1 The people began complaining out loud to the LORD about their troubles. When the LORD heard them, he became angry, and fire from the LORD began to burn among them. It destroyed some people on the outskirts of the camp. 2 The people cried out to Moses, Moses prayed to the LORD, and the fire died down. 3 That place was called Taberah [Fire] because fire from the LORD burned among them there. 4 Some foreigners among the Israelites had a strong craving for [other kinds of] food. Even the Israelites started crying again and said, "If only we had meat to eat! 5 Remember all the free fish we ate in Egypt and the cucumbers, watermelons, leeks, onions, and garlic we had? 6 But now we've lost our appetite! Everywhere we look there's nothing but manna!" 7 (Manna was [small] like coriander seeds and looked like resin. 8 The people would go around and gather it, then grind it in a handmill or crush it in a mortar. They would cook it in a pot or make round loaves of bread out of it. It tasted like rich pastry made with olive oil. 9 When dew fell on the camp at night, manna fell with it.) 10 Moses heard people from every family crying at the entrance to their tents. The LORD became very angry, and Moses didn't like it either. 11 So he asked, "LORD, why have you brought me this trouble? How have I displeased you that you put the burden of all these people on me? 12 Am I their mother? Did I give birth to them? Are you really asking me to carry them in my arms--as a nurse carries a baby--all the way to the land you promised their ancestors with an oath? 13 Where can I get meat for all these people? They keep crying for me to give them meat to eat. 14 I can't take care of all these people by myself. This is too much work for me! 15 If this is how you're going to treat me, why don't you just kill me? I can't face this trouble anymore." 16 The LORD answered Moses, "Bring me 70 Israelite men who you know are leaders and officers of the people. Take them to the tent of meeting, and have them stand with you. 17 I'll come down and speak with you there. I'll take some of the Spirit that is on you and put it on them. They will help you take care of the people. You won't have to take care of the people alone. 18 Tell the people to get ready for tomorrow. They must be set apart as holy. Then they will eat meat. I, the LORD, heard them crying and saying, 'If only we had meat to eat! We were better off in Egypt!' So I will give them meat. 19 They won't eat it just for one or two days, or five, or ten, or twenty days, 20 but for a whole month, until it comes out of their ears and they're sick of it. This is because they rejected the LORD who is here among them and cried in front of him, asking, 'Why did we ever leave Egypt?'" 21 But Moses said, "Here I am with 600,000 foot soldiers around me. Yet, you say, 'I will give them meat to eat for a whole month!' 22 Would they have enough if all the flocks and herds were butchered for them? Would they have enough if all the fish in the sea were caught for them?" 23 The LORD asked Moses, "Is there a limit to the LORD's power? Now you will see whether or not my words come true." 24 Moses went out and told the people what the LORD said. He gathered 70 of the leaders of the people and had them stand around the tent. 25 Then the LORD came down in the [column of] smoke and spoke with him. He took some of the Spirit that was on Moses and put it on the 70 leaders. When the Spirit came to rest on them, they prophesied, but they never prophesied again. 26 Two men, named Eldad and Medad, had stayed in the camp. They were on the list with the other leaders but hadn't gone with them to the tent. The Spirit came to rest on them, too, and they prophesied in the camp. 27 Then a young man ran and told Moses, "Eldad and Medad are prophesying in the camp." 28 So Joshua, son of Nun, who had been Moses' assistant ever since he was a young man, spoke up and said, "Stop them, sir!" 29 But Moses asked him, "Do you think you need to stand up for me? I wish all the LORD's people were prophets and that the LORD would put his Spirit on them." 30 Then Moses and the leaders went back to the camp. 31 The LORD sent a wind from the sea that brought quails and dropped them all around the camp. There were quails on the ground about three feet deep as far as you could walk in a day in any direction. 32 All that day and night and all the next day the people went out and gathered the quails. No one gathered less than 60 bushels. Then they spread the quails out all around the camp. 33 While the meat was still in their mouths--before they had even had a chance to chew it--the LORD became angry with the people and struck them with a severe plague. 34 That place was called Kibroth Hattaavah [Graves of Those Who Craved [Meat]] because there they buried the people who had a strong craving [for meat]. 35 From Kibroth Hattaavah the people moved to Hazeroth, and they stayed there.
1 Miriam and Aaron began to criticize Moses because he was married to a woman from Sudan. 2 They asked, "Did the LORD speak only through Moses? Didn't he also speak through us?" The LORD heard their complaint. 3 (Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on earth.) 4 Suddenly, the LORD said to Moses, Aaron, and Miriam, "All three of you come to the tent of meeting." So all three of them came. 5 Then the LORD came down in the column of smoke and stood at the entrance to the tent. He called to Aaron and Miriam, and they both came forward. 6 He said, "Listen to my words: When there are prophets of the LORD among you, I make myself known to them in visions or speak to them in dreams. 7 But this is not the way I treat my servant Moses. He is the most faithful person in my household. 8 I speak with him face to face, plainly and not in riddles. He even sees the form of the LORD. Why weren't you afraid to criticize my servant Moses?" 9 The LORD was angry with them, so he left. 10 When the smoke left the tent, Miriam was covered with an infectious skin disease. She was as white as snow. Aaron turned to her and saw she was covered with the disease. 11 So he said to Moses, "Please, sir, don't punish us for this foolish sin we committed. 12 Don't let her be like a stillborn baby that's not completely developed." 13 So Moses cried to the LORD, "Please, God, heal her!" 14 The LORD replied to Moses, "If her own father had spit in her face, wouldn't she be excluded from the community for seven days? She must be put in isolation outside the camp for seven days. Then she can be brought back." 15 So Miriam was put in isolation outside the camp for seven days. The people didn't break camp until she was brought back. 16 After that, the people moved from Hazeroth and set up camp in the Desert of Paran.
1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 "Send men to explore Canaan, which I'm giving to the Israelites. Send one leader from each of their ancestors' tribes." 3 So at the LORD's command, Moses sent these men from the Desert of Paran. All of them were leaders of the Israelites. 4 These are their names: Shammua, son of Zaccur, from the tribe of Reuben; 5 Shaphat, son of Hori, from the tribe of Simeon; 6 Caleb, son of Jephunneh, from the tribe of Judah; 7 Igal, son of Joseph, from the tribe of Issachar; 8 Hoshea, son of Nun, from the tribe of Ephraim; 9 Palti, son of Raphu, from the tribe of Benjamin; 10 Gaddiel, son of Sodi, from the tribe of Zebulun; 11 Gaddi, son of Susi, from the tribe of Joseph (that is, the tribe of Manasseh); 12 Ammiel, son of Gemalli, from the tribe of Dan; 13 Sethur, son of Michael, from the tribe of Asher; 14 Nahbi, son of Vophsi, from the tribe of Naphtali; 15 Geuel, son of Machi, from the tribe of Gad. 16 These are the names of the men Moses sent to explore the land. But Moses gave Hoshea, son of Nun, the name Joshua. 17 When Moses sent them to explore Canaan, he told them, "Go through the Negev and then into the mountain region. 18 See what the land is like and whether the people living there are strong or weak, few or many. 19 Is the land they live in good or bad? Do their cities have walls around them or not? 20 Is the soil rich or poor? Does the land have trees or not? Do your best to bring back some fruit from the land." (It was the season when grapes were beginning to ripen.) 21 So the men explored the land from the Desert of Zin to the border of Hamath. 22 They went through the Negev and came to Hebron, where Ahiman, Sheshai, and Talmai lived. They are descendants of Anak. (Hebron was built seven years before Zoan in Egypt.) 23 When they came to the Eshcol Valley, they cut off a branch with only one bunch of grapes on it. They carried it on a pole between two of them. They also brought some pomegranates and figs. 24 So they called that valley Eshcol [Bunch of Grapes] because of the bunch of grapes the Israelites cut off there. 25 Forty days later, they came back from exploring the land. 26 They came back to Moses, Aaron, and the whole community of Israel at Kadesh in the Desert of Paran. They gave their report and showed them the fruit from the land. 27 This is what they reported to Moses: "We went to the land where you sent us. It really is a land flowing with milk and honey. Here's some of its fruit. 28 But the people who live there are strong, and the cities have walls and are very large. We even saw the descendants of Anak there. 29 The Amalekites live in the Negev. The Hittites, Jebusites, and Amorites live in the mountain region. And the Canaanites live along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea and all along the Jordan River." 30 Caleb told the people to be quiet and listen to Moses. Caleb said, "Let's go now and take possession of the land. We should be more than able to conquer it." 31 But the men who had gone with him said, "We can't attack those people! They're too strong for us!" 32 So they began to spread lies among the Israelites about the land they had explored. They said, "The land we explored is one that devours those who live there. All the people we saw there are very tall. 33 We saw Nephilim there. (The descendants of Anak are Nephilim.) We felt as small as grasshoppers, and that's how we must have looked to them."