Allotment for Simeon
1 The second lot came out for the tribe of Simeon according to its clans. Their inheritance lay within the territory of Judah. 2 It included:
Beersheba (or Sheba), Moladah, 3 Hazar Shual, Balah, Ezem, 4 Eltolad, Bethul, Hormah, 5 Ziklag, Beth Markaboth, Hazar Susah, 6 Beth Lebaoth and Sharuhen—thirteen towns and their villages;
7 Ain, Rimmon, Ether and Ashan—four towns and their villages— 8 and all the villages around these towns as far as Baalath Beer (Ramah in the Negev).
This was the inheritance of the tribe of the Simeonites, according to its clans. 9 The inheritance of the Simeonites was taken from the share of Judah, because Judah’s portion was more than they needed. So the Simeonites received their inheritance within the territory of Judah.
Allotment for Zebulun
10 The third lot came up for Zebulun according to its clans:
The boundary of their inheritance went as far as Sarid. 11 Going west it ran to Maralah, touched Dabbesheth, and extended to the ravine near Jokneam. 12 It turned east from Sarid toward the sunrise to the territory of Kisloth Tabor and went on to Daberath and up to Japhia. 13 Then it continued eastward to Gath Hepher and Eth Kazin; it came out at Rimmon and turned toward Neah.14 There the boundary went around on the north to Hannathon and ended at the Valley of Iphtah El.15 Included were Kattath, Nahalal, Shimron, Idalah and Bethlehem. There were twelve towns and their villages.
16 These towns and their villages were the inheritance of Zebulun, according to its clans.
Allotment for Issachar
17 The fourth lot came out for Issachar according to its clans. 18 Their territory included:
Jezreel, Kesulloth, Shunem, 19 Hapharaim, Shion, Anaharath, 20 Rabbith, Kishion, Ebez, 21 Remeth, En Gannim, En Haddah and Beth Pazzez. 22 The boundary touched Tabor, Shahazumah and Beth Shemesh, and ended at the Jordan. There were sixteen towns and their villages.
23 These towns and their villages were the inheritance of the tribe of Issachar, according to its clans.
Allotment for Asher
24 The fifth lot came out for the tribe of Asher according to its clans. 25 Their territory included:
Helkath, Hali, Beten, Akshaph, 26 Allammelek, Amad and Mishal. On the west the boundary touched Carmel and Shihor Libnath. 27 It then turned east toward Beth Dagon, touched Zebulun and the Valley of Iphtah El, and went north to Beth Emek and Neiel, passing Kabul on the left. 28 It went to Abdon, Rehob, Hammon and Kanah, as far as Greater Sidon. 29 The boundary then turned back toward Ramah and went to the fortified city of Tyre, turned toward Hosah and came out at the Mediterranean Sea in the region of Akzib, 30 Ummah, Aphek and Rehob. There were twenty-two towns and their villages.
31 These towns and their villages were the inheritance of the tribe of Asher, according to its clans.
Allotment for Naphtali
32 The sixth lot came out for Naphtali according to its clans:
33 Their boundary went from Heleph and the large tree in Zaanannim, passing Adami Nekeb and Jabneel to Lakkum and ending at the Jordan. 34 The boundary ran west through Aznoth Tabor and came out at Hukkok. It touched Zebulun on the south, Asher on the west and the Jordan on the east. 35 The fortified towns were Ziddim, Zer, Hammath, Rakkath, Kinnereth, 36 Adamah, Ramah, Hazor, 37 Kedesh, Edrei, En Hazor, 38 Iron, Migdal El, Horem, Beth Anath and Beth Shemesh. There were nineteen towns and their villages.
39 These towns and their villages were the inheritance of the tribe of Naphtali, according to its clans.
Allotment for Dan
40 The seventh lot came out for the tribe of Dan according to its clans. 41 The territory of their inheritance included:
Zorah, Eshtaol, Ir Shemesh, 42 Shaalabbin, Aijalon, Ithlah, 43 Elon, Timnah, Ekron, 44 Eltekeh, Gibbethon, Baalath, 45 Jehud, Bene Berak, Gath Rimmon, 46 Me Jarkon and Rakkon, with the area facing Joppa.
47 (When the territory of the Danites was lost to them, they went up and attacked Leshem, took it, put it to the sword and occupied it. They settled in Leshem and named it Dan after their ancestor.)
48 These towns and their villages were the inheritance of the tribe of Dan, according to its clans.
Allotment for Joshua
49 When they had finished dividing the land into its allotted portions, the Israelites gave Joshua son of Nun an inheritance among them, 50 as the Lord had commanded. They gave him the town he asked for—Timnath Serah in the hill country of Ephraim. And he built up the town and settled there.
51 These are the territories that Eleazar the priest, Joshua son of Nun and the heads of the tribal clans of Israel assigned by lot at Shiloh in the presence of the Lord at the entrance to the tent of meeting. And so they finished dividing the land.
A map of the approximate land each tribe was allotted:
This chapter picks up on the second casting of lots given to Simeon. It is interesting to note that they took their inheritance from Judah, as Judah had more than they needed. What an amazing parallel to the grace we are given and commanded to share! “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” – Luke 12:48
Judah was the first to receive the inheritance of land from the Lord. We, as children of God, set apart by Christ, have received our inheritance that was set to be given to us before the foundation of the world. Once we make our way into the ‘land’ that God has given us, we change. We should no longer look like the rest of the world because we are in our inheritance. When others see us, they should see that we are growing and changing, becoming more and more like Christ. It then becomes our duty to share what we have been given with those around us, and to give them a portion among our inheritance.
After all the tribes of Israel had been given their lands (with the exception of Levi, who’s inheritance is God) Joshua was given his inheritance. Joshua was the leader of Israel during all of this time, and yet he was the last to receive his portion. In the parable of the workers in the vineyard (Matthew 20) Jesus explains that all who come to the Lord will be given the same reward. It doesn’t matter if you were the first to come, or if you will be the last.. all that matters is that you come. “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.” – Matthew 20:16
- Is there a promise or principle to remember?
God gives to us so we can give to others. This has two parts in relation to this chapter:
- Share your inheritance – share the good news that you have been given in salvation with others. Let your cup overflow! Generosity and kindness will not bring people to the Lord, though they are an excellent way to build relationships. “14 But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear their threats; do not be frightened.” 15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.” – 1 Peter 3
- Share your gifts – share what God has given you. This might be a talent such as writing, singing, or construction, or it may be that God has blessed you with an overflow of provisions. He gives us these things so we can share them with others which gives us opportunity to share the Gospel. Being a Christian means being able to give, and not receive, knowing that your reward has already been fulfilled. Whether that is sharing your inheritance (sharing the Gospel), or tithing to the church, God calls us to be generous.
- Is there an example to follow or a command to obey?
Judah and Joshua both are great examples here. Judah willingly shares what they have been given because they know that what they have is too much for them to hoard up for themselves. They already had all they needed so it was only natural to share it. Joshua shows patience in that he willingly waits for his turn to receive his inheritance. He knows that it is coming, so there is no need to push to the front. Joshua is more concerned that all these people get their inheritance because he knows that God is his ultimate reward as he was once told: “As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. 6 Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.” – Joshua 1:5.
- Are there attitudes that needed changing, or an error to avoid?
What is your attitude when it comes to sharing the Gospel? Do you know what to share? Are you trying to win souls to Christ by smiling and being nice.. occasionally throwing God’s name into conversation, or are you giving them the only message that can save their lives?
God is the creator of all things, and created man in His image. We sinned, and still sin by deliberately ignoring God’s commands. Because of that sin, we will die apart from God. He desires a relationship with us so He made a way for us to be forgiven and restored to a right relationship with Him. Christ died for us, to take our place as a sinner, so when God looks at us He sees no sin, only Christ. Now Christ has risen from death and sits at the right hand of God, speaking on our behalf to forgive our sins… but we must ask for forgiveness, and turn from our lives of sin to follow Him. We must do as He commands.. we must read His word.
- Is there a sin being revealed?
Everything you have is a gift from God. If you have a house, it is from God. If you have money, it is from God. If you have children, they are from God. We may work for these things, but again, God gave us that job. Our sin is not recognizing that God is our provider, and not being willing to give these things back to Him. In my life right now we are just barely able to pay our mortgage, but I know that if God wants us to have this house, then the money will come. We must be willing to give all things, and people, over to Him, because He gave them to us first… they are His.
- Does this make you want to pray for someone or yourself?
Lord, I pray that this message might be a help to those in need of reassurance that you are on your throne. You are in control. Thank you Lord that you have all things under your control! Thank you that you have saved me and that I am able to share your love for me with others. I pray that you would use me as a vessel in my work, and in my life, to show others your great love and mercy. I pray that I truly would be able to give all to you.