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Numbers 13

The Spies Explore Canaan
(Deuteronomy 1:19–25)

1 And the LORD said to Moses, 2 “Send out for yourself men to spy out the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the Israelites. From each of their fathers’ tribes send one man who is a leader among them.”

3 So at the consent a of the LORD, Moses sent them out from the Wilderness of Paran. All the men were leaders of the Israelites, 4 and these were their names:

From the tribe of Reuben, Shammua son of Zaccur;

5 from the tribe of Simeon, Shaphat son of Hori;

6 from the tribe of Judah, Caleb son of Jephunneh;

7 from the tribe of Issachar, Igal son of Joseph;

8 from the tribe of Ephraim, Hoshea son of Nun;

9 from the tribe of Benjamin, Palti son of Raphu;

10 from the tribe of Zebulun, Gaddiel son of Sodi;

11 from the tribe of Manasseh (a tribe of Joseph), Gaddi son of Susi;

12 from the tribe of Dan, Ammiel son of Gemalli;

13 from the tribe of Asher, Sethur son of Michael;

14 from the tribe of Naphtali, Nahbi son of Vophsi;

15 and from the tribe of Gad, Geuel son of Machi.

16 These were the names of the men Moses sent to spy out the land; and Moses gave to Hoshea son of Nun the name Joshua.

17 When Moses sent them to spy out the land of Canaan, he told them, “Go up through the Negev and into the hill country. 18 See what the land is like and whether its people are strong or weak, few or many. 19 Is the land where they live good or bad? Are the cities where they dwell open camps or fortifications? 20 Is the soil fertile or unproductive? Are there trees in it or not? Be courageous, and bring back some of the fruit of the land.” (It was the season for the first ripe grapes.)

21 So they went up and spied out the land from the Wilderness of Zin as far as Rehob, toward Lebo-hamath. 22 They went up through the Negev and came to Hebron, where Ahiman, Sheshai, and Talmai, the descendants of Anak, dwelled. It had been built seven years before Zoan in Egypt.

23 When they came to the Valley of Eshcol, b they cut down a branch with a single cluster of grapes, which they carried on a pole between two men. They also took some pomegranates and figs. 24 Because of the cluster of grapes the Israelites cut there, that place was called the Valley of Eshcol.

The Reports of the Spies

25 After forty days the men returned from spying out the land, 26 and they went back to Moses, Aaron, and the whole congregation of Israel in the Wilderness of Paran at Kadesh. They brought back a report for the whole congregation and showed them the fruit of the land.

27 And they gave this account to Moses: “We went into the land to which you sent us, and indeed, it is flowing with milk and honey. Here is some of its fruit! 28 Nevertheless, the people living in the land are strong, and the cities are large and fortified. We even saw the descendants of Anak there. 29 The Amalekites live in the land of the Negev; the Hittites, Jebusites, and Amorites live in the hill country; and the Canaanites live by the sea and along the Jordan.”

30 Then Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “We must go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly conquer it!”

31 But the men who had gone up with him replied, “We cannot go up against the people, for they are stronger than we are!”

32 So they gave the Israelites a bad report about the land that they had spied out:“The land we explored devours its inhabitants, and all the people we saw there are great in stature. 33 We even saw the Nephilim there—the descendants of Anak that come from the Nephilim! We seemed like grasshoppers in our own sight, and we must have seemed the same to them!”



3 a Literally according to the mouth
23 b Eshcol means cluster ; also in verse 24.

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