Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Numbers 25:8

and he went after the man of Israel into the tent and pierced both of them through, the man of Israel and the woman, through the body. So the plague on the sons of Israel was checked.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Decision;   Fear of God;   Fellowship;   Israel;   Miscegenation;   Phinehas;   Women;   Zeal, Religious;   Zimri;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Alliance and Society with the Enemies of God;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Balaam;   Idol, Idolatry;   Midianites;   Moabites;   Phinehas;   Simeon;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Balaam;   Midian;   Phinehas;   Priest;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Armour;   Phinehas;   Tent;   Zimri;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Tent;   Zimri;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Crimes and Punishments;   High Priest;   Midian, Midianites;   Numbers, Book of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Alcove;   Beth-Peor;   Moses;   Numbers, Book of;   Pavilion;   Phinehas;   Zimri;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Plague;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Midian, Midianites ;   Phinehas ;   Tent;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Balaam;   Phinehas;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Baal;   Phinehas;   Shittim;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Ba'al,;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Arms;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Peculiarities of the Law of Moses;   On to Canaan;   Moses, the Man of God;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Alcove;   Belly;   Cozbi;   Maw;   Midianitish Woman;   Moses;   Pavilion;   Phinehas;   Plague;   Zimri (1);   Kitto Biblical Cyclopedia - Baal;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Balaam;   Crime;   ;   Judaism;   Medicine;   Phinehas;   Plague;   Sidra;   Simeon, Tribe of;   Zimri;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Thrust both of them through - Inspired undoubtedly by the Spirit of the God of justice to do this act, which can never be a precedent on any common occasion. An act something similar occurs in our own history. In 1381, in the minority of Richard II., a most formidable insurrection took place in Kent and Essex; about 100,000 men, chiefly under the direction of Wat Tyler, seized on London, massacred multitudes of innocent people, and were proceeding to the greatest enormities, when the king requiring a conference in Smithfield with the rebel leader, Sir William Walworth, then mayor of London, provoked at the insolence with which Tyler behaved to his sovereign, knocked him off his horse with his mace, after which he was instantly dispatched. While his partisans were bending their bows to revenge the death of their leader, Richard, then only sixteen years of age, rode up to them, and with great courage and presence of mind thus addressed them: "What, my people, will you kill your king! be not concerned for the death of your leader; follow me, and I will be your general." They were suddenly appeased, and the rebellion terminated. The action of Sir William Walworth was that of a zealot, of essential benefit at the time, and justified only by the pressing exigencies of the case.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/numbers-25.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Into the tent - The inner recess in the tent, fashioned archwise, and appropriated as the sleeping-chamber and women‘s apartment.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/numbers-25.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And he went after the man of Israel into the tent,.... Into which he went with his harlot; the word here used is different from what is commonly used for a tent: Aben Ezra observes that in the Kedarene or Arabic language there is a word near to it, which Bochart, putting the article "al" to it, saysF1"conclave est camerati operis, quo lectus circumdatur", Hierozoic. par. 1. l. 4. c. 8. Colossians 1092. Vid. Schultens Animadv. Philolog. in Job. p. 183. , is "alkobba", from whence is the word "alcove" with us; and Aben Ezra says, there was some little difference between the form of a tent and this, as well as others observeF2Castel. Lex. Heptaglot. Colossians 3261. there was in the matter of it, this being of skins and leather, and the other of hair, boughs of trees, &c. the author of AruchF3Baal Aruch, fol. 133. 4. says, it was short, or narrow above and broad below, and interprets it a place in which whores were put; and so it is used in the TalmudF4T. Bab. Avoda Zara, fol. 17. 2. for a brothel house, and is so translated here by some interpretersF5אל הקבה "in lupanar", V. L. "ad lupanar", Montanus; "in lupanar ipsum", Junius & Tremellius; "in fornicem", Tigurine version. :

and thrust both of them through; with his javelin, spear, or pike:

the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly; by which, it seems, they were killed in the very act of uncleanness; this was an extraordinary action, done by a person of public authority, and under a more than common emotion of spirit, and not to be drawn into an example by persons of a private character:

so the plague was stayed from the children of Israel; which had broke out among them and carried off many; even a disease, the pestilence, according to JosephusF6Ut supra. (Antiqu. l. 4. c. 6. sect. 12.) ; it ceasing upon this fact of Phinehas, shows that that was approved of by the Lord.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/numbers-25.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

the plague — some sudden and widespread mortality.

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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/numbers-25.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And he went after the man of Israel into the tent, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel.

Thrust them thro' — Phineas was himself a man in great authority, and did this after the command given by Moses to the rulers to slay these transgressors, and in the very sight, and no doubt by the consent of Moses himself, and also by the special direction of God's spirit.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/numbers-25.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Numbers 25:8 And he went after the man of Israel into the tent, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel.

Ver. 8. And thrust both of them through.] So they died in the flagrancy of their lust; as did likewise one of the Popes, taken in the act, and slain together with his harlot, by the husband of the adulteress. Mention is likewise made by William Malmesbury, of one Walter, bishop of Hereford, A. D. 1060, his offering to force his seamstress; she resisted what she might, but finding him too strong for her, thrust her shears into his belly, and gave him his deathly wound. (a)

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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/numbers-25.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Numbers 25:8. And he went, &c.— And he went after the man of Israel into the bed-room,—[apartment,—alcove] and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel. and the woman, in her bed-room. Vid. Nold. 62. 821.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/numbers-25.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Into the tent, or brothel house; for since they gave way to such lewd practices, no doubt they singled out convenient places for their wickedness.

Thrust both of them through; which is no warrant for private persons to take upon them the execution of justice upon any, though the greatest malefactors, because Phinehas was himself a man in great authority and power, and did this after the command given by Moses to the rulers to slay these transgressors, and in the very sight, and no doubt by the consent of Moses himself, and also by the special instinct and direction of God’s Spirit.

Through her belly, or in her brothel house, for the word is the same before used, and translated tent, and it may be called hers, because she chose or used that place for her wicked purposes, as the rest doubtless hid other places of like nature. The

plague; either the pestilence, or some other sudden and grievous mortality.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/numbers-25.html. 1685.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Numbers 25:8. Thrust them both through — Phinehas was himself a man in great authority, and did this after the command given by Moses to the rulers to slay these transgressors, and in the very sight, and no doubt by the consent of Moses himself, and also by the special direction of God’s Spirit.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/numbers-25.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Parts. Ovid says, Lethifer ille locus, "That place where wounds so often deadly prove." Hebrew kubbak, means brothel-house just before, a bead, vault, cistern, belly, &c. Septuagint translate, "through her womb." The plague, inflicted by God, instantly ceased, to shew the divine approbation of this exemplary punishment, and all were so much filled with terror and repentance, that it was no longer necessary for the judges to sentence any more to death. An effectual stop was also put to the spreading disorder of both carnal and spiritual fornication. (Haydock)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/numbers-25.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

tent. Hebrew. kubbah, a high and vaulted pleasure tent, used in the worship of Baal. Occurs only here.

belly. Hebrew. kobah, the part between the ribs, and loins. Occurs only here, for the Figure of speech Paronomasia (App-6).

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/numbers-25.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And he went after the man of Israel into the tent, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel.

Went after the man of Israel into the tent, [ haqubaah (Hebrew #6898)] - the alcove, or projection in the posterior part of a tent; a vaulted pleasure-tent, devoted to the impure worship of Baal or Priapus (Gesenius). [Septuagint, eis teen kaminon.]

So the plague was stayed, [ hamageepaah (Hebrew #4046)]. This word, which is rendered plague, has a generic and also a specific meaning. It signifies a divine judgment, in particular, a pestilential disease (cf. Numbers 14:37; Numbers 16:48; Numbers 17:13; Numbers 25:18, etc.), and also an extensive slaughter by the sword, hand, or any cause (1 Samuel 4:17; 2 Samuel 17:9). We understand by its use in this case a sudden and widespread mortality.

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Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/numbers-25.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(8) Into the tent.—The word kubbah (tent, or alcove) occurs only in this place. The reference may be to the inner part of the ordinary tent which was occupied by the women; or it may denote an arched or vaulted tent (probably of skins), which the Israelites had erected whilst joining with the Moabites and Midianites in the lascivious worship of Baal-peor. The LXX. has kaminos, the Vulgate lupanar.

Through her belly.—Or, within her tent. It is thought by some that the word which is here used was originally the same word which occurs in the earlier part of the verse, and which is there rendered tent.

So the plague was stayed . . . —It is probable that the judges were not duly obedient to the command of Moses, and, consequently, that a plague broke out from the Lord upon the people.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/numbers-25.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And he went after the man of Israel into the tent, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel.
thrust
5,11; Psalms 106:29-31
So the plague
16:46-48; 2 Samuel 24:25; 1 Chronicles 21:22
Reciprocal: Exodus 22:20 - sacrificeth;  Numbers 1:23 - GeneralNumbers 16:48 - GeneralNumbers 25:18 - which;  Judges 3:21 - thrust it;  1 Samuel 15:33 - hewed;  2 Samuel 24:21 - the plague;  1 Kings 18:45 - there was;  Proverbs 7:23 - a dart;  Ezekiel 9:5 - Go

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Numbers 25:8". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/numbers-25.html.