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Judges 8 Wycliffe Bible (WYC)

And the men of Ephraim said to Gideon, What is this thing, that thou wouldest do, that thou calledest not us, when thou wentest to battle against Midian? And they chided with him strongly, and well nigh they did to him violence. (And the men of Ephraim said to Gideon, What is this that thou hast done, that thou did not call us when thou wentest to battle against the Midianites? And they strongly complained to him, and they almost did violence to him.)

To whom he answered, And what such thing might I have done, what manner thing ye have done? (But he answered to them, Could I have done such a thing as ye have done?) Whether a raisin of Ephraim is not better than the vintages of Abiezer?

And the Lord hath betaken into your hands the princes of Midian, Oreb and Zeeb. What such thing might I have done, what manner thing ye have done? (For the Lord hath delivered Oreb and Zeeb, the princes of the Midianites, into your hands. Could I have done such a thing as ye have done?) And when he had spoken this thing, the spirit of them rested, by which they swelled against him.

And when Gideon had come to (the) Jordan, he passed it with three hundred men, that were with him; and for weariness they might not pursue them that fled. (And when Gideon had come to the Jordan River, he crossed over it with the three hundred men who were with him; and for weariness they might not pursue those who had fled before them.)

And he said to the men of Succoth, I beseech (thee), give ye (some) loaves to the people, that is with me; for they failed greatly (for they faint now), (so) that we may then pursue Zebah and Zalmunna, (the) kings of Midian.

And the princes of Succoth answered in scorn, (and said,) In hap the palms of the hands of Zebah and of Zalmunna be in thine hands, and therefore thou askest, that we give (some) loaves to thine host.

To whom Gideon said, Therefore, when the Lord shall betake Zebah and Zalmunna into mine hands, and when I shall turn again (as an) overcomer in peace, I shall rend your flesh with thorns and briars of the desert. (To whom Gideon said, And so, when the Lord shall deliver Zebah and Zalmunna into my hands, and when I shall return to you in victory, I shall tear, or shall cut, your flesh with thorns and briars from the desert.)

And Gideon went up from thence, and came into Penuel; and he spake like things to men of that place, to whom also they answered, as the men of Succoth had answered (and they answered him just like the men of Succoth had answered him).

And so he said to them, When I shall turn again (as an) overcomer in peace (When I shall return to you in victory), I shall destroy this tower.

10 Forsooth Zebah and Zalmunna rested with all their host; for fifteen thousand men (were) left of all the companies of the peoples of the east, when an hundred and twenty thousand of fighters and of men drawing out sword were slain. (And Zebah and Zalmunna were in Karkor with their army; and fifteen thousand men were all who were left of the companies of the peoples of the east, for a hundred and twenty thousand fighting men drawing out swords had been killed.)

11 And Gideon ascended by the way of them that dwelled in tabernacles at the east coast of Nobah and of Jogbehah, and smote the tents of [the] enemies, that were secure, and supposed not anything of adversity.

12 And Zebah and Zalmunna fled, whom Gideon pursued, and (he) took (hold of them), when all their host was troubled.

13 And he turned again from battle before the rising of the sun, (And Gideon returned from the battle by way of the Ascent of Heres,)

14 and he took (hold of) a young man of the men of Succoth; and he asked him the names of the princes, and of the elder men of Succoth; and he described (to Gideon) seven and seventy men in number.

15 And he came to Succoth, and said to them, Lo, (here be) Zebah and Zalmunna! of which ye upbraided me (of whom ye upbraided me), and said, In hap the hands of Zebah and of Zalmunna be in thine hands, and therefore thou askest, that we give (some) loaves to (thy) men, that be weary and failed.

16 Therefore Gideon took the elder men of the city, and thorns and briars of (the) desert, and he rent with those, and all-brake the men of Succoth; (And so Gideon took hold of the city elders, and some thorns and briars from the desert, and he tore, or cut, them with those, and broke the men of Succoth all to pieces;)

17 also he destroyed the tower of Penuel, when the dwellers of the city were slain. (and he also destroyed the tower of Penuel, and killed the inhabitants of that city.)

18 And he said to Zebah and Zalmunna, What manner men were they, that ye killed in Tabor? Which answered, They were like thee, and one of them was as the son of a king (and one of them was like a king’s son).

19 To whom Gideon said, They were (all) my brethren, the sons of my mother; (as) the Lord liveth, if ye had saved them, I would not slay you.

20 And he said to Jether, his first begotten son, Rise thou (up), and slay them. And Jether drew not his sword; for he dreaded, for he was yet a boy (But Jether would not draw out his sword; for he was afraid, for he was still a boy).

21 And Zebah and Zalmunna said (to Gideon), Rise thou (up thyself), and fall on us; for thou art by the age and strength of [a] man. (So) Gideon rose (up), and killed Zebah and Zalmunna, and (then he) took the ornaments, and (the) bells, with which the necks of (the) kings’ camels be wont to be made fair.

22 And all the men of Israel said to Gideon, Be thou lord of us, thou, and thy son, and the son of thy son; for thou deliveredest us from the hand of Midian.

23 To whom he said, I shall not be lord of you, neither my son shall be lord on you, but the Lord shall be lord on you. (To whom he said, I shall not rule over you, nor shall my son rule over you, but the Lord shall rule over you.)

24 And Gideon said to them, I ask one asking of you, give ye to me the earrings of your prey; for Ishmaelites were wont to have golden earrings.

25 Which answered, We shall give (you them) most gladly. And they spreaded forth a mantle on the earth, and casted forth therein [the] earrings of the prey;

26 and the weight of the earrings that he asked (for) was a thousand and seven hundred shekels of gold, without [the] ornaments, and brooches, and cloak of purple, which the kings of Midian were wont to use, and besides [the] golden bands of camels (and without the gold bands for the camels).

27 And Gideon made thereof (an) ephod, that is, a priest’s cloak, and he put it in his city (of) Ophrah; and all Israel did fornication, that is idolatry, therein (therewith); and it was made to Gideon, and to all his house, into falling.

28 But Midian was made low before the sons of Israel, and they might no more raise up their nolls; and the land rested forty years, in which Gideon was sovereign.

29 And so Jerubbaal, the son of Joash, went, and dwelled in his house;

30 and he had seventy sons, that went out of his thigh, for he had many wives.

31 And a concubine, that is, (the) secondary wife, of him, whom he had in Shechem, engendered to him a son, Abimelech by name.

32 And Gideon, the son of Joash, died in [a] good eld [age], and was buried in the sepulchre of Joash, his father, in Ophrah, of the family of Abiezrites.

33 And after that Gideon was dead, the sons of Israel turned away, and they did fornication, that is, idolatry, with Baalim; and they smote (a) bond of peace with Baal(berith), that he should be to them into God (and they made a covenant with Baalberith, so that he would be their god),

34 neither Israel had mind of their Lord God, that had delivered them from the hand of all their enemies by compass/about; (and the people of Israel did not remember the Lord their God, who had delivered them from the hands of all their enemies around them;)

35 neither they did mercy to the family of Jerubbaal, that is, Gideon, after all the good things that he did to Israel. (nor were they grateful, or loyal, to Jerubbal’s family, after all the good that he had done for Israel.)

Judges 8 New International Version (NIV)

Zebah and Zalmunna

Now the Ephraimites asked Gideon, “Why have you treated us like this? Why didn’t you call us when you went to fight Midian? And they challenged him vigorously.

But he answered them, “What have I accomplished compared to you? Aren’t the gleanings of Ephraim’s grapes better than the full grape harvest of Abiezer? God gave Oreb and Zeeb, the Midianite leaders, into your hands. What was I able to do compared to you?” At this, their resentment against him subsided.

Gideon and his three hundred men, exhausted yet keeping up the pursuit, came to the Jordan and crossed it. He said to the men of Sukkoth, “Give my troops some bread; they are worn out, and I am still pursuing Zebah and Zalmunna, the kings of Midian.”

But the officials of Sukkoth said, “Do you already have the hands of Zebah and Zalmunna in your possession? Why should we give bread to your troops?”

Then Gideon replied, “Just for that, when the Lord has given Zebah and Zalmunna into my hand, I will tear your flesh with desert thorns and briers.”

From there he went up to Peniel[a] and made the same request of them, but they answered as the men of Sukkoth had. So he said to the men of Peniel, “When I return in triumph, I will tear down this tower.”

10 Now Zebah and Zalmunna were in Karkor with a force of about fifteen thousand men, all that were left of the armies of the eastern peoples; a hundred and twenty thousand swordsmen had fallen. 11 Gideon went up by the route of the nomads east of Nobah and Jogbehah and attacked the unsuspecting army. 12 Zebah and Zalmunna, the two kings of Midian, fled, but he pursued them and captured them, routing their entire army.

13 Gideon son of Joash then returned from the battle by the Pass of Heres. 14 He caught a young man of Sukkoth and questioned him, and the young man wrote down for him the names of the seventy-seven officials of Sukkoth, the elders of the town. 15 Then Gideon came and said to the men of Sukkoth, “Here are Zebah and Zalmunna, about whom you taunted me by saying, ‘Do you already have the hands of Zebah and Zalmunna in your possession? Why should we give bread to your exhausted men?’” 16 He took the elders of the town and taught the men of Sukkoth a lesson by punishing them with desert thorns and briers. 17 He also pulled down the tower of Peniel and killed the men of the town.

18 Then he asked Zebah and Zalmunna, “What kind of men did you kill at Tabor?

“Men like you,” they answered, “each one with the bearing of a prince.”

19 Gideon replied, “Those were my brothers, the sons of my own mother. As surely as the Lord lives, if you had spared their lives, I would not kill you.” 20 Turning to Jether, his oldest son, he said, “Kill them!” But Jether did not draw his sword, because he was only a boy and was afraid.

21 Zebah and Zalmunna said, “Come, do it yourself. ‘As is the man, so is his strength.’” So Gideon stepped forward and killed them, and took the ornaments off their camels’ necks.

Gideon’s Ephod

22 The Israelites said to Gideon, “Rule over us—you, your son and your grandson—because you have saved us from the hand of Midian.”

23 But Gideon told them, “I will not rule over you, nor will my son rule over you. The Lord will rule over you.” 24 And he said, “I do have one request, that each of you give me an earring from your share of the plunder.” (It was the custom of the Ishmaelites to wear gold earrings.)

25 They answered, “We’ll be glad to give them.” So they spread out a garment, and each of them threw a ring from his plunder onto it. 26 The weight of the gold rings he asked for came to seventeen hundred shekels,[b] not counting the ornaments, the pendants and the purple garments worn by the kings of Midian or the chains that were on their camels’ necks. 27 Gideon made the gold into an ephod, which he placed in Ophrah, his town. All Israel prostituted themselves by worshiping it there, and it became a snare to Gideon and his family.

Gideon’s Death

28 Thus Midian was subdued before the Israelites and did not raise its head again. During Gideon’s lifetime, the land had peace forty years.

29 Jerub-Baal son of Joash went back home to live. 30 He had seventy sons of his own, for he had many wives. 31 His concubine, who lived in Shechem, also bore him a son, whom he named Abimelek. 32 Gideon son of Joash died at a good old age and was buried in the tomb of his father Joash in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.

33 No sooner had Gideon died than the Israelites again prostituted themselves to the Baals. They set up Baal-Berith as their god 34 and did not remember the Lord their God, who had rescued them from the hands of all their enemies on every side. 35 They also failed to show any loyalty to the family of Jerub-Baal (that is, Gideon) in spite of all the good things he had done for them.

Footnotes:

  1. Judges 8:8 Hebrew Penuel, a variant of Peniel; also in verses 9 and 17
  2. Judges 8:26 That is, about 43 pounds or about 20 kilograms
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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