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And Moses took the tabernacle, and pitched it without the camp, afar off from the camp, and called it the tabernacle of the congregation. And it came to pass, that every one that sought the Lord went out unto the tabernacle of the congregation, which was without the camp.
And it came to pass, when Moses went out unto the tabernacle, that all the people rose up, and stood every man at his tent door, and looked after Moses, until he was gone into the tabernacle. And it came to pass, as Moses entered into the tabernacle, the cloudy pillar descended, and stood at the door of the tabernacle, and the Lord talked with Moses. And all the people saw the cloudy pillar stand at the tabernacle dvor: and all the people rose up and worshipped, every man at his tent door. And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp; but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle.
Jethro's Advice (Ex. xviii.). When Jethro, the priest of Midian, Moses' father in law, heard of all that God had done for Moses, and for Israel his people, and that the Lord had brought Israel out of Egypt; then Jethro, Moses' father in law, took Zipporah, Moses' wife, after he had sent her back, and her two sons; of which the name of the one was Gershom; "for," he said, "I have been an alien in a strange land: " and the name of the other was Eliezer; 1 "for the God of my father," said he, was mine help, and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh." And Jethro, Moses' father in law, came with his sons and his wife unto Moses into the wilderness, where he encamped at the mount of God. And he said unto Moses: "I thy father in law Jethro am come unto thee, and thy wife, and her two sons with her." And Moses went out to meet his father in law, and did obeisance, and kissed him; and they asked each other of their welfare; and they came into the tent.
And Moses told his father in law all that the Lord had done unto Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for Israel's sake, and all the travail that had come upon them by the way, and how the Lord delivered them. And Jethro rejoiced for all the goodness which the Lord had done to Israel, whom he had delivered out of the hand of the Egyptians. And Jethro said: "Blessed be the Lord,
1 Eliezer. 'My God is a help.'
who hath delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of Pharaoh. Now I know that the Lord is greater than all gods: for in the thing wherein they dealt proudly he was above them." And Jethro, Moses' father in law, took a burnt offering and sacrifices for God: and Aaron came, and all the elders of Israel, to eat bread with Moses' father in law before God.
And it came to pass on the morrow, that Moses sat to judge the people and the people stood by Moses from the morning unto the evening. And when Moses' father in law saw all that he did to the people, he said: "What is this thing that thou doest to the people? why sittest thou thyself alone, and all the people stand by thee from morning unto even?" And Moses said unto his father in law: "Because the people come unto me to enquire of God: when they have a matter they come unto me; and I judge between one and another, and I do make them know the statutes of God, and his laws."
And Moses' father in law said unto him: "The thing that thou doest is not good. Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee: for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone. Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel, and God shall be with thee: Be thou for the people to God-ward, that thou mayest bring the causes unto God: and thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them the way wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do. Moreover thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens: and let them judge the people at all seasons: and it shall be, that every great matter they shall bring unto thee, but every small matter they shall judge: so shall it be easier for thyself, and they shall bear the burden with thee. If thou shalt do this thing, and God command thee so, then thou shalt be able to endure, and all this people shall also go to their place in peace."
So Moses hearkened to the voice of his father in law, and did all that he had said. And Moses chose able men out of all Israel, and made them heads over the people, rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens. And they judged the people at all seasons: the hard causes they
brought unto Moses, but every small matter they judged themselves. And Moses let his father in law depart and he went his way into his own land.
Appointment of Seventy Elders (Num. xi. 16, 17, 24-29). And the Lord said unto Moses: "Gather unto me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom thou knowest to be the elders of the people, and officers over them; and bring them unto the tabernacle of the congregation, that they may stand there with thee. And I will come down and talk with thee there and I will take of the spirit which is upon thee, and will put it upon them; and they shall bear the burden of the people with thee, that thou bear it not thyself alone."
And Moses went out, and told the people the words of the Lord, and gathered the seventy men of the elders of the people, and set them round about the tabernacle. And the Lord came down in a cloud, and spake unto him, and took of the spirit that was upon him, and gave it unto the seventy elders: and it came to pass that, when the spirit rested upon them, they prophesied, and did not cease. But there remained two of the men in the camp, the name of the one was Eldad, and the name of the other Medad: and the spirit rested upon them; and they were of them that were written, but went not out unto the tabernacle: and they prophesied in the camp. And there ran a young man, and told Moses, and said, "Eldad and Medad do prophesy in the camp." And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of Moses, one of his young men, answered and said, "My lord Moses, forbid them." And Moses said unto him: "Enviest thou for my sake? would God that all the Lord's people were prophets, and that the Lord would put his spirit upon them!"
Jealousy of Miriam and Aaron (Num. xii. 1-15). And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman. And they said: "Hath the Lord indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us?" And the Lord heard it. Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth. And the Lord spake suddenly unto Moses, and unto Aaron, and unto Miriam : "Come out ye three unto the tabernacle of the congregation."
And they three came out. And the Lord came down in the pillar of the cloud, and stood in the door of the tabernacle, and called Aaron and Miriam: and they both came forth. And he said: "Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, I the Lord will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream. My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house. With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even manifestly, and not in dark speeches; and the similitude of the Lord shall he behold: wherefore then were ye not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?" And the anger of the Lord was kindled against them; and he departed. And the cloud departed from off the tabernacle; and behold, Miriam became leprous, white as snow: and Aaron looked upon Miriam, and behold, she was leprous. And Aaron said unto Moses: 66 Alas, my lord, I beseech thee, lay not the sin upon us, wherein we have done foolishly, and wherein we have sinned. Let her not be as one dead, of whom the flesh is half consumed when he cometh out of his mother's womb." And Moses cried unto the Lord, saying, "Heal her now, O God, I beseech thee." And the Lord said unto Moses: "If her father had but spit in her face, should she not be ashamed seven days? let her be shut out from the camp seven days, and after that let her be received in again." And Miriam was shut out from the camp seven days: and the people journeyed not till Miriam was brought in again.
ISRAEL IN THE WILDERNESS
Departure from Sinai (Num. x. 11, 12, 29-36). And it came to pass on the twentieth day of the second month, in the second year, that the cloud was taken up from off the tabernacle of the testimony. And the children of Israel took their journeys out of the wilderness of Sinai; and the cloud rested in the wilderness of Paran.
And Moses said unto Hobab, the son of Raguel the Midianite, Moses' father in law: "We are journeying unto the place of which the Lord said, I will give it you: come thou with us, and we will do thee good: for the Lord hath spoken good concerning Israel." And he said unto him: "I will not go; but I will depart to mine own land, and to my kindred." And he said: "Leave us not, I pray thee; forasmuch as thou knowest how we are to encamp in the wilderness, and thou mayest be to us instead of eyes. And it shall be, if thou go with us, yea, it shall be, that what goodness the Lord shall do unto us, the same will we do unto thee."
And they departed from the mount of the Lord three days' journey and the ark of the covenant of the Lord went before them in the three days' journey, to search out a resting place for them. And the cloud of the Lord was upon them by day, when they went out of the camp.
And it came to pass, when the ark set forward, that Moses said: "Rise up, Lord, and let thine enemies be scattered; and let them that hate thee flee before thee." And when it rested, he said: "Return, O Lord, unto the many thousands of Israel."
The Manna and the Quails (Ex. xvi. 2, 3, 9-30; Num. xi. 7-9; Ex. xvi. 32-xvii. 1; Num. xi. 4-6, 10-15, 18-23, 30-35; xx. 1). And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness: and the children of Israel said unto them: "Would to God we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by
1 See note, p. 82.