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Bible Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Numbers 1

Overview

Numbers 1:1, God commands Moses to number the people; Numbers 1:5, The princes of the tribes; Numbers 1:17, The number of every tribe; Numbers 1:47, The Levites are exempted for the service of the Lord.

Verse 1

wilderness: Numbers 10:11, Numbers 10:12, Exodus 19:1, Leviticus 27:34

tabernacle: Exodus 25:22, Leviticus 1:1

on the first day: As the tabernacle was erected on the first day of the first month, in the second year of their departure from Egypt - Exodus 40:17, and this happened on the first day of the second month, in the same year, it is evident that the transactions related in the preceding book must all have taken place in the space of one month, and during the time the Israelites were encamped at mount Sinai. Numbers 9:1, Numbers 10:11, Exodus 40:17, 1 Kings 6:1

Reciprocal: Genesis 17:4 - a father Genesis 35:11 - a nation Genesis 42:13 - Thy servants Genesis 46:15 - Leah Exodus 3:12 - ye shall Exodus 12:3 - an house Leviticus 25:1 - General Numbers 3:1 - spake Numbers 7:89 - he heard Numbers 26:4 - General Numbers 26:64 - General Deuteronomy 23:12 - General

Verse 2

Take ye the sum: This numbering was probably intended to illustrate the Divine faithfulness in thus increasing the seed of Abraham; to prepare them to preserve due order in their march; and to distinguish the tribes and families. Numbers 26:2-4, Numbers 26:63, Numbers 26:64, Exodus 30:12, Exodus 38:26, 2 Samuel 24:1-3, 1 Chronicles 21:1, 1 Chronicles 21:2, 1 Chronicles 27:23, 1 Chronicles 27:24

the children: Genesis 49:1-3, Exodus 1:1-5

after: Numbers 1:18, Numbers 1:22, Numbers 1:26-54, Exodus 6:14-19

Reciprocal: Numbers 1:19 - General Numbers 1:44 - General 1 Chronicles 23:24 - by their polls 2 Chronicles 17:14 - to the house

Verse 3

twenty: Numbers 14:29, Numbers 32:11, Exodus 30:14

able: Numbers 26:2, Deuteronomy 3:18, Deuteronomy 24:5, 2 Samuel 24:9, 2 Chronicles 17:13-18, 2 Chronicles 26:11-13

by their: Numbers 33:1, Exodus 12:17

Reciprocal: Numbers 1:47 - General 1 Chronicles 5:18 - that went 1 Chronicles 23:24 - twenty 2 Chronicles 25:5 - from twenty

Verse 4

Numbers 1:16, Numbers 2:3-31, Numbers 7:10-83, Numbers 10:14-27, Numbers 13:2-15, Numbers 17:3, Numbers 25:4, Numbers 25:14, Numbers 34:18-28, Exodus 18:25, Joshua 22:14, 1 Chronicles 27:1-22

Reciprocal: Leviticus 4:22 - a ruler hath sinned Numbers 7:2 - the princes Numbers 10:4 - General Numbers 30:1 - General Joshua 4:2 - twelve men Joshua 18:4 - three 1 Chronicles 23:24 - after the house Revelation 7:5 - tribe of Juda

Verse 5

Elizur: Numbers 2:10, Numbers 7:30, Numbers 10:18, Genesis 29:32-35, Genesis 30:5-20, Genesis 35:17-26, Genesis 46:8-24, Genesis 49:1-33, Exodus 1:2-5, Deuteronomy 33:1-29, Revelation 7:4-8

Reciprocal: Genesis 35:22 - Now the sons Numbers 1:17 - General Numbers 17:2 - all their princes 1 Chronicles 2:1 - Reuben 1 Chronicles 5:1 - he was Job 9:5 - which overturneth Ezekiel 48:1 - the names

Verse 6

Shelumiel: Numbers 2:12, Numbers 7:36

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:10 - Simeon Numbers 10:19 - Simeon Job 9:5 - which overturneth

Verse 7

Nahshon: Numbers 2:3, Numbers 7:12, Numbers 10:14, Ruth 4:18, 1 Chronicles 2:10, 1 Chronicles 2:11, Matthew 1:2-5, Luke 3:32, Naasson

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:12 - Judah Exodus 6:23 - Amminadab Ruth 4:20 - Nahshon Matthew 1:4 - Naasson

Verse 8

Nethaneel: Numbers 2:5, Numbers 7:18, Numbers 10:15

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:13 - Issachar

Verse 9

Eliab: Numbers 2:7, Numbers 7:24, Numbers 10:16

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:14 - Zebulun Ezekiel 42:13 - the most holy

Verse 10

Elishama: Numbers 2:18, Numbers 7:48, Numbers 10:22, 1 Chronicles 7:26, 1 Chronicles 7:27

Gamaliel: Numbers 2:20, Numbers 7:54, Numbers 10:23

Reciprocal: Genesis 48:5 - are mine Judges 1:22 - the house 1 Chronicles 2:41 - Elishama Ezekiel 42:13 - the most holy

Verse 11

Abidan: Numbers 2:22, Numbers 7:60, Numbers 10:24

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:16 - sons of Genesis 46:21 - the sons

Verse 12

Ahiezer: Numbers 2:25, Numbers 7:66, Numbers 10:25

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:23 - Dan

Verse 13

Pagiel: Numbers 2:27, Numbers 7:72, Numbers 10:26

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:17 - Asher

Verse 14

Eliasaph: Numbers 7:42, Numbers 10:20, Son of Reuel, Numbers 2:14

Deuel: As the ד, daleth is very like the ר, resh, they might be easily mistaken for each other; and hence this person being called both Deuel and Reuel, may be easily accounted for. The Septuagint and Syriac have Reuel, in this chapter; and in Numbers 2:14, the Samaritan, Vulgate, and Arabic have Deuel, instead of Reuel, with which reading a vast number of manuscripts concur, and which is also supported by Numbers 7:42, Numbers 10:20. We may therefore safely conclude, the Deuel, and not Reuel, was the original reading.

Reciprocal: Jeremiah 11:19 - that his

Verse 15

Ahira: Numbers 2:29, Numbers 7:78, Numbers 10:27

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:24 - Naphtali

Verse 16

the renowned: Keruey haâidah, literally "the called of the congregation," those who were summoned by name to attend. Numbers 2:3-31, Numbers 7:2, Numbers 7:10-83, Numbers 10:14-27, Numbers 11:17, Numbers 16:2, Numbers 26:9, Judges 6:15, 1 Chronicles 27:16-22

heads: Numbers 1:4, Exodus 18:21, Exodus 18:25, Deuteronomy 1:15, 1 Samuel 22:7, 1 Samuel 23:23, Micah 5:2

Reciprocal: Leviticus 4:22 - a ruler hath sinned

Verse 17

Numbers 1:5-15, John 10:3, Revelation 7:4-17

Reciprocal: Leviticus 24:16 - blasphemeth 1 Chronicles 16:41 - expressed

Verse 18

their pedigrees: Ezra 2:59, Nehemiah 7:61, Hebrews 7:3, Hebrews 7:6, *marg.

by the: Numbers 1:2

according: Numbers 1:20-54

from twenty: In this census no women were reckoned, nor children, nor minors, nor strangers, nor Levites, nor old men; which, collectively, must have formed an immense multitude; the Levites alone amounted to 22,300 men.

Reciprocal: Exodus 30:14 - from twenty 1 Chronicles 23:24 - by their polls 1 Chronicles 27:23 - from twenty 2 Chronicles 17:14 - to the house

Verse 19

Numbers 1:2, Numbers 26:1, Numbers 26:2, 2 Samuel 24:1-10

Verse 20

Numbers 2:10, Numbers 2:11, Numbers 26:5-7, Genesis 29:32, Genesis 46:9, Genesis 49:3, Genesis 49:4, 1 Chronicles 5:1

Reciprocal: Genesis 35:22 - Now the sons Genesis 46:8 - Reuben Exodus 30:14 - from twenty Numbers 1:18 - according

Verse 21

That a comparative view may be easily taken of the state of the tribes, we will here produce them, compared with that of the second census - Numbers 26:1, in their decreasing proportion, beginning with the greatest and proceeding to the least.

Tribe 1st Census 2nd Census

Judah 74,600 76,500

Dan 62,700 64,400

Simeon 59,300 22,200

Zebulun 57,400 60,500

Issachar 54,400 64,300

Naphtali 53,400 45,400

Reuben 46,500 43,730

Gad 45,650 40,500

Asher 41,500 53,400

Ephraim 40,500 32,500

Benjamin 35,400 45,600

Manasseh 32,200 52,700

Totals: 603,550 601,730

Thus we find Judah the most populous tribe, and Manasseh the least so; the difference between them being as great as 42,000. Jacob had given Judah the pre-eminence in his prophetic blessing; and that tribe was to have the precedency in the encampments of Israel: accordingly God had increased them more than any of their brethren. Ephraim and Manasseh, according to the same prophecy, were numbered as distinct tribes, Ephraim having the superiority, as it was foretold; and Joseph indeed appears "a fruitful bough." Numbers 2:10, Numbers 2:11, Numbers 26:7

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:8 - Reuben Numbers 3:34 - General

Verse 22

Numbers 2:12, Numbers 2:13, Numbers 26:12-14, Genesis 29:33, Genesis 34:25-30, Genesis 42:24, Genesis 46:10, Genesis 49:5, Genesis 49:6

Reciprocal: Numbers 1:2 - after Numbers 26:14 - General 1 Chronicles 23:24 - by their polls Revelation 7:7 - Simeon

Verse 23

Numbers 2:13, Numbers 25:8, Numbers 25:9, Numbers 25:14, Numbers 26:14

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:10 - Simeon

Verse 24

The tribe of Gad marched, along with that of Simeon, under the standard of Reuben; and it seems, on that account, to have been introduced in this order. The other tribes also, are here classed together according to their encampments, and the order of their subsequent march. Numbers 2:14, Numbers 2:15, Numbers 26:15-18, Genesis 30:10, Genesis 30:11, Genesis 46:16, Genesis 49:19

Reciprocal: Numbers 26:18 - General

Verse 25

Numbers 2:15, Numbers 26:18

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:16 - sons of

Verse 26

Numbers 2:3, Numbers 2:4, Numbers 26:19-22, Genesis 29:35, Genesis 46:12, Genesis 49:8-12, 2 Samuel 24:9, 1 Chronicles 5:2, 2 Chronicles 17:14-16

Reciprocal: Numbers 1:2 - after Numbers 26:22 - General

Verse 27

Numbers 2:3, Numbers 2:4, Numbers 26:22, 2 Samuel 24:9, 2 Chronicles 17:14-16

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:12 - Judah Genesis 49:8 - thy hand

Verse 28

Numbers 2:5, Numbers 2:6, Numbers 23:23-25, Genesis 30:18, Genesis 46:13, Genesis 49:14, Genesis 49:15

Reciprocal: Numbers 26:25 - threescore

Verse 29

Numbers 2:6, Numbers 26:25

Reciprocal: Numbers 2:5 - General

Verse 30

Numbers 2:7, Numbers 2:8, Numbers 26:26, Numbers 26:27, Genesis 30:20, Genesis 46:14, Genesis 49:13

Verse 31

Numbers 2:8, Numbers 26:27

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:14 - Zebulun Numbers 2:7 - General

Verse 32

Numbers 2:18, Numbers 2:19, Numbers 26:35-37, Genesis 30:24, Genesis 37:1-36, Genesis 39:1-23, Genesis 46:20, Genesis 48:1-22, Genesis 49:22-26, Deuteronomy 33:17

Reciprocal: Genesis 48:5 - are mine Numbers 26:37 - General Judges 1:22 - the house

Verse 33

the tribe: Genesis 48:5, Deuteronomy 33:17

were forty: Numbers 2:19, Numbers 26:37

Reciprocal: Genesis 48:19 - I know it

Verse 34

Manasseh: Numbers 26:34, Genesis 41:51, Genesis 46:20, Genesis 48:1, Genesis 50:23, Deuteronomy 33:17, Joshua 4:12, Joshua 17:1, 1 Chronicles 7:14, Revelation 7:6

Verse 35

Numbers 2:21, Numbers 26:34, Genesis 48:19, Genesis 48:20

Verse 36

Genesis 35:16-18, Genesis 44:20, Genesis 46:21, Genesis 49:27

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:19 - Joseph Numbers 26:41 - General

Verse 37

Numbers 2:23, Numbers 26:41, Judges 20:44-46, 2 Chronicles 17:17

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:19 - Joseph Genesis 46:21 - the sons

Verse 38

Genesis 30:5, Genesis 30:6, Genesis 46:23, Genesis 49:16, Genesis 49:17

Reciprocal: Numbers 26:43 - General

Verse 39

Numbers 2:26, Numbers 26:43

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:23 - Dan

Verse 40

Genesis 30:12, Genesis 30:13, Genesis 46:27, Genesis 49:20

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:17 - Asher Numbers 26:47 - General 2 Samuel 2:9 - Ashurites 1 Chronicles 2:2 - Asher

Verse 41

Numbers 2:28, Numbers 26:47

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:17 - Asher 1 Chronicles 2:2 - Asher

Verse 42

Naphtali: Genesis 30:7, Genesis 30:8, Genesis 46:24, Genesis 49:21, Respecting the manner in which this vast multitude sprang from 75 persons, Scheuchzer has some valuable calculations, with the results of which we present the reader:

Tribe 1st Gen 2nd Gen 3rd Gen 4th Gen Totals - 3 and 4

Judah 25 238 3,865 70,735 74,600

Dan 11 132 2,508 60,192 62,700

Simeon 39 359 3,953 55,347 59,300

Zebulun 20 143 2,296 55,104 57,400

Issachar 27 251 3,022 51,378 54,400

Naphtali 26 296 3,560 49,840 53,400

Reuben 31 215 2,583 43,917 46,500

Gad 67 475 3,804 41,846 45,650

Asher 39 310 3,192 38,308 41,500

Ephraim 16 160 1,928 38,572 40,500

Benjamin 98 885 4,425 30,975 35,400

Manasseh 10 134 1,610 30,590 32,200

Levi 8 96 1,240 21,060 22,300

Reciprocal: Numbers 2:29 - the tribe Numbers 2:30 - General Numbers 26:50 - General

Verse 43

Numbers 2:30, Numbers 26:50

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:24 - Naphtali Numbers 2:29 - the tribe

Verse 44

Numbers 1:2-16, Numbers 26:64

Verse 45

Reciprocal: Numbers 14:29 - all that were

Verse 46

What an astonishing increase from seventy persons who went down into Egypt about 215 years before, where they had latterly endured the greatest hardships! Such was the effect of God's promise, which cannot fail. Numbers 2:32, Numbers 23:10, Numbers 26:51, Genesis 12:2, Genesis 13:16, Genesis 15:5, Genesis 17:6, Genesis 22:17, Genesis 26:3, Genesis 28:14, Genesis 46:3, Genesis 46:4, Exodus 12:37, Exodus 38:26, Deuteronomy 10:22, 1 Kings 4:20, 2 Samuel 24:9, 1 Chronicles 21:5, 2 Chronicles 13:3, 2 Chronicles 17:14-19, Hebrews 11:11, Hebrews 11:12, Revelation 7:4-9

Reciprocal: Genesis 48:16 - grow into Numbers 11:21 - General Deuteronomy 1:10 - your God Judges 20:17 - four hundred

Verse 47

Numbers 1:3, Numbers 1:50, Numbers 2:33, Numbers 3:1-51, Numbers 4:1-49, 8:1-26, Numbers 26:57-62, 1 Chronicles 6:1-81, 1 Chronicles 21:6

Reciprocal: Deuteronomy 10:8 - time the Lord

Verse 49

Numbers 2:33, Numbers 26:62

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:6 - General Numbers 8:11 - they may execute

Verse 50

thou shalt: Numbers 3:1-10, Numbers 4:15, Numbers 4:25-33, Exodus 31:18, Exodus 32:26-29, Exodus 38:21, 1 Chronicles 23:1-32, 1 Chronicles 25:1 - 1 Chronicles 26:32, Ezra 8:25-30, Ezra 8:33, Ezra 8:34, Nehemiah 12:8, Nehemiah 12:22, Nehemiah 12:47, Nehemiah 13:5, Nehemiah 13:10-13, Nehemiah 13:22

the tabernacle: Numbers 1:53, Numbers 20:11, Exodus 31:18, Exodus 38:21, Psalms 122:4

shall encamp: Numbers 2:17, Numbers 3:23-38, Numbers 10:21

Reciprocal: Exodus 16:34 - General Exodus 37:5 - General Exodus 40:33 - up the court Numbers 1:47 - General Numbers 2:2 - about the Numbers 3:7 - to do the 2 Chronicles 24:6 - tabernacle Acts 7:44 - the tabernacle Revelation 15:5 - General

Verse 51

the Levites: Numbers 4:5-33, Numbers 10:11, Numbers 10:17-21

the stranger: Numbers 3:10, Numbers 3:38, Numbers 16:40, Numbers 18:22, Leviticus 22:10-13, 1 Samuel 6:19, 2 Samuel 6:7

Reciprocal: Exodus 29:33 - a stranger Numbers 10:21 - the other did Numbers 17:13 - Whosoever Numbers 18:4 - a stranger 1 Kings 13:33 - whosoever

Verse 52

Numbers 2:2, Numbers 2:34, Numbers 10:1-36, Numbers 24:2

Reciprocal: Numbers 9:19 - kept the Numbers 18:22 - come nigh

Verse 53

shall pitch: Numbers 1:50, Numbers 3:7, Numbers 18:3, 1 Timothy 4:13-16, 2 Timothy 4:2

there be: Numbers 8:19, Numbers 16:46, Numbers 18:5, Leviticus 10:6, 1 Samuel 6:19, Jeremiah 5:31, Jeremiah 23:15, Acts 20:28-31

and the: Numbers 3:7, Numbers 3:8, Numbers 8:24-26, Numbers 18:3-5, Numbers 31:30, Numbers 31:47, 1 Chronicles 23:32, 2 Chronicles 13:10

Reciprocal: Exodus 16:34 - General Exodus 38:21 - tabernacle of testimony Numbers 2:2 - about the Numbers 3:23 - General Numbers 3:29 - General Numbers 3:35 - shall Numbers 3:38 - toward Numbers 8:26 - to keep Numbers 9:19 - kept the Numbers 16:9 - separated Revelation 15:5 - General

Verse 54

Numbers 2:34, Exodus 23:21, Exodus 23:22, Exodus 39:32, Exodus 39:43, Exodus 40:16, Exodus 40:32, Deuteronomy 12:32, 1 Samuel 15:22, Matthew 28:20

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:49 - According to the Numbers 9:22 - abode

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Numbers 1". "Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tsk/numbers-1.html.