Exodus 18
Legacy Standard Bible►► 

Jethro’s Counsel

1Now Jethro, the priest of Midian, Moses’ father-in-law, heard of all that God had done for Moses and for Israel His people, how Yahweh had brought Israel out of Egypt. 2And Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, took Moses’ wife Zipporah, after he had sent her away, 3and her two sons, of whom [†]one was named Gershom, for Moses said, “I have been a [†]sojourner in a foreign land.” 4[†]And the other was named [†]Eliezer, for he said, “The God of my father was my help and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh.”

5Then Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, came with his sons and his wife to Moses [†]in the wilderness where he was camped, at the mount of God. 6And he [†]sent word to Moses, “I, your father-in-law Jethro, am coming to you with your wife and her two sons with her.” 7Then Moses went out to meet his father-in-law, and he bowed down and kissed him; and they asked each other of their welfare and went into the tent. 8And Moses recounted to his father-in-law all that Yahweh had done to Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for Israel’s sake, all the hardship that had befallen them on the journey, and how Yahweh had delivered them. 9And Jethro rejoiced over all the goodness which Yahweh had done to Israel, that He had delivered [†]them from the hand of the Egyptians. 10So Jethro said, “Blessed be Yahweh who delivered you from the hand of the Egyptians and from the hand of Pharaoh, and who delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians. 11Now I know that Yahweh is greater than all the gods; [†]for in this matter they acted presumptuously against [†]the people.” 12Then Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, took a burnt offering and sacrifices for God, and Aaron came with all the elders of Israel to eat [†]a meal with Moses’ father-in-law before God.

13Now it happened the next day that Moses sat to judge the people, and the people stood about Moses from the morning until the evening. 14And Moses’ father-in-law saw all that he was doing for the people, so he said, “What is this thing that you are doing for the people? Why do you alone sit as judge and all the people stand about you from morning until evening?” 15And Moses said to his father-in-law, “Because the people come to me to inquire of God. 16When they have a matter, it comes to me, and I judge between a man and his neighbor and make known the statutes of God and His laws.” 17And Moses’ father-in-law said to him, “The thing that you are doing is not good. 18You will surely wear out, both yourself and [†]these people who are with you, for the [†]task is too heavy for you; you cannot do it alone. 19Now listen to my voice: I will give you counsel, and God be with you. [†]You be the people’s representative before God, and you bring the matters to God; 20then warn them about the statutes and the laws, and make known to them the way in which they shall go and the work they shall do. 21But you shall [†]select excellent men out of all the people, those who fear God, men of truth, those who hate greedy gain; and you shall place these men over them as leaders of thousands, [†]of hundreds, [†]of fifties, and [†]of tens. 22And they will judge the people at all times. And it will be that every major matter they will bring to you, but every minor matter they themselves will judge. So it will be easier for you, and they will bear the burden with you. 23If you do this thing and God so commands you, then you will be able to [†]endure, and all [†]these people also will go to [†]their place in peace.”

24So Moses listened to the voice of his father-in-law and did all that he had said. 25And Moses chose excellent men out of all Israel and made them heads over the people, leaders of thousands, [†]of hundreds, [†]of fifties, and [†]of tens. 26And they judged the people at all times; the difficult matter they would bring to Moses, but every minor matter they themselves would judge. 27Then Moses [†]let his father-in-law depart, and he went his way into his own land.

3 Lit the name of the one was
3 Heb ger
4 Lit The name of the other was
4 Lit My God is help
5 Lit unto
6 Lit said
9 Lit him
11 Lit indeed, in the thing in which they
11 Lit them
12 Lit bread
18 Lit this
18 Lit matter
19 Lit You be for the people in front of God
21 Lit see
21 Lit leaders of
21 Lit leaders of
21 Lit leaders of
23 Lit stand
23 Lit this
23 Lit his
25 Lit leaders of
25 Lit leaders of
25 Lit leaders of
27 Lit sent off his father-in-law

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