Joshua 16–18

1 The allotment of land for the descendants of Joseph was from the Jordan by Jericho then east into the wilderness, rising from Jericho to the hill country of Bethel. 2 It goes out from Bethel to Luz and passes to the border of Arkite territory at Ataroth. 3 It goes down westward to the territory of the Japhletites, to the border of lower Beth Horon and Gezer, and then goes out to the sea.

4 So the descendants of Joseph, Manasseh and Ephraim, took their inheritance.

5 The territory of the Ephraimites, according to their clans, was as follows. The border of their inheritance on the east was Ataroth Addar as far as upper Beth Horon. 6 The border goes out toward the sea with Mikmethath on the north. It turns eastward toward Taanath Shiloh and passes it on the east toward Janoah. 7 It descends from Janoah to Ataroth and to Naarah, touches Jericho, and extends to the Jordan. 8 From Tappuah the border goes west to the Kanah Ravine and out to the sea. This is the inheritance of the tribe of the Ephraimites according to their clans. 9 The other cities for the Ephraimites were in the middle of the inheritance of the descendants of Manasseh, all the cities and their villages.

10 They did not drive out the Canaanites who lived in Gezer, so the Canaanites live in the midst of Ephraim until this day performing heavy labor as slaves.

Chapter 17

1 Then allotment was made to the tribe of Manasseh, for he was the firstborn of Joseph. To Makir the firstborn of Manasseh, the father of Gilead, were allotted Gilead and Bashan, because he was a warrior. 2 And allotments were made to the rest of the tribe of Manasseh, according to their families: Abiezer, Helek, Asriel, Shechem, Hepher, and Shemida; these were the male descendants of Manasseh son of Joseph, according to their families.

3 Yet Zelophehad, son of Hepher, son of Gilead, son of Makir, son of Manasseh had no sons, only daughters. These were his daughters’ names: Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milkah, and Tirzah. 4 They approached Eleazar the priest, Joshua son of Nun, and the leaders, saying, “The Lord commanded Moses to give us an inheritance among our relatives.” So Joshua gave them an inheritance among their fathers’ relatives according to the word of the Lord. 5 Therefore Manasseh received ten regions, apart from the lands of Gilead and Bashan on the east side of the Jordan, 6 because the daughters of Manasseh received an inheritance among his sons, and the rest of the people of Manasseh received the land of Gilead.

7 The boundary of Manasseh was from Asher to Mikmethath east of Shechem, and it runs south toward the inhabitants of En Tappuah. 8 Now Manasseh owned the land of Tappuah, but Tappuah on the border of Manasseh belonged to the Ephraimites. 9 Then the border descended to the Kanah Ravine, southward to the brook. These cities of Ephraim are among the cities of Manasseh. The border of Manasseh was on the north side of the brook, and it ended at the sea. 10 The land belonging to Ephraim was to the south, and the land belonging to Manasseh to the north. The Mediterranean Sea was the boundary of this territory, which bordered Asher in the north and Issachar in the east.

11 In Issachar and Asher, Manasseh was assigned districts: Beth Shan, Ibleam, Dor, Endor, Taanach, Megiddo, Naphoth, and their respective villages.

12 Yet the sons of Manasseh could not take possession of those cities, because the Canaanites were determined to live in that land. 13 But when the children of Israel became strong, they put the Canaanites to hard labor as slaves, but they did not actually drive them out.

14 The descendants of Joseph said to Joshua, “Why have you assigned us a single allotment, a single portion? We are a numerous people, as the Lord has blessed us.”

15 Joshua said to them, “If you are a numerous people, go up to the forests and clear out a place there for yourselves in the land of the Perizzites and the giants, since the hill country of Ephraim is too small for you.”

16 The descendants of Joseph said, “The hill country is not enough for us, and all the Canaanites living in the plains have iron chariots, both those in Beth Shan and the Jezreel Valley.”

17 Joshua said to Ephraim and Manasseh, the descendants of Joseph, “You are a numerous people who have great strength. There will not be only one allotment for you. 18 The hill country shall be yours. Although it is a forest you shall clear it and own it to its borders. You shall drive out the Canaanites, even though they have iron chariots and are strong.”

Chapter 18

1 The whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled at Shiloh and set up the tent of meeting there. The land was subdued before them. 2 Yet seven tribes among the children of Israel remained who had not yet received their inheritance.

3 So Joshua said to the children of Israel, “How long will you delay going in to possess the land that the Lord, the God of your fathers, has given you? 4 Select three men from each tribe, and I will send them out; and they will rise and go throughout the land, and describe it according to their inheritance, and they will come back to me. 5 They shall divide it into seven portions. Judah will stay in their territory in the south, and the house of Joseph will stay in their territory in the north. 6 So describe the land in seven portions and return to me. Then I will cast lots for you here before the Lord our God. 7 Yet there is no portion for the Levites among you, for the priesthood of the Lord is their inheritance. Gad, Reuben, and the half-tribe of Manasseh have acquired their inheritance on the east side of the Jordan, which Moses the servant of the Lord gave them.”

8 So the men got up and left. Joshua commanded those who were leaving to survey the land, saying, “Go and walk back and forth throughout the land. Write a description of it, then return to me. Here in Shiloh I will cast lots for you before the Lord.” 9 The men went and passed through the land. In a book they wrote a description of it by cities in seven portions, and they came back to Joshua at the Shiloh settlement. 10 Joshua cast lots for them in Shiloh before the Lord. There Joshua apportioned the land for the children of Israel according to their divisions.

11 The lot of the tribe of Benjamin, according to their clans, came up. The territory allotted to it fell between Judah and Joseph.

12 Their northern border goes from the Jordan up the northern slope of Jericho. It runs westward into the hill country and extends to the wilderness of Beth Aven. 13 The border passes from there southward toward Luz, to the slope of Luz (that is, Bethel), and descends to Ataroth Addar on the hill south of lower Beth Horon.

14 On the western side, the border turns south from the hill that lies to the south near Beth Horon, and it extends to Kiriath Baal (that is, Kiriath Jearim), a city belonging to Judah. This is the western border.

15 The southern border starts from Kiriath Jearim and goes out westward to the spring of the waters of Nephtoah. 16 The border then descends to the foot of the mountain that lies by the Valley of Ben Hinnom, which is at the north end of the Valley of Rephaim. It descends from the Hinnom Valley to the slope of the Jebusites, then down to En Rogel. 17 The border runs north and goes out to En Shemesh and Geliloth, which is opposite the Ascent of Adummim, and descends to the Stone of Bohan the son of Reuben. 18 It passes toward the slope north of the Beth Arabah and descends to the Arabah. 19 The border passes north of the slope of Beth Hoglah, and it runs out to the northern tip of the Dead Sea at the southern end of the Jordan. This is the southern border.

20 The Jordan forms the eastern boundary.

This is the inheritance of the tribe of Benjamin, according to their clans, by its boundaries all around.

21 The cities belonging to the tribe of Benjamin, according to their clans, were Jericho, Beth Hoglah, Emek Keziz, 22 Beth Arabah, Zemaraim, Bethel, 23 Avvim, Parah, Ophrah, 24 Kephar Ammoni, Ophni, and Geba: twelve cities with their villages.

25 Also there were Gibeon, Ramah, Beeroth, 26 Mizpah, Kephirah, Mozah, 27 Rekem, Irpeel, Taralah, 28 Zelah, Haeleph, the Jebusite city (that is, Jerusalem), Gibeah, and Kiriath: fourteen cities with their villages.

This is the inheritance of the tribe of Benjamin according to their clans.

Luke 2:1–24

1 In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that the entire inhabited earth should be taxed. 2 This taxation was first made when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And everyone went to his own city to be taxed.

4 So Joseph also departed from the city of Nazareth in Galilee to the City of David which is called Bethlehem, in Judea, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be taxed with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child. 6 So while they were there, the day came for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in strips of cloth, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

8 And in the same area there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And then an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were very afraid. 10 But the angel said to them, “Listen! Do not fear. For I bring you good news of great joy, which will be to all people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be a sign to you: You will find the Baby wrapped in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly there was with the angel a company of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest,

and on earth peace, and good will toward men.”

15 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Let us now go to Bethlehem and see what has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.”

16 So they came hurrying and found Mary and Joseph, and the Baby lying in a manger. 17 When they had seen Him, they made widely known the word which was told them concerning this Child. 18 And all those who heard it marveled at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

21 When eight days had passed and the Child was circumcised, He was named JESUS, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb.

22 When the days of her purification according to the Law of Moses were completed, they brought Him to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in the law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male shall be called holy to the Lord”) 24 and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.”