Joshua 18

1 The Israeli people captured all the land [that they were able to], but there were still seven tribes that had not been allotted any land. The Israeli people all gathered at Shiloh, and they set up the Sacred Tent there. 2 3 Joshua said to them, “Why are you waiting a long time to take control of [the rest of] the land that Yahweh, the God whom your ancestors [worshiped], has promised to give to you [RHQ]? 4 Choose three men from each of your seven tribes. Then I will send them to explore [the parts of] the land [which you have not occupied yet. When they finish exploring it], they must write a report, in which they will (make a map/show the boundaries) of the land that each tribe wants to receive. 5 They will divide the remaining land into seven parts. The tribe of Judah will keep its land in the south, and the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh will keep their land in the north. 6 But in their report, the men from the seven tribes should describe the seven parts of the remaining land [that they wish to receive], and bring the report to me. While Yahweh is watching, I will (cast lots/throw marked stones) [to decide which land should be allotted to each tribe]. 7 But the tribe of Levi will not be allotted any land, because their [reward is that they will be] Yahweh’s priests. The tribes of Gad, Reuben, and half the tribe of Manasseh have already been allotted their land on the east side of the Jordan [River], just as Moses, the man who served God [well], decided, [so they will not get any more land].” 8 When the men who were chosen [got ready to] leave, Joshua told them, “Go and explore the land. Then write a report of what you have seen, and bring it back to me. Then while Yahweh is watching, I will (cast lots/throw marked stones) here at Shiloh, [to determine what area each tribe will receive].” 9 So the men left and walked through the area. Then they described in a scroll each town that was in the seven parts [into which they had divided] the land. Then they returned to Joshua, who was still at Shiloh. 10 [After Joshua read their report], while Yahweh was watching, he (cast lots/threw marked stones) to choose which land would be allotted to each of the seven Israeli tribes. 11 The first tribe that was allotted land was the tribe of Benjamin. Each clan in that tribe was allotted some of the land that was between the area that was allotted to the tribe of Judah and the area that was allotted to the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh. 12 The northern border started at the Jordan [River] and extended west along the northern side of Jericho, into the hilly area. From there the border extended west to the desert near Beth-Aven [town]. 13 From there it extended southwest to Luz (which is [now named] Bethel). From there it extended southwest to Ataroth-Addar [town], which is on the hill south of Lower Beth-Horon [city]. 14 At the hill south of Beth-Horon, the border turned and extended south to Kiriath-Baal [town], which is [also named] Kiriath-Jearim. That is a town where people of the tribe of Judah live. That was the western border of the land allotted to the tribe of Benjamin. 15 The southern border of their land started near Kiriath-Jearim and extended west to Nephtoah Springs. 16 From there it extended south to the bottom of the hill, near Ben-Hinnom Valley, on the north side of Repha Valley. The border extended south along the Hinnom Valley, south of the city where the Jebus people-group lived, to En-Rogel. 17 From there the border extended west to En-Shemesh, and continued to Geliloth near Adummim Pass. Then it extended to the great stone of Reuben’s son Bohan. 18 From there the border extended to the northern edge of Beth-Arabah [town] and down into the Jordan [River] Valley. 19 From there it extended east to the northern edge of Beth-Hoglah [town] and ended at the north end of the Dead Sea, where the Jordan [River flows into the Dead Sea]. That was the southern boundary [of the land allotted to the tribe of Benjamin]. 20 The Jordan [River] was the eastern boundary of the land allotted to the tribe of Benjamin. Those were the boundaries of the land allotted to them. 21 The cities in the land allotted to the tribe of Benjamin were Jericho, Beth-Hoglah, Emek-Keziz, 22 Beth-Arabah, Zemaraim, Bethel, 23 Avvim, Parah, Ophrah, 24 Kephar-Ammoni, Ophni, and Geba. Altogether there were fourteen towns and the surrounding villages. 25 The tribe of Benjamin also had the towns of Gibeon, Ramah, Beeroth, 26 Mizpah, Kephirah, Mozah, 27 Rekem, Irpeel, Taralah, 28 Zelah, Haeleph, the city where the Jebus people-group lived (which is [now named] Jerusalem), Gibeah, and Kiriath. Altogether there were 14 towns and the surrounding villages. All that area was allotted to the clans of the tribe of Benjamin.