Bible Commentaries

Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments

Numbers

Book Overview - Numbers

by Joseph Sutcliffe

THE FOURTH BOOK OF MOSES, CALLED NUMBERS.

The ancient Hebrews entitled this Book, וידבר Va-jedabbar; that is, And he spake; and במדבר Bemidbar, that is, In the wilderness; the words with which the book itself commences. The Seventy call it the Book of Numbers, because the people were numbered in the plain before Sinai, and thirty eight years afterward in the plains of Moab near the Jordan. It comprises a period of about thirty nine years, and records so many facts concerning the conduct and calamities which befel the Israelites in the desert, that the magistrate, the minister, and the individual may here find much instruction for the regulation of his conduct, and a multitude of motives to zeal and constancy in religion. Concerning its authenticity, it is to us a sufficient confirmation to find it quoted or alluded to, not less than seventeen times in the New Testament.