1:9 I also said to you at that time, “I am no longer able to sustain you by myself.
1:10 The Lord your God has increased your population 1 to the point that you are now as numerous as the very stars of the sky. 2
1:11 Indeed, may the Lord, the God of your ancestors, make you a thousand times more numerous than you are now, blessing you 3 just as he said he would!
1:12 But how can I alone bear up under the burden of your hardship and strife?
1:13 Select wise and practical 4 men, those known among your tribes, whom I may appoint as your leaders.”
1:14 You replied to me that what I had said to you was good.
1:15 So I chose 5 as your tribal leaders wise and well-known men, placing them over you as administrators of groups of thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens, and also as other tribal officials.
1:16 I furthermore admonished your judges at that time that they 6 should pay attention to issues among your fellow citizens 7 and judge fairly, 8 whether between one citizen and another 9 or a citizen and a resident foreigner. 10
1:17 They 11 must not discriminate in judgment, but hear the lowly 12 and the great alike. Nor should they be intimidated by human beings, for judgment belongs to God. If the matter being adjudicated is too difficult for them, they should bring it before me for a hearing.
Instructions at Kadesh Barnea
1:18 So I instructed you at that time regarding everything you should do.
1 tn Heb “multiplied you.”
2 tn Or “heavens.” The Hebrew term שָׁמַיִם (shamayim) may be translated “heaven(s)” or “sky” depending on the context.
3 tn Heb “may he bless you.”
4 tn The Hebrew verb נְבֹנִים (nÿvonim, from בִּין [bin]) is a Niphal referring to skill or intelligence (see T. Fretheim, NIDOTTE 1:652-53).
5 tn Or “selected”; Heb “took.”
6 tn Or “you.” A number of English versions treat the remainder of this verse and v. 17 as direct discourse rather than indirect discourse (cf. KJV, NAB, NIV, NRSV, NLT).
7 tn Heb “brothers.” The term “brothers” could, in English, be understood to refer to siblings, so “fellow citizens” has been used in the translation.
8 tn The Hebrew word צֶדֶק (tsedeq, “fairly”) carries the basic idea of conformity to a norm of expected behavior or character, one established by God himself. Fair judgment adheres strictly to that norm or standard (see D. Reimer, NIDOTTE 3:750).
9 tn Heb “between a man and his brother.”
10 tn Heb “his stranger” or “his sojourner”; NAB, NIV “an alien”; NRSV “resident alien.” The Hebrew word גֵּר (ger) commonly means “foreigner.”
11 tn Heb “you,” and throughout the verse (cf. NASB, NRSV).
12 tn Heb “the small,” but referring to social status, not physical stature.