Jošua 21

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1 Pođoše tada glavari levitskih obitelji k svećeniku Eleazaru i Jošui, sinu Nunovu, i plemenskim glavarima Izraela.

2 I rekoše im u Šilu, u zemlji kanaanskoj: "Jahve je zapovjedio preko Mojsija da nam se dadu gradovi gdje ćemo živjeti i pašnjaci oko njih za našu stoku."

3 Izraelci dadoše levitima od svoje baštine, po zapovijedi Jahvinoj, ove gradove s njihovim pašnjacima.

4 Iziđe, dakle, ždrijeb za porodice Kehatove: levitima, potomcima svećenika Arona, pripade trinaest gradova od plemena Judina, Šimunova i Benjaminova;

5 ostalim sinovima Kehatovim pripalo je ždrijebom po porodicama deset gradova od plemena Efrajimova i Danova i od polovine plemena Manašeova.

6 Sinovi Geršonovi dobiše po porodicama trinaest gradova od plemena Jisakarova, Ašerova i Naftalijeva i od polovine plemena Manašeova u Bašanu.

7 Merarijevim sinovima po njihovim porodicama pripalo je dvanaest gradova od plemena Rubenova, Gadova i Zebulunova.

8 Tako Izraelci ždrijebom dodijeliše levitima te gradove s pašnjacima, kako bijaše zapovjedio Jahve preko Mojsija.

9 Od plemena sinova Judinih i od plemena sinova Šimunovih dodijeljeni su bili ovi gradovi koji se poimence navode:

10 sinovima Aronovim u levitskim porodicama Kehatovim, jer je prvi ždrijeb bio za njih,

11 pripade Kirjat-Arba, glavni grad Anakovaca, to jest Hebron, u Judinoj gori, s pašnjacima unaokolo.

12 Ali polja oko toga grada sa selima unaokolo bila su već dana u baštinu Kalebu, sinu Jefuneovu.

13 Sinovima svećenika Arona pripade grad-utočište Hebron s pašnjacima i Libna s pašnjacima;

14 Jatir s pašnjacima, Eštemoa s pašnjacima,

15 Holon s pašnjacima, Debir s pašnjacima,

16 Ašan s pašnjacima, Juta s pašnjacima, Bet-Šemeš s pašnjacima. Dakle, devet gradova od ona dva plemena.

17 Od plemena Benjaminova: Gibeon s pašnjacima, Geba s pašnjacima,

18 Anatot s pašnjacima, Almon s pašnjacima. Dakle, četiri grada.

19 Tako su svećenici, sinovi Aronovi, dobili svega trinaest gradova s njihovim pašnjacima.

20 Ostalim levitima u porodicama sinova Kehatovih ždrijebom su pripali gradovi plemena Efrajimova.

21 Dali su im grad-utočište Šekem s pašnjacima njegovim na Efrajimovoj gori, zatim Gezer s pašnjacima,

22 Kibsajim s pašnjacima, Bet-Horon s pašnjacima. Dakle, četiri grada.

23 Od plemena Danova dobili su: Elteku s pašnjacima i Gibeton s pašnjacima,

24 Ajalon s pašnjacima i Gat-Rimon s pašnjacima. Dakle, četiri grada.

25 Od polovine plemena Manašeova: Tanak s pašnjacima i Jibleam s pašnjacima. Dakle, dva grada.

26 U svemu: deset su gradova s pašnjacima dobile porodice ostalih sinova Kehatovih.

27 Geršonovim sinovima, porodicama levitskim, dadoše od polovine plemena Manašeova grad-utočište Golan u Bašanu i Aštarot s njihovim pašnjacima. Dakle, dva grada.

28 Od plemena Jisakarova: Kišon s pašnjacima, Dabrat s pašnjacima,

29 Jarmut s pašnjacima i En-Ganim s pašnjacima. Dakle, četiri grada.

30 Od plemena Ašerova: Mišal s pašnjacima, Abdon s pašnjacima,

31 Helkat s pašnjacima i Rehob s pašnjacima. Dakle, četiri grada.

32 Od plemena Naftalijeva: grad-utočište Kedeš u Galileji s pašnjacima, Hamot Dor s pašnjacima i Kartan s pašnjacima. Dakle, tri grada.

33 Svega Geršonovih gradova po porodicama njihovim bijaše trinaest gradova s pašnjacima.

34 Porodicama sinova Merarijevih, preostalim levitima, dali su od plemena Zebulunova: Jokneam s pašnjacima, Kartu s pašnjacima,

35 Rimon s pašnjacima, Nahalal s pašnjacima. Dakle, četiri grada.

36 S onu stranu Jordana od plemena Rubenova dadoše im grad-utočište Beser s pašnjacima na pustinjskoj visoravni, Jahas s pašnjacima,

37 Kedemot s pašnjacima, Mefaat s pašnjacima. Dakle, četiri grada.

38 Od plemena Gadova: grad-utočište Ramot u Gileadu s pašnjacima, Mahanajim s pašnjacima,

39 Hešbon s pašnjacima, Jazer s pašnjacima. Dakle, četiri grada.

40 U svemu bijaše dodijeljeno ždrijebom porodicama sinova Merarijevih, preostalim levitima, dvanaest gradova.

41 Tako usred baštine sinova Izraelovih bijaše četrdeset i osam levitskih gradova s pašnjacima.

42 Svaki je taj grad imao pašnjake unaokolo. Tako je bilo sa svima spomenutim gradovima.

43 Tako je Jahve predao Izraelcima svu zemlju za koju se zakleo da će je dati ocima njihovim. Primili su je u posjed i nastanili se u njoj.

44 I dade im Jahve da otpočinu u miru na svim međama, kako se bijaše zakleo njihovim ocima. Nitko im od njihovih neprijatelja ne bijaše kadar odoljeti. Sve im je njihove neprijatelje predao Jahve u ruke.

45 Od svih obećanja što ih je Jahve dao domu Izraelovu nijedno ne osta neispunjeno. Sve se ispunilo.

  

Exploring the Meaning of Jošua 21      

Napsal(a) Rev. Julian Duckworth

Joshua 21: The cities of the Levite priests and the end of the settlement.

In this chapter, the last remaining part of the settlement was completed: the provision for the Levites, the priests of Israel. This tribe had been appointed priests because only they had answered the call, “Who is on the side of the Lord?” when the Israelites had been worshipping the golden calf in the wilderness (see Exodus 32:26).

Much of the chapter is spent listing the cities given to the three sons of Aaron, who was appointed high priest. Each extended family of Aaron’s sons was given about sixteen cities. It seems very significant that a lot of these cities were the same ones given to the other tribes, and were also the cities of refuge.

Levi’s name means ‘joined’, which is very suitable for the Levite priests, who received cities in every tribal territory. This meant that the presence of priests was everywhere (see Swedenborg’s work, Arcana Caelestia 342).

Spiritually speaking, this distribution is a wonderful illustration that our spirit lives throughout our whole body. Every part of us is alive! Every single thing in our body, from one blood cell to our heart and lungs, is maintained by our spirit, which itself is maintained by the influx of the Lord’s life. The function of everything in our body is in a perfect correspondence with the kingdom of heaven.

So, spiritually, the Levites stand for the presence of the Lord everywhere, in everything. This underlines the point that everything in the natural world - even the cities and territories described in this chapter of Joshua - reflect something about God and heaven (see Swedenborg’s Apocalypse Revealed 194). But there is another important meaning for the distribution of the priestly Levites in cities all through the tribal territories: we must keep on acknowledging that everything is a blessing from the Lord, that everything we do is for God, and that the Lord alone does what is truly good (see Swedenborg’s work, Divine Providence 91).

After the distribution of cities to the Levites, Israel was fully established in the land of Canaan. The rest of this chapter is a consolidating statement which is worth including in full:

v43. “So the Lord gave to Israel all the land of which He had sworn to give to their fathers, and they took possession of it and dwelt in it.
v44. The Lord gave them rest all around, according to all that he had sworn to their fathers. And not a man of all their enemies stood against them; the Lord delivered all their enemies into their hand.
v45. Not a word failed of any good thing which the Lord had spoken to the house of Israel. All came to pass.”

These are words of fulfillment, culmination, assurance and blessing. Everything here traces back to the Lord. The Lord made a covenant with the children of Israel, granted them victory over their enemies, and gave them the Land of Canaan; the Lord had spoken in complete truth. “All came to pass.”

This final statement is a promise of our own capacity for regeneration and spiritual progress. We are able to overcome our natural desires and selfish states; we have been established in our life with the ability to understand and do what is good. In devoting ourselves to the Lord, we find strength to see that He will never fail us, and will change us for the better. ‘All came to pass’ is our affirmation that our life is always under God’s care and providence (Arcana Caelestia 977).

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