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Commentary On Joshua by Jean Calvin

CHAPTER 9

1 And when all the kings had heard, who were beyond Jordan in the mountain, and in the plain, and in the whole coast of the great sea from the region of Lebanon, the Hittite, Amorite, Canaanite, Perizzite, Hivite, and Jebusite,

2 They assembled together to fight with Joshua and Israel with one consent.

3 But the inhabitants of Gibeon hearing what Joshua had done at the city of Jericho and to Hai,

4 They too acted craftily. For they went away, and pretended that they were ambassadors, and brought old sacks on their asses, and wine-bladders, old, and broken, and bound up;

5 And old and patched shoes on their feet, and old clothes upon them, and the whole bread for their journey was dry and musty.

6 They proceeded therefore to Joshua to the camp in Gilgal, and they said to him and to the men of Israel, We have come from a far country, now therefore make a covenant with us.

7 Then the men of Israel replied to the Hivite, Perhaps thou dwells in the midst of me, and how shall I make a league with thee?

8 But they said to Joshua, We are thy servants. And Joshua says to them, Who are you, and whence have you come?

9 They answered him, From a very far country have thy servants come in the name of Jehovah thy God. For we have heard his fame, and what things he did in Egypt,

10 Likewise what things he did to the two Amorite kings, who were beyond Jordan, Sihon, king of Hesbon, and Og, king of Basan in Astaroth.

11 And our elders, and all the inhabitants of our land said to us, Take in your hand food for the journey, and go to meet them, and say to them, We are your servants, and now make a league with us.

12 That is our bread; we brought it warm from our houses on the day on which we left to come to you, and now it is hard and dry.

13 And those are the wine-bladders, which we filled when new, and behold they are burst. And those our clothes, and our shoes have become worn by reason of the long journey.

14 The men therefore took of their victuals, and did not inquire at the mouth of Jehovah.

15 And Joshua made peace with them, and entered into a league with them, that they would permit them to live, and the princes of the congregation swear to them.

16 But three days after they had entered into covenant with them, they heard that they were their neighbors, and dwelt in the midst of them.

17 And the children of Israel set out and came to their cities on the third day. And their cities were Gibeon, Chephirat, Beeroth, Ciriath-Jearim.

18 And the children of Israel did not smite them, because the princes of the congregation had sworn to them by Jehovah God of Israel; and the whole congregation murmured against the princes.

19 Then all the princes said to all the congregation, We have sworn to them by Jehovah God of Israel, therefore we cannot now touch them.

20 This we will do to them, we will save them alive, lest wrath be against us because of the oath which we have sworn to them.

21 Therefore the princes said to them, Let them live, and hew wood, and dig water for the whole congregation, as all the princes have spoken to them.

22 Joshua therefore called them, and spoke unto them, saying, How is it that you have deceived us, saying, We are very remote from you, seeing you dwell in the midst of us.

23 Now, therefore, are you cursed, and there shall never cease among you slaves, both hewing wood and digging water for the house of my God.

24 And they answered Joshua and said, When it was distinctly told (by telling it was told) to thy servants how Jehovah thy God had commanded Moses his servant to give you the land, and utterly destroy all the dwellers of the land from before you, we feared greatly for our lives from before you, and did that thing.

25 And now, behold, we are in thy hand; as it pleases, and as it is right in thy eyes to do to us, thou shall do.

26 And he did to them thus, and delivered them in the hand of the children of Israel, and they did not slay them.

27 And Joshua, on that day, appointed them to be hewers of wood and drawers of water for the congregation, and for the altar of Jehovah, even to this day, in the place which he shall have chosen.

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