2 Then Yehoshua said to all the people, “Thus said Hashem, the God of Yisrael: In olden times, your forefathers—Terach, father of Avraham and father of Nahor—lived beyond the Euphrates and worshiped other gods.
ה וָאֶשְׁלַח אֶת־מֹשֶׁה וְאֶת־אַהֲרֹן וָאֶגֹּף אֶת־מִצְרַיִם כַּאֲשֶׁר עָשִׂיתִי בְּקִרְבּוֹ וְאַחַר הוֹצֵאתִי אֶתְכֶם׃
6 I freed your fathers—from Egypt, and you came to the Sea. But the Egyptians pursued your fathers to the Sea of Reeds with chariots and horsemen.
ו וָאוֹצִיא אֶת־אֲבוֹתֵיכֶם מִמִּצְרַיִם וַתָּבֹאוּ הַיָּמָּה וַיִּרְדְּפוּ מִצְרַיִם אַחֲרֵי אֲבוֹתֵיכֶם בְּרֶכֶב וּבְפָרָשִׁים יַם־סוּף׃
7 They cried out to Hashem, and He put darkness between you and the Egyptians; then He brought the Sea upon them, and it covered them. Your own eyes saw what I did to the Egyptians. “After you had lived a long time in the wilderness,
ז וַיִּצְעֲקוּ אֶל־יְהֹוָה וַיָּשֶׂם מַאֲפֵל בֵּינֵיכֶם וּבֵין הַמִּצְרִים וַיָּבֵא עָלָיו אֶת־הַיָּם וַיְכַסֵּהוּ וַתִּרְאֶינָה עֵינֵיכֶם אֵת אֲשֶׁר־עָשִׂיתִי בְּמִצְרָיִם וַתֵּשְׁבוּ בַמִּדְבָּר יָמִים רַבִּים׃
8 I brought you to the land of the Amorites who lived beyond the Yarden. They gave battle to you, but I delivered them into your hands; I annihilated them for you, and you took possession of their land.
ח ואבאה [וָאָבִיא] אֶתְכֶם אֶל־אֶרֶץ הָאֱמֹרִי הַיּוֹשֵׁב בְּעֵבֶר הַיַּרְדֵּן וַיִּלָּחֲמוּ אִתְּכֶם וָאֶתֵּן אוֹתָם בְּיֶדְכֶם וַתִּירְשׁוּ אֶת־אַרְצָם וָאַשְׁמִידֵם מִפְּנֵיכֶם׃
10 but I refused to listen to Balaam; he had to bless you, and thus I saved you from him.
י וְלֹא אָבִיתִי לִשְׁמֹעַ לְבִלְעָם וַיְבָרֶךְ בָּרוֹךְ אֶתְכֶם וָאַצִּל אֶתְכֶם מִיָּדוֹ׃
11 “Then you crossed the Yarden and you came to Yericho. The citizens of Yericho and the Amorites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hittites, Girgashites, Hivites, and Jebusites fought you, but I delivered them into your hands.
12 I sent a plague ahead of you, and it drove them out before you—[just like] the two Amorite kings—not by your sword or by your bow.
יב וָאֶשְׁלַח לִפְנֵיכֶם אֶת־הַצִּרְעָה וַתְּגָרֶשׁ אוֹתָם מִפְּנֵיכֶם שְׁנֵי מַלְכֵי הָאֱמֹרִי לֹא בְחַרְבְּךָ וְלֹא בְקַשְׁתֶּךָ׃
13 I have given you a land for which you did not labor and towns which you did not build, and you have settled in them; you are enjoying vineyards and olive groves which you did not plant.
va-e-TAYN la-KHEM E-retz a-SHER lo ya-GA-ta BAH v’-a-REEM a-SHER lo v’-nee-TEM va-tay-sh’-VU ba-HEM k’-ra-MEEM v’-zay-TEEM a-SHER lo n’-ta-TEM a-TEM o-kh’-LEEM
יג וָאֶתֵּן לָכֶם אֶרֶץ אֲשֶׁר לֹא־יָגַעְתָּ בָּהּ וְעָרִים אֲשֶׁר לֹא־בְנִיתֶם וַתֵּשְׁבוּ בָּהֶם כְּרָמִים וְזֵיתִים אֲשֶׁר לֹא־נְטַעְתֶּם אַתֶּם אֹכְלִים׃
24:13 I have given you a land
Yehoshua’s final speech to the nation includes a review of their history, starting from before the birth of Avraham, continuing through the enslavement in Egypt and subsequent exodus, and concluding with their recent conquest and possession of the Promised Land. In addition to fostering loyalty to Hashem, this farewell address serves as a powerful reminder that what God wants is for the People of Israel to serve Him specifically in Eretz Yisrael. We, who live in an era that has seen the Jewish exiles gather from around the world to live together as a free nation in the State of Israel, are especially privileged to witness the words of Yehoshua realized before our very eyes.1 comment
14 “Now, therefore, revere Hashem and serve Him with undivided loyalty; put away the gods that your forefathers served beyond the Euphrates and in Egypt, and serve Hashem.
יד וְעַתָּה יְראוּ אֶת־יְהֹוָה וְעִבְדוּ אֹתוֹ בְּתָמִים וּבֶאֱמֶת וְהָסִירוּ אֶת־אֱלֹהִים אֲשֶׁר עָבְדוּ אֲבוֹתֵיכֶם בְּעֵבֶר הַנָּהָר וּבְמִצְרַיִם וְעִבְדוּ אֶת־יְהֹוָה׃
15 Or, if you are loath to serve Hashem, choose this day which ones you are going to serve—the gods that your forefathers served beyond the Euphrates, or those of the Amorites in whose land you are settled; but I and my household will serve Hashem.”
טו וְאִם רַע בְּעֵינֵיכֶם לַעֲבֹד אֶת־יְהֹוָה בַּחֲרוּ לָכֶם הַיּוֹם אֶת־מִי תַעֲבֹדוּן אִם אֶת־אֱלֹהִים אֲשֶׁר־עָבְדוּ אֲבוֹתֵיכֶם אֲשֶׁר בעבר [מֵעֵבֶר] הַנָּהָר וְאִם אֶת־אֱלֹהֵי הָאֱמֹרִי אֲשֶׁר אַתֶּם יֹשְׁבִים בְּאַרְצָם וְאָנֹכִי וּבֵיתִי נַעֲבֹד אֶת־יְהֹוָה׃
16 In reply, the people declared, “Far be it from us to forsake Hashem and serve other gods!
טז וַיַּעַן הָעָם וַיֹּאמֶר חָלִילָה לָּנוּ מֵעֲזֹב אֶת־יְהֹוָה לַעֲבֹד אֱלֹהִים אֲחֵרִים׃
17 For it was Hashem our God who brought us and our fathers up from the land of Egypt, the house of bondage, and who wrought those wondrous signs before our very eyes, and guarded us all along the way that we traveled and among all the peoples through whose midst we passed.
יז כִּי יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ הוּא הַמַּעֲלֶה אֹתָנוּ וְאֶת־אֲבוֹתֵינוּ מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם מִבֵּית עֲבָדִים וַאֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה לְעֵינֵינוּ אֶת־הָאֹתוֹת הַגְּדֹלוֹת הָאֵלֶּה וַיִּשְׁמְרֵנוּ בְּכָל־הַדֶּרֶךְ אֲשֶׁר הָלַכְנוּ בָהּ וּבְכֹל הָעַמִּים אֲשֶׁר עָבַרְנוּ בְּקִרְבָּם׃
18 And then Hashem drove out before us all the peoples—the Amorites—that inhabited the country. We too will serve Hashem, for He is our God.”
יח וַיְגָרֶשׁ יְהֹוָה אֶת־כָּל־הָעַמִּים וְאֶת־הָאֱמֹרִי יֹשֵׁב הָאָרֶץ מִפָּנֵינוּ גַּם־אֲנַחְנוּ נַעֲבֹד אֶת־יְהֹוָה כִּי־הוּא אֱלֹהֵינוּ׃
19 Yehoshua, however, said to the people, “You will not be able to serve Hashem, for He is a holy Hashem. He is a jealous Hashem; He will not forgive your transgressions and your sins.
יט וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אֶל־הָעָם לֹא תוּכְלוּ לַעֲבֹד אֶת־יְהֹוָה כִּי־אֱלֹהִים קְדֹשִׁים הוּא אֵל־קַנּוֹא הוּא לֹא־יִשָּׂא לְפִשְׁעֲכֶם וּלְחַטֹּאותֵיכֶם׃
20 If you forsake Hashem and serve alien gods, He will turn and deal harshly with you and make an end of you, after having been gracious to you.”
כ כִּי תַעַזְבוּ אֶת־יְהֹוָה וַעֲבַדְתֶּם אֱלֹהֵי נֵכָר וְשָׁב וְהֵרַע לָכֶם וְכִלָּה אֶתְכֶם אַחֲרֵי אֲשֶׁר־הֵיטִיב לָכֶם׃
21 But the people replied to Yehoshua, “No, we will serve Hashem!”
כא וַיֹּאמֶר הָעָם אֶל־יְהוֹשֻׁעַ לֹא כִּי אֶת־יְהֹוָה נַעֲבֹד׃
22 Thereupon Yehoshua said to the people, “You are witnesses against yourselves that you have by your own act chosen to serve Hashem.” “Yes, we are!” they responded.
כב וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אֶל־הָעָם עֵדִים אַתֶּם בָּכֶם כִּי־אַתֶּם בְּחַרְתֶּם לָכֶם אֶת־יְהֹוָה לַעֲבֹד אוֹתוֹ וַיֹּאמְרוּ עֵדִים׃
23 “Then put away the alien gods that you have among you and direct your hearts to Hashem, the God of Yisrael.”
כג וְעַתָּה הָסִירוּ אֶת־אֱלֹהֵי הַנֵּכָר אֲשֶׁר בְּקִרְבְּכֶם וְהַטּוּ אֶת־לְבַבְכֶם אֶל־יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל׃
24 And the people declared to Yehoshua, “We will serve none but Hashem our God, and we will obey none but Him.”
כד וַיֹּאמְרוּ הָעָם אֶל־יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אֶת־יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ נַעֲבֹד וּבְקוֹלוֹ נִשְׁמָע׃
26 Yehoshua recorded all this in a book of divine instruction. He took a great stone and set it up at the foot of the oak in the sacred precinct of Hashem;
כו וַיִּכְתֹּב יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אֶת־הַדְּבָרִים הָאֵלֶּה בְּסֵפֶר תּוֹרַת אֱלֹהִים וַיִּקַּח אֶבֶן גְּדוֹלָה וַיְקִימֶהָ שָּׁם תַּחַת הָאַלָּה אֲשֶׁר בְּמִקְדַּשׁ יְהֹוָה׃
27 and Yehoshua said to all the people, “See, this very stone shall be a witness against us, for it heard all the words that Hashem spoke to us; it shall be a witness against you, lest you break faith with your God.”
כז וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אֶל־כָּל־הָעָם הִנֵּה הָאֶבֶן הַזֹּאת תִּהְיֶה־בָּנוּ לְעֵדָה כִּי־הִיא שָׁמְעָה אֵת כָּל־אִמְרֵי יְהֹוָה אֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר עִמָּנוּ וְהָיְתָה בָכֶם לְעֵדָה פֶּן־תְּכַחֲשׁוּן בֵּאלֹהֵיכֶם׃
28 Yehoshua then dismissed the people to their allotted portions.
כח וַיְשַׁלַּח יְהוֹשֻׁעַ אֶת־הָעָם אִישׁ לְנַחֲלָתוֹ׃
32 The bones of Yosef, which the Israelites had brought up from Egypt, were buried at Shechem, in the piece of ground which Yaakov had bought for a hundred kesita from the children of Hamor, Shechem‘s father, and which had become a heritage of the Josephites.