Judges 17:1-11 (The Message)

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1 There was a man from the hill country of Ephraim named Micah. 2 He said to his mother, "Remember that 1,100 pieces of silver that were taken from you? I overheard you when you pronounced your curse. Well, I have the money; I stole it. But now I've brought it back to you." His mother said, "God bless you, my son!" 3 As he returned the 1,100 silver pieces to his mother, she said, "I had totally consecrated this money to God for my son to make a statue, a cast god." 4 Then she took 200 pieces of the silver and gave it to a sculptor and he cast them into the form of a god. 5 This man, Micah, had a private chapel. He had made an ephod and some teraphim-idols and had ordained one of his sons to be his priest. 6 In those days there was no king in Israel. People did whatever they felt like doing. 7 Meanwhile there was a young man from Bethlehem in Judah and from a family of Judah. He was a Levite but was a stranger there. 8 He left that town, Bethlehem in Judah, seeking his fortune. He got as far as the hill country of Ephraim and showed up at Micah's house. 9 Micah asked him, "So where are you from?" He said, "I'm a Levite from Bethlehem in Judah. I'm on the road, looking for a place to settle down." 10 Micah said, "Stay here with me. Be my father and priest. I'll pay you ten pieces of silver a year, whatever clothes you need, and your meals." 11 The Levite agreed and moved in with Micah. The young man fit right in and became one of the family.
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