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Bible Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Numbers 3

Overview

Numbers 3:1, The sons of Aaron; Numbers 3:5, The Levites are given to the priests instead of the first-born; Numbers 3:14, are numbered by their families; Numbers 3:21, The families, number, and charge of the Gershonites; Numbers 3:27, of the Kohathites; Numbers 3:33, of the Merarites; Numbers 3:38, The place and charge of Moses and Aaron; Numbers 3:40, The first-born are freed by the Levites; Numbers 3:44, The overplus are redeemed.

Verse 1

generations: Genesis 2:4, Genesis 5:1, Genesis 10:1, Exodus 6:16, Exodus 6:20, Matthew 1:1

spake: Numbers 1:1, Leviticus 25:1, Leviticus 27:34

Reciprocal: Numbers 1:47 - General Numbers 1:50 - thou shalt Numbers 8:1 - General Numbers 26:57 - of Gershon Deuteronomy 10:8 - time the Lord 1 Chronicles 6:48 - brethren Zechariah 12:13 - Levi

Verse 2

Numbers 26:60, Exodus 6:23, Exodus 28:1, 1 Chronicles 6:3, 1 Chronicles 24:1

Reciprocal: Numbers 17:3 - General Joshua 21:10 - General

Verse 3

the priests: Exodus 28:41, Exodus 40:13, Exodus 40:15, Leviticus 8:2, Leviticus 8:12, Leviticus 8:30

whom he consecrated: Heb. whose hand he filled, Exodus 29:1-37, Leviticus 8:1 - Leviticus 9:24, Hebrews 7:28

Reciprocal: Exodus 30:30 - anoint Leviticus 10:1 - Nadab Leviticus 10:2 - fire Numbers 17:3 - General Hebrews 5:4 - General

Verse 4

Nadab: Numbers 26:61, Leviticus 10:1, Leviticus 10:2

Reciprocal: 1 Chronicles 6:50 - Eleazar 1 Chronicles 15:4 - the children of Aaron 1 Chronicles 24:2 - died

Verse 5

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:39 - and Aaron Numbers 8:11 - they may execute

Verse 6

The word hakraiv, here rendered bring near, is properly a sacrificial word, and signifies the presenting of a sacrifice or offering to the Lord. As an offering, the tribe of Levi was entirely given up to the service of the sanctuary, to be no longer their own, but the Lord's. Numbers 1:49-53, Numbers 2:17, Numbers 2:33, Numbers 8:6-15, Numbers 8:22-26, Numbers 16:9-11, Numbers 18:2-6, Exodus 32:26-29, Deuteronomy 33:8, Deuteronomy 33:9, Malachi 2:4

Reciprocal: Numbers 8:19 - I have given 1 Chronicles 23:28 - for the service 1 Chronicles 23:32 - the charge of the sons 2 Chronicles 29:11 - the Lord Ezra 6:18 - as it is written

Verse 7

keep: Numbers 3:32, Numbers 8:26, Numbers 31:30, 1 Chronicles 23:28-32, 1 Chronicles 26:20, 1 Chronicles 26:22, 1 Chronicles 26:26

to do the: Numbers 1:50, Numbers 8:11, Numbers 8:15, Numbers 8:24-26

Reciprocal: Leviticus 8:35 - keep Numbers 1:53 - shall pitch Numbers 3:25 - the charge Numbers 3:28 - keeping Numbers 3:38 - for the charge Numbers 4:3 - to do Numbers 18:21 - even the service Numbers 18:23 - do the service Hebrews 13:10 - serve

Verse 8

Numbers 4:15, Numbers 4:28, Numbers 4:33, Numbers 10:17, Numbers 10:21, 1 Chronicles 26:20-28, Ezra 8:24-30, Isaiah 52:11

Reciprocal: Numbers 1:53 - and the Numbers 3:38 - for the charge Numbers 4:12 - General Numbers 4:32 - the instruments Numbers 9:19 - kept the Numbers 18:21 - even the service Numbers 26:60 - General Numbers 31:30 - keep the Hebrews 13:10 - serve

Verse 9

Numbers 8:19, Numbers 18:6, Numbers 18:7, Ephesians 4:8, Ephesians 4:11

Verse 10

they shall: Numbers 18:7, 1 Chronicles 6:32, Ezekiel 44:8, Acts 6:3, Acts 6:4, Romans 12:7, 1 Timothy 4:15, 1 Timothy 4:16

and the stranger: Numbers 3:38, Numbers 1:51, Numbers 16:35, Numbers 16:40, Numbers 18:3, 1 Samuel 6:19, 2 Samuel 6:7, 2 Chronicles 26:16-21, Ephesians 2:19, Hebrews 8:4, Hebrews 10:19-22

Reciprocal: Exodus 29:33 - a stranger Numbers 18:2 - but thou Numbers 18:4 - a stranger Numbers 18:22 - come nigh Deuteronomy 18:5 - General 1 Kings 12:31 - priests 1 Kings 13:33 - whosoever 1 Chronicles 13:7 - carried the ark 2 Chronicles 23:7 - whosoever Ezra 2:62 - therefore Nehemiah 12:44 - Judah rejoiced

Verse 11

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:39 - and Aaron

Verse 12

When God miraculously destroyed all the first-born of the Egyptians - Exodus 12:29, he spared those of the Israelites; and, in commemoration of that event, he was pleased to appoint that all the first-born males "should be set apart unto himself" - Exodus 13:12-16. God is here pleased to relinquish this claim, and to appoint the whole tribe of Levi to attend his immediate service in their stead. Numbers 3:41, Numbers 3:45, Numbers 8:16, Numbers 8:18, Numbers 18:6

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:40 - General Numbers 8:15 - and offer Numbers 8:21 - offered

Verse 13

Because: Numbers 8:16, Numbers 8:17, Numbers 18:15, Exodus 13:2, Exodus 13:12, Exodus 22:29, Exodus 34:19, Leviticus 27:26, Ezekiel 44:30, Luke 2:23, Hebrews 12:23

on the day: Exodus 12:29, Exodus 12:30, Exodus 13:15

Reciprocal: Deuteronomy 15:19 - the firstling

Verse 15

Numbers 3:22, Numbers 3:28, Numbers 3:34, Numbers 3:39, Numbers 3:40, Numbers 3:43, Numbers 18:15, Numbers 18:16, Numbers 26:62, Proverbs 8:17, Jeremiah 2:2, Jeremiah 31:3, Mark 10:14, 2 Timothy 3:15

Reciprocal: 1 Chronicles 23:24 - after the house 2 Chronicles 31:17 - genealogy

Verse 16

word: Heb. mouth, Numbers 3:39, Numbers 3:51, Numbers 4:27, Numbers 4:37, Numbers 4:41, Numbers 4:45, Numbers 4:49, Genesis 45:21, Deuteronomy 21:5

Verse 17

Numbers 26:57, Numbers 26:58, Genesis 46:11, Exodus 6:16-19, Joshua 21:1-45, 1 Chronicles 6:1, 1 Chronicles 6:2, 1 Chronicles 6:16-19

Gershon: Numbers 15:5-23, Numbers 23:6-23, Numbers 24:1 - Numbers 26:65, Nehemiah 11:1 - Nehemiah 12:47

Reciprocal: 1 Chronicles 6:43 - Gershom

Verse 18

Numbers 3:21, Exodus 6:17-19, 1 Chronicles 6:17, 1 Chronicles 6:20, 1 Chronicles 6:21, 1 Chronicles 23:7-11, 1 Chronicles 25:4, 1 Chronicles 26:1-32, Nehemiah 12:1-26

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:22 - General

Verse 19

Numbers 3:27, Exodus 6:18, Exodus 6:20, 1 Chronicles 6:18, 1 Chronicles 6:38, 1 Chronicles 15:5, 1 Chronicles 15:8-10, 1 Chronicles 15:17-21, 1 Chronicles 23:12, 1 Chronicles 23:13, 1 Chronicles 23:18-20, 1 Chronicles 25:4, 1 Chronicles 26:1-32, Nehemiah 12:1-26

Reciprocal: Leviticus 10:4 - Uzziel Numbers 4:2 - General Joshua 21:10 - General 1 Chronicles 24:22 - Izharites 1 Chronicles 26:23 - Amramites

Verse 20

Numbers 3:33, Exodus 6:19, 1 Chronicles 6:19, 1 Chronicles 6:29, 1 Chronicles 6:44-47, 1 Chronicles 15:6, 1 Chronicles 23:21-23, 1 Chronicles 24:27-30, 1 Chronicles 25:3

Reciprocal: Joshua 21:7 - General 1 Chronicles 6:47 - Mahli 1 Chronicles 6:63 - Merari 1 Chronicles 23:24 - after the house 2 Chronicles 31:17 - genealogy Ezra 8:18 - Mahli

Verse 21

Numbers 3:18

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:22 - General Joshua 21:6 - General 1 Chronicles 6:17 - the sons of Gershom

Verse 22

from a month old: The males of all the other tribes were numbered from twenty years old and upwards; but, had the Levites been numbered in this way, they would not have been nearly equal in number to the first-born of the twelve tribes. Add to this, that as there must have been first-born of all ages in the other tribes, it was necessary that the Levites, who were to be their substitutes, should also be of all ages; and it appears to have been partly on this ground, that the Levites were numbered from a month old and upwards. Numbers 4:38-40

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:15 - General Numbers 3:39 - and Aaron Numbers 4:44 - General Joshua 21:6 - General

Verse 23

Numbers 1:53, Numbers 2:17

Reciprocal: Numbers 1:50 - shall encamp Numbers 3:29 - General Numbers 3:38 - toward Numbers 8:15 - go in

Verse 24

Lael: i.e. unto, by, because of God, [Strong's H3815]. Numbers 3:24

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:22 - General Numbers 4:44 - General

Verse 25

the charge: From this and the next chapter, we see the very severe labour which the Levites were to perform, while the journeyings of the Israelites lasted. When we consider, that there was not less than 14 tons 266 lbs. of metal employed in the tabernacle - see note on Exodus 38:24, besides the immense weight of the skins, hangings, cords, boards, and posts, we shall find it was no easy matter to transport this moveable temple from place to place. The Gershonites, who were 7,500 in number had to carry the tent, coverings, vail, hangings of the court, cords, etc. - Numbers 3:25, and Numbers 3:26, the Kohathites, who were 8,600, the ark, table, candlestick, altars, and instruments of the sanctuary - Numbers 3:31, and the Merarites, who were 6,200, the boards, bars, sockets, and all matters connected with these belonging to the tabernacle, with the pillars of the court, their sockets, pins, and cords - Numbers 3:36, and Numbers 3:37. Numbers 3:7, Numbers 4:24-28, Numbers 7:7, Numbers 10:17, 1 Chronicles 9:14-33, 1 Chronicles 23:32, 1 Chronicles 26:21, 1 Chronicles 26:22, 2 Chronicles 31:2, 2 Chronicles 31:11-18, Ezra 8:28-30, Mark 13:34, Romans 12:6-8, Colossians 4:17, 1 Timothy 1:18

the tabernacle and: Exodus 25:9, Exodus 26:1-14, Exodus 36:8-19, Exodus 40:19

and the hanging: Exodus 26:36, Exodus 26:37, Exodus 36:37, Exodus 36:38, Exodus 40:28

Reciprocal: Exodus 39:32 - all the Numbers 4:25 - the curtains Numbers 18:3 - only they Numbers 31:30 - keep the

Verse 26

the hangings: Exodus 27:9-16, Exodus 38:9-16

the cords: Exodus 35:18

Reciprocal: Exodus 39:32 - all the Numbers 3:25 - the charge Numbers 4:25 - the curtains Numbers 7:7 - Two wagons Numbers 10:17 - the sons

Verse 27

Numbers 3:19, 1 Chronicles 23:12, 1 Chronicles 26:23

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:2 - General Numbers 4:5 - Aaron shall come Numbers 10:21 - the Kohathites Joshua 21:5 - General Joshua 21:10 - General 1 Chronicles 23:13 - The sons 1 Chronicles 24:22 - Izharites Ezekiel 40:45 - the keepers

Verse 28

eight thousand: Numbers 4:35, Numbers 4:36

keeping: Numbers 3:7, Numbers 3:31

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:15 - General Numbers 3:35 - shall Numbers 3:39 - and Aaron Numbers 4:44 - General Ezekiel 40:45 - the keepers

Verse 29

Numbers 3:23, Numbers 1:53, Numbers 2:10

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:35 - shall Numbers 3:38 - toward

Verse 30

Reciprocal: Leviticus 10:4 - Uzziel Numbers 4:4 - General Numbers 4:15 - These things

Verse 31

the ark: Numbers 4:4-16, Exodus 25:10-40, Exodus 31:1 - Exodus 35:29, Exodus 37:1-24, Exodus 39:33-42, Exodus 40:2-16, Exodus 40:30

the altars: Exodus 27:1-8, Exodus 30:1-10, Exodus 37:25-29, Exodus 38:1-7

and the hanging: Exodus 26:31-33, Exodus 36:35, Exodus 36:36

Reciprocal: Exodus 25:23 - a table Exodus 39:32 - all the Leviticus 24:4 - the pure Numbers 3:25 - the charge Numbers 3:28 - keeping Numbers 4:15 - These things Numbers 7:9 - because Numbers 18:3 - only they Numbers 31:30 - keep the Deuteronomy 10:8 - bear

Verse 32

Numbers 4:16, Numbers 4:27, Numbers 20:25-28, 2 Kings 25:18, 1 Chronicles 9:14-20, 1 Chronicles 26:20-24

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:7 - keep Numbers 4:40 - General Numbers 8:26 - to keep Joshua 24:33 - Eleazar 1 Chronicles 6:50 - Eleazar 1 Chronicles 9:20 - Phinehas Ezra 7:5 - Eleazar Nehemiah 11:11 - the ruler Ezekiel 40:45 - the keepers

Verse 33

Numbers 3:20, 1 Chronicles 6:19, 1 Chronicles 23:21

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:29 - General 1 Chronicles 6:29 - Mahli 1 Chronicles 6:47 - Mushi

Verse 34

Numbers 1:21, Numbers 2:9, Numbers 2:11

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:15 - General Numbers 4:44 - General

Verse 35

shall: Numbers 3:28, Numbers 3:29, Numbers 1:53

northward: Numbers 2:25

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:38 - toward 1 Chronicles 5:14 - Abihail

Verse 36

under the custody and charge: Heb. the office of the charge, the boards. Numbers 4:29-33, Numbers 7:8, Exodus 26:15-29, Exodus 26:32, Exodus 26:37, Exodus 27:9-19, Exodus 35:11, Exodus 35:18, Exodus 36:20-34, Exodus 36:36, Exodus 38:17-20, Exodus 39:33

Reciprocal: Exodus 26:19 - forty sockets of silver Exodus 26:26 - bars of shittim wood Exodus 39:32 - all the Numbers 3:25 - the charge Numbers 4:31 - the charge Numbers 10:17 - the sons Numbers 18:3 - only they Numbers 31:30 - keep the

Verse 37

Reciprocal: Exodus 27:19 - all the pins thereof Exodus 39:32 - all the Numbers 3:25 - the charge Numbers 4:31 - the charge Numbers 7:8 - four wagons Numbers 10:17 - the sons

Verse 38

toward: Numbers 3:23, Numbers 3:29, Numbers 3:35, Numbers 1:53, Numbers 2:3

keeping: Numbers 3:10, Numbers 18:1-5, 1 Chronicles 6:48, 1 Chronicles 6:49

for the charge: Numbers 3:7, Numbers 3:8, Numbers 3:10

Reciprocal: Exodus 29:33 - a stranger Numbers 1:51 - the stranger Numbers 2:17 - tabernacle Numbers 4:15 - they shall Numbers 16:40 - that no Numbers 18:7 - the stranger Numbers 18:22 - come nigh 1 Chronicles 23:32 - the charge of the sons 2 Chronicles 23:7 - whosoever Ezekiel 40:45 - the keepers

Verse 39

and Aaron: The word ואהרן, weaharon, "and Aaron," has a point over each of its letters, probably designed as a mark of spuriousness. The word is wanting in the Samaritan, Syriac, and Coptic, and also in eight of Dr. Kennicott's and in four of De Rossi's manuscripts. Moses alone, as Houbigant observes, was commanded to number the Levites (Numbers 3:5, Numbers 3:11, Numbers 3:40, Numbers 3:44, Numbers 3:51) for as the money with which the first-born were redeemed was to be paid to Aaron and his sons (Numbers 3:48), it was decent that he, whose advantage it was that the number of the first-born should exceed, should not be authorized to take that number himself. twenty and two thousand. This total does not agree with the particulars; for the Gershonites were 7,500, the Kohathites 8,600, and the Merarites 6,200, which make a total of 22,300. Several methods of solving this difficulty have been proposed by learned men. Houbigant supposes there is an error in the enumeration of the Kohathites in Numbers 3:28; the numeral shesh, "six," being written instead of shalosh, "three," before "hundred." Dr. Kennicott's mode of reconciling the discrepancy, however, is the most simple. He supposes that an error has crept into the number of the Gershonites in Numbers 3:22, where instead of 7,500 we should read 7,200, as ך, caph final, which stands for 500, might have been easily mistaken for ר, resh, 200 (Dr. Kennicott on the Hebrew Text, vol. II. p. 212). Either of these modes will equally reconcile the difference. Numbers 4:47, Numbers 4:48, Numbers 26:62, Matthew 7:14

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:15 - General Numbers 3:16 - word Numbers 3:43 - General Numbers 3:46 - which are

Verse 40

Numbers 3:12, Numbers 3:15, Numbers 3:45, Exodus 32:26-29, Psalms 87:6, Isaiah 4:3, Luke 10:20, Philippians 4:3, 2 Timothy 2:19, Hebrews 12:23, Revelation 3:5, Revelation 14:4

Reciprocal: Leviticus 27:6 - from Numbers 3:39 - and Aaron

Verse 41

Numbers 3:12, Numbers 3:45, Numbers 8:16, Numbers 18:15, Exodus 24:5, Exodus 24:6, Exodus 32:26-29, Matthew 20:28, 1 Timothy 2:6

Reciprocal: Numbers 16:9 - separated

Verse 43

Numbers 3:39

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:15 - General

Verse 44

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:39 - and Aaron

Verse 45

Numbers 3:12, Numbers 3:40, Numbers 3:41

Reciprocal: Exodus 34:20 - All the Numbers 8:10 - General Numbers 8:14 - and the Levites Numbers 8:16 - instead of such Numbers 18:6 - I have Malachi 2:5 - covenant

Verse 46

redeemed: Numbers 18:15, Exodus 13:13

the two hundred: As the number of the Levites was 22,000, and the first-born males of the Israelites were 22,273, there were therefore 372 more of the latter than of the former, which are here ordered to be redeemed. The price of redemption is fixed at five shekels, or about 15s. each, in Numbers 3:47. This money, amounting to 1,365 shekels, equal to, 15s English, was taken of the first-born. There is some difficulty, however, in determining which of the first-born should be redeemed by paying this sum, and which should be exchanged for the Levites; for every Israelite, no doubt, would rather have his first-born redeemed by a Levite, than pay five shekels; and yet some of them must have incurred this expense. Rabbi Solomon Jarchi says, to prevent contention, Moses took 22,000 slips of parchment, and wrote on each a son of Levi, and 273 more, on which he wrote five shekels; then putting them in an urn, and shaking them together, he ordered every one of the first-born to draw out a slip. If he drew out one with the first inscription, he said to him, a Levite hath redeemed thee, but if he drew out one of the latter, he said, pay the price. This is pronounced by Dr. A. Clarke to be a stupid, silly tale; but when we know that the determination by lot was used among the Israelites, it does not seem improbable that it was now resorted to, though we cannot vouch for the accuracy of the detail. This species of redeeming men is referred to by St. Peter in his 1st Epistle 1 Peter 1:18, 1 Peter 1:19.

which are: Numbers 3:39-43

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:50 - General

Verse 47

five shekels: Numbers 18:16, Leviticus 27:6

the shekel: Numbers 3:50, Exodus 30:13, Leviticus 27:25, Ezekiel 45:12

Reciprocal: Exodus 30:24 - the shekel Exodus 38:24 - the shekel Numbers 3:46 - the two hundred 1 Chronicles 23:24 - by their polls

Verse 48

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:39 - and Aaron Numbers 3:51 - Moses

Verse 50

Numbers 3:46, Numbers 3:47, Matthew 20:28, 1 Timothy 2:5, 1 Timothy 2:6, Titus 2:14, Hebrews 9:12, 1 Peter 1:18, 1 Peter 3:18

Reciprocal: 1 Chronicles 23:29 - for all manner of measure

Verse 51

Moses: Numbers 3:48, Numbers 16:15, 1 Samuel 12:3, 1 Samuel 12:4, Acts 20:33, 1 Corinthians 9:12, 1 Peter 5:2

as the Lord: Malachi 4:4

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:16 - word Numbers 3:39 - and Aaron Numbers 4:49 - According to the

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Numbers 3". "Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tsk/numbers-3.html.