Bible: Judges 5:1-31

Celebrating the Victory in Song

5:1 On that day Deborah and Barak son of Abinoam sang this victory song: 1 

5:2When the leaders took the lead 2  in Israel,

When the people answered the call to war –

Praise the Lord!

5:3 Hear, O kings!

Pay attention, O rulers!

I will sing to the Lord! 3 

I will sing 4  to the Lord God of Israel!

5:4 O Lord, when you departed 5  from Seir,

when you marched from Edom’s plains,

the earth shook, the heavens poured down,

the clouds poured down rain. 6 

5:5 The mountains trembled 7  before the Lord, the God of Sinai; 8 

before the Lord God of Israel.

5:6 In the days of Shamgar son of Anath,

in the days of Jael caravans 9  disappeared; 10 

travelers 11  had to go on winding side roads.

5:7 Warriors 12  were scarce, 13 

they were scarce in Israel,

until you 14  arose, Deborah,

until you arose as a motherly protector 15  in Israel.

5:8 God chose new leaders, 16 

then fighters appeared in the city gates; 17 

but, I swear, not a shield or spear could be found, 18 

among forty military units 19  in Israel.

5:9 My heart went out 20  to Israel’s leaders,

to the people who answered the call to war.

Praise the Lord!

5:10 You who ride on light-colored female donkeys,

who sit on saddle blankets, 21 

you who walk on the road, pay attention!

5:11 Hear 22  the sound of those who divide the sheep 23  among the watering places;

there they tell of 24  the Lord’s victorious deeds,

the victorious deeds of his warriors 25  in Israel.

Then the Lord’s people went down to the city gates

5:12 Wake up, wake up, Deborah!

Wake up, wake up, sing a song!

Get up, Barak!

Capture your prisoners of war, 26  son of Abinoam!

5:13 Then the survivors 27  came down 28  to the mighty ones; 29 

the Lord’s people came down to me 30  as 31  warriors.

5:14 They came from Ephraim, who uprooted Amalek, 32 

they follow 33  after you, Benjamin, with your soldiers.

From Makir leaders came down,

from Zebulun came 34  the ones who march carrying 35  an officer’s staff.

5:15 Issachar’s leaders were with Deborah,

the men of Issachar 36  supported 37  Barak;

into the valley they were sent under Barak’s command. 38 

Among the clans of Reuben there was intense 39  heart searching. 40 

5:16 Why do you remain among the sheepfolds, 41 

listening to the shepherds playing their pipes 42  for their flocks? 43 

As for the clans of Reuben – there was intense searching of heart.

5:17 Gilead stayed put 44  beyond the Jordan River.

As for Dan – why did he seek temporary employment in the shipyards? 45 

Asher remained 46  on the seacoast,

he stayed 47  by his harbors. 48 

5:18 The men of Zebulun were not concerned about their lives; 49 

Naphtali charged on to the battlefields. 50 

5:19 Kings came, they fought;

the kings of Canaan fought,

at Taanach by the waters of Megiddo, 51 

but 52  they took no silver as plunder.

5:20 From the sky 53  the stars 54  fought,

from their paths in the heavens 55  they fought against Sisera.

5:21 The Kishon River carried them off;

the river confronted them 56  – the Kishon River.

Step on the necks of the strong! 57 

5:22 The horses 58  hooves pounded the ground; 59 

the stallions galloped madly. 60 

5:23Call judgment down on 61  Meroz,’ says the Lord’s angelic 62  messenger;

Be sure 63  to call judgment down on 64  those who live there,

because they did not come to help in the Lord’s battle, 65 

to help in the Lord’s battle against the warriors.’ 66 

5:24 The most rewarded 67  of women should be Jael,

the wife of Heber the Kenite!

She should be the most rewarded of women who live in tents.

5:25 He asked for water,

and she gave him milk;

in a bowl fit for a king, 68 

she served him curds.

5:26 Her left 69  hand reached for the tent peg,

her right hand for the workmen’s hammer.

She “hammered” 70  Sisera,

she shattered his skull, 71 

she smashed his head, 72 

she drove the tent peg through his temple. 73 

5:27 Between her feet he collapsed,

he fell limp 74  and was lifeless; 75 

between her feet he collapsed and fell limp,

in the spot where he collapsed,

there he fell limp – violently murdered! 76 

5:28 Through the window she looked;

Sisera’s mother cried out through the lattice:

‘Why is his chariot so slow to return?

Why are the hoofbeats of his chariot-horses 77  delayed?’

5:29 The wisest of her ladies 78  answer;

indeed she even thinks to herself,

5:30No doubt they are gathering and dividing the plunder 79 

a girl or two for each man to rape! 80 

Sisera is grabbing up colorful cloth, 81 

he is grabbing up colorful embroidered cloth, 82 

two pieces of colorful embroidered cloth,

for the neck of the plunderer!’ 83 

5:31 May all your enemies perish like this, O Lord!

But may those who love you shine

like the rising sun at its brightest!” 84 

And the land had rest for forty years.

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