וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל־יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אַל־תִּירָא וְאַל־תֵּחָת קַח עִמְּךָ אֵת כָּל־עַם הַמִּלְחָמָה וְקוּם עֲלֵה הָעָי 8:1
רְאֵה נָתַתִּי בְיָדְךָ אֶת־מֶלֶךְ הָעַי וְאֶת־עַמּוֹ וְאֶת־עִירוֹ וְאֶת־אַרְצוֹ׃
Josh. 8:1 And the Lord said to Joshua, “Fear not and be not dismayed; take with you all the people of battle and arise, go up to Ai. See, I have given the king of Ai into your hand, and his people and his city and his land.”
וְעָשִׂיתָ לָעַי וּלְמַלְכָּהּ כַּאֲשֶׁר עָשִׂיתָ לִירִיחוֹ וּלְמַלְכָּהּ רַק־שְׁלָלָהּ וּבְהֶמְתָּהּ תָּבֹזּוּ לָכֶם שִׂים־לְךָ 8:2
אֹרֵב לָעִיר מֵאַחֲרֶיהָ׃
Josh. 8:2 “And you shall do to Ai and its king as you did to Jericho and its king, except its spoil and its cattle you may take away for yourselves. Set an ambush for yourself for the city from behind it.”
וַיָּקָם יְהוֹשֻׁעַ וְכָל־עַם הַמִּלְחָמָה לַעֲלוֹת הָעָי וַיִּבְחַר יְהוֹשֻׁעַ שְׁלֹשִׁים אֶלֶף אִישׁ גִּבּוֹרֵי הַחַיִל 8:3
Josh. 8:3 So Joshua rose, and all the people of battle, to go up to Ai; and Joshua chose thirty thousand men, the mighty men of valor, and sent them at night.
וַיְצַו אֹתָם לֵאמֹר רְאוּ אַתֶּם אֹרְבִים לָעִיר מֵאַחֲרֵי הָעִיר אַל־תַּרְחִיקוּ מִן־הָעִיר מְאֹד וִהְיִיתֶם 8:4
Josh. 8:4 And he commanded them saying, “See you to lie in ambush against the city from behind the city; be not very far away from the city, and all of you shall be prepared.”
וַאֲנִי וְכָל־הָעָם אֲשֶׁר אִתִּי נִקְרַב אֶל־הָעִיר וְהָיָה כִּי־יֵצְאוּ לִקְרָאתֵנוּ כַּאֲשֶׁר בָּרִאשֹׁנָה וְנַסְנוּ לִפְנֵיהֶם׃ 8:5
Josh. 8:5 “And I and all the people who are with me will come near to the city, and it will be, when they come forth to meet us as before, that we will flee before them,
וְיָצְאוּ אַחֲרֵינוּ עַד הַתִּיקֵנוּ אוֹתָם מִן־הָעִיר כִּי יֹאמְרוּ נָסִים לְפָנֵינוּ כַּאֲשֶׁר בָּרִאשֹׁנָה וְנַסְנוּלִפְנֵיהֶם׃ 8:6
Josh. 8:6 and they will come forth after us until we have drawn them away from the city, for they will say, ‘They are fleeing before us as before.’ So we will flee before them.”
וְאַתֶּם תָּקֻמוּ מֵהָאוֹרֵב וְהוֹרַשְׁתֶּם אֶת־הָעִיר וּנְתָנָהּ יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם בְּיֶדְכֶם׃ 8:7
Josh. 8:7 “Then you will rise up from the ambush and possess the city and the Lord, your God, will deliver it into your hands.”
וְהָיָה כְּתָפְשְׂכֶם אֶת־הָעִיר תַּצִּיתוּ אֶת־הָעִיר בָּאֵשׁ כִּדְבַר יְהוָה תַּעֲשׂוּ רְאוּ צִוִּיתִי אֶתְכֶם׃ 8:8
Josh. 8:8 “And let it be when you seize the city, you shall burn the city with fire. You shall do according to the word of the Lord. Take heed, I have commanded you.”
וַיִּשְׁלָחֵם יְהוֹשֻׁעַ וַיֵּלְכוּ אֶל־הַמַּאְרָב וַיֵּשְׁבוּ בֵּין בֵּית־אֵל וּבֵין הָעַי מִיָּם לָעָי וַיָּלֶן יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בַּלַּיְלָה 8:9
הַהוּא בְּתוֹךְ הָעָם׃
Josh. 8:9 Then Joshua sent them forth, and they went to the place of ambush and remained between Beth-el and Ai from the west of Ai, and Joshua tarried in that night in the midst of the people.
וַיַּשְׁכֵּם יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בַּבֹּקֶר וַיִּפְקֹד אֶת־הָעָם וַיַּעַל הוּא וְזִקְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לִפְנֵי הָעָם הָעָי׃ 8:10
Josh. 8:10 And Joshua arose early in the morning and counted the people; then he went up, he and the elders of Israel, before the people to Ai.
וְכָל־הָעָם הַמִּלְחָמָה אֲשֶׁר אִתּוֹ עָלוּ וַיִּגְּשׁוּ וַיָּבֹאוּ נֶגֶד הָעִיר וַיַּחֲנוּ מִצְּפוֹן לָעַי וְהַגַּי בינו וּבֵין־הָעָי׃ 8:11
Josh. 8:11 And all the people of battle who were with him went up and drew near and came before the city and camped from the north of Ai, and the valley was between it and Ai.
וַיִּקַּח כַּחֲמֵשֶׁת אֲלָפִים אִישׁ וַיָּשֶׂם אוֹתָם אֹרֵב בֵּין בֵּית־אֵל וּבֵין הָעַי מִיָּם לָעִיר׃ 8:12
Josh. 8:12 And he had drawn about five thousand men and set them in ambush between Beth-el and Ai from the west of the city.
וַיָּשִׂימוּ הָעָם אֶת־כָּל־הַמַּחֲנֶה אֲשֶׁר מִצְּפֹון לָעִיר וְאֶת־עֲקֵבֹו מִיָּם לָעִיר וַיֵּלֶךְ יְהֹושֻׁעַ בַּלַּיְלָה הַהוּא 8:13
Josh. 8:13 So the people set in array all the host, which was from north of the city and its rear from west of the city. And Joshua went in that night into the midst of the valley.
וַיְהִי כִּרְאוֹת מֶלֶךְ־הָעַי וַיְמַהֲרוּ וַיַּשְׁכִּימוּ וַיֵּצְאוּ אַנְשֵׁי־הָעִיר לִקְרַאת־יִשְׂרָאֵל לַמִּלְחָמָה הוּא וְכָל־ 8:14
עַמּוֹ לַמּוֹעֵד לִפְנֵי הָעֲרָבָה וְהוּא לֹא יָדַע כִּי־אֹרֵב לוֹ מֵאַחֲרֵי הָעִיר׃
Josh. 8:14 And it was when the king of Ai could see, then the men of the city hastened and rose early and came forth to meet Israel to do battle, he and all his people, at the appointed time in front of the Arabah, and he did not know that the ambush against him was from behind the city.
וַיִּנָּגְעוּ יְהוֹשֻׁעַ וְכָל־יִשְׂרָאֵל לִפְנֵיהֶם וַיָּנֻסוּ דֶּרֶךְ הַמִּדְבָּר׃ 8:15
Josh. 8:15 And Joshua got up, and all Israel before them, and fled toward the wilderness.
וַיִּזָּעֲקוּ כָּל־הָעָם אֲשֶׁר הָעִיר לִרְדֹּף אַחֲרֵיהֶם וַיִּרְדְּפוּ אַחֲרֵי יְהוֹשֻׁעַ וַיִּנָּתְקוּ מִן־הָעִיר׃ 8:16
Josh. 8:16 And all the people who were in the city assembled to pursue after them, and they pursued after Joshua and were drawn away from the city.
וְלֹא־נִשְׁאַר אִישׁ בָּעַי וּבֵית אֵל אֲשֶׁר לֹא־יָצְאוּ אַחֲרֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וַיַּעַזְבוּ אֶת־הָעִיר פְּתוּחָה וַיִּרְדְּפוּ 8:17
Josh. 8:17 And no men remained in Ai or Beth-el who did not go out after Israel, so they left the city open and pursued after Israel.
וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל־יְהוֹשֻׁעַ נְטֵה בַּכִּידוֹן אֲשֶׁר־בְּיָדְךָ אֶל־הָעַי כִּי בְיָדְךָ אֶתְּנֶנָּה וַיֵּט יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בַּכִּידוֹן 8:18
Josh. 8:18 And the Lord said to Joshua, “Stretch out with the javelin that is in your hand to Ai, for I will deliver it into your hand.” And Joshua stretched forth with the javelin that was in his hand to the city.
וְהָאוֹרֵב קָם מְהֵרָה מִמְּקוֹמוֹ וַיָּרוּצוּ כִּנְטוֹת יָדוֹ וַיָּבֹאוּ הָעִיר וַיִּלְכְּדוּהָ וַיְמַהֲרוּ וַיַּצִּיתוּ אֶת־הָעִיר 8:19
Josh. 8:19 And the ambush rose quickly from its place and they ran at the stretching of his hand and they entered the city and captured it, and they hurried and set the city on fire.
וַיִּפְנוּ אַנְשֵׁי הָעַי אַחֲרֵיהֶם וַיִּרְאוּ וְהִנֵּה עָלָה עֲשַׁן הָעִיר הַשָּׁמַיְמָה וְלֹא־הָיָה בָהֶם יָדַיִם לָנוּס הֵנָּה 8:20
וָהֵנָּה וְהָעָם הַנָּס הַמִּדְבָּר נֶהְפַּךְ אֶל־הָרוֹדֵף׃
Josh. 8:20 When the men of Ai looked behind them, then they saw that, behold, the smoke of the city went up skyward, and there was no power in them to flee this way or that, and the people who were fleeing to the wilderness turned back to the pursuers.
וִיהוֹשֻׁעַ וְכָל־יִשְׂרָאֵל רָאוּ כִּי־לָכַד הָאֹרֵב אֶת־הָעִיר וְכִי עָלָה עֲשַׁן הָעִיר וַיָּשֻׁבוּ וַיַּכּוּ אֶת־אַנְשֵׁי הָעָי׃ 8:21
Josh. 8:21 And Joshua and all Israel saw that the ambush had captured the city and that the smoke of the city ascended, and they turned back and smote the men of Ai.
וְאֵלֶּה יָצְאוּ מִן־הָעִיר לִקְרָאתָם וַיִּהְיוּ לְיִשְׂרָאֵל בַּתָּוֶךְ אֵלֶּה מִזֶּה וְאֵלֶּה מִזֶּה וַיַּכּוּ אוֹתָם עַד־בִּלְתִּי 8:22
הִשְׁאִיר־לוֹ שָׂרִיד וּפָלִיט׃
Josh. 8:22 And the others came forth from the city to meet them, and they were against Israel in the middle of these from here and those from there, so they smote them until no more were left of them remaining or escaped.
וְאֶת־מֶלֶךְ הָעַי תָּפְשׂוּ חָי וַיַּקְרִבוּ אֹתוֹ אֶל־יְהוֹשֻׁעַ׃ 8:23
Josh. 8:23 And they captured the king of Ai alive and they brought him to Joshua.
וַיְהִי כְּכַלּוֹת יִשְׂרָאֵל לַהֲרֹג אֶת־כָּל־יֹשְׁבֵי הָעַי בַּשָּׂדֶה בַּמִּדְבָּר אֲשֶׁר רְדָפוּם בּוֹ וַיִּפְּלוּ כֻלָּם לְפִי־ 8:24
חֶרֶב עַד־תֻּמָּם וַיָּשֻׁבוּ כָל־יִשְׂרָאֵל הָעַי וַיַּכּוּ אֹתָהּ לְפִי־חָרֶב׃
Josh. 8:24 And it was when Israel put an end to slaying all the inhabitants of Ai in the field, in the wilderness into which they had pursued them, and all of them had fallen to the edge of the sword until consumed, that all Israel returned to Ai and smote it with the edge of the sword.
וַיְהִי כָל־הַנֹּפְלִים בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא מֵאִישׁ וְעַד־אִשָּׁה שְׁנֵים עָשָׂר אָלֶף כֹּל אַנְשֵׁי הָעָי׃ 8:25
Josh. 8:25 And were all who fell on that day from the men and the women twelve thousand, all persons of Ai.
וִיהוֹשֻׁעַ לֹא־הֵשִׁיב יָדוֹ אֲשֶׁר נָטָה בַּכִּידוֹן עַד אֲשֶׁר הֶחֱרִים אֵת כָּל־יֹשְׁבֵי הָעָי׃ 8:26
Josh. 8:26 And Joshua did not draw back his hand which he stretched forth with the javelin until the time that he destroyed all the inhabitants of Ai.
רַק הַבְּהֵמָה וּשְׁלַל הָעִיר הַהִיא בָּזְזוּ לָהֶם יִשְׂרָאֵל כִּדְבַר יְהוָה אֲשֶׁר צִוָּה אֶת־יְהוֹשֻׁעַ׃ 8:27
Josh. 8:27 Only Israel took for a prey the cattle and the spoil of that city for themselves, according to the word of the Lord that He had commanded Joshua.
וַיִּשְׂרֹף יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אֶת־הָעָי וַיְשִׂימֶהָ תֵּל־עוֹלָם שְׁמָמָה עַד הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה׃ 8:28
Josh. 8:28 So Joshua burned Ai and set a heap on it for ever, a waste until this day.
וְאֶת־מֶלֶךְ הָעַי תָּלָה עַל־הָעֵץ עַד־עֵת הָעָרֶב וּכְבוֹא הַשֶּׁמֶשׁ צִוָּה יְהוֹשֻׁעַ וַיֹּרִידוּ אֶת־נִבְלָתוֹ מִן־הָעֵץ 8:29
וַיַּשְׁלִיכוּ אוֹתָהּ אֶל־פֶּתַח שַׁעַר הָעִיר וַיָּקִימוּ עָלָיו גַּל־אֲבָנִים גָּדוֹל עַד הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה׃
Josh. 8:29 And he hanged the king of Ai on a tree until the time of the evening, and when the sun went down Joshua commanded, and they took down his body from the tree and threw it down at the entrance of the gate of the city, and they raised over it a heap of great stones until this day.
אָז יִבְנֶה יְהוֹשֻׁעַ מִזְבֵּחַ לַיהוָה אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּהַר עֵיבָל׃ 8:30
Josh. 8:30 Now Joshua could build an altar to the Lord, God of Israel, on Mount Ebal,
[Return to Judg. 9:7]
כַּאֲשֶׁר צִוָּה מֹשֶׁה עֶבֶד־יְהוָה אֶת־בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל כַּכָּתוּב בְּסֵפֶר תּוֹרַת מֹשֶׁה מִזְבַּח אֲבָנִים שְׁלֵמוֹת 8:31
אֲשֶׁר לֹא־הֵנִיף עֲלֵיהֶן בַּרְזֶל וַיַּעֲלוּ עָלָיו עֹלוֹת לַיהוָה וַיִּזְבְּחוּ שְׁלָמִים׃
Josh. 8:31 as Moses, servant of the Lord, commanded the children of Israel, as written on the scroll of the Torah of Moses, an altar of whole stones against which iron had not been struck, and they offered on it burnt offerings to the Lord and sacrificed peace offerings.
Notice that the tent of meeting has not been mentioned so far throughout this book. If Joshua had to build a stone altar, the Tabernacle must not have been available. Where were the Levites, and why were they not carrying it? The scribe seems to have forgotten about them and the Tabernacle, having mentioned only the ark of the Lord. More questions: Was the ark covered while it was being carried? Or were the people able to see it? And what of the sacrifices? Were they not to be offered except where the Lord chose? These questions seem not to be answerable. However, in chapter 18 we will learn more, but none of these questions will be answered.
וַיִּכְתָּב־שָׁם עַל־הָאֲבָנִים אֵת מִשְׁנֵה תּוֹרַת מֹשֶׁה אֲשֶׁר כָּתַב לִפְנֵי בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל׃ 8:32
Josh. 8:32 And he wrote there on the stones a copy of the Torah of Moses that he wrote before the children of Israel.
וְכָל־יִשְׂרָאֵל וּזְקֵנָיו וְשֹׁטְרִים וְשֹׁפְטָיו עֹמְדִים מִזֶּה וּמִזֶּה לָאָרוֹן נֶגֶד הַכֹּהֲנִים הַלְוִיִּם נֹשְׂאֵי אֲרוֹן 8:33
בְּרִית־יְהוָה כַּגֵּר כָּאֶזְרָח חֶצְיוֹ אֶל־מוּל הַר־גְּרִזִים וְהַחֶצְיוֹ אֶל־מוּל הַר־עֵיבָל כַּאֲשֶׁר צִוָּה מֹשֶׁה
עֶבֶד־יְהוָה לְבָרֵךְ אֶת־הָעָם יִשְׂרָאֵל בָּרִאשֹׁנָה׃
Josh. 8:33 And all Israel and its elders and officers, and its judges were standing on one side or the other of the ark before the priests of the Levites, the bearers of the ark of the covenant of the Lord, the stranger as well as the inborn, one-half before Mount Gerizim and the other half before Mount Ebal as Moses, servant of the Lord, commanded, to bless the people Israel as before.
וְאַחֲרֵי־כֵן קָרָא אֶת־כָּל־דִּבְרֵי הַתּוֹרָה הַבְּרָכָה וְהַקְּלָלָה כְּכָל־הַכָּתוּב בְּסֵפֶר הַתּוֹרָה׃ 8:34
Josh. 8:34 And after this he pronounced all the words of the Torah, the blessing and the curse, according to all that is written on the scroll of the Torah.
לֹא־הָיָה דָבָר מִכֹּל אֲשֶׁר־צִוָּה מֹשֶׁה אֲשֶׁר לֹא־קָרָא יְהוֹשֻׁעַ נֶגֶד כָּל־קְהַל יִשְׂרָאֵל וְהַנָּשִׁים וְהַטַּף 8:35
וְהַגֵּר הַהֹלֵךְ בְּקִרְבָּם׃
Josh. 8:35 There was not a word from all that Moses commanded that Joshua did not read before the whole assembly of Israel, with the women and the little ones and the strangers walking in their midst.
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