1While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples2and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”3So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?” “John’s baptism,” they replied.4Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.”5On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.6When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied.7There were about twelve men in all.8Paul entered the synagogue and spoke boldly there for three months, arguing persuasively about the kingdom of God.9But some of them became obstinate; they refused to believe and publicly maligned the Way. So Paul left them. He took the disciples with him and had discussions daily in the lecture hall of Tyrannus.10This went on for two years, so that all the Jews and Greeks who lived in the province of Asia heard the word of the Lord.11God did extraordinary miracles through Paul,12so that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were taken to the sick, and their illnesses were cured and the evil spirits left them.13Some Jews who went around driving out evil spirits tried to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who were demon-possessed. They would say, “In the name of the Jesus whom Paul preaches, I command you to come out.”14Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this.15One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?”16Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them and overpowered them all. He gave them such a beating that they ran out of the house naked and bleeding.17When this became known to the Jews and Greeks living in Ephesus, they were all seized with fear, and the name of the Lord Jesus was held in high honor.18Many of those who believed now came and openly confessed what they had done.19A number who had practiced sorcery brought their scrolls together and burned them publicly. When they calculated the value of the scrolls, the total came to fifty thousand drachmas.20In this way the word of the Lord spread widely and grew in power.
1After the time of Abimelek, a man of Issachar named Tola son of Puah, the son of Dodo, rose to save Israel. He lived in Shamir, in the hill country of Ephraim.2He led Israel twenty-three years; then he died, and was buried in Shamir.
3He was followed by Jair of Gilead, who led Israel twenty-two years.4He had thirty sons, who rode thirty donkeys. They controlled thirty towns in Gilead, which to this day are called Havvoth Jair.5When Jair died, he was buried in Kamon.
6Again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the LORD. They served the Baals and the Ashtoreths, and the gods of Aram, the gods of Sidon, the gods of Moab, the gods of the Ammonites and the gods of the Philistines. And because the Israelites forsook the LORD and no longer served him,7he became angry with them. He sold them into the hands of the Philistines and the Ammonites,8who that year shattered and crushed them. For eighteen years they oppressed all the Israelites on the east side of the Jordan in Gilead, the land of the Amorites.9The Ammonites also crossed the Jordan to fight against Judah, Benjamin and Ephraim; Israel was in great distress.10Then the Israelites cried out to the LORD, “We have sinned against you, forsaking our God and serving the Baals.”11The LORD replied, “When the Egyptians, the Amorites, the Ammonites, the Philistines,12the Sidonians, the Amalekites and the Maonites oppressed you and you cried to me for help, did I not save you from their hands?13But you have forsaken me and served other gods, so I will no longer save you.14Go and cry out to the gods you have chosen. Let them save you when you are in trouble!”15But the Israelites said to the LORD, “We have sinned. Do with us whatever you think best, but please rescue us now.”16Then they got rid of the foreign gods among them and served the LORD. And he could bear Israel’s misery no longer.17When the Ammonites were called to arms and camped in Gilead, the Israelites assembled and camped at Mizpah.18The leaders of the people of Gilead said to each other, “Whoever will take the lead in attacking the Ammonites will be head over all who live in Gilead.”
1Jephthah the Gileadite was a mighty warrior. His father was Gilead; his mother was a prostitute.2Gilead’s wife also bore him sons, and when they were grown up, they drove Jephthah away. “You are not going to get any inheritance in our family,” they said, “because you are the son of another woman.”3So Jephthah fled from his brothers and settled in the land of Tob, where a gang of scoundrels gathered around him and followed him.4Some time later, when the Ammonites were fighting against Israel,5the elders of Gilead went to get Jephthah from the land of Tob.6“Come,” they said, “be our commander, so we can fight the Ammonites.”7Jephthah said to them, “Didn’t you hate me and drive me from my father’s house? Why do you come to me now, when you’re in trouble?”8The elders of Gilead said to him, “Nevertheless, we are turning to you now; come with us to fight the Ammonites, and you will be head over all of us who live in Gilead.”9Jephthah answered, “Suppose you take me back to fight the Ammonites and the LORD gives them to me—will I really be your head?”10The elders of Gilead replied, “The LORD is our witness; we will certainly do as you say.”11So Jephthah went with the elders of Gilead, and the people made him head and commander over them. And he repeated all his words before the LORD in Mizpah.12Then Jephthah sent messengers to the Ammonite king with the question: “What do you have against me that you have attacked my country?”13The king of the Ammonites answered Jephthah’s messengers, “When Israel came up out of Egypt, they took away my land from the Arnon to the Jabbok, all the way to the Jordan. Now give it back peaceably.”14Jephthah sent back messengers to the Ammonite king,15saying: “This is what Jephthah says: Israel did not take the land of Moab or the land of the Ammonites.16But when they came up out of Egypt, Israel went through the wilderness to the Red Sea and on to Kadesh.17Then Israel sent messengers to the king of Edom, saying, ‘Give us permission to go through your country,’ but the king of Edom would not listen. They sent also to the king of Moab, and he refused. So Israel stayed at Kadesh.18“Next they traveled through the wilderness, skirted the lands of Edom and Moab, passed along the eastern side of the country of Moab, and camped on the other side of the Arnon. They did not enter the territory of Moab, for the Arnon was its border.19“Then Israel sent messengers to Sihon king of the Amorites, who ruled in Heshbon, and said to him, ‘Let us pass through your country to our own place.’20Sihon, however, did not trust Israel to pass through his territory. He mustered all his troops and encamped at Jahaz and fought with Israel.21“Then the LORD, the God of Israel, gave Sihon and his whole army into Israel’s hands, and they defeated them. Israel took over all the land of the Amorites who lived in that country,22capturing all of it from the Arnon to the Jabbok and from the desert to the Jordan.23“Now since the LORD, the God of Israel, has driven the Amorites out before his people Israel, what right have you to take it over?24Will you not take what your god Chemosh gives you? Likewise, whatever the LORD our God has given us, we will possess.25Are you any better than Balak son of Zippor, king of Moab? Did he ever quarrel with Israel or fight with them?26For three hundred years Israel occupied Heshbon, Aroer, the surrounding settlements and all the towns along the Arnon. Why didn’t you retake them during that time?27I have not wronged you, but you are doing me wrong by waging war against me. Let the LORD, the Judge, decide the dispute this day between the Israelites and the Ammonites.”28The king of Ammon, however, paid no attention to the message Jephthah sent him.29Then the Spirit of the LORD came on Jephthah. He crossed Gilead and Manasseh, passed through Mizpah of Gilead, and from there he advanced against the Ammonites.30And Jephthah made a vow to the LORD: “If you give the Ammonites into my hands,31whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites will be the LORD’s, and I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering.”32Then Jephthah went over to fight the Ammonites, and the LORD gave them into his hands.33He devastated twenty towns from Aroer to the vicinity of Minnith, as far as Abel Keramim. Thus Israel subdued Ammon.
1“Do you know when the mountain goats give birth? Do you watch when the doe bears her fawn?2Do you count the months till they bear? Do you know the time they give birth?3They crouch down and bring forth their young; their labor pains are ended.4Their young thrive and grow strong in the wilds; they leave and do not return.5“Who let the wild donkey go free? Who untied its ropes?6I gave it the wasteland as its home, the salt flats as its habitat.7It laughs at the commotion in the town; it does not hear a driver’s shout.8It ranges the hills for its pasture and searches for any green thing.9“Will the wild ox consent to serve you? Will it stay by your manger at night?10Can you hold it to the furrow with a harness? Will it till the valleys behind you?11Will you rely on it for its great strength? Will you leave your heavy work to it?12Can you trust it to haul in your grain and bring it to your threshing floor?13“The wings of the ostrich flap joyfully, though they cannot compare with the wings and feathers of the stork.14She lays her eggs on the ground and lets them warm in the sand,15unmindful that a foot may crush them, that some wild animal may trample them.16She treats her young harshly, as if they were not hers; she cares not that her labor was in vain,17for God did not endow her with wisdom or give her a share of good sense.18Yet when she spreads her feathers to run, she laughs at horse and rider.19“Do you give the horse its strength or clothe its neck with a flowing mane?20Do you make it leap like a locust, striking terror with its proud snorting?21It paws fiercely, rejoicing in its strength, and charges into the fray.22It laughs at fear, afraid of nothing; it does not shy away from the sword.23The quiver rattles against its side, along with the flashing spear and lance.24In frenzied excitement it eats up the ground; it cannot stand still when the trumpet sounds.25At the blast of the trumpet it snorts, ‘Aha!’ It catches the scent of battle from afar, the shout of commanders and the battle cry.26“Does the hawk take flight by your wisdom and spread its wings toward the south?27Does the eagle soar at your command and build its nest on high?28It dwells on a cliff and stays there at night; a rocky crag is its stronghold.29From there it looks for food; its eyes detect it from afar.30Its young ones feast on blood, and where the slain are, there it is.”