Attention!
Partner with StudyLight.org as God uses us to make a difference for those displaced by Russia's war on Ukraine.
Click to donate today!

Bible Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Numbers 4

Overview

Numbers 4:1, The age at which the Levites were to begin to serve, and the duration of the service; Numbers 4:4, The duty of the Kohathites; Numbers 4:16, The charge of Eleazar; Numbers 4:17, The office of the priests; Numbers 4:21, The duty of the Gershonites; Numbers 4:29, of the Merarites; Numbers 4:34, The number of the Kohathites; Numbers 4:38, of the Gershonites Numbers 4:42, and of the Merarites.

Verse 1

Reciprocal: Genesis 46:11 - Levi Exodus 31:6 - that they Numbers 1:47 - General Numbers 4:49 - as the Lord Numbers 7:66 - On the tenth day Numbers 8:1 - General

Verse 2

Numbers 3:19, Numbers 3:27

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:34 - General Joshua 21:10 - General 1 Chronicles 15:2 - None ought to 1 Chronicles 23:3 - the Levites 2 Chronicles 29:12 - Kohathites

Verse 3

thirty years: Numbers 8:24-26, Genesis 41:46, 1 Chronicles 23:3, 1 Chronicles 23:24-27, 1 Chronicles 28:12, 1 Chronicles 28:13, Luke 3:23, 1 Timothy 3:6

enter: 2 Kings 11:4-12, 2 Chronicles 23:1-11, 2 Corinthians 10:3, 2 Corinthians 10:4, Ephesians 6:10-18, 1 Timothy 1:18

to do: Numbers 3:7, Numbers 3:8, Numbers 16:9, 1 Chronicles 6:48, 1 Chronicles 23:4, 1 Chronicles 23:5, 1 Chronicles 23:28-32, 1 Timothy 3:1

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:23 - thirty years Numbers 4:30 - service Numbers 4:35 - General Numbers 4:47 - From thirty Numbers 8:15 - go in 2 Chronicles 31:17 - twenty Ezra 3:8 - twenty years old Ezekiel 1:1 - in the thirtieth

Verse 4

Numbers 4:15, Numbers 4:19, Numbers 4:24, Numbers 4:30, Numbers 3:30, Numbers 3:31, Mark 13:34

Reciprocal: Exodus 39:32 - all the Numbers 7:9 - unto the Numbers 10:21 - the Kohathites 1 Samuel 6:19 - he smote 1 Chronicles 13:2 - the priests Ezra 8:28 - the vessels

Verse 5

And when: Numbers 2:16, Numbers 2:17, Numbers 10:14

Aaron shall come: The law prohibiting any person, except the high priest on one day in the year, to enter into the most holy place, must have admitted an exception while the Israelites were in the wilderness: that exception, therefore, is here expressly made; and the directions given respecting it must be religiously observed, or the service could not be safely performed. While the cloud rested on the tabernacle, the general rule was in force; but when it was removed, then the priests might enter to prepare the sacred vessels for removal. Numbers 4:15, Numbers 3:27-32

they shall: Exodus 26:31-33, Exodus 36:35, Exodus 40:3, Isaiah 25:7, Matthew 27:51, Hebrews 9:3, Hebrews 10:20

and cover: Exodus 25:10-22, Exodus 37:1-9, 2 Samuel 6:2-9

Reciprocal: Exodus 26:14 - a covering Exodus 31:10 - General Exodus 35:19 - The cloths Numbers 1:51 - the Levites 1 Samuel 4:4 - with the ark 1 Samuel 6:19 - he smote 2 Samuel 6:3 - set 1 Chronicles 23:26 - carry Revelation 11:19 - the ark

Verse 6

badgers' skins: This was not the covering of badgers' skins made for the tabernacle, which was carried by the Gershonites - Numbers 4:24, and Numbers 4:25, but one made for the purpose of concealing and sheltering the ark when it was to be carried.

a cloth: Numbers 4:7, Numbers 4:8, Numbers 4:11-13, Exodus 35:19, Exodus 39:1, Exodus 39:41

and shall put: Wesamoo baddaiv, rather, "and adjust the staves thereof;" i.e., dispose them rightly under the covering, that they might be laid on their shoulders: for the staves were never taken out of the rings.

the staves: Exodus 25:13-15, 1 Kings 8:7, 1 Kings 8:8

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:10 - General Numbers 4:13 - General 1 Chronicles 15:15 - bare the ark 2 Chronicles 5:8 - the staves

Verse 7

the table: Exodus 25:23-30, Exodus 37:10-16, Leviticus 24:5-8

cover withal: or, pour out withal

the continual: The Israelites, without doubt, were able to procure corn enough from the adjacent countries, even when in the wilderness, to make the shewbread, and to present the daily meat offerings.

Reciprocal: Exodus 25:29 - the Exodus 25:30 - General Leviticus 24:8 - General Numbers 4:6 - a cloth Numbers 4:8 - General Numbers 4:12 - General Numbers 7:14 - spoon Jeremiah 52:18 - bowls Hosea 9:4 - their bread Zechariah 14:20 - the bowls

Verse 8

Numbers 4:6, Numbers 4:7, Numbers 4:9, Numbers 4:11-13

Reciprocal: Exodus 25:13 - General Joshua 2:18 - scarlet thread Song of Solomon 4:3 - scarlet

Verse 9

Exodus 25:31-39, Exodus 37:17-24, Psalms 119:105, Revelation 1:20, Revelation 2:1

Reciprocal: Exodus 25:38 - the tongs Leviticus 24:4 - the pure Numbers 4:8 - General Numbers 4:12 - General Numbers 4:16 - the office 1 Kings 7:49 - the tongs

Verse 10

Numbers 4:6, Numbers 4:12

Reciprocal: Exodus 26:14 - rams' skins dyed red

Verse 11

Exodus 30:1-19, Exodus 37:25-28, Exodus 39:38, Exodus 40:5, Exodus 40:26, Exodus 40:27

Reciprocal: Exodus 25:13 - General Numbers 4:6 - a cloth Numbers 4:8 - General Numbers 4:13 - General

Verse 12

Numbers 4:7, Numbers 4:9, Numbers 3:8, Exodus 25:9, Exodus 31:10, 2 Kings 25:14, 2 Kings 25:15, 1 Chronicles 9:29, 2 Chronicles 4:11, 2 Chronicles 4:16, 2 Chronicles 4:19, 2 Chronicles 4:22

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:10 - General Numbers 4:13 - General

Verse 13

The embers of the sacred fire seem to have been removed in the grate, which was carried apart from the brazen altar; both being covered from view by purple cloths. Numbers 4:6-9, Numbers 4:11, Numbers 4:12, Exodus 27:3-5, Exodus 39:1, Exodus 39:41, Leviticus 6:12, Leviticus 6:13

Reciprocal: Exodus 27:7 - bear it

Verse 14

all the vessels thereof: Exodus 38:1-7, 2 Chronicles 4:19

basins: or, bowls

Reciprocal: Exodus 25:13 - General Exodus 27:3 - fleshhooks Exodus 27:7 - bear it Exodus 37:4 - staves Leviticus 6:12 - the fire Jeremiah 52:18 - the shovels Zechariah 14:20 - the bowls

Verse 15

after that: Numbers 7:9, Numbers 10:21, Deuteronomy 31:9, Joshua 4:10, 2 Samuel 6:13, 1 Chronicles 15:2, 1 Chronicles 15:15

they shall: Numbers 3:38, Exodus 19:12, 1 Samuel 6:19, 2 Samuel 6:6, 2 Samuel 6:7, 1 Chronicles 13:9, 1 Chronicles 13:10, Hebrews 12:18-29

These things: Numbers 3:30, Numbers 3:31

Reciprocal: Exodus 37:4 - staves Exodus 37:5 - General Numbers 1:50 - thou shalt Numbers 3:8 - General Numbers 4:4 - General Numbers 4:5 - Aaron shall come Numbers 4:20 - they shall Numbers 4:24 - burdens Numbers 4:47 - every one Numbers 4:49 - every one Numbers 18:2 - but thou Numbers 18:3 - neither Deuteronomy 10:8 - bear Joshua 3:3 - the priests 1 Samuel 4:4 - with the ark 2 Samuel 15:24 - bearing 1 Kings 8:3 - the priests took up 1 Chronicles 9:11 - the ruler 1 Chronicles 13:7 - carried the ark 1 Chronicles 15:13 - for that 2 Chronicles 5:4 - the Levites 2 Chronicles 35:3 - not be Revelation 11:19 - the ark

Verse 16

the office: Eleazar himself, perhaps with the other priests, was required to carry the oil for the light, the incense, and the flour for the daily meat offering, and the holy ointment; besides superintending the Levites. It may be supposed, that he himself carried no more of the oil than for present use - see note on Numbers 4:9. Numbers 3:32

the oil: Exodus 25:6, Exodus 27:20, Exodus 27:21, Leviticus 24:2

the sweet: Exodus 30:34-38, Exodus 37:29

the daily: Exodus 29:39-41

the anointing: Exodus 30:23-33

the oversight: Luke 4:18, Acts 20:28, 1 Corinthians 4:1, 1 Timothy 2:5, Hebrews 3:1, Hebrews 3:6, 1 Peter 2:25, 1 Peter 5:2

Reciprocal: 1 Chronicles 9:11 - the ruler 1 Chronicles 9:20 - Phinehas

Verse 18

Eleazar and the priests would be chargeable with the death of the Kohathites, if they failed to give them proper cautions and directions; or permitted them to gaze with irreverence or curiosity upon the holy things, which they might carry, but not see - Numbers 4:20. Numbers 16:32, Numbers 17:10, Numbers 18:5, Exodus 19:21, Leviticus 10:1, Leviticus 10:2, 1 Samuel 6:19, 2 Samuel 6:6, 2 Samuel 6:7, Jeremiah 38:23

Verse 19

the most holy: Numbers 4:4

Reciprocal: Leviticus 16:2 - that he die not Numbers 4:20 - they shall Numbers 4:24 - burdens Numbers 18:3 - only they 2 Samuel 6:6 - put forth 1 Chronicles 15:2 - None ought to Ezra 8:28 - the vessels

Verse 20

they shall: Numbers 4:15, Numbers 4:19, Exodus 19:21, Leviticus 10:2, 1 Samuel 6:19, Hebrews 10:19, Hebrews 10:20, Revelation 11:19

the holy things: Hakkodesh, "the holy," or "sanctuary," i.e., the ark, as the Jews generally understand it; and with good reason, as any one may be convinced, who compares 1 Kings 8:8, with 2 Chronicles 5:9, where that which is called the holy in the former, is called the ark in the latter.

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:18 - General Numbers 18:3 - only they 2 Samuel 6:6 - put forth 1 Chronicles 15:2 - None ought to Ezra 8:28 - the vessels

Verse 21

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:49 - as the Lord

Verse 22

Numbers 3:18, Numbers 3:21, Numbers 3:24

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:41 - General

Verse 23

thirty years: Numbers 4:3

to perform the service: Heb. to war the warfare, Numbers 4:3, Isaiah 63:1-4, Romans 7:14-24, 1 Corinthians 9:7, 2 Corinthians 6:7, 2 Corinthians 10:3-5, Ephesians 6:10-19, Galatians 5:17, Galatians 5:24, 1 Timothy 1:18, 2 Timothy 2:3, 2 Timothy 2:4, 2 Timothy 4:7

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:30 - service Numbers 4:35 - General Numbers 4:47 - From thirty Numbers 8:24 - from twenty Numbers 8:25 - cease waiting upon the service thereof 1 Chronicles 23:3 - the Levites

Verse 24

burdens: or, carriage, Numbers 4:15, Numbers 4:19, Numbers 4:27, Numbers 4:31, Numbers 4:32, Numbers 4:47, Numbers 4:49

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:25 - the charge Numbers 4:6 - badgers' skins Numbers 7:7 - Two wagons Numbers 10:17 - the sons

Verse 25

the curtains: Numbers 3:25, Numbers 3:26, Numbers 7:5-7

the covering: Exodus 26:14

Reciprocal: Exodus 26:2 - curtain Exodus 26:7 - curtains Numbers 1:50 - thou shalt Numbers 4:6 - badgers' skins Numbers 7:7 - sons of Gershon

Verse 26

the hangings: Exodus 27:9

and their cords: Exodus 35:18

Verse 27

appointment: Heb. mouth, The Levites were under the command of the priests. Eleazar exercised this authority in general, as next in succession to Aaron, and he in particular was placed over the Kohathites; while Ithamar, his younger brother, commanded the Gershonites and Merarites - Numbers 4:33. Luke 1:70, 1 Corinthians 11:2

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:16 - word Numbers 3:32 - General Numbers 4:24 - burdens Numbers 20:24 - word Numbers 26:62 - those that

Verse 28

Numbers 4:33, 1 Corinthians 12:5, 1 Corinthians 12:6

Reciprocal: Exodus 38:21 - by the hand Numbers 3:8 - General Numbers 7:8 - four wagons 1 Chronicles 9:11 - the ruler 1 Chronicles 9:20 - Phinehas

Verse 29

Numbers 3:33-35

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:36 - under the custody and charge Numbers 4:45 - General

Verse 30

service: Heb. warfare, Numbers 4:3, Numbers 4:23, Psalms 110:1-7, 1 Timothy 6:11, 1 Timothy 6:12, 2 Timothy 2:4, 2 Timothy 4:7, 2 Timothy 4:8

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:4 - General Numbers 4:35 - General Numbers 4:47 - From thirty 1 Chronicles 23:3 - the Levites

Verse 31

the charge: Numbers 3:36, Numbers 3:37, Numbers 7:8, Numbers 7:9

the boards: Exodus 26:15

Reciprocal: Exodus 26:19 - forty sockets of silver Exodus 26:26 - bars of shittim wood Numbers 4:24 - burdens Numbers 4:49 - every one

Verse 32

and by name: An inventory was taken of every particular, even to the very pins belonging to each part, that nothing might be wanting when the tabernacle was set up.

the instruments: Numbers 3:8, Numbers 7:1, Exodus 25:9, Exodus 38:17, Exodus 38:21, 1 Chronicles 9:29

Reciprocal: Exodus 26:15 - boards Exodus 26:19 - forty sockets of silver Exodus 27:19 - all the pins thereof Numbers 4:24 - burdens Numbers 7:8 - the sons

Verse 33

under the hand: Numbers 4:28, Joshua 3:6, Isaiah 3:6

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:8 - General Numbers 4:27 - appointment 1 Chronicles 9:11 - the ruler 1 Chronicles 9:20 - Phinehas

Verse 34

Numbers 4:2

Reciprocal: 1 Chronicles 23:24 - after the house

Verse 35

Numbers 4:3, Numbers 4:23, Numbers 4:30, Numbers 4:39, Numbers 4:43, Numbers 4:47, Numbers 8:24-26, 1 Chronicles 23:3, 1 Chronicles 23:24, 1 Chronicles 23:26, 1 Chronicles 23:27, 1 Chronicles 28:13, Luke 3:23, 1 Timothy 3:6

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:28 - eight thousand

Verse 36

In the third chapter we have an account of the whole number of the Levites; and here of those only who were able to serve the Lord in the sanctuary. By comparing the two places, we find the number of the effective and ineffective males to stand thus:

Families, Effective Men, Ineffective Men, Totals

Kohathites 2,750 5,850 8,600 Gershonites 2,630 4,870 7,500 Merarites 3,200 3,000 6,200

Thus we find that the whole number of the Levites amounted to 22,300; of whom 8,580 were fit for service and 13,720 unfit, being either too old or too young. What an astonishing number of men, all performing some service by which God was glorified, and the congregation at large benefited!

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:28 - eight thousand Numbers 4:44 - General

Verse 37

Reciprocal: Leviticus 26:46 - by the hand Numbers 3:16 - word Numbers 4:47 - every one Numbers 4:49 - According to the

Verse 38

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:22 - from a month old 2 Chronicles 31:17 - genealogy

Verse 39

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:35 - General Luke 3:23 - thirty

Verse 40

Numbers 3:32

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:44 - General Numbers 7:7 - sons of Gershon

Verse 41

Numbers 4:22

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

Verse 42

Reciprocal: 1 Chronicles 6:47 - Merari 2 Chronicles 31:17 - genealogy

Verse 43

Reciprocal: Numbers 4:35 - General 1 Chronicles 23:3 - the Levites Luke 3:23 - thirty

Verse 44

The family of Merari, though smaller than either of the other families of Levi, yet had a greater number of able men than any of them; for out of 6,200 males of a month old and upwards, we find 3,200 who were neither too young nor too old for the service of the sanctuary; which was more than one-half of their whole number. In this the wisdom and providence of God appear most conspicuously; for the Merarites were charged with the heaviest part of the sanctuary, as the boards, bars, sockets, etc; and though waggons were afterwards provided for them, yet the loading and unloading of the sockets, and other things of great weight, would require much strength, both bodily and numerical. - Compare Numbers 4:36, and Numbers 4:40, with Numbers 3:22, Numbers 3:28, Numbers 3:24. Thus God ever manifests his wisdom, in fitting men for the work to which they are appointed, whether with respect to number or gifts: "For to one is given, by the Spirit, the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge, by the same Spirit; to another faith, by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing, by the same Spirit; to another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues, but all these worketh that one and the self-same Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will." Numbers 3:34, Deuteronomy 33:25, 1 Corinthians 10:13, 1 Corinthians 12:8-12, 2 Corinthians 12:9, 2 Corinthians 12:10

Reciprocal: Exodus 27:6 - staves for the altar

Verse 45

Numbers 4:29

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

Verse 46

Reciprocal: 2 Chronicles 31:17 - genealogy

Verse 47

From thirty: Numbers 4:3, Numbers 4:23, Numbers 4:30, 1 Chronicles 23:3, 1 Chronicles 23:27

every one: Numbers 4:15, Numbers 4:24, Numbers 4:37, Romans 12:6-8, 1 Corinthians 12:4-31

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:39 - and Aaron Numbers 4:35 - General Luke 3:23 - thirty

Verse 48

Numbers 3:39, Matthew 7:14, Matthew 20:16, Matthew 22:15

Reciprocal: Numbers 7:8 - the sons Numbers 26:62 - those that 1 Chronicles 23:3 - thirty and eight

Verse 49

According to the: Numbers 4:37, Numbers 4:41, Numbers 4:45, Numbers 1:54, Numbers 2:33, Numbers 3:51

every one: Numbers 4:15, Numbers 4:24, Numbers 4:31, Isaiah 11:2-4, Isaiah 42:1-7, Isaiah 49:1-8, Romans 12:4-8

as the Lord: Numbers 4:1, Numbers 4:21

Reciprocal: Numbers 3:16 - word Numbers 26:57 - of Gershon Deuteronomy 10:8 - time the Lord 1 Chronicles 6:48 - brethren 1 Chronicles 23:26 - carry Zechariah 12:13 - Levi

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Numbers 4". "Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tsk/numbers-4.html.