Numbers

<42012E> 89

J. N. Darby.

(Notes and Comments Vol. 2.)

Numbers 3

- 25. The door of the tabernacle of the congregation, i.e., the entrance of the court to get at the tabernacle. The altar is elsewhere said to be at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, there only, the people came. The laver was only priestly washing.

- 42, 43. Those only, I apprehend, who were as such in their fathers' houses unmarried.

- 46. As regards the change of number in Levites and first-born - Israel was numbered the first day of the second month, the people started on the twentieth, and as far as appears, the numbering of the Levites was the very next thing to the numbering of Israel, and of course that numbering was taken. Certainly many things passed between the numbering of Israel and the twentieth day when the camp moved.

Numbers 4

- 3. Host, tzava, as in verses 23, 30, etc.; see Exodus 38:8, and 1 Samuel 2:22, tza-va (to assemble by troops); but in Numbers 8:25, it should be "service" as in verse 23 of this chapter.

- 14, for "censers" read "shovels" or "pans," it is from kha-thah (to remove), as ya-im (shovels) from ya-ga to take away. Which was shovel and which was pan I cannot say, but I apprehend the first were shovels, and the second pans, from the analogy of the word.

NOTE. - The laver is not found in the vessels carried in the desert, and covered with different cloths, and the reason is, I think, evident, and confirms the sense I judge to be that of these ordinances. The laver, though a means of approach, was no manifestation of the divine character which produced a corresponding result in the believer; it was merely a means of the purification of man needed in his drawing nigh to God.

Numbers 6

I take it this chapter applies properly to Israel. The remnant even, though not wilfully, is under the sin of the dead, and must own this to begin again; his first separation is all lost. This has been done by faith in those that owned, as in Acts 2, their guilt in it - they are separate, but the time of separation is not closed, nor the time to drink wine begun. The remnant at the end will enter into this in a peculiar manner, and through deep affliction, because of their long infidelity; still they will have learned their entire dependence on the Lord, and, in the way of repentance, the death of Christ, after long remaining unclean. They will be anew separated to God; when all that is closed, they will have their proper liberty, strength and joy in communion and power. Hence, with this is connected the blessing through the High Priest and His sons at the close of the chapter - Christ, Head of his own family is introduced in that character, as bringing the blessing of Jehovah on Israel, "They shall put."

90 The hair is sign of neglect of self for the Lord, and dependence on Him - power on the head, hence a sign of subjection in him that wears it, but subjection in devoted abstraction from self. Christ will drink the wine with them; it will not then be dependence by faith, the energy of faith in an absent Lord, restraint on self, though power through grace may accompany this strength made perfect in weakness.

- 27. This closes a division of the book. The people and camp are numbered and formed, their purity, and that even in consecration to the Lord, secured.

Numbers 8

Up to the end of this chapter is evidently the establishment of Israel as the people consecrated to God for the journey, and the type of the Levites as having service, but service dependent on the priesthood.

Numbers 9

This chapter presents the case of consecration, not of will, in an individual case hindering the bond of union with the congregation where God was; withal the presence of God for direction in the journey, to stop, to go on, or to abide.

91 Numbers 10

- 11 and 12. On the twentieth day of the second month they leave Sinai and rest in Paran.

- 13. From this verse to chapter 12:16 is in the journey; it is all we have of detail in journey, for there, in Kadesh in Paran, they refuse to go up to possess. They are ordered to turn to the wilderness by the Red Sea, and then go up presumptuously and are discomfited. All that is said of the journey is in Deuteronomy 2:1, "we compassed Mount Seir many days." There were thirty-eight years from Kadesh to the brook Zered; Deut. 2:14. They had been a good while in Kadesh before the Amorites discomfited them; the spies were forty days absent after; after the twentieth day of the second month they had gone to Kibroth Hattaavah Hazeroth, from thence they came to Paran; on the return of the spies they were at Kadesh. Chapters 11 and 12 are in connection with this chapter in the journey; in chapter 13 comes the realisation of promise in hope, and chapter 14 closes completely this portion of the book of Numbers.

The chapter before us is the order of march, different already from what had been instituted, and with more grace also; as chapters 11 and 12 are the failure in the journey, weariness, complaint, discontent and lusting, and then the prophet and priest rising up against the royalty of Him who is face to face with God, Aaron alone as priest making intercession. Thus the Church is in this guilt in refusing the supremacy of Christ as King taking sovereignly in grace whom He will. This is especially against Christ in grace, for this principle is also presented, that Moses, type of Christ in sovereignty and proximity to God, was also type of sovereign grace - he had married an Ethiopian woman. Here the Lord is, where He was with Moses in grace when Israel fell, without the camp, but then He is with Aaron and Miriam in judgment, who claim grace to exalt themselves. Miriam, who is in the position of testimony, for such is the place as prophetess, is covered with sin.

- 36. Here we have another division of the book; the freewill offerings, and charge of the Lord, and the journeying - the two parts of the wilderness life. But the ark went sovereignly forth.

92 Numbers 11

Note, the spirit of Moses had got away from God, not only he says, "How can I bear this people," but when the Lord says "You have despised the Lord among you," Moses says immediately The people among whom I am." All return to the world in heart is really slighting the redemption which has delivered us out of it; but what is really important is this, that Moses as well as the people shows this want of confidence - the thought of want of power in God. God shows that there was not merely in Himself, but in the midst of them, the power in abundance which they had not faith on the one hand to trust, on the other to exercise, for, in order to governing and leading up the people, the Lord takes of the spirit which was on Moses and puts it on seventy elders, who should effect with him this task, and to draw the attention of the whole camp, for Joshua knew of it by the display of power in the midst of it. Such is unbelief!

Numbers 12

How deep the instruction in this chapter! "The Lord heard" - if we knew always how to leave it to Him! "The man Moses was meek" (poor in spirit) "above all the men on the face of the earth" - he left it all there - "The Lord heard." It is all beautiful.

- 10. The Lord, so to speak, spat in her face - how terrible! Yet there was much grace mixed with it all.

- 11. Miriam comes first in speaking against Moses (verse 1) - Aaron is the first to confess, and owns his own fault with her in it. It is the same word in Deuteronomy 8:2, "he humbled them and proved them, to know what was in their hearts."

Numbers 14

This chapter is the revolt of the people despising the pleasant land, the fear of the difficulties setting aside faith, and in consequence producing a disparaging report of the land itself - they were gathered together against the Lord.

Besides the general instruction, I have this to remark that Caleb just brings in what the rest all leave out - the Lord; and then, note, the effect is the heavenly good and joyful blessing is full before his mind - it is a good land, and the difficulties which absorbed the others disappear. "They are bread for us: their defence is departed from them, the Lord is with us: fear them not." Blessings and heavenly joys cannot sustain faith when the Lord is not looked to. The grapes of Eshcol were forgotten, as though they were not, for the others, and if faith be not in exercise, how should heavenly things be seen?

93 Note too in Exodus 3, we have full grace - here government. There Abraham, Isaac, Israel; hence "My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest," and as we have often noted, the ground of consuming, grace and power comes in, the ground of looking for God to be with us, for He does not impute, but is with us against the sin. Here it is the principles of government there announced, not original absolute grace; hence there is government, judging, chastening. The rest, as far as I am aware, I have noticed elsewhere. But what perverseness, that while they forget the Lord entirely as to the path and difficulties of faith, they remember how to charge Him with bringing them into their present condition when they are discontented with it.

- 32. Shall pasture - be nomads.

- 34. Not "my breach of promise," but my turning against them, my hostility - t'nuati (my hostility, my alteration) only found here and in Job 33:10, "He findeth occasions against me." They would learn what it was to have God thus dealing in anger with them. It is to be in a position which brings anger and judgment from God; "My turning away and being hostile to them" is "You shall experience what it is to have Me against you."

- 44, presumed, i.e., proudly of their own will, see Deuteronomy 1:41.

Numbers 15

Here we have grace which after all secures the land and joy and communion therein, the stranger being also admitted to this; error supposed when in enjoyment of the promises and atonement; presumptuous sin condemned; the memorial of the fringe of blue, the marks of heavenly-mindedness in communion, which recalls the commandment and gives force in the conscience to the first deliverance. Blue was next the gold always in the tabernacle.

94 Note how after the various forms of rebelliousness or unbelief, complaining, lusting, self-righteous exaltation of prophetess and priest against the king (who held immediate intercourse with the Lord) and despising the promise, the absolute certainty of the promise in grace, comes in before the apostasy of Kore, in which the perishing comes. After this, it is brought out that priestly grace alone - Aaron's rod before and laid up by the tabernacle of witness from which the righteous judgment had come forth on Kore - could take away the murmuring and lead them through the wilderness. The special place and privilege too of priesthood then comes out most instructively, and here alone, chapter 18:10, is eating in the most holy place spoken of, which must be communicatively from office; I cannot think it is among the most holy things.

The order of these chapters is very interesting.

- 15. Hak-ka-hal (as for the congregation). Does this make the sojourner a part of the congregation?

- 23. From the day that the Lord commanded (began to command) and onward to your generations.

Numbers 16

Here we have Levites, ministers of service, who will be priests between God and the people, and the famous men who rebel against the authority of Moses. The direct judgment consumes these, and the fire of the sanctuary they would approach consumes them. Korah acted on all the congregation, but Moses in judgment, and Aaron in intercession afterwards, when their hearts rise against the judgment or Moses as cause of it, preserve the people. The supremacy of Christ as Priest is established as being near to God, but thereon the priests, and He especially in the day of atonement, but the priests every day being thus brought nigh, have to bear the iniquity of the sanctuary. This is an important principle, it is not sin against the commandment of the law, but the iniquity of the sanctuary; but the communion of the sanctuary, chapter 18:10, is theirs, and everything that the Lord takes as His, but this as priests.

95 Remark how for the history of Korah is a point by itself, the coming into the land being fully assured in grace, at the end of the failures in faith of Israel, in the previous chapter. Korah, etc., is positive rebellion against the authority of God in the royalty and priesthood.

Note the contrast between Aaron's formal self-exaltation along with Miriam against grace, sovereign grace, and God's exaltation of the priestly position as alone holding the burden and enjoying the communion and God's food of the sanctuary - all was polluted to all unless cleansed by this consecration; chap. 18:32. Thus the world, alas! through the Church firstfruits.

Note prophecy and priesthood never reach the place of sovereign grace even in the Church. The Church's own place is in Moses marrying the Ethiopian, and face to face with God, because it enters into the mind of God where Christ is.

Numbers 18

Note the difference of priestly and family communion, all depending on Aaron in verses 9, 10 and 11-13.

Note too, that the first three verses of Leviticus 2 are the ordinary meat-offering, from verse 4 the baked meat-offering - the latter dry, or mingled with oil, was for all the males of the family - the baked ones entirely the priest's that offered it; one was isolated offering in Christ alone, the other was general Church communion.

Note, in passing, the wave-breast was for Aaron and his sons; the heave-shoulder for the offering priest. This, however, would seem to be only in the case of the peace-offerings; the trespass-offerings and sin-offerings were for the males only, the heave- and wave-offerings for all the family, see also Leviticus 10:14. However, in heave-offerings there seem to be more decided consecration, not for service as presented merely but entirely given up; the Levites were a wave-offering. The heave-offering was an offering of gift, save the heave-shoulder; the heave-offering of dough, Numbers 15:19-21. Leviticus 7:14, I apprehend, must be one of the unleavened cakes.

The wave-offering seems rather presented to the Lord, and then to subsist for whatever service or use; the heave-offering to have been more offered to the Lord. It is a common word for everything offered to God and given up, so to speak, to Him.

96 Numbers 19

We have here the provision for defilement by sin, the principle of death in the desert, by death accomplished - long since applied by the power of the Holy Ghost.

This chapter is the restoration of worship. And so it is as to the Spirit, it is not forgiveness as acceptance, but a needed process in which the soul, and defilement on it, is brought sensibly connected with Christ's death by the power of the Spirit to be able first to worship, and then to serve.

It is well to take first the offering in itself in connection with Jehovah and then its application.

In the case of the red heifer the Lord speaks to Moses and Aaron; several are so. Moses receives what is necessary for God as such - the law between Him and man. When Aaron comes in, i.e., is addressed by God as in already, of course it refers to God, but it is priestly service, where we have to say to God. The red heifer was both. Intercourse with God refers to His holy nature (1 John 1) - compare Joshua 5:15, and the bush - as much as reconciliation, but still this is supposed in it. Here the blood was where the people met God, the efficacy of the great day of atonement is supposed, the individual is restored. Where he meets God, the perfect and abiding efficacy of the blood always is. It is purely a sin-offering all burnt without the camp. There was no imputation, the ashes proved that all that was settled long ago, but the man could not come to the tabernacle, though the blood was there. His communion and worship were interrupted; the sense of the sin, according to the death of Christ, was brought upon Him by the Spirit and Word. Hence the address was to Moses and Aaron; it was necessary according to what God was, but it was also restoration to one who was defiled, the atonement being a settled thing. It was not a simply priestly service. Then it would have been "the priest shall take," etc. Moses and Aaron give the heifer to Eleazar, he represented Aaron, but Aaron received the command, to give it its true and full character. The sprinkling with the water was by any clean person, not a priestly act, but none but a priest could take the blood. It refers to the wilderness, our path here, hence does not go within the veil, though, as burnt outside the camp, having all the efficacy of that which did, based itself on it, only applied to the journeying state, to man with God, not abstractedly to God in His nature. It is the High Priest, but as such, in atonement, he must for the full character of it go within the veil, but that is not the point here. It is a high priestly service, but refers to the administrative restoration in our walk here. Hence we have Eleazar to represent Aaron, but Aaron receives the command; it is not, or only as restoring relation with it as far as the people could go, sanctuary work. That was Aaron's part, separate from sinners, made higher than the heavens. It is high-priestly, but not the High Priest's proper place. That meets the eye of God, and represents the people and is perfect once for all. The command to Moses and Aaron meets this, but the work itself, while based on a perfect sin-offering is journeying restoration, based on what is perfect, but applied administratively to restore the man's cleanness, in order to come.

97 We have to consider here the analogy of our walk down here under the government of God, and Israel's place. Peter's epistle connects these two. Query, does Israel, in the millennium even, go further? I suppose not. His place then does rest on Christ having carried the blood within, but his relationship is at the door; they had in the fullest way touched death in crucifying Christ, even if it were atoned for.

The red heifer gives us a wonderful picture of God's estimate of sin in respect not of judgment but of holiness and any defilement. Its starting point and basis is the blood sprinkled seven times where the people met God, but showed that that had been wholly settled. Further the great day of atonement is supposed; there the blood was within the veil, so that God had been perfectly glorified as to sin, and the sins also put away. All that was a settled point, and for the approach of the people the basis laid in the seven times sprinkled blood; the question of personal state and defilement hindering communion remained, and to this the ashes of the red heifer applied. What I here note is, how in this respect, defilement and communion, the least defilement is intolerable to God. Every one that touched was unclean, the priest, the man that gathered the ashes, that sprinkled the water, all that was exposed in the house, the man that touched. Then I have the measure of uncleanness, the death of Christ, the Spirit and the Word, for the water is the Word in the power of the Spirit; the ashes were there, proof that sin as such before God, imputable guilt, was all consumed in the death of Christ, but it was measured by that in the heart. It was God's measurement, the true one of it, the Word discerns the thoughts and intents of the heart, as the eye of God - whatever is not of the life of Christ in us grieves the Holy Spirit.

98 We know, by the ashes, that the sin was all consumed and put away, and that enables us to estimate it as a question of holiness and our state. Thus the death of Christ, sin against His holy grace, the Spirit and the Word, are the measure of sin to the heart, but as we learn first its evil, we learn grace is above the evil and communion is restored - we judge ourselves, not having to be judged for it, and then return into deeper sense of the sunshine of God's favour.

But there is more; the glory of the world, all nature was cast into the burning of the heifer, and, when the water is applied to our souls, all this is gone and we are simply with the sole state of the soul in question with God. There is a natural life in which we live from day to day, even where rightly; here the soul is alone, such as it is, with God, according to what He is - revealed in the Cross, by the Spirit and the Word - and nothing else there. This makes it an absolute searching out, at least as to all that is then in question, as to its then state. We are manifested to God, and there is nothing to veil it, or interrupt the direct revelation of God to the soul, alone itself with God, naked and open to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do. It is wonderful how there we are in the inner world, and not in the vain show of the fashion of this world which passes away.

Note, the Levites were not washed but only sprinkled. The only other case of the use of the word is the red heifer and Ezekiel from niddah (separation) chapter 36. Perhaps it is because it is only service as offered in life, and not dying and renewal or new nature and life in order to be oneself with God, and that before Himself in heavenly places. The priests were washed.

99 Numbers 20

Moses acted not on the grace, but with "his rod" and "we," and was shut out, which note well, blessed as he was. May our souls be subject to His Word, His blessed Word!

- 14. This is not the same as Deuteronomy 2:3. This was a proposal to cross Edom at once, but Edom would not consent, and they wander there a long time; at last God says, "Ye have compassed this mountain long enough."

Numbers 21

- 1. The "when" is wrong here; he heard sometime or other, and when they came into his neighbourhood, he attacked them; see chapter 33:40.

- 13-15. Verses 14, 15 alone present any question. I see no reason why they could not have been written at the time, but my impression is that these two were added when the book was edited. This it surely was, traditionally by Ezra. It may have been by Samuel, or even Jeremiah when found in the days of Josiah, but by divine prophetic care owned by Christ Himself.

These references to Jasher and the book of the wars of the Lord, or legendary songs occur several times. They are appeals to common history as recognising an unexampled wonder, or some alleged right for which their own testimony or faith would not avail - thus Jephthah. It seems to me quite uncertain whether "Is not this written in the book of Jasher" (Joshua 10:13) is by the author of the book of Joshua. It may be prophetically inserted as a witness to the truth of the account, as a phenomenon patent to all. It may have been a series of received history, a compilation so called, containing a notable number of passages in their history, compiled and added to at various times, just as I avow I do not know the date of the phrase in the book of Joshua. It is added as confirmation, and no change of what was originally written. It is even a question with me if the previous part of the verse be from Joshua. 2 Samuel 1:18, clearly comes in parenthetically, whatever its source.

100 Numbers 23

In Balaam's prophecies, the first three are the actual state, the fourth is the future.

The ark taken, and the priestly relationship broken, the royalty substituted fails also. Nehemiah does not attempt the crowning of Zerubbabel, there is no re-establishment of the fallen system, the Gentile slavery is acknowledged. What rested on man's responsibility was gone irreparably; but this did not touch what God had substituted in His own sovereignty to maintain communication with His people according to His own fidelity when they were unfaithful. In Samuel ordinance is there, and Zechariah, Haggai, and Malachi are there as prophets, and though that closed the canon up to John the baptist, yet we have, even at the end, Anna a prophetess who speaks to all who waited for redemption in Israel. Nor did the unfaithfulness of Israel touch the looking of faith to the resources which were in God, nor to the supply of that which was needful for the present exigencies of His people. This gives a clear idea of the position.

The great principle of the Balaamic history is that God was the unsolicited Guardian and Blesser of His people. The machinations of enemies go on, and that unknown to Israel, who consequently seeks nothing from God, but He is active for His people from His own grace to them, and nothing escapes Him. "Who are these men that come to thee?" says God to Balaam. God began as He did with Satan in Job's case, "Hast thou considered my servant Job?" On the other hand, Balak is in entire and all-perverting darkness. First Israel was forbidden to touch Moab, next he says, "He whom thou blessest is blessed, and he whom thou cursest is cursed," and he was seeking to bring the curse on Israel when God had said, "Blessed is he that blesseth thee, and cursed is he that curseth thee," so that he was just bringing it on himself.

This interest that God takes in His people, for Israel knew nothing that was going on, is of the profoundest interest; it was between God and the adversary, see Zechariah 3, not between God and Israel - then He judges evil.

- 15. See chapter 24:1.

- 23. Note here it is said concerning Jacob and Israel, "What hath God wrought?"

- 25. Hatred and unbelief think of circumstances, and Balak, having been frightened by the sight of Israel, seeks in the folly of unbelief to withdraw Balaam from the influence of what he dreaded himself, for unbelief never thinks of the thoughts of the Lord, from whom surely the people was not hidden. His perseverance in seeking the curse enlarged the blessing; it is always thus. He does not know God, and God could not merely repeat the blessing already given, thus it is continually developed.

101 Note, after his justification Israel rises up as a lion, and does not lie down until after having seized the prey. When seen in his beauty, having pillaged the nations, he lies down and who shall stir him up? And note verse 16 (chap. 24) when prophecy is brought out he has the knowledge of the Most High, which is not of in verse 4.

It is interesting to see the terms that Balaam uses; "Jehovah" and "Elohim," and only in the two last prophecies when he did not seek enchantments. In the two first he uses only "Jehovah" and "Elohim"; and mark how in verse 3 "Jehovah will come to meet me," and "Elohim met Balaam," and "Jehovah put a word in Balaam's mouth." "How shall I curse whom God hath not cursed, and how shall I defy whom Jehovah hath not defied?" Verse 16, "And Jehovah met Balaam." . . . "Balak said, what hath Jehovah spoken." . . . "Elohim is not a man." . . . "Jehovah his Elohim is with him." . . . "Elohim brought him out of Egypt." . . . "What hath Elohim wrought." . . . "All that Jehovah speaketh that must I do." All this is clearly Jehovistic, though Elohim is used, because Jehovah is Elohim. So in the next chapter, "And when Balaam saw that it pleased Jehovah to bless Israel," we are here clearly on Jehovistic ground - "then the Spirit of Elohim came upon him, and he heard the words of Elohim, and saw the vision of Shaddai . . . "they are like the lign aloes which Jehovah has planted" - he could not go beyond the commandment of Jehovah. Again in verse 16 we have "heard the words of God, knew the knowledge of the Most High, saw the vision of Shaddai." In this last prophecy which is a continuation without his going to meet again or Jehovah's meeting him, but which is introduced by the commandment of Jehovah, it is the distinct assertion that Jehovah, the Elohim of Israel, took the place of - was Shaddai the Almighty, yea Elion, who would order the whole world as He pleased, and of this Balaam warns Balak; compare Psalm 91, "He that dwelleth in the secret of Elion (Most High) shall abide under the shadow of Shaddai." "I," says Messiah, "will say of Jehovah, He is my refuge, my fortress, my Elohim, in him will I trust," i.e., He takes Jehovah, the God of the Jews, for protection, for the shadow of His wings. Hence He is protected by Almighty power - Shaddai. Hence Israel says, "because thou hast made Jehovah even the Most High" (for He is so, above all Elohim) "my refuge, thy habitation," He would be protected, and then in verse 14 Jehovah owns His knowing His name. Now Balaam shows this prophetically - Jehovah, whose name is all through in question, is Shaddai, is the Most High; Elohim, God Himself wrought for Israel, and there was no enchantment against Him, Jehovah met Balaam and declared Himself Shaddai and Elion in favour of Israel, taking the last name when He was setting the world aright in judgment, as He does in the mouth of Melchizedek, adding, "Possessor of heaven and earth."

102 All this makes clear what I have noticed a hundred times for edification before any controversy, "Jehovah" is the name of relationship taken with Israel, as "Shaddai" with the Patriarchs. No man could have given a name used just as frequently as "Elohim," as unknown in point of fact. But God revealed Himself specifically to the Fathers as "El Shaddai;" and they were to walk in the faith of that name, as Jehovah to Moses and Israel, and they were to walk in the faith of that; to us as Father, and so we are to walk. "I am El Shaddai, walk before me and be thou perfect," "Thou shalt be perfect with Jehovah thy God," "Be ye therefore perfect as your Father who is in heaven is perfect." "So ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty" - Jehovah Shaddai.

Numbers 24

- 3. Terrible thing to have the eyes open when we have no part in what we see. But it is a wonderful scene to see this man forced of God to give unwillingly God's testimony in favour of His people, rebellious and perverse as they were. God insisting on His own mind, a true prophet is in the midst of and reproves the people, a false one is forced by, taken by God above them all, and has God's sovereign mind of grace and purpose above them all; he is not fit to reprove them - that is a holy work. But the scene is wonderful - God's mind all blessing. Compare Deuteronomy 9 for testimony in the camp; and note here it was after all their history.

103  - 16. The second point* is added, and points to the latter days and millennium, when the Most High is the name God takes. But further, the first two prophecies are the present relationship and mind of God towards Israel; Jehovah is there in the power of God, a Deliverer who has taken the people to Himself. That was God's present testimony. But in the third we get by the Spirit, Abraham's God (vv. 4 and 9) and so far that closes it - Jehovah their God is God; but the blessing of the Almighty is there. Then in the fourth the millennium and Christ. In one sense the third closes as to Israel and Elohim Jehovah Shaddai's blessing; in the fourth Elohim the Most High takes up the world, the latter days, and "thy people," and Asshur and the ships of Chittim.

{*In the Hebrew.}

- 17. I should think, certainly from Jeremiah 48:45, that Gesenius is right in his interpretation of kol-b'ney sheth (all the children of Sheth) children of noise, i.e., tumultuous war.

Numbers 26

- 59. For the omission of subject to "bare," see 1 Kings 1:6 and 1 Chronicles 7:14, whatever the difficulty connected with it; compare Exodus 6:16-20. This verse (59) is the greatest difficulty of all as to the counting 430 years of captivity. I do not see that the 430 years of Galatians 3 is so much so, because it must, if strictly taken, refer to Israel's offering, for the covenant was kekuromenen (confirmed), i.e., some forty years after the arrival in Canaan; and the term here "begat to him in Egypt" implies, it would seem, it was one (i.e., Levi himself) who had come down, so that it might have been otherwise. Jacob was one hundred and thirty on coming into Egypt; Gen. 47:9. Joseph was thirty when he stood before Pharaoh. Jacob came down nine years (seven of plenty, two of famine) afterwards. Joseph was about seven when he arrived in Canaan, seventeen when he was sold. Thus Jacob was 10 + 13 + 9 years from his arrival from Padan to his going down to Egypt, i.e., thirty years, i.e., ninety-eight when he left Padan, and about seventy-eight when he went there; he had remained some thirty-eight after Esau's marriage. It is remarkable these late marriages of the first Patriarchs - Isaac was forty and had no child till he was sixty, Abraham none of promise till he was an hundred. Now Judah was about fifteen when he married and had children then. The moment of transition was the end of Jacob's life; he goes down, sixty-six souls of his family. They were to be as heavenly strangers till then, now to multiply for the earth; they could hardly have been had they so multiplied, they must have settled somewhere as Esau. Yet while at ease and princes, they were yet but a few of them and they strangers in the land, and when oppressed and ill-treated they multiplied and grew. In these were God's ways.

104 Numbers 28

- 2. Query as to this, "for my sacrifices made by fire," and compare Leviticus 3.

- 11. It is no doubt here l'ishshay (for my offerings by fire); but "and" is put in. "Bread" here is "food," there lekhem (food, bread); it may not exclude the min'khah (meal-offering), but the main object is the slain victim. See also Leviticus 21:6.

Numbers 32

- 19. Both "yonder side" and "this side," are meever (beyond, from beyond).

Numbers 33

As regards this chapter and Deuteronomy 10, the supposed difficulty is the proof, whatever we judge of the position of Deuteronomy 10, that the writer wrote from a knowledge of facts which hindered his supposing any liability to have his account attacked by difficulties which arose from ignorance - the best proof of real competency and integrity.

First I remark that, after two years, arriving at the mount of the Amorites, they failed in going up and compassed mount Seir many days, thirty-seven years; they went backwards and forwards in this neighbourhood. Now we have three journeys backward and forward from Moseroth or Mosera to the Red Sea - Ezion-gaber point, when at length they turned round to go northward by the south of Seir - and from the Red Sea to Mosera.

105  - 31, etc., they go from Moseroth by Bene-jaakan, Horhagidgad to Ezion-gaber. Thence they go to mount Hor, and Aaron dies. It was in that country that Arad attacked them; his destruction is related between Aaron's death in mount Hor and their journey back again to the Red Sea. So that we have the journey from Moseroth to Ezion-gaber by Benejaakan and Gudgodah or Hor-hagidgad, from Ezion-gaber back to Hor, and, in chapter 21, back from Hor to Ezion-gaber before they turned round to go northward the other side of Edom to Moab.

Mount Hor is a district in the western edge of Edom, for the Israelites "pitched in mount Hor in the edge of Edom" before they turned Edom to go northward; but we have, in compassing Edom, a journey from Mosera to Ezion-gaber, from Ezion-gaber to Hor (the same side of mount Hor - more or less on the same identical route) and from Hor to Eziongaber. Now the first time they pass from Mosera by Benejaakan and Hor-hagidgad, i.e., a part of Hor designated by Gilgal. They returned on their steps to Hor by Kadesh. In Deuteronomy we find them going in the inverse direction, as might be expected on their return going from Bene-jaakan to Moseroth, which thus proves the general course of their journeys must have been towards Hor, for on the return journey we know they were going there at the time Aaron died, so that Moseroth is an encampment in the district and neighbourhood of Hor; from the encampment he went up into the mountain itself to die.

Then in Deuteronomy 10:7, they return, as we have seen they certainly did, by Gudgodah and Jotbatha, which, according to verses 32, 33 of our chapter, is on the road from Mosera to Ezion-gaber, thus: - (see Map overleaf ).[See 42_n&c2a.png] GRAPHIC

The left line through the dots, verses 30-35; the middle line as in verses 36, 37, and Deuteronomy 10. Aaron dies in Mosera in mount Hor where Israel pitched, and would have passed on through Edom but could not; then comes the right hand line. They come back to the Red Sea (chap. 21), pass up the other side of Edom, and cross the Jordan beyond the Dead Sea; now chapter 21 connects itself with chapter 33, compare chapter 21:10 and chapter 33:43.

So that it is a great confirmation of the accuracy of the account, and only shows that Mosera is in the district of Hor, and that it was from this station Aaron went up to die. We have the three journeys positively stated, yet no one would have thought in reading, the two verses alone gave the two journeys, and that they returned on their steps, i.e., from Bene-jaakan to Moseroth, and then back by Gudgodah to Jotbatha. Yet the full accounts of Numbers prove they did, and the places in Deuteronomy are found exactly in the order of going and returning. We have positively in Numbers Mosera to Ezion-gaber, Ezion-gaber to Hor (chap. 33), Hor to the Red Sea, i.e. Ezion-gaber, and this by the stations which in Deuteronomy are mentioned, one in the order going to Mosera, and the two others on leaving Mosera in the order coming from towards Ezion-gaber, which we know to have been from Hor where Aaron died.

107  - 4, 5. Two solutions have occurred to me, each side being 2,000 cubits; but that allows nothing for the size of the city thus: - [See 42_n&c2b.png] GRAPHIC

The other, which I suppose must be the meaning, is verse 4, the pomoerium,* and verse 5 the fields round. In verse 5, the pomoerium is reckoned to the city itself, hence not said from the wall; it was merely mikhutz la-ir (outside the city). The only question would be, if the whole would be only 2,000 cubits, but then there is no mention of the second 1,000 by itself.

{*Pomoerion or pomoerium, a space void of buildings within and without the wall of the city.}