And when they came unto the borders of Jordan, that are in the land of Canaan, the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh built there an altar by Jordan, a great altar to see to.
And the children of Israel heard say, Behold, the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh have built an altar over against the land of Canaan, in the borders of Jordan, at the passage of the children of Israel.
And when the children of Israel heard of it, the whole congregation of the children of Israel gathered themselves together at Shiloh, to go up to war against them.
And the children of Israel sent unto the children of Reuben, and to the children of Gad, and to the half tribe of Manasseh, into the land of Gilead, Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest,
And with him ten princes, of each chief house a prince throughout all the tribes of Israel; and each one was an head of the house of their fathers among the thousands of Israel.
And they came unto the children of Reuben, and to the children of Gad, and to the half tribe of Manasseh, unto the land of Gilead, and they spake with them, saying,
Thus saith the whole congregation of the LORD, What trespass is this that ye have committed against the God of Israel, to turn away this day from following the LORD, in that ye have builded you an altar, that ye might rebel this day against the LORD?
Is the iniquity of Peor too little for us, from which we are not cleansed until this day, although there was a plague in the congregation of the LORD,
But that ye must turn away this day from following the LORD? and it will be, seeing ye rebel to day against the LORD, that to morrow he will be wroth with the whole congregation of Israel.
Notwithstanding, if the land of your possession be unclean, then pass ye over unto the land of the possession of the LORD, wherein the LORD'S tabernacle dwelleth, and take possession among us: but rebel not against the LORD, nor rebel against us, in building you an altar beside the altar of the LORD our God.
Did not Achan the son of Zerah commit a trespass in the accursed thing, and wrath fell on all the congregation of Israel? and that man perished not alone in his iniquity.
Then the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh answered, and said unto the heads of the thousands of Israel,
The LORD God of gods, the LORD God of gods, he knoweth, and Israel he shall know; if it be in rebellion, or if in transgression against the LORD, (save us not this day,)
That we have built us an altar to turn from following the LORD, or if to offer thereon burnt offering or meat offering, or if to offer peace offerings thereon, let the LORD himself require it;
And if we have not rather done it for fear of this thing, saying, In time to come your children might speak unto our children, saying, What have ye to do with the LORD God of Israel?
For the LORD hath made Jordan a border between us and you, ye children of Reuben and children of Gad; ye have no part in the LORD: so shall your children make our children cease from fearing the LORD.
Therefore we said, Let us now prepare to build us an altar, not for burnt offering, nor for sacrifice:
But that it may be a witness between us, and you, and our generations after us, that we might do the service of the LORD before him with our burnt offerings, and with our sacrifices, and with our peace offerings; that your children may not say to our children in time to come, Ye have no part in the LORD.
Therefore said we, that it shall be, when they should so say to us or to our generations in time to come, that we may say again, Behold the pattern of the altar of the LORD, which our fathers made, not for burnt offerings, nor for sacrifices; but it is a witness between us and you.
God forbid that we should rebel against the LORD, and turn this day from following the LORD, to build an altar for burnt offerings, for meat offerings, or for sacrifices, beside the altar of the LORD our God that is before his tabernacle.
And when Phinehas the priest, and the princes of the congregation and heads of the thousands of Israel which were with him, heard the words that the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the children of Manasseh spake, it pleased them.
And Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest said unto the children of Reuben, and to the children of Gad, and to the children of Manasseh, This day we perceive that the LORD is among us, because ye have not committed this trespass against the LORD: now ye have delivered the children of Israel out of the hand of the LORD.
And Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, and the princes, returned from the children of Reuben, and from the children of Gad, out of the land of Gilead, unto the land of Canaan, to the children of Israel, and brought them word again.
And the thing pleased the children of Israel; and the children of Israel blessed God, and did not intend to go up against them in battle, to destroy the land wherein the children of Reuben and Gad dwelt.
And the children of Reuben and the children of Gad called the altar Ed: for it shall be a witness between us that the LORD is God.
Praise ye the LORD. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.
Who can utter the mighty acts of the LORD? who can shew forth all his praise?
Blessed are they that keep judgment, and he that doeth righteousness at all times.
Remember me, O LORD, with the favour that thou bearest unto thy people: O visit me with thy salvation;
That I may see the good of thy chosen, that I may rejoice in the gladness of thy nation, that I may glory with thine inheritance.
We have sinned with our fathers, we have committed iniquity, we have done wickedly.
Our fathers understood not thy wonders in Egypt; they remembered not the multitude of thy mercies; but provoked him at the sea, even at the Red sea.
Nevertheless he saved them for his name's sake, that he might make his mighty power to be known.
He rebuked the Red sea also, and it was dried up: so he led them through the depths, as through the wilderness.
And he saved them from the hand of him that hated them, and redeemed them from the hand of the enemy.
And the waters covered their enemies: there was not one of them left.
Then believed they his words; they sang his praise.
They soon forgat his works; they waited not for his counsel:
But lusted exceedingly in the wilderness, and tempted God in the desert.
And he gave them their request; but sent leanness into their soul.
They envied Moses also in the camp, and Aaron the saint of the LORD.
The earth opened and swallowed up Dathan, and covered the company of Abiram.
And a fire was kindled in their company; the flame burned up the wicked.
They made a calf in Horeb, and worshipped the molten image.
Thus they changed their glory into the similitude of an ox that eateth grass.
They forgat God their saviour, which had done great things in Egypt;
Wondrous works in the land of Ham, and terrible things by the Red sea.
Therefore he said that he would destroy them, had not Moses his chosen stood before him in the breach, to turn away his wrath, lest he should destroy them.
Yea, they despised the pleasant land, they believed not his word:
But murmured in their tents, and hearkened not unto the voice of the LORD.
Therefore he lifted up his hand against them, to overthrow them in the wilderness:
To overthrow their seed also among the nations, and to scatter them in the lands.
They joined themselves also unto Baalpeor, and ate the sacrifices of the dead.
Thus they provoked him to anger with their inventions: and the plague brake in upon them.
Then stood up Phinehas, and executed judgment: and so the plague was stayed.
And that was counted unto him for righteousness unto all generations for evermore.
They angered him also at the waters of strife, so that it went ill with Moses for their sakes:
Because they provoked his spirit, so that he spake unadvisedly with his lips.
They did not destroy the nations, concerning whom the LORD commanded them:
But were mingled among the heathen, and learned their works.
And they served their idols: which were a snare unto them.
Yea, they sacrificed their sons and their daughters unto devils,
And shed innocent blood, even the blood of their sons and of their daughters, whom they sacrificed unto the idols of Canaan: and the land was polluted with blood.
Thus were they defiled with their own works, and went a whoring with their own inventions.
Therefore was the wrath of the LORD kindled against his people, insomuch that he abhorred his own inheritance.
And he gave them into the hand of the heathen; and they that hated them ruled over them.
Their enemies also oppressed them, and they were brought into subjection under their hand.
Many times did he deliver them; but they provoked him with their counsel, and were brought low for their iniquity.
Nevertheless he regarded their affliction, when he heard their cry:
And he remembered for them his covenant, and repented according to the multitude of his mercies.
He made them also to be pitied of all those that carried them captives.
Save us, O LORD our God, and gather us from among the heathen, to give thanks unto thy holy name, and to triumph in thy praise.
Blessed be the LORD God of Israel from everlasting to everlasting: and let all the people say, Amen. Praise ye the LORD.