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Judges - Chapter 5

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1 They sang a song that day, Deborah and Barak son of Abinoam, and the words were:

2 That the warriors in Israel unbound their hair, that the people came forward with a will, bless Yahweh!

3 Listen, you kings! Give ear, you princes! From me, from me comes a song for Yahweh. I shall glorify Yahweh, God of Israel.

4 Yahweh, when you set out from Seir, when you marched from the field of Edom, the earth shook, the heavens pelted, the clouds pelted down water.

5 The mountains melted before Yahweh of Sinai, before Yahweh, God of Israel.

6 In the days of Shamgar son of Anath, in the days of Jael, there were no more caravans; those who went forth on their travels took their way along by-paths.

7 The villages in Israel were no more, they were no more until you arose, O Deborah, until you arose, mother of Israel!

8 They were choosing new gods when war was at the gates. Was there one shield, one spear to be found among the forty thousand men in Israel?

9 My heart is with the leaders of Israel, with the people who came forward with a will! Bless Yahweh!

10 You who ride white donkeys and sit on saddle-blankets as you ride, and you who go on foot,

11 sing -- to the sound of the shepherds at the watering places! There they extol Yahweh's blessings, his saving acts for his villages in Israel! (Then Yahweh's people marched down to the gates.)

12 Awake, awake, Deborah! Awake, awake, declaim a song! Take heart, to your feet, Barak, capture your captors, son of Abinoam!

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13 Then Israel marched down to the gates; like champions, Yahweh's people marched down to fight for him!

14 The princes of Ephraim are in the valley. Behind you, Benjamin is in your ranks. Captains have come down from Machir, those who wield the commander's staff, from Zebulun.

15 The princes of Issachar are with Deborah; Naphtali, with Barak, in the valley follows in hot pursuit. In the clans of Reuben there was much searching of heart.

16 Why did you stay among the sheepfolds, listening for the whistle, with the flocks? (In the clans of Reuben, there was much searching of heart.)

17 Gilead stayed on the other side of the Jordan, and why should Dan have stayed aboard ship? Asher remained beside the sea, peacefully living within his ports.

18 Zebulun is a people who have braved death, Naphtali too, on the high ground of the country.

19 The kings came and they fought, how they fought, those kings of Canaan, at Taanach, near the Waters of Megiddo, but no booty of silver did they take!

20 The stars fought from heaven, from their orbits they fought against Sisera.

21 The torrent of Kishon swept them away, the torrent of old, the torrent of Kishon. -March on, be strong my soul!

22 The horses' hooves then hammer the ground: galloping, galloping go his steeds.

23 'Curse Meroz,' said the Angel of Yahweh, 'curse, curse the people living there for not having come to Yahweh's help, to Yahweh's help as warriors!'

24 Most blessed of women be Jael (the wife of Heber the Kenite); of tent-dwelling women, may she be most blessed!

25 He asked for water; she gave him milk; she offered him curds in a lordly dish.

26 She reached her hand out to seize the peg, her right hand to seize the workman's mallet. She hammered Sisera, she crushed his head, she pierced his temple and shattered it.

27 Between her feet, he crumpled, he fell, he lay; at her feet, he crumpled, he fell. Where he crumpled, there he fell, destroyed.

28 At the window, she leans and watches, Sisera's mother, through the lattice, 'Why is his chariot so long coming? Why so delayed the hoof-beats from his chariot?'

29 The wisest of her ladies answers, and she to herself repeats,

30 'Are they not collecting and sharing out the spoil: a girl, two girls for each warrior; a booty of coloured and embroidered stuff for Sisera, one scarf, two embroidered scarves for me!'

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31 So perish all your enemies, Yahweh! And let those who love you be like the sun when he emerges in all his strength! And the country had peace for forty years.

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