The Israelites defeat the kings of Midian
Num 25:1-17 The Israelites camp at Abel Shittim (‘the valley of acacia trees’) in Moab. Some of the Israelite men have sexual relationships with Moabite women and become involved in the worship of Baal at Mt Peor (see 4 on Map 46). They are put to death for disobeying God.
Num 26:1-65 A second census takes place in Moab. The total number of adult Israelite men is recorded as 601,730. (A previous census taken at Mt Sinai about forty years earlier is recorded in Numbers 1:1-54 - see the feature on The First Census in Section 25.)
Num 27:1-11 Moses establishes a legal ruling regarding the inheritance of property when an Israelite dies without a son and heir.
Num 27:12-14 Moses is commanded to “Climb this mountain in the Abarim Mountains” (Numbers 27:12) and to look out across the ‘promised land’ before he dies (see Map 46).
Mount Nebo, where Moses looked out across the 'promised land' (Berthold Werner)
Num 27:15-23 Joshua is commissioned by Eleazar the priest to succeed Moses.
Num 28-30 Moses receives further guidance about offerings, religious festivals and vows.
Num 31:1-54 The Israelites defeat the five kings of Midian and kill Balaam. The spoils are divided amongst the soldiers, the priests and the community.
Num 32:1-19 The Israelite tribes of Reuben and Gad, together with half the tribe of Manassah, ask if they can opt out of any further fighting. They want to stay in the lands of Gilead and Bashan east of the River Jordan that were taken from King Sihon and King Og (see Numbers 21:33-35). This includes the towns of Ataroth, Dibon, Jazer, Nimrah, Heshbon, Elealeh, Sebam, Nebo and Beon.
Num 32:20-42 Moses refuses, but agrees that after crossing the River Jordan and helping the other Israelites to conquer Canaan, they may return here and settle with their large herds of cattle and their flocks of sheep and goats.
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