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Bible Commentaries

Lange's Commentary on the Holy Scriptures: Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical
Numbers 16

 

 

Verses 1-35

THIRD SECTION

A.—THE REBELLION OF KORAH, DATHAN AND ABIRAM (THEIR ANTICIPATION OF THE UNIVERSAL PRIESTHOOD AND THEIR JUDGMENT).

Numbers 16:1-35

1Now Korah, the son of Izhar, the son of Kohath, the son of Levi, and Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, and On, the son of Peleth, sons of Reuben, [FN1]took men: 2And they rose up before Moses, with certain of the children of Israel, two hundred and fifty princes of the [FN2]assembly, [FN3]famous in the congregation, men of renown: 3And they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron, and said unto them, [FN4]Ye take too much upon you, seeing all the congregation are holy, every one of them, and the Lord is among them: wherefore then lift ye up yourselves above the congregation of the Lord? 4And when Moses heard it, he fell upon his face: 5And he spake unto Korah and unto all his company, saying, Even to morrow the Lord will shew who are his, and who is holy; and will cause him to come near unto him: even him whom he hath chosen will he cause to come near unto him 6 This do; Take you censers, Korah, and all his company; 7And put fire therein, and put incense in them before the Lord to morrow: and it shall be that the man whom the Lord doth choose, he shall be holy: [FN5]ye take too much upon you, ye sons of Levi 8 And Moses said unto Korah, Hear, I pray you, ye sons of Levi: [FN6] 9Seemeth it but a small thing unto you, that the God of Israel hath separated you from the congregation of Israel, to bring you near to himself to do the service of the tabernacle of the Lord, and to stand before the congregation to minister unto them? 10And he hath brought thee near to him, and all thy brethren the sons of Levi with thee: and seek ye the priesthood also? 11For which cause both thou and all thy company are gathered together against the Lord: and what is Aaron, that ye murmur against him?

12And Moses sent to call Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab; [FN7]which said, We 13 will not come up: d Is it a small thing that thou hast brought us up out of a land that floweth with milk and honey, to kill us in the wilderness, except thou make 14 thyself altogether a prince over us? Moreover, thou hast not brought us into a land that floweth with milk and honey, or given us inheritance of fields and vineyards: wilt thou [FN8]put out the eyes of these men? we will not come up 15 And Moses was very wroth, and said unto the Lord, Respect not thou their [FN9]offering: I have not taken one ass from them, neither have I hurt one of them 16 And Moses said unto Korah, Be thou and all thy company before the Lord, thou, and they, and Aaron to morrow: 17And take every man his censer, and put incense in them, and bring ye before the Lord every man his censer, two hundred and fifty censers; thou also, and Aaron, each of you his censer 18 And they took every man his censer, and put fire in them, and laid incense thereon, and stood [FN10]in the door of the [FN11]tabernacle of the congregation [FN12]with Moses and Aaron 19 And Korah gathered all the congregation against them unto the door of the htabernacle of the congregation: 20and the glory of the Lord appeared unto all the congregation. And the Lord spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, 21Separate yourselves from among this congregation, that I may consume them in a moment 22 And they fell upon their faces, and said, O God, the God of the spirits of all flesh, shall one man sin, and wilt thou be wroth with all the congregation?

23And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, 24Speak unto the congregation, saying, Get you up from about the tabernacle of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram 25 And Moses rose up and went unto Dathan and Abiram; and the elders of Israel followed him 26 And he spake unto the congregation, saying, Depart, I pray you, from the tents of these wicked men, and touch nothing of theirs, lest ye be [FN13]consumed in all their sins 27 So they gat up from the tabernacle of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram, on every side: and Dathan and Abiram came out, and stood in the door of their tents, and their wives, and their sons, and their little children 28 And Moses said, Hereby ye shall know that the Lord hath sent me to do all these works; [FN14]for I have not done them of mine own mind. [FN15]29If these men die [FN16]the common death of all men, or if they be visited after the visitation of all men; then the Lord hath not sent me 30 But if the Lord [FN17]make a new thing, and the earth open her mouth, and swallow them up, with all that appertain unto them, and they go down quick into [FN18]the pit; then ye shall understand that these men have [FN19]provoked the Lord.

31And it came to pass, as he had made an end of speaking all these words, that the ground clave asunder that was under them: 32And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that appertained unto Korah, and all their goods 33 They, and all that appertained to them, went down alive into mthe pit, and the earth closed upon them: and they perished from among the [FN20]congregation 34 And all Israel that were round about them fled at the cry of them: for they said, Lest the earth swallow us up also. 35And there came out a fire from the Lord, and consumed the two hundred and fifty men that offered incense.

TEXTUAL AND GRAMMATICAL

Numbers 16:2. We read with Knobel וַיִּקְשׁוּ instead of וַיִקַּח, which is inexplicable, for which comp. 1 Kings 7:25; 1 Kings 16:9; 2 Kings 15:10; 2 Kings 15:25; Amos 7:10. Ewald proposes וַיִקָהֵל; but, as Knobel well remarks, that does not well suit for only four men. LXX.: καὶ ἐλάλησε. Vulg.: ecce!

We do not adopt the conjecture of our translator, [viz., that given above by Pastor Fay, who in the German original translates the text of Leviticus and Numbers.—Tr.]. The difficulty is more easily solved if we omit the וְ before Dathan, or take the three Vavs in connection: he took along with him both Dathan and Abiram and also On. Thus Korah is designated as the real author, as also in Numbers 16:22 he is given this prominence. Another explanation, which is also more acceptable than the above conjecture, is the assumption of Gesenius [Thes., p760] that the singular is to be read as plural: Korah, Dathan, etc., took250 men to them.

Numbers 16:11. We cannot adopt Keil’s construction: “Therefore thou and thy faction that have joined against Jehovah—and Aaron, what is Hebrews, that ye murmur against him?” An Aposiopesis that is quite superfluous.

EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL

One might call this history a prototype of conspiracy and insurrection. Various party interests, essentially and wholly diverse and mutually conflicting, combine in the element of antipathy against the princely authority of Moses, and the priestly authority of Aaron (one might say against the authority of the State and of the Church). But there rests an obscurity of confusion over this sympathetic conspiracy against the authority appointed by Jehovah, as there could not but be in interests so diverse. Koran with his following (not his sons) is a Levite. Therefore he had himself also a privileged position. But the precedence of the Aaronic priesthood is to him a thorn in the eye. Therefore in reality it is not universal right that he would insist on, but a share in the clerical prerogatives of Aaron. Dathan, Abiram and On, the descendants of Reuben, no doubt have in mind the fact that their ancestor was the first-born, but not the transference of the rights of the first-born to Judah by the Patriarch. It must be mentioned to their praise that the tribe of Judah makes no special claims, but is only drawn into sympathy in a general way. But the real princes of the conspiracy conceal their particular pretensions under the demagogical watch-word: the entire congregation is holy, and under the radical definition of the entire congregation: they all are holy (evidently the idea of the plebiscite). This watchword is supported by the reproach: why do ye exalt yourselves over the congregation of Jehovah? In this reproach the conspiracy seems to convert an element of truth into a lie. There was, it is true, a theocratic authority over the congregation, that was not mediated by a legal representation of the congregation, yet elements of mediation were still there, the elders, the princes of the tribes, the prophetic voices, enough, a potential mediation by signs of the Spirit was indeed in existence; but of course no organized one. And such an one, too, could only distantly hover before the minds of the people; what the crowd desired was the dissolution of all authority, anarchy. Still the glitter of the idol of freedom and equality was even here so influential, that the whole nation was electrified by it, and they did not notice how they were made the sport of clerical and legitimist party interests. Hence even after the first judgment, there remained still a mutinous disposition that evoked a second judgment. Perhaps, too, this mutinous disposition sprang in part from the recollection of the stern judgment of stoning inflicted on the blasphemer and on the Sabbath-breaker: for here again it is nourished by the embittered feeling at the death penalty inflicted on the conspirators, although that appeared as a divine decree. The excitement, the stormy commotion, and the confusion of the event are reflected in the intricacy of the representation, and this has occasioned no little exegetical confusion which we must try to avoid. [See Text. and Gram., Numbers 16:2].

Evidently there was first a conspiracy that brooded in secret. The original agitators, Koran, Dathan and Abiram, succeeded in drawing to their party representatives from the whole congregation, princes of the particular tribes. Thus they arose against Moses and Aaron. Their cry to these two leaders: enough for you, may not be translated by the cool language: let what has been hitherto suffice you. It is a quo usque of indignation. To it is attached pretension in quite a radical form. When Moses falls on his face it is because he is in the greatest extremity and needs a divine decision, and looks for it. And on this decision reposes his exceeding bold and surprising answer. Not he will decide, but Jehovah. Let them all present themselves before Jehovah, the next morning even, as would-be priests, with censers, in order to stand before Jehovah along with Aaron in opposition and in rivalry, then Jehovah Himself will decide. According to the law, even the sons of the priests were forbidden to offer strange fire to Jehovah, much more were mere Levites and non-Levites forbidden to sacrifice, let alone to perform the holiest act of offering which was done in the very Sanctuary of the Tabernacle. Hence Moses could not have instituted such measures as he did here, had he not regarded the law as completely broken and suspended. His expedient reminds us of the words of Jesus to Judas: “that thou doest do quickly.” With the congregation seduced as it was, Moses could not act with its support; the law could only be restored again by a mighty judgment of God. Still the rebels were not to be left in doubt about the great irony that lay in the admission of this candidating, hence the addition, in which he repeats the word of the Levites as a rebuking echo: it is enough with you, upon which follows a reproof. Hear, ye sons of Levi, etc., Numbers 16:8. Now he brings home to the Levites that they themselves had received from Jehovah—not from him—a prerogative above that of the other tribes of Israel, by which he lays bare the contradiction in their revolutionary watch-word. He charges them with untruthfulness; it was not the universal priesthood that they wanted, but they were emulous of the high-priesthood of Aaron ( Numbers 16:9-10). Ye rebel, he says, against Jehovah Himself, not, as ye suppose, against Aaron, for he as a man signifies nothing in this business, that ye should murmur against him ( Numbers 16:11). In other words: your would-be murmuring against Aaron is a rebellion against Jehovah.

And Moses said to call Dathan, etc., Numbers 16:12 sqq. This begins the account of Moses’ dealing with the Reubenites. With great penetration he sees through the coalition, and deals with each faction singly, as befitted it. The Korah faction aimed specially at Aaron, and he contended with it accordingly, and, as appears, with such success that the sons of Korah held aloof from the sedition of their father ( Numbers 26:11). But the Reuben faction was primarily directed against, the princely position of Moses himself. He accordingly summons Dathan and Abiram to appear before him, (he does not, as Baumgarten supposes, call on them to make sacrifice); the third, On, appears already or later to have drawn back. Also Zelophehad, an influential man of the tribe of Prayer of Manasseh, had renounced the general craze. But the Reubenite faction answered roughly and refused obedience to Moses with malignant irony. We will not come up, they said, with reference to the tabernacle that is regarded as an exalted tent. He has brought them out of a land flowing with milk and honey, but not brought them into such a land; he has sorely deceived them, and seems as if he would bore out the people’s eyes, i.e., as if he would degrade them to absolute, blind obedience against all private judgment. This reproach, that he desired to rule over them as an absolute despot of the conscience, provoked the extremest indignation of the faithful servant of God, who could appeal to his unselfishness, whereby at the same time the sentiment is expressed that despotism of the conscience always springs from ambition and avarice. Respect not thou their offering, ( Numbers 16:15) is his prayer—the mildest form in which he could implore the divine vindication of his uprightness.

And Moses said unto Korah, etc., Numbers 16:16 sqq. Here follows the summons already mentioned in Numbers 16:6 : appear to-morrow with censers before Jehovah for rivalry with Aaron; only now it is amplified to the effect that the whole company, and as such also the third faction likewise should appear with their censers, the symbols of their pretensions. And they actually appeared. Also the250 with their censers. Thus250 censers, it is added supplementally; as if we were to say: 250 horse, or so many cowls. The250 censers instead of the one censer of Aaron is the main point. But Korah had contrived that, beside this, the whole congregation appeared before the Tabernacle, if not as his decided adherents, still with the inclination to go over to his party, that stood opposed to the two apparently helpless men, Moses and Aaron. So the crowd of people stood wavering on Carmel, inclined to apostacy, when Elijah contended with the priests of Baal, and so the mass of craven souls mostly stand in decisive crises in which fidelity has to contend with a seductive novelty. But invariably in such a situation there occurs a miraculous turn of affairs: the glory of the Lord appears. Thus it appeared as Paul went to Damascus; when Gustavus Adolphus came to Germany; when William of Orange went to England. It is not stated how in the present case it displayed itself to the whole people; how a dread of God developed within the Tabernacle as the entire crowd pressed to the Tabernacle door to profane the sanctuary.

The word of Jehovah: Separate yourselves from among this congregation that I may consume them, Numbers 16:21 sqq, was probably manifested to the people only by their seeing Moses and Aaron (likely within the Tabernacle) fall on their faces in prayer. Both act as intercessors and mediators for the erring people. Ah, great God (El), thou God of the spirits of all flesh, what may that mean? Art Thou not now their Jehovah, still Thou art the almighty God, that rules over the spirits according to their peculiarity, according to the different measures of their guilt and innocence, even if as flesh they appear in a compact mass. As the God that judges the spirits, that looks on the heart, He cannot treat all alike in a deceived people. According to Baumgarten the expression means the same as God of gods; according to Keil, it designates the spirits as creatures; according to Knobel: Author and Lord of all life. The intercession runs: the one Prayer of Manasseh, he may have sinned, wilt Thou on this account burst out on the whole congregation? With this the one man is of course surrendered to the righteous punishment of God; yet it cannot for that release the whole congregation, but all will depend on who is hardened and who not when the separation is called for between the congregation and the guilty man.

Speak unto the congregation, etc., Numbers 16:21 sqq. From this point the representation becomes difficult. It is assumed that the tents of the Levites did not lie far from those of the Reubenites, Dathan and Abiram. But from what follows it appears that we are to understand a distinction between the Korah faction, or those sacrificing before the Tabernacle, and the faction of Dathan and Abiram, an itio in partes, as indeed further on is accomplished a twofold judgment. Then the first direction reads, verse Numbers 24 : take your stand high up (far enough off) making a circuit of the tents Korah, Dathan, Abiram. In this appears already the idea of the abyss in the earth developed further on. And now there begins a flow of the people from the Tabernacle toward the dwelling of Korah, Dathan and Abiram. We leave at the Tabernacle the men burning incense, but Moses goes now to the tents of Dathan and Abiram. At the Tabernacle the Levites and the250 censers have apparently come by their rights; now also the Reubenites must be distinguished according to their claims. Korah, too, must follow this main current, which is signified when it is stated that Moses and the elders went in advance. [The omission of express mention of Korah in Numbers 16:27; Numbers 16:32, gives reason for supposing he remained at the Tabernacle.—Tr.]. When the people had stationed themselves, making a circuit of the tents, a position that seemed to prepare for paying homage, then the second direction to the people follows: Depart, I pray you, from the tents of these wicked men, etc. A ban is pronounced upon them, they shall perish for their sin. Meanwhile Dathan and Abiram, with their families, still stand in the door of their tent as if they expected that homage would be done them. There-upon Moses announces the decisive sign that was to attest his call ( Numbers 16:28). [Dr. Lange paints into this scene too much of what he calls irony. Nothing in the simple account justifies this idea of a mockery, of seeming to set up the250 Levites as the objects of priestly homage, and then, in their turn, the Reubenites as the objects of princely homage, while Moses himself leads the farce by setting the people around in a circuit, the whole to be turned, in the catastrophe, into a trap for the awful destruction of these parties. Touch nothing of theirs, lest ye be swept away in all their sins, shows no pretence of homage, but directly the reverse. Princes do not stand in the door of their tent with their families, even to the little babes, when they would receive homage. This was simply the posture of looking on as passive spectators of their own desertion.—Tr.].

If all goes on as usual with these men, so that they die a common death and thus meet the universal fate of men, then the LORD hath not sent me, Numbers 16:29. Then the contrary condition is expressed in a manner that is quite significant: but if the Lord makes something altogether creative, new (בְּרִיאָה יִבְרָא), as it is further defined, then ye shall know that (with a happy turn of expression) these people have rejected Jehovah, i.e., not me, therefore, as this statement quite reminds us of Numbers 16:11 : ye conspire against Jehovah—what is Aaron? Blessed men whose guilelessness gave them this assurance, that it was God’s affair that was attacked in them ( John 20:23)! How basely this assurance has been abused by hierarchs ancient and modern! But here it proceeds from the testimony of the Spirit of God. The word: if Jehovah shall do something creative, designates the miracle proper. For the miracle is something out and out new in an old familiar sphere of life; a new word as a prophecy ( Isaiah 42:9), a new fact as a miracle in the narrower sense ( Jeremiah 31:22), a new covenant as the unity of the new word and of the new fact ( Jeremiah 31:31), which is celebrated on to eternity in a new Song of Solomon, and, in respect to matter and form ( Luke 5:38) proves itself to be the new principle and the impelling power of the world’s renovation ( Revelation 21:5), and also forms the reason for the new life and the new name ( Isaiah 62:2). The new fact that Moses announces will be a miracle of punishment: the earth will open her mouth and swallow the rebels alive.—And so it happened; a sudden caving in of the ground swallowed the entire space where the rebels were. The surrounding circle of the people, among whom we are to suppose were the sons of Korah, draws back with terror. It is worthy of note that here, too, the terror of the people (as attritio) has no sort of religious manifestation as its consequence. While here the earth swallowed up the greater part of the conspiracy, which is properly designated as that of Korah, in the group of false priests that were offering incense there broke out a fire from the Lord that destroyed them; as in their time Nadab and Abihu were destroyed by fire. Fire from heaven devours the men that committed sacrilege on the true priesthood, on the fire of the Spirit; but under the rebels against the God-ordained earthly power the ground under foot caves in. Moses, however, appears here, too, as the man whose wonderful presentiment becomes a miraculous prophecy by the Spirit of revelation. The discrepancies that Knobel has tried to find in this section Keil clears up.

Footnotes:

FN#1 - conspired [?]

FN#2 - congregation.

FN#3 - called of the assembly.

FN#4 - Heb. It is much for you.

FN#5 - Heb. It is much for you.

FN#6 - Is it too small a thing?

FN#7 - And they said.

FN#8 - Heb. bore out.

FN#9 - meal-offering.

FN#10 - at.

FN#11 - Tent of Meeting.

FN#12 - and

FN#13 - swept away.

FN#14 - that it is not of.

FN#15 - Heb. bore out.

FN#16 - Heb. as every man dieth.

FN#17 - Heb. create a creation.

FN#18 - underworld [the Sheol.]

FN#19 - blasphemed.

FN#20 - assembly.


Verses 36-50

B.—THE MONUMENT OF THE DIVINE JUDGMENT, AND ON THE OTHER HAND THE MURMURING CONGREGATION

Numbers 16:36-50 (Heb. Text Numbers 17:1-13).

36And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, 37Speak unto Eleazar the son of Aaron the priest, that he take up the censers out of the burning, and scatter thou the fire [FN21]yonder; for they are hallowed 38 The censers of these sinners against their own souls, let them make them broad plates for a covering of the altar: for they offered them before the Lord, therefore they are hallowed: and they shall be a sign unto the children of Israel 39 And Eleazar the priest took the brazen censers, [FN22]wherewith they that were burnt had offered; and they were made broad plates for 40a covering of the altar: To be a memorial unto the children of Israel, that no stranger, which is not of the seed of Aaron, come near to [FN23]offer incense before the Lord; [FN24]that he be not as Korah, and as his company: as the Lord said to him by the hand of Moses.

41But on the morrow all the congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron, saying, Ye have killed the people of the Lord 42 And it came to pass, when the congregation was gathered against Moses and against Aaron, that they looked toward the [FN25]tabernacle of the congregation: and, behold, the cloud covered it, and the glory of the Lord appeared 43 And Moses and Aaron came before the etabernacle of the congregation.

44And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, 45Get you up from among this congregation, that I may consume them as in a moment. And they fell upon their faces.

46And Moses said unto Aaron, Take [FN26]a censer, and put fire therein from off the altar, and put on incense, and [FN27]go quickly unto the congregation, and make [FN28]an atonement for them: for there is wrath gone out from the Lord; the plague is begun 47 And Aaron took as Moses commanded, and ran into the midst of the [FN29]congregation; and, behold, the plague was begun among the people: and he put on incense, and made [FN30]an atonement for the people 48 And he stood between the dead and the living; and the plague was stayed 49 Now they that died [FN31]in the plague were fourteen thousand and seven hundred, besides them that died about the matter of Korah 50 And Aaron returned unto Moses unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation: and the plague was stayed.

EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL

The directions to Eleazar, the son and successor of Aaron, Numbers 16:36-40. To him is committed the place of burning in front of the Tabernacle. The fire that is still there Isaiah, as something profane, to be scattered away off and thus destroyed. The censers, however, have been sanctified, not by their having been brought near to the sanctuary, but by the judgment on the sinners, who sinned against their souls and forfeited their lives. Hence the censers must be gathered out of the burning and be used as plates to cover the altar of burnt-offerings. This would be a monument to the people to warn them of the judgment of God. It was done accordingly.

The murmuring congregation, Numbers 16:41-50. There is presented to us here a very remarkable psychological phenomenon. First, there arises a murmuring in the whole congregation against Moses and Aaron, that comes even to their ears: Ye have killed the people of the LORD, 41. At first, therefore, their faith in the sanctity of the fanatics continued, and they went on believing that they were the real people of God, even after the great penal judgment. A similar obduracy and blindness appears also after the judgment on the priests of Baal, after the destruction of Jerusalem, after the Thirty Years’ war, as the blame of the last is laid on the Protestants. But how could Moses be blamed for the extraordinary penal judgment, especially when Hebrews, on the contrary, had prayed for the preservation of the people excepting Korah? Clearly they must have assumed, either that Moses foresaw the natural conditions of the judgment, say the conflagration proceeding from the burning of incense and the earthquake occasioned along with it, or that he employed magic arts to bring about the calamities. In a word, here superstitious belief in a fanatical idol prevails against the most convincing facts; history is given up for the sake of the delusive image of a would-be idea. And in fact so decidedly is this the case that the congregation make a faction against Moses and Aaron before the Tabernacle. This time the glory of the Lord spreads a cloud of smoke that covers the whole Tabernacle, and behind which disappear from the people the hard-pressed men of God. The meaning of this is: they shall raise themselves (הֵרֹמוּ) out of this congregation and above it, Jehovah will exterminate this apparently obdurate congregation. The men fall on their faces before the majesty of Jehovah, but an intercession is no more audible (see 1 John 5:16). Rather Moses recognizes that the wrath (קֶצֶף, the forth-bursting wrath) of God, as the real source of all mortal judgments ( Psalm 90), has begun to pour out on the congregation, that outside, therefore, the decreed plague of sudden death (נֶגֵף) had begun. But this time Aaron must intercede as high-priest, and make atonement for the congregation with incense as the symbol of intercession. Thus he must hasten out with the censer into the midst of the congregation. He places himself, burning incense, between the dead and the living; a grand position, rich in symbolical significance. Thus the plague is shut off, interned (אָצַר).

The250 censers of the fanatics effected nothing but deadly fatality; the one censer of the true high-priest saves life, conquers death by making a separation between the living and the dead (an antithesis brought out by Kurtz)! It is true that14,700 had already fallen, apart from the destruction of the faction of Korah. The smoking incense of the high-priest’s atonement had here no doubt the same significance that the Brazen Serpent had later (21). It Isaiah, therefore, misleading when Keil affirms: the power and efficacy of it did not depend on the inwardness and efficacy of the subjective faith, but had a firm foundation in the objective power of the divine institution. That verges on the opus operatum, and the question arises: is not subjective faith reckoned along with the objective institution?

According to Keil, the plague consisted probably in a sudden falling dead, as in the case of a pest that breaks out with extreme violence: “not that we should regard it simply as a plague.” But is not also a plague a divine fatality? Of course, after the awful reaction against the penal judgments of God, there must have set in an equally awful reaction of conscience, as in the case of the death of Ananias and Sapphira. The truth of the high-priestly office was of course mightily confirmed by this atonement.

HOMILETICAL HINTS

on all of 16

The rebellion of Korah. The nature of the spirit of faction1) A great common antipathy against the spirit and the law of the rightfully existing order2) An agitation of ambitious heads3) A coalition of egotistic and opposing interests4) A mutinous working up of the masses. The spiritualism of the Levites in league with the legitimism of the Reubenites and the anarchical lusts of the people. The fanatically anticipated priesthood. A certain disposition of the race of Korah to inspiration appeared in later times through the sons of Korah in the Korahitic poets and leaders of song. On who drew back, the sons of Korah who refused to join in: praise of circumspection and reflection, especially in times of seductive excitement. Moses agitated yet steadfast. How, after his words of reproof to Korah, he seemed to take the position of the opponents and thereby brought about their judgment. The double form of the judgment. The stiff-necked, blind adhesion of the congregation to their betrayers, their aggravated complicity. The great fatality impending over the congregation that was persisting in its blindness, and the atoning priest. The smoke of the censer was the visible image of the compassionate and forgiving intercession. Aaron between the dead and the living, or the most beautiful and exalted moment in his life as priest.

Footnotes:

FN#21 - away off.

FN#22 - which.

FN#23 - burn.

FN#24 - and that.

FN#25 - Tent of Meeting.

FN#26 - the.

FN#27 - bring it.

FN#28 - omit an.

FN#29 - assembly.

FN#30 - omit an.

FN#31 - by.

 


Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition available at BibleSupport.com. Public Domain.

Bibliography Information
Lange, Johann Peter. "Commentary on Numbers 16:4". "Commentary on the Holy Scriptures: Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/lcc/numbers-16.html. 1857-84.

Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, June 26th, 2019
the Week of Proper 7 / Ordinary 12
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