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Sunday, February 18 2018

Why Did They Leave Their Families Behind?

"Our little ones, our wives, our flocks, and all our cattle, shall be there in the cities of Gilead: But thy servants will pass over, every man armed for war, before the LORD to battle, as my lord saith"

When the Israelites crossed the Jordan River in the time of Joshua (see Joshua's Commission), there was a major difference in tribal structure that made the crossing - two and a half of the tribes did not have their families with them, while all of the other tribes did have everyone. Why?

Tribal Map As shown on the map, the tribes of Reuben, Gad and half of Manasseh were given their tribal inheritances east of the Jordan River. It was not part of the original plan, but when the leaders of the kingdoms there, primarily of Ammon and Moab, needlessly started a war with the Israelites, who had respectfully and humbly asked only to pass through, the people who started the war also lost their territory - which was then given to the tribes of Reuben, Gad and half of Manasseh.

Just before the Israelites crossed the Jordan, representatives of the tribes of Reuben and Gad, and later half of the tribe of Manasseh, requested to make the then-sovereign Israelite land east of the Jordan their tribal inheritance.

"32:1 Now the children of Reuben and the children of Gad had a very great multitude of cattle: and when they saw the land of Jazer, and the land of Gilead, that, behold, the place was a place for cattle; 32:2 The children of Gad and the children of Reuben came and spake unto Moses, and to Eleazar the priest, and unto the princes of the congregation, saying,

32:3 Ataroth, and Dibon, and Jazer, and Nimrah, and Heshbon, and Elealeh, and Shebam, and Nebo, and Beon, 32:4 Even the country which the LORD smote before the congregation of Israel, is a land for cattle, and thy servants have cattle: 32:5 Wherefore, said they, if we have found grace in thy sight, let this land be given unto thy servants for a possession, and bring us not over Jordan." (Numbers 32:1-5 KJV)

The request was accepted, with the condition that, while their families could remain behind, with sufficient protection, the best of their fighting men must accompany the other tribes across to Jordan to help them acquire their tribal lands "from Dan to Beersheba," just as those tribes had already helped the two and a half tribes acquire their homelands east of the Jordan River.

"32:20 And Moses said unto them, If ye will do this thing, if ye will go armed before the LORD to war, 32:21 And will go all of you armed over Jordan before the LORD, until he hath driven out his enemies from before him, 32:22 And the land be subdued before the LORD: then afterward ye shall return, and be guiltless before the LORD, and before Israel; and this land shall be your possession before the LORD.

32:23 But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out.

32:24 Build you cities for your little ones, and folds for your sheep; and do that which hath proceeded out of your mouth.

32:25 And the children of Gad and the children of Reuben spake unto Moses, saying, Thy servants will do as my lord commandeth. 32:26 Our little ones, our wives, our flocks, and all our cattle, shall be there in the cities of Gilead: 32:27 But thy servants will pass over, every man armed for war, before the LORD to battle, as my lord saith." (Numbers 32:20-27 KJV)

When all was done, the east of Jordan tribes returned home to their families: "And the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh returned, and departed from the children of Israel out of Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan, to go unto the country of Gilead, to the land of their possession, whereof they were possessed, according to the word of the LORD by the hand of Moses."

The Jabbok River

"22:1 Then Joshua called the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half tribe of Manasseh, 22:2 And said unto them,

Ye have kept all that Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you, and have obeyed my voice in all that I commanded you: 22:3 Ye have not left your brethren these many days unto this day, but have kept the charge of the commandment of the LORD your God.

22:4 And now the LORD your God hath given rest unto your brethren, as he promised them: therefore now return ye, and get you unto your tents, and unto the land of your possession, which Moses the servant of the LORD gave you on the other side Jordan. 22:5 But take diligent heed to do the commandment and the law, which Moses the servant of the LORD charged you, to love the LORD your God, and to walk in all his ways, and to keep his commandments, and to cleave unto him, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.

22:6 So Joshua blessed them, and sent them away: and they went unto their tents.

22:7 Now to the one half of the tribe of Manasseh Moses had given possession in Bashan: but unto the other half thereof gave Joshua among their brethren on this side Jordan westward.

And when Joshua sent them away also unto their tents, then he blessed them, 22:8 And he spake unto them, saying, Return with much riches unto your tents, and with very much cattle, with silver, and with gold, and with brass, and with iron, and with very much raiment: divide the spoil of your enemies with your brethren.

22:9 And the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh returned, and departed from the children of Israel out of Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan, to go unto the country of Gilead, to the land of their possession, whereof they were possessed, according to the word of the LORD by the hand of Moses." (Joshua 22:1-9 KJV)

Fact Finder: Even though the tribe of Manasseh was divided into east and west of the Jordan River, was it nevertheless done in an orderly manner, according to clans - with no family divisions?
See Why East And West Manasseh?


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This Day In History, February 18

1229: During the Sixth Crusade (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy and Emperor Constantine's Sun Dogs and A History Of Jerusalem: Constantine and Muhammad), "Holy Roman Emperor" (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation) Frederick II signed a truce with al-Kamil, thereby regaining Jerusalem.

Crusaders

1248: Imperial forces under Frederick II were defeated at Parma in Italy.

1478: George, the Duke of Clarence, was convicted of treason against his brother Edward IV, and then killed in the Tower of London by being drowned in a wine barrel.

1503: Henry Tudor (later Henry VIII) was made Prince of Wales.

1516: Mary I, Queen of England, was born. The daughter of Henry VIII and his first wife Catherine of Aragon (the Spanish-born daughter of the Roman Catholic monarchs King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain - the employers of Christopher Columbus and the founders of the Spanish Inquisition, including the torture of non-Catholics with "waterboarding"), she became known as "Bloody Mary" after her campaign against Protestants in England.

1546: Martin Luther, a monk who became a leader of the Protestant reformation, died at age 62. Despite their "protest," the Protestant churches maintain most of Rome's anti-Biblical doctrines (see Why Call Me, Lord, Lord, and Do Not The Things Which I Say?).

1564: Michelangelo Buonarotti (popularly known simply as "Michelangelo"), Italian painter, sculptor and architect, died.

Michelangelo

1574: Zeeland fell to Dutch rebels.

1678: John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress was first published, in Britain (see also The Pilgrims).

1688: Quakers in Germantown, Pennsylvania, adopted the first formal antislavery resolution in North America.

1861: In Italy, the first parliament met and proclaimed Victor Emmanuel as the first king of Italy.

1900: The Battle of Paardeberg began in the second Boer War. The Boers under Piet Cronje eventually surrendered on February 27 under British artillery.

1915: During the First Word War (1914-1918; see also The Assassination That Triggered Two World Wars), Germany began a submarine blockade of England.

1930: Clyde Tombaugh, working with photographic plates at the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona, discovered "Pluto," the 9th and smallest planet in the solar system.

1967: Robert Oppenheimer died. He was a prominent member of the team of physicists that produced the U.S. atomic bombs that incinerated the civilian populations (the Japanese attack on Pearl harbor was an attack on a military base) of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 (see also Who Would Throw A Nuclear Boomerang?).

The famous U.S. military photograph below shows the 20,000 foot "mushroom cloud" that was produced by the bombing of Hiroshima - a seething holocaust of dust and ashes that included the incinerated remains of about 150,000 men, women and children.

Hiroshima

Three days later, a second U.S. atomic bomb destroyed another Japanese city - Nagasaki. The photograph below shows the towering "mushroom cloud" from that bombing - that also included the incinerated remains of over 100,000 men, women and children.

Nagasaki

1979: Snow fell in the Sahara Desert in southern Algeria, the only time in recorded history.

1994: Representatives from 135 countries announced at a United Nations environmental conference that greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced to stop "global warming."





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