Exodus 18: 13-26

13th February 2011 Off By Derek Buckthorpe


13: The next day Moses took his seat to settle disputes among the people, and he was surrounded from morning till evening.

14: At the sight of all he was doing for the people, Jethro asked, ‘What is this you are doing for the people? Why do you sit alone with all of them standing round from morning till evening?”

15: “The people came to me to seek God’s guidance,” Moses answered.

16: Whenever there is a dispute among them, they come to me, and I decide between one party and the other, I make known the statutes and the Laws of God.”

17: His Father-in-Law said to him, “This is not the best way to do it.

18: You will only wear yourself out and wear out the people who are here. The task is too heavy for you: you cannot do it alone.

19: Now listen to me; take my advice, and God be with you. It is for you to be the people’s representative before God, and bring their disputes to Him,

20: to instruct them in the statutes and the Laws, and teach them how they must behave and what they must do.

21: But you should search for capable God-fearing men among all the people, honest and incorruptible men, and appoint them over the people as officers over units of a thousand, of a hundred, of fifty, or of ten.

22: They can act as judges for the people at all times; difficult cases they should refer to you, but decide simple cases themselves. In this way your burden will be lightened, as they will be sharing it with you.

23: If you do this then God will direct you and you will be able to go on. And moreover, this whole people will arrive at its destination in harmony.”

24: Moses heeded his father-in-law and did all he suggested.

25: He chose capable men from all over Israel and appointed them leaders of the people, officers over units of a thousand, of a hundred, of fifty, or of ten.

26: They sat at permanent court, bringing the difficult cases to Moses but deciding simple cases themselves.