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Joshua – Chapter 21
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Next, the leaders of the Tribe of Levi approached Elazar and Joshua to apportion to them the cities and fields promised to them in parshas Masei. The Leviim were divided into four groups: the Kohanim, the rest of the descendants of Kehos, the descendants of Gershon and the descendants of Merari. Each of these groups […]
Joshua – Chapter 20
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Now that all 12 Tribes were settled in their portions, it was time to designate the cities of refuge as Hashem commanded Moshe in parshas Masei. These were cities where those who killed accidentally would flee. They would have to reside there until the death of the Kohein Gadol (High Priest). What did the High […]
Joshua – Chapter 19
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Next came the portion of Shimon (Simeon), which, oddly enough, was scattered throughout the portion of Judah. One reason is given in the text of the Navi itself: Judah’s territory was simply too big for a single Tribe. Another reason can be found in the brachos (blessings) given to the 12 sons of Jacob by […]
Joshua – Chapter 18
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The Tribes of Judah and the sons of Joseph were settled in their territory, as were the Tribes with land in Trans-Jordan. Since Levi did not have a territory, this left seven Tribes waiting to receive their portions. Joshua had each of these Tribes select three members who would survey the land and describe its […]
Joshua – Chapter 17
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Continuing the territory of Joseph’s sons, the Navi moves on the half of the Tribe of Menashe that did not settle in Trans-Jordan. Elazar the High Priest and Joshua were now approached by the daughters of Tzelofchad. You may recall that these five women approached Moshe in parshas Pinchas, saying that their deceased father had […]
Joshua – Chapter 16
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A short chapter – a mere ten verses – starts a description of the territory of the sons of Joseph. Their territory extended from the Jordan opposite Jericho to Beth-El. In addition to their own territory, Ephraim had cities that extended into the territory of Menashe. Canaanite residents remained in Gezer, one of these cities, […]
Joshua – Chapter 15
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The Navi now details the land given to each Tribe. Judah’s territory was in the south. It extended from the Mediterranean Sea on the west to the Dead Sea on the east. Jerusalem was at the northern end of Judah’s territory, which extended southward into the Negev desert. The division of the land started with […]
Joshua – Chapter 14
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The remaining nine and a half Tribes were assigned their portion by lottery. But wait! If two and a half Tribes got their inheritance on the eastern shore of the Jordan (2.5), and the Tribe of Levi has no portion of land (+1), and nine and a half Tribes got land by lottery (+9.5), that’s […]
Joshua – Chapter 13
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While the majority of it is discussed passingly over the course of two chapters, the conquest of the land actually took seven long years. After seven years of battles to acquire the land, Joshua spent seven years dividing the land and settling it among the Tribes. Joshua divides the land on the west of the […]
Joshua – Chapter 12
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The Navi now gives a list of kings defeated by Israel. First it lists those defeated by Moshe on the other side of the Jordan: Sichon and Og. Then it lists those conquered by Joshua, totaling thirty-one. The Navi lists the thirty-one kings in an odd, apparently redundant, fashion. It says, “The king of Jericho, […]