1It happened, when all the kings who were beyond the Jordan, in the
hill country, and in the lowland, and on all the shore of the great sea in
front of Lebanon, the Hittite, and the Amorite, the Canaanite, the Perizzite,
the Hivite, and the Jebusite, heard of it;
2that they gathered themselves
together, to fight with Joshua and with Israel, with one accord.
when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and to
4they also resorted to a ruse, and went and made as if they had been
ambassadors, and took old sacks on their donkeys, and wineskins, old and
torn and bound up,
5and old and patched shoes on their feet, and old
garments on them; and all the bread of their provision was dry and was become
6They went to Joshua to the camp at Gilgal, and said to him, and
to the men of Israel, We are come from a far country: now therefore make
you a covenant with us.
7The men of Israel said to the Hivites, What
if you dwell among us; and how shall we make a covenant with you?
8They said to Joshua, We are your servants. Joshua said to them, Who are
you? and from whence come you?
9They said to him, From a very
far country your servants are come because of the name of Yahweh your God:
for we have heard the fame of him, and all that he did in Egypt,
all that he did to the two kings of the Amorites, who were beyond the Jordan,
to Sihon king of Heshbon, and to Og king of Bashan, who was at Ashtaroth.
11Our elders and all the inhabitants of our country spoke to us, saying,
Take provision in your hand for the journey, and go to meet them, and tell
them, We are your servants: and now make you a covenant with us.
12This our bread we took hot for our provision out of our houses on the
day we came forth to go to you; but now, behold, it is dry, and is become
13and these wineskins, which we filled, were new; and behold,
they are torn: and these our garments and our shoes are become old by reason
of the very long journey.
14The men took of their provision, and didn’t
ask counsel at the mouth of Yahweh.
15Joshua made peace with them, and
made a covenant with them, to let them live: and the princes of the
congregation swore to them.
16It happened at the end of three days after
they had made a covenant with them, that they heard that they were their
neighbors, and that they lived among them.
17The children of Israel
traveled, and came to their cities on the third day. Now their cities were
Gibeon, and Chephirah, and Beeroth, and Kiriath Jearim.
18The children of
Israel didn’t strike them, because the princes of the congregation had sworn
to them by Yahweh, the God of Israel. All the congregation murmured against
19But all the princes said to all the congregation, We have
sworn to them by Yahweh, the God of Israel: now therefore we may not touch
20This we will do to them, and let them live; lest wrath be on us,
because of the oath which we swore to them.
21The princes said to them,
Let them live: so they became wood cutters and drawers of water to all the
congregation, as the princes had spoken to them.
22Joshua called for
them, and he spoke to them, saying, Why have you deceived us, saying, We
are very far from you; when you dwell among us?
you are cursed, and there shall never fail to be of you bondservants,
both wood cutters and drawers of water for the house of my God.
answered Joshua, and said, Because it was certainly told your servants, how
that Yahweh your God commanded his servant Moses to give you all the land,
and to destroy all the inhabitants of the land from before you; therefore we
were sore afraid for our lives because of you, and have done this thing.
25Now, behold, we are in your hand: as it seems good and right to you to
do to us, do.
26So did he to them, and delivered them out of the hand of
the children of Israel, that they didn’t kill them.
27That day Joshua
made those wood cutters and drawers of water for the congregation, and for
the altar of Yahweh, to this day, in the place which he should choose.