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1 And the men of Ephraim said to him, “What is this that you have done to us, not to call us when you went to fight with Midian?” And they upbraided him violently. 2 And he said to them, “What have I done now in comparison with you? Is not the gleaning of the grapes of Ephraim better than the vintage of Abi-ezer? 3 God has given into your hands the princes of Midian, Oreb and Zeeb; what have I been able to do in comparison with you?” Then their anger against him was abated, when he had said this.
4 And Gideon came to the Jordan and passed over, he and the three hundred men who were with him, faint yet pursuing. 5 So he said to the men of Succoth, “Pray, give loaves of bread to the people who follow me; for they are faint, and I am pursuing after Zebah and Zalmunna, the kings of Midian.” 6 And the officials of Succoth said, “Are Zebah and Zalmunna already in your hand, that we should give bread to your army?” 7 And Gideon said, “Well then, when the Lord has given Zebah and Zalmunna into my hand, I will flail your flesh with the thorns of the wilderness and with briers.” 8 And from there he went up to Penuel, and spoke to them in the same way; and the men of Penuel answered him as the men of Succoth had answered. 9 And he said to the men of Penuel, “When I come again in peace, I will break down this tower.”
10 Now Zebah and Zalmunna were in Karkor with their army, about fifteen thousand men, all who were left of all the army of the people of the East; for there had fallen a hundred and twenty thousand men who drew the sword. 11 And Gideon went up by the caravan route east of Nobah and Jogbehah, and attacked the army; for the army was off its guard. 12 And Zebah and Zalmunna fled; and he pursued them and took the two kings of Midian, Zebah and Zalmunna, and he threw all the army into a panic.
13 Then Gideon the son of Joash returned from the battle by the ascent of Heres. 14 And he caught a young man of Succoth, and questioned him; and he wrote down for him the officials and elders of Succoth, seventy-seven men. 15 And he came to the men of Succoth, and said, “Behold Zebah and Zalmunna, about whom you taunted me, saying, ‘Are Zebah and Zalmunna already in your hand, that we should give bread to your men who are faint?’ ” 16 And he took the elders of the city and he took thorns of the wilderness and briers and with them taught the men of Succoth. 17 And he broke down the tower of Penuel, and slew the men of the city.
18 Then he said to Zebah and Zalmunna, “Where are the men whom you slew at Tabor?” They answered, “As you are, so were they, every one of them; they resembled the sons of a king.” 19 And he said, “They were my brothers, the sons of my mother; as the Lord lives, if you had saved them alive, I would not slay you.” 20 And he said to Jether his first-born, “Rise, and slay them.” But the youth did not draw his sword; for he was afraid, because he was still a youth. 21 Then Zebah and Zalmunna said, “Rise yourself, and fall upon us; for as the man is, so is his strength.” And Gideon arose and slew Zebah and Zalmunna; and he took the crescents that were on the necks of their camels.
22 Then the men of Israel said to Gideon, “Rule over us, you and your son and your grandson also; for you have delivered us out of the hand of Midian.” 23 Gideon said to them, “I will not rule over you, and my son will not rule over you; the Lord will rule over you.” 24 And Gideon said to them, “Let me make a request of you; give me every man of you the earrings of his spoil.” (For they had golden earrings, because they were Ishmaelites.) 25 And they answered, “We will willingly give them.” And they spread a garment, and every man cast in it the earrings of his spoil. 26 And the weight of the golden earrings that he requested was one thousand seven hundred shekels of gold; besides the crescents and the pendants and the purple garments worn by the kings of Midian, and besides the collars that were about the necks of their camels. 27 And Gideon made an ephod of it and put it in his city, in Ophrah; and all Israel played the harlot after it there, and it became a snare to Gideon and to his family. 28 So Midian was subdued before the people of Israel, and they lifted up their heads no more. And the land had rest forty years in the days of Gideon.
29 Jerubbaal the son of Joash went and dwelt in his own house. 30 Now Gideon had seventy sons, his own offspring, for he had many wives. 31 And his concubine who was in Shechem also bore him a son, and he called his name Abimelech. 32 And Gideon the son of Joash died in a good old age, and was buried in the tomb of Joash his father, at Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
33 As soon as Gideon died, the people of Israel turned again and played the harlot after the Baals, and made Baal-berith their god. 34 And the people of Israel did not remember the Lord their God, who had rescued them from the hand of all their enemies on every side; 35 and they did not show kindness to the family of Jerubbaal (that is, Gideon) in return for all the good that he had done to Israel.
About The Revised Standard Version, Catholic Edition
This edition of the Revised Standard Version of the Bible has been prepared for use by Catholics by a committee of the Catholic Biblical Association of Great Britain. It is an authorized revision of the American Standard Version, published in 1901.
The Catholic Edition of the New Testament, copyright Copyright 1965; The Catholic Edition of the Old Testament, incorporating the Apocrypha, copyright Copyright 1966 Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America.