The Levite in a general assembly declareth his wrong.
Judges 20:1 Then went forth all the sons of Israel, and the assembly came together as one man, from Dan even to Beersheba with the land of Gilead,unto Yahweh at Mizpah. Judges 20:2 And the chiefs of all the peopleall the tribes of Israelpresented themselves in the convocation of the people of God,four hundred thousand footmen, that drew the sword. Judges 20:3 And the sons of Benjamin heard that the sons of Israel had gone up to Mizpah. Then said the sons of Israel, Tell [us], In what manner was brought to pass this vileness? Judges 20:4 And the Levite, husband of the woman that was cut in pieces, responded and said,Into Gibeah that pertaineth to Benjamin, I entered, I and my concubine, to tarry the night. Judges 20:5 And the owners of Gibeah rose up against me, and beset the house, for my sake, by night,me, they thought to slay, and, my concubine, they so humbled, that she died. Judges 20:6 So I laid hold on my concubine, and cut her in pieces, and sent her throughout all the country of the inheritance of Israel,because they had wrought lewdness and impiety, in Israel. Judges 20:7 Lo! ye all, are sons of Israel,give your word and counsel, here.
The decree of the assembly.
Judges 20:8 Then arose all the people, as one man, saying,No man of us will go to his tent, and no man of us will turn aside to his house. Judges 20:9 Now, therefore, this is the thing, that we will do to Gibeah,[Go] against it by lot; Judges 20:10 and we will take ten men of a hundred, of all the tribes of Israel, and a hundred of a thousand, and a thousand of ten thousand, to fetch provisions for the people,that they may do, when they come to Gibeah of Benjamin, according to all the impiety that it hath wrought in Israel. Judges 20:11 So all the men of Israel were gathered together against the city, as one man knit together.
The Benjamites, being cited, make head against the Israelites.
Judges 20:12 And the tribes of Israel sent men throughout all the divisions of Benjamin, saying,What is this vile thing that hath been brought to pass, among you? Judges 20:13 Now, therefore, deliver up the menthe sons of the Abandoned Onewho are in Gibeah, that we may put them to death, and vileness be consumed out of Israel. But [the sons of] Benjamin would not hearken unto the voice of their brethren, the sons of Israel. Judges 20:14 Then did the sons of Benjamin gather themselves together out of the cities, unto Gibeah,to go forth to battle against the sons of Israel. Judges 20:15 And the sons of Benjamin were numbered on that day, out of the cities, twenty-six thousand men, that drew the sword,besides, of the inhabitants of Gibeah, were numbered seven hundred chosen men. Judges 20:16 Out of all this people, were seven hundred chosen men, left-handed,any one of whom could sling with a stone to a hair's-breadth, and not miss. Judges 20:17 And, the men of Israel, were numbered, apart from Benjamin, four hundred thousand men, that drew the sword,every one of these being a man of war.
The Israelites in two battles lose forty thousand.
Judges 20:18 And they arose, and went up to Bethel, and asked of God, and the sons of Israel said, Who shall go up for us first, to fight against the sons of Benjamin? And Yahweh saidJudah, first. Judges 20:19 And the sons of Israel arose in the morning,and encamped against Gibeah. Judges 20:20 And the men of Israel went forth, to fight against Benjamin,so the men of Israel set themselves in array against them, to fight against Gibeah. Judges 20:21 Then came forth the sons of Benjamin out of Gibeah,and laid low of Israel, on that day, twenty-two thousand men, to the ground. Judges 20:22 And the people, the men of Israel, encouraged themselves,and again set themselves in array for battle in the place where they had set themselves in array on the first day. Judges 20:23 Now the sons of Israel had gone up, and wept before Yahweh, until the evening, and asked of Yahweh, saying, Shall I again draw near to battle against the sons of Benjamin, my brother? And Yahweh said, Go up against him. Judges 20:24 So the sons of Israel came near against the sons of Benjamin, on the second day. Judges 20:25 And Benjamin came forth to meet them out of Gibeah, on the second day, and laid low, of the sons of Israel, yet eighteen thousand men, to the ground,all these, drew the sword.
They destroy by a stratagem all the Benjamites except six hundred.
Judges 20:26 Then went up all the sons of Israel, and all the people, and came to Bethel, and wept, and tarried there before Yahweh, and fasted on that day, until the evening,and caused to go up ascending-sacrifices and peace-offerings, before Yahweh. Judges 20:27 And the sons of Israel asked of Yahweh,there, being the ark of the covenant of God, in those days; Judges 20:28 and Phinehas, son of Eleazar, son of Aaron, was standing before it in those days, saying: Shall I yet again go forth to battle, against the sons of Benjamin, my brother, or shall I forbear? And Yahweh saidGo up, for, tomorrow, will I deliver him into thy hand. Judges 20:29 And Israel set liers in wait against Gibeah, round about. Judges 20:30 So the sons of Israel went up against the sons of Benjamin, on the third day,and set themselves in array against Gibeah, as time after time. Judges 20:31 And the sons of Benjamin came forth against the people, they were drawn away from the city,and began to smite of the people, slaying as time after time, in the highways, whereof, one, goeth up to Bethel, and, the other, to Gibeah in the field, about thirty men in Israel. Judges 20:32 Then said the sons of Benjamin, They are, being smitten, before us, as at the first. But the sons of Israel had saidLet us flee, and draw them away from the city, into the highways. Judges 20:33 And, all the men of Israel, rose up out of their place, and set themselves in array in Baal-tamar,and, the liers in wait of Israel, began to break forth out of their place, out of the forest of Gibeah. Judges 20:34 And there came over against Gibeah ten thousand chosen men, out of all Israel, and the battle was severe,they, not knowing that disaster was overtaking them. Judges 20:35 Thus Yahweh smote Benjamin before Israel, and the sons of Israel destroyed in Benjamin, that day, twenty-five thousand and one hundred men,all these, drew the sword. Judges 20:36 So the sons of Benjamin saw that they were smitten,and that the men of Israel had given place to Benjamin, because they trusted to the liers in wait, whom they had set near Gibeah. Judges 20:37 And, the liers in wait, hasted, and rushed upon Gibeah,and the liers in wait marched forward, and smote all the city with the edge of the sword. Judges 20:38 Now, the appointed sign, between the men of Israel and the liers in wait, had been,to cause a great cloud of smoke to ascend out of the city. Judges 20:39 So, when the men of Israel turned in the battle,and, the Benjamites, began to smite and slay of the sons of Israel, about thirty men, for they said, Yea! they are, smitten, before us, as in the first battle, Judges 20:40 then, the cloud, began to ascend out of the city, a pillar of smoke,and the Benjamites looked behind them, and lo! the whole city flamed up towards the heavens. Judges 20:41 And, when, the men of Israel, turned, then were the men of Benjamin dismayed,for they saw that disaster had overtaken them. Judges 20:42 And, when they turned before the men of Israel unto the way of the desert, the battle, over took them,while, as for them that came out of the cities, they began to destroy them in their midst: Judges 20:43 they hemmed in the Benjamites, they pursued them, with ease, trode they them down,as far as over against Gibeah, towards sunrise. Judges 20:44 So there fell of Benjamin, eighteen thousand men,all these being men of valour. Judges 20:45 And, when they turned and fled towards the desert unto the cliff Rimmon, then gleaned they of them, in the highways, five thousand men,and they followed hard after them as far as Gidom, and smote of them, two thousand men. Judges 20:46 So then it came to pass that, all the fallen of Benjamin, were twenty-five thousand men, that drew the sword, on that day,all these being men of valour. Judges 20:47 But there turned and fled, towards the desert, unto the cliff Rimmon, six hundred men,who abode in the cliff Rimmon, four months. Judges 20:48 Thus, the men of Israel, turned against the sons of Benjamin, and smote them with the edge of the sword, beginning with the city, each and every one down to the beast, even to every one that was met with,moreover, all the cities they came to, they set on fire.