And may God, the God-of-Your-Fathers, keep it up and multiply you another thousand times, bless you just as he promised.
But how can I carry, all by myself, your troubles and burdens and quarrels?
So select some wise, understanding, and seasoned men from your tribes, and I will commission them as your leaders."
You answered me, "Good! A good solution."
So I went ahead and took the top men of your tribes, wise and seasoned, and made them your leaders - leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties, and of tens, officials adequate for each of your tribes.
At the same time I gave orders to your judges: "Listen carefully to complaints and accusations between your fellow Israelites. Judge fairly between each person and his fellow or foreigner.
Don't play favorites; treat the little and the big alike; listen carefully to each. Don't be impressed by big names. This is God's judgment you're dealing with. Hard cases you can bring to me; I'll deal with them."
I issued orders to you at that time regarding everything you would have to deal with.
Then we set out from Horeb and headed for the Amorite hill country, going through that huge and frightening wilderness that you've had more than an eyeful of by now - all under the command of God, our God - and finally arrived at Kadesh Barnea.
There I told you, "You've made it to the Amorite hill country that God, our God, is giving us.
Look, God, your God, has placed this land as a gift before you. Go ahead and take it now. God, the God-of-Your-Fathers, promised it to you. Don't be afraid. Don't lose heart."
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)