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Israel Worships Baal at Peor

25 While the people of Israel were still camped at ·Acacia [L Shittim], the men began ·sinning sexually [to prostitute themselves] with Moabite women [C on the advice of Balaam who found another way to get his money; 31:16]. The women invited them to their sacrifices to their gods, and the ·Israelites [L people] ate food there and worshiped these gods. So the Israelites ·began to worship [L yoked themselves to] Baal of Peor, and the Lord was very angry with them.

The Lord said to Moses, “Get all the leaders of the people and ·kill [impale] them in open daylight in the presence of the Lord. Then the Lord will not be angry with the people of Israel.”

So Moses said to Israel’s judges, “Each of you must ·put to death [kill] your people who have become ·worshipers of [L yoked to] Baal of Peor.”

Moses and the Israelites were gathered at the entrance to the Meeting Tent, crying there. Then an ·Israelite man [L man of the sons/T children of Israel] brought a Midianite woman to his ·brothers [family] in plain sight of Moses and all the ·people [community; congregation; assembly]. Phinehas son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron, the priest, saw this, so he ·left the meeting [L rose up from the community/congregation/assembly] and ·got [L took in his hand] his spear. He followed the Israelite into his ·tent [vaulted/newlywed tent] and drove his spear through the belly of both the Israelite man and the Midianite woman [C while they were embracing]. Then the ·terrible sickness [plague] among the ·Israelites [L sons/T children of Israel] stopped.

This ·sickness [plague] had killed twenty-four thousand people.

10 The Lord said to Moses, 11 “Phinehas son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron, the priest, has saved the ·Israelites [L sons/T children of Israel] from my anger. He hates sin as much as I do. ·Since he tried to save my honor among them [L Because of his zeal in their midst], I will not kill them in my zeal. 12 So tell Phinehas that I am making my ·peace agreement [covenant/treaty of peace] with him. 13 He and his ·descendants [L seed] will ·always be priests [L have a covenant/treaty of eternal/perpetual priesthood], because he had ·great concern for the honor of [L passion/zeal for] his God. He ·removed the sins of the Israelites so they would belong to God [L provided atonement for the sons/T children of Israel].”

14 The Israelite man who was ·killed [L struck] with the Midianite woman was named Zimri son of Salu. He was the leader of a ·family [ancestral clan] in the tribe of Simeon. 15 And the name of the Midianite woman who was ·put to death [L struck] was Cozbi daughter of Zur, who was the chief of a Midianite ·family [ancestral clan].

16 The Lord said to Moses, 17 “·The Midianites are your enemies [Harrass the Midianites], and you should ·kill [L strike] them. 18 They have already ·made you their enemies [harrassed you], because they tricked you at Peor and because of their sister Cozbi, the daughter of a Midianite leader. She was the woman who was killed when the ·sickness [plague] came because the people sinned at Peor.”

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