Joshua 8:12

Hebrew Bible

10 Bright and early the next morning Joshua gathered the army, and he and the leaders of Israel marched at the head of it to Ai. 11 All the troops that were with him marched up and drew near the city. They camped north of Ai on the other side of the valley. 12 He took 5,000 men and set an ambush west of the city between Bethel and Ai. 13 The army was in position—the main army north of the city and the rear guard west of the city. That night Joshua went into the middle of the valley. 14 When the king of Ai and all his people saw Israel, they rushed to get up early. Then the king and the men of the city went out to meet Israel in battle, at the meeting place near the rift valley. But he did not realize an ambush was waiting for him behind the city.

LXX Joshua 8:12


10 And Joshua rose up early in the morning, and numbered the people; and he went up, he and the elders before the people to Gai. 11 And all the men of war went up with him, and they went forward and came over against the city eastward. 12 And the ambuscade was on the west side of the city. 13 And it came to pass when the king of Gai saw it, he hasted and went out to meet them direct to the battle, he and all the people that were with him: and he knew not that there was an ambuscade formed against him behind the city. 14 And Joshua and Israel saw, and retreated from before them.

 Notes and References

"... The motive behind the alterations would have been the wish to conform to the original story in which the shofar was blown by lay people to the priestly legislation found in Numbers 10.1-10, which reserves this right exclusively for the Aaronide priests (compare Targum Jonathan, Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews 5:22-23, 27 and the War Scroll). With respect to the story of the fall of Ai (Joshua 8:1-29), she argued (Mazor, ‘Textual’) that the Old Greek version reflects an intermediate stage between the pristine narrative contained in 4QJosha (lacking Joshua 8:14) and the expansionistic Masoretic text (including the pluses vis-à-vis LXX found in Joshua 8:7-8, 9, 12, 13, 15-16, 20 and 26). In her view, the textual accretions resulted from narrative conflation with Judges 20, a narrative with a similar plot. In reaction to these maximalist positions, scholars over the last decade have pointed once more to the interpretative character of the Greek translation. In a careful text-critical analysis of Joshua 6, Bieberstein concluded that most of the major divergences between the Masoretic text and LXX in these chapters are the result of a deliberate restructuring and reformulation by the translator. Although in his view the book has had a very long process of literary formation, there is no overlap between the history of redaction and textual transmission ..."

van der Meer, Michaël N. "Joshua" in Aitken, J. K. (ed.) T&T Clark Companion to the Septuagint (pp. 86-101) T&T Clark International, 2015

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