head of cattle, 45thirty thousand five hundred donkeys 46and sixteen thousand persons. 47From this half, the Israelites' share, Moses took one out of every fifty, human and animal, and gavethem to the Levites who were responsible for Yahweh's Dwel ing, as Yahweh had ordered Moses. 48The officers of the thousands who had fought the campaign, the commanders of the thousands andcommanders of the hundreds, came to Moses 49and said, 'Your servants have numbered the soldiers under their command: none of our men ismissing. 50So, as an offering for Yahweh, we have brought what each of us has found in the way of goldornaments, armlets and bracelets, rings, earrings and breastplates, to make expiation for ourselves beforeYahweh.' 51Moses and the priest Eleazar accepted this gold from them, al this jewel ery. 52This portion of gold given to Yahweh by the commanders of the thousands and commanders of thehundreds amounted to sixteen thousand seven hundred and fifty shekels. 53Each of the soldiers took his own booty. 54But Moses and the priest Eleazar, having accepted the gold from the commanders of the thousandsand commanders of the hundreds, brought it into the Tent of Meeting, to be a reminder of the Israelites beforeYahweh.
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