Because he had nine hundred iron chariots1 and had cruelly oppressed2 the Israelites for twenty years, they cried to the LORD for help.
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Deborah,3 a prophetess,4 the wife of Lappidoth, was leading Israel at that time.
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She held court5 under the Palm of Deborah between Ramah6 and Bethel7 in the hill country of Ephraim, and the Israelites came to her to have their disputes decided.
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She sent for Barak son of Abinoam8 from Kedesh9 in Naphtali and said to him, "The LORD, the God of Israel, commands you: 'Go, take with you ten thousand men of Naphtali10 and Zebulun11 and lead the way to Mount Tabor.12
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I will lure Sisera, the commander of Jabin's13 army, with his chariots and his troops to the Kishon River14 and give him into your hands.15' "
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Barak said to her, "If you go with me, I will go; but if you don't go with me, I won't go."
"Very well," Deborah said, "I will go with you. But because of the way you are going about this, the honor will not be yours, for the LORD will hand Sisera over to a woman." So Deborah went with Barak to Kedesh,16
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where he summoned17 Zebulun and Naphtali. Ten thousand men followed him, and Deborah also went with him.
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Now Heber the Kenite had left the other Kenites,18 the descendants of Hobab,19 Moses' brother-in-law, and pitched his tent by the great tree20 in Zaanannim21 near Kedesh.
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When they told Sisera that Barak son of Abinoam had gone up to Mount Tabor,22
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Sisera gathered together his nine hundred iron chariots23 and all the men with him, from Harosheth Haggoyim to the Kishon River.24
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Then Deborah said to Barak, "Go! This is the day the LORD has given Sisera into your hands.25 Has not the LORD gone ahead26 of you?" So Barak went down Mount Tabor, followed by ten thousand men.
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At Barak's advance, the LORD routed27 Sisera and all his chariots and army by the sword, and Sisera abandoned his chariot and fled on foot.
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But Barak pursued the chariots and army as far as Harosheth Haggoyim. All the troops of Sisera fell by the sword; not a man was left.28
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Sisera, however, fled on foot to the tent of Jael,29 the wife of Heber the Kenite,30 because there were friendly relations between Jabin king of Hazor31 and the clan of Heber the Kenite.
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Jael32 went out to meet Sisera and said to him, "Come, my Lord, come right in. Don't be afraid." So he entered her tent, and she put a covering over him.
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"I'm thirsty," he said. "Please give me some water." She opened a skin of milk,33 gave him a drink, and covered him up.
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"Stand in the doorway of the tent," he told her. "If someone comes by and asks you, 'Is anyone here?' say 'No.' "
But Jael,34 Heber's wife, picked up a tent peg and a hammer and went quietly to him while he lay fast asleep,35 exhausted. She drove the peg through his temple into the ground, and he died.36
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Barak came by in pursuit of Sisera, and Jael37 went out to meet him. "Come," she said, "I will show you the man you're looking for." So he went in with her, and there lay Sisera with the tent peg through his temple--dead.38
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On that day God subdued39 Jabin,40 the Canaanite king, before the Israelites.
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And the hand of the Israelites grew stronger and stronger against Jabin, the Canaanite king, until they destroyed him.41
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