Josué 8

1 Jehovah said to Joshua: »Do not fear and do not be discouraged troubledconfused. Take all the people of war with you and go up to Ai. I have given into your hand the king of Ai, and his people, and his city, and his land.

2 »Do to Ai and her king what you did to Jericho and her king. Take the spoil and the cattle for yourselves. Lay an ambush for the city behind it.«

3 Joshua and all the people of war went up against Ai. Joshua chose out thirty thousand mighty men of valor, and sent them away by night.

4 He commanded them, saying: »You shall lie in wait against the city, even behind the city. Do not go very far from the city and be ready.

5 »I, and all the people that are with me, will approach the city. When they come out against us we will run away from them.

6 »They will come out after us till we have drawn them from the city. They will say: ‘They run from us.’ Therefore we will run before them.

7 »Then you shall rise up from the ambush, and seize the city: for Jehovah your God will deliver it into your hand.

8 »When you have taken the city you will set the city on fire according to the commandment of Jehovah. See, I have commanded you.«

9 Joshua sent them forth. They went to lie in ambush, and stay between Bethel and Ai, on the west side of Ai. Joshua lodged that night among the people.

10 Joshua rose up early in the morning and mustered his men. He and the elders of Israel went in front of the people to Ai.

11 And all the people, even the people of war that were with him went to the city. They set up camp on the north side of Ai. There was a valley between them and Ai.

12 He took about five thousand men, and set them to lie in ambush between Bethel and Ai, on the west side of the city.

13 They had the solders take up their positions those in camp to the north and the ambush to the west. Joshua went that night into the midst of the valley.

14 When the king of Ai saw it, that they hasted and rose up early, and the men of the city went out against Israel to battle, he and all his people, at a time appointed headed for the plain. He did not know that there was an ambush against him behind the city.

15 Joshua and all Israel made as if they were beaten in front of them and ran away to the wilderness.

16 All the people in Ai were called together to chase after them. They chased after Joshua, and were drawn away from the city.

17 There was no man left in Ai or Bethel. They all went after Israel: and they left the city open.

18 Jehovah said to Joshua: »Stretch out the spear javelin that is in your hand toward Ai.« I will give it to your hand. Joshua stretched out the spear that he had in his hand toward the city.

19 The ambush began quickly. They ran as soon as he had stretched out his hand. They entered into the city, captured it and quickly set the city on fire.

20 The men of Ai looked behind and saw the smoke of the city ascended up to heaven. They had no power to run this way or that way: and the people that fled to the wilderness turned back upon the pursuers.

21 When Joshua and all Israel saw that the ambush had taken the city, and that the smoke of the city ascended they turned and killed the men of Ai.

22 The men of the ambush came out of the city against them. They were caught in the middle with Israel on both sides. Israel killed them all. No one remained or escaped.

23 They captured the king of Ai alive, and brought him to Joshua.

24 When Israel finished slaying all the inhabitants of Ai in the field, in the wilderness where they chased them, and when they were all fallen on the edge of the sword, until they were consumed, that all the Israelites returned to Ai, and killed it with the edge of the sword.

25 Twelve thousand men and women of Ai were killed that day.

26 Joshua did not withdraw his hand. He stretched out the spear, until he had utterly destroyed all the inhabitants of Ai.

27 Israel took the cattle and the spoil of that city for preys for themselves, according to the word Jehovah commanded Joshua.

28 Joshua burnt Ai and made it a heap forever, even desolation to this day.

29 He hung the king of Ai on a tree until evening. As soon as the sun was down, Joshua commanded that they take his carcass down from the tree and throw it at the entering gate of the city. They raised a large pile of rocks over it that is there to this day.

30 Then Joshua built an altar to Jehovah the God of Israel on mount Ebal,

31 As Moses the servant of the Lord commanded the children of Israel, as it is written in the book of the Law of Moses, an altar of whole stones that have not been cut by any iron tool. They offered offerings to Jehovah, and sacrificed peace offerings.

32 He wrote upon the stones a copy of the Law of Moses. He did this in the presence of the children of Israel.

33 All Israel, and their elders, and officers, and their judges, stood on both sides of the Ark before the priests. The Levites who carried the ark of the covenant of Jehovah, as well the stranger, as he that was born among them; Half of the people stood on Mount Gerizim. And half of them stood on Mount Ebal. As Moses the servant of Jehovah commanded before, that they should bless the people of Israel.

34 Afterward he read all the words of the Law, the blessings and cursing, according to all that is written in the Book of the Law.

35 There was not a word of all that Moses commanded that Joshua did not read before all the congregation of Israel, with the women, and the little ones, and the strangers that were conversant among them.