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Bible Dictionaries

Fausset's Bible Dictionary

Gershon

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Oldest of Levi's three sons, born apparently before Jacob's going down to Egypt (Genesis 46:11). Kohath and his descendants Moses and Aaron's priestly line eclipsed Gershon's line. Gershon's sons were Libni and Shimei (1 Chronicles 6:17; 1 Chronicles 6:20-21; 1 Chronicles 6:39-43). Some of his descendants took part in the service of the sanctuary (1 Chronicles 23:7-11). Asaph, the famous sacred singer and seer, was one of them. Compare also under Hezekiah (2 Chronicles 29:12). At the Sinai census the males of the sons of Gershon were 7500 (Numbers 3:21-22). The serving men were 2,630 (Numbers 4:38-41). They had charge of the tabernacle, tent, covering, hangings, curtain of the door, and cords (Numbers 3:25-26; Numbers 4:25-26). They had two covered wagons and four oxen for the service (Numbers 7:3; Numbers 7:7-8).

The Merarites had twice as many wagons and oxen. The reason for this unequal division is not expressed; but on turning to Numbers 2 the reason undesignedly appears (an unstudied propriety attesting the truth of the narrative); the Gershonites had the lighter parts to bear, the "curtains," "tabernacle," i.e. the mishkan or great woven cloth consisting of ten breadths, the "tent" of goats' hair cloth, and the "covering" of rams' skins, and badgers (tachash ) skins, the hangings and their cords. (See BADGERS.) But the Merarites had the heavier and more solid framework to bear, the boards, bars, pillars, sockets, pins, their cords and instruments. Their station was "behind the tabernacle westward" (Numbers 3:23); on march they were in the rear of the first three tribes. Thirteen of the Levitical cities were allotted to them; all in the northern tribes, two of them cities of refuge (Joshua 21:27-33; 1 Chronicles 6:62; 1 Chronicles 6:71-76).

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Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew R. Entry for 'Gershon'. Fausset's Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/fbd/g/gershon.html. 1949.

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