In the second year, in the second month, on the twentieth day of the month, the cloud lifted from over the tabernacle of the covenant. a12
Then the Israelites set out by stages from the wilderness of Sinai, and the cloud settled down in the wilderness of Paran.
They set out for the first time at the command of the Lord by Moses.
The standard of the camp of Judah set out first, company by company, and over the whole company was Nahshon son of Amminadab.
Over the company of the tribe of Issachar was Nethanel son of Zuar;
and over the company of the tribe of Zebulun was Eliab son of Helon.
Then the tabernacle was taken down, and the Gershonites and the Merarites, who carried the tabernacle, set out.
Next the standard of the camp of Reuben set out, company by company; and over the whole company was Elizur son of Shedeur.
Over the company of the tribe of Simeon was Shelumiel son of Zurishaddai,
and over the company of the tribe of Gad was Eliasaph son of Deuel.
Then the Kohathites, who carried the holy things, set out; and the tabernacle was set up before their arrival.
Next the standard of the Ephraimite camp set out, company by company, and over the whole company was Elishama son of Ammihud.
Over the company of the tribe of Manasseh was Gamaliel son of Pedahzur,
and over the company of the tribe of Benjamin was Abidan son of Gideoni.
Then the standard of the camp of Dan, acting as the rear guard of all the camps, set out, company by company, and over the whole company was Ahiezer son of Ammishaddai.
Over the company of the tribe of Asher was Pagiel son of Ochran,
and over the company of the tribe of Naphtali was Ahira son of Enan.
This was the order of march of the Israelites, company by company, when they set out.
Moses said to Hobab son of Reuel the Midianite, Moses' father-in-law, "We are setting out for the place of which the Lord said, "I will give it to you'; come with us, and we will treat you well; for the Lord has promised good to Israel."
But he said to him, "I will not go, but I will go back to my own land and to my kindred."
He said, "Do not leave us, for you know where we should camp in the wilderness, and you will serve as eyes for us.
Moreover, if you go with us, whatever good the Lord does for us, the same we will do for you."
So they set out from the mount of the Lord three days' journey with the ark of the covenant of the Lord going before them three days' journey, to seek out a resting place for them,
the cloud of the Lord being over them by day when they set out from the camp.
Whenever the ark set out, Moses would say, "Arise, O Lord, let your enemies be scattered, and your foes flee before you."
And whenever it came to rest, he would say, "Return, O Lord of the ten thousand thousands of Israel." b
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (New Revised Standard Bible Version Online)