1 Now the Lord said to Joshua, “aDo not fear or be dismayed. Take all the people of war with you and arise, go up to Ai; see, bI have given into your hand the king of Ai, his people, his city, and his land.
5 “Then I and all the people who are with me will approach the city. And when they come out to meet us as at the first, awe will flee before them.
8 “Then it will be when you have seized the city, that you shall set the city on fire. You shall do it aaccording to the word of the Lord. See, I have commanded you.”
10 Now Joshua arose early in the morning and mustered the people, and he went up with the elders of Israel before the people to Ai.
14 It came about when the king of Ai saw it, that the men of the city hurried and rose up early and went out to meet Israel in battle, he and all his people at the appointed place before the desert plain. But he did not know that there was an ambush against him behind the city.
15 Joshua and all Israel pretended to be beaten before them, and fled aby the way of the wilderness.
16 And all the people who were in the city were called together to pursue them, and they pursued Joshua and awere drawn away from the city.
17 So not a man was left in Ai or Bethel who had not gone out after Israel, and they left the city 1unguarded and pursued Israel.
18 Then the Lord said to Joshua, “aStretch out the javelin that is in your hand toward Ai, for I will give it into your hand.” So Joshua stretched out the javelin that was in his hand toward the city.
20 When the men of Ai turned 1back and looked, behold, the smoke of the city ascended to the sky, and they had no place to flee this way or that, for the people who had been fleeing to the wilderness turned against the pursuers.
21 When Joshua and all Israel saw that the men in ambush had captured the city and that the smoke of the city ascended, they turned back and 1slew the men of Ai.
22 1The others came out from the city to encounter them, so that they were trapped in the midst of Israel, 2some on this side and some on that side; and they 3slew them until ano one was left 4of those who survived or escaped.
24 Now when Israel had finished killing all the inhabitants of Ai in the field in the wilderness where they pursued them, and all of them were fallen by the edge of the sword until they were destroyed, then all Israel returned to Ai and struck it with the edge of the sword.
27 aIsrael took only the cattle and the spoil of that city as plunder for themselves, according to the word of the Lord which He had commanded Joshua.
28 So Joshua burned Ai and made it aa heap forever, a desolation until this day.
29 aHe hanged the king of Ai on a tree until evening; and at sunset Joshua gave command and they took his body down from the tree and threw it at the entrance of the city gate, and raised over it a great heap of stones that stands to this day.
30 Then Joshua built an altar to the Lord, the God of Israel, in aMount Ebal,
31 just as Moses the servant of the Lord had commanded the sons of Israel, as it is written in the book of the law of Moses, aan altar of uncut stones on which no man had wielded an iron tool; and they offered burnt offerings on it to the Lord, and sacrificed peace offerings.
33 aAll Israel with their elders and officers and their judges were standing on both sides of the ark before the Levitical priests who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord, the stranger as well as the native. Half of them stood in front of bMount Gerizim and half of them in front of Mount Ebal, just as Moses the servant of the Lord had given command at first to bless the people of Israel.
34 Then afterward he read all the words of the law, the blessing and the curse, according to all that is written in athe book of the law.
About New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update
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