Book of Jasher 37

Book of Jasher 37

Chapter 37


And in the one hundred and fifth year
of the life of Jacob, that is the ninth year of Jacob’s dwelling with his
children in the
land of Canaan, he came
from Padan-aram.

And in those days Jacob journeyed
with his children from Hebron, and they went and returned to the city of
Shechem, they and all belonging to them, and they dwelt there, for the children
of Jacob obtained good and fat pasture land for their cattle in the city of
Shechem, the city of Shechem having then been rebuilt, and there were in it about
three hundred men and women.

And Jacob and his children and all
belonging to him dwelt in the part of the field which Jacob had bought from
Hamor the father of Shechem, when he came from Padan-aram before Simeon and
Levi had smitten the city.

And all those kings of the Canaanites
and Amorites that surrounded the city of
Shechem, heard that
the sons of Jacob had again come to Shechem and dwelt there.

And they said, Shall the sons of
Jacob the Hebrew again come to the city and dwell therein, after that they have
smitten its inhabitants and driven them out? shall they now return and also
drive out those who are dwelling in the city or slay them?

And all the kings of Canaan again
assembled, and they came together to make war with Jacob and his sons.

And Jashub king of Tapnach sent also
to all his neighboring kings, to Elan king of Gaash, and to Ihuri king of
Shiloh, and to Parathon king of Chazar, and to Susi king of Sarton, and to
Laban king of Bethchoran, and to Shabir king of Othnay-mah, saying,

Come up to me and assist me, and let
us smite Jacob the Hebrew and his sons, and all belonging to him, for they are
again come to Shechem to possess it and to slay its inhabitants as before.

And all these kings assembled
together and came with all their camps, a people exceedingly plentiful like the
sand upon the sea shore, and they were all opposite to Tapnach.

And Jashub king of Tapnach went forth
to them with all his army, and he encamped with them opposite to Tapnach
without the city, and all these kings they divided into seven divisions, being
seven camps against the sons of Jacob.

And they sent a declaration to Jacob
and his son, saying, Come you all forth to us that we may have an interview
together in the plain, and revenge the cause of the men of Shechem whom you
slew in their city, and you will now again return to the city of Shechem and
dwell therein, and slay its inhabitants as before.

And the sons of Jacob heard this and
their anger was kindled exceedingly at the words of the kings of Canaan, and
ten of the sons of Jacob hastened and rose up, and each of them girt on his
weapons of war; and there were one hundred and two of their servants with them
equipped in battle array.

And all these men, the sons of Jacob
with their servants, went toward these kings, and Jacob their father was with
them, and they all stood upon the heap of Shechem.

And Jacob prayed to the Lord for his
sons, and he spread forth his hands to the Lord, and he said, O God, thou art
an Almighty God, thou art our father, thou didst form us and we are the works
of thine hands; I pray thee deliver my sons through thy mercy from the hand of
their enemies, who are this day coming to fight with them and save them from
their hand, for in thy hand is power and might, to save the few from the many.

And give unto my sons, thy servants,
strength of heart and might to fight with their enemies, to subdue them, and
make their enemies fall before them, and let not my sons and their servants die
through the hands of the children of

But if it seemeth good in thine eyes
to take away the lives of my sons and their servants, take them in thy great
mercy through the hands of thy ministers, that they may not perish this day by
the hands of the kings of the Amorites.

And when Jacob ceased praying to the
Lord the earth shook from its place, and the sun darkened, and all these kings
were terrified and a great consternation seized them.

And the Lord hearkened to the prayer
of Jacob, and the Lord impressed the hearts of all the kings and their hosts
with the terror and awe of the sons of Jacob.

For the Lord caused them to hear the
voice of chariots, and the voice of mighty horses from the sons of Jacob, and
the voice of a great army accompanying them.

And these kings were seized with
great terror at the sons of Jacob, and whilst they were standing in their
quarters, behold the sons of Jacob advanced upon them, with one hundred and
twelve men, with a great and tremendous shouting.

And when the kings saw the sons of
Jacob advancing toward them, they were still more panic struck, and they were
inclined to retreat from before the sons of Jacob as at first, and not to fight
with them.

But they did not retreat, saying, It
would be a disgrace to us thus twice to retreat from before the Hebrews.

And the sons of Jacob came near and
advanced against all these kings and their armies, and they saw, and behold it
was a very mighty people, numerous as the sand of the sea.

And the sons of Jacob called unto the
Lord and said, Help us O Lord, help us and answer us, for we trust in thee, and
let us not die by the hands of these uncircumcised men, who this day have come
against us.

And the sons of Jacob girt on their
weapons of war, and they took in their hands each man his shield and his
javelin, and they approached to battle.

And Judah, the son of Jacob, ran
first before his brethren, and ten of his servants with him, and he went toward
these kings.

And Jashub, king of Tapnach, also
came forth first with his army before
Judah, and Judah saw Jashub
and his army coming toward him, and
Judah‘s wrath was
kindled, and his anger burned within him, and he approached to battle in which
Judah ventured his

And Jashub and all his army were
advancing toward
Judah, and he was
riding upon a very strong and powerful horse, and Jashub was a very valiant
man, and covered with iron and brass from head to foot.

And whilst he was upon the horse, he
shot arrows with both hands from before and behind, as was his manner in all
his battles, and he never missed the place to which he aimed his arrows.

And when Jashub came to fight with Judah, and was
darting many arrows against
Judah, the Lord
bound the hand of Jashub, and all the arrows that he shot rebounded upon his
own men.

And notwithstanding this, Jashub kept
advancing toward
Judah, to challenge
him with the arrows, but the distance between them was about thirty cubits, and
Judah saw Jashub
darting forth his arrows against him, he ran to him with his wrath-excited

And Judah took up a
large stone from the ground, and its weight was sixty shekels, and
Judah ran toward
Jashub, and with the stone struck him on his shield, that Jashub was stunned
with the blow, and fell off from his horse to the ground.

And the shield burst asunder out of
the hand of Jashub, and through the force of the blow sprang to the distance of
about fifteen cubits, and the shield fell before the second camp.

And the kings that came with Jashub
saw at a distance the strength of Judah, the son of Jacob, and what he had done
to Jashub, and they were terribly afraid of

And they assembled near Jashub’s
camp, seeing his confusion, and
Judah drew his
sword and smote forty-two men of the camp of Jashub, and the whole of Jashub’s
camp fled before
Judah, and no man
stood against him, and they left Jashub and fled from him, and Jashub was still
prostrate upon the ground.

And Jashub seeing that all the men of
his camp had fled from him, hastened and rose up with terror against
Judah, and stood
upon his legs opposite

And Jashub had a single combat with Judah, placing shield
toward shield, and Jashub’s men all fled, for they were greatly afraid of

And Jashub took his spear in his hand
to strike
Judah upon his
head, but
Judah had quickly
placed his shield to his head against Jashub’s spear, so that the shield of
Judah received the
blow from Jashub’s spear, and the shield was split in too.

And when Judah saw that his
shield was split, he hastily drew his sword and smote Jashub at his ankles, and
cut off his feet that Jashub fell upon the ground, and the spear fell from his

And Judah hastily
picked up Jashub’s spear, with which he severed his head and cast it next to
his feet.

And when the sons of Jacob saw what Judah had done to
Jashub, they all ran into the ranks of the other kings, and the sons of Jacob
fought with the army of Jashub, and the armies of all the kings that were

And the sons of Jacob caused fifteen
thousand of their men to fall, and they smote them as if smiting at gourds, and
the rest fled for their lives.

And Judah was still
standing by the body of Jashub, and stripped Jashub of his coat of mail.

And Judah also took
off the iron and brass that was about Jashub, and behold nine men of the
captains of Jashub came along to fight against

And Judah hastened and
took up a stone from the ground, and with it smote one of them upon the head,
and his skull was fractured, and the body also fell from the horse to the

And the eight captains that remained,
seeing the strength of
Judah, were
greatly afraid and they fled, and
Judah with his ten
men pursued them, and they overtook them and slew them.

And the sons of Jacob were still
smiting the armies of the kings, and they slew many of them, but those kings
daringly kept their stand with their captains, and did not retreat from their
places, and they exclaimed against those of their armies that fled from before
the sons of Jacob, but none would listen to them, for they were afraid of their
lives lest they should die.

And all the sons of Jacob, after
having smitten the armies of the kings, returned and came before Judah, and
Judah was still slaying the eight captains of Jashub, and stripping off their

And Levi saw Elon, king of Gaash,
advancing toward him, with his fourteen captains to smite him, but Levi did not
know it for certain.

And Elon with his captains approached
nearer, and Levi looked back and saw that battle was given him in the rear, and
Levi ran with twelve of his servants, and they went and slew Elon and his
captains with the edge of the sword.

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