Numbers 14

The People Rebel

1 Then all the congregation lifted up their voices and cried, and the people wept that night.
2 All the sons of Israel 1grumbled against Moses and Aaron; and the whole congregation said to them, "2Would that we had died in the land of Egypt! Or would that we had died in this wilderness!
3 "Why is the LORD bringing us into this land, 3to fall by the sword? 4Our wives and our little ones will become plunder; would it not be better for us to return to Egypt?"
4 So they said to one another, "5Let us appoint a leader and return to Egypt."
5 6Then Moses and Aaron fell on their faces in the presence of all the assembly of the congregation of the sons of Israel.
6 Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh, of those who had spied out the land, tore their clothes;
7 and they spoke to all the congregation of the sons of Israel, saying, "7The land which we passed through to spy out is an exceedingly good land.
8 "8If the LORD is pleased with us, then He will bring us into this land and give it to us-9a land which flows with milk and honey.
9 "Only 10do not rebel against the LORD; and do not 11fear the people of the land, for they will be our prey. Their protection has been removed from them, and the LORD is with us; do not fear them."
10 12But all the congregation said to stone them with stones. Then 13the glory of the LORD appeared in the tent of meeting to all the sons of Israel.

Moses Pleads for the People

11 14The LORD said to Moses, "How long will this people spurn Me? And how long will 15they not believe in Me, despite all the signs which I have performed in their midst?
12 "I will smite them with 16pestilence and dispossess them, and I 17will make you into a nation greater and mightier than they."
13 18But Moses said to the LORD, "Then the Egyptians will hear of it, for by Your strength You brought up this people from their midst,
14 and they will tell it to the inhabitants of this land. They have heard that You, O LORD, are in the midst of this people, for 19You, O LORD, are seen eye to eye, while Your cloud stands over them; and You go before them in a pillar of cloud by day and in a pillar of fire by night.
15 "Now if You slay this people as one man, 20then the nations who have heard of Your fame will say,
16 'Because the LORD 21could not bring this people into the land which He promised them by oath, therefore He slaughtered them in the wilderness.'
17 "But now, I pray, let the power of the Lord be great, just as You have declared *,
18 '22The LORD is slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but 23He will by no means clear the guilty, 24visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generations.'
19 "25Pardon, I pray, the iniquity of this people according to the greatness of Your lovingkindness, just as You also have forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now."

The LORD Pardons and Rebukes

20 So the LORD said, "26I have pardoned them according to your word;
21 but indeed, 27as I live, 28all the earth will be filled with the glory of the LORD.
22 "Surely 29all the men who have seen My glory and My signs which I performed in Egypt and in the wilderness, yet 30have put Me to the test these ten times and have not listened to My voice,
23 31shall by no means see the land which I swore to their fathers, nor shall any of those who spurned Me see it.
24 "But My servant Caleb, 32because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, 33I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it.
25 "34Now the Amalekites and the Canaanites live in the valleys; turn tomorrow and set out to the wilderness by the way of the Red * Sea."
26 The LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying,
27 "How long * shall I bear with this evil congregation who are 35grumbling against Me? I have heard the complaints of the sons of Israel, which they are making against Me.
28 "Say to them, '36As I live,' says the LORD, 'just as 37you have spoken in My hearing, so I will surely do to you;
29 38your corpses will fall in this wilderness, even all 39your numbered men, according to your complete number from twenty years old and upward, who have grumbled against Me.
30 'Surely you shall not come into the land in which I swore * to settle you, 40except * Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun.
31 '41Your children, however, whom you said would become a prey -I will bring them in, and they will know the land which you have rejected.
32 '42But as for you, your corpses will fall in this wilderness.
33 'Your sons shall be shepherds for 43forty years in the wilderness, and they will suffer for your unfaithfulness, until your corpses lie in the wilderness.
34 'According to the 44number of days which you spied out the land, forty days, for every day you shall bear your guilt a year, even forty years, and you will know My opposition.
35 '45I, the LORD, have spoken, surely * this I will do to all this evil congregation who are gathered together against Me. In this wilderness they shall be destroyed, and there they will die.' "
36 46As for the men whom Moses sent to spy out the land and who returned and made all the congregation grumble against him by bringing out a bad report concerning the land,
37 even 47those men who brought out the very bad report of the land died by a 48plague before the LORD.
38 But Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh remained alive out of those men who went to spy out the land.

Israel Repulsed

40 In the morning, however, they rose up early and went up to the ridge of the hill country, saying, "51Here we are; we have indeed sinned, but we will go up to the place which the LORD has promised."
41 But Moses said, "52Why then are you transgressing the commandment of the LORD, when it will not succeed?
42 "53Do not go up, or you will be struck down before your enemies, for the LORD is not among you.
43 "For the Amalekites and the Canaanites will be there in front of you, and you will fall by the sword, inasmuch * * as you have turned back from following the LORD. And the LORD will not be with you."
44 But they went up heedlessly to the ridge of the hill country; neither 54the ark of the covenant of the LORD nor Moses left the camp.
45 Then the Amalekites and the Canaanites who lived in that hill country came down, and struck them and beat them down as far as 55Hormah.
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