|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
33:6-23 The order in which the tribes are here blessed, is not the same as is observed elsewhere. The blessing of Judah may refer to the whole tribe in general, or to David as a type of Christ. Moses largely blesses the tribe of Levi. Acceptance with God is what we should all aim at, and desire, in all our devotions, whether men accept us or not, 2Co 5:9. This prayer is a prophecy, that God will keep up a ministry in his church to the end of time. The tribe of Benjamin had their inheritance close to mount Zion. To be situated near the ordinances, is a precious gift from the Lord, a privilege not to be exchanged for any worldly advantage, or indulgence. We should thankfully receive the earthly blessings sent to us, through the successive seasons. But those good gifts which come down from the Father of lights, through the rising of the Sun of righteousness, and the pouring out of his Spirit like the rain which makes fruitful, are infinitely more precious, as the tokens of his special love. The precious things here prayed for, are figures of spiritual blessing in heavenly things by Christ, the gifts, graces, and comforts of the Spirit. When Moses prays for the good will of Him that dwelt in the bush, he refers to the covenant, on which all our hopes of God's favour must be founded. The providence of God appoints men's habitations, and wisely disposes men to different employments for the public good. Whatever our place and business are, it is our wisdom and duty to apply thereto; and it is happiness to be well pleased therewith. We should not only invite others to the service of God, but abound in it. The blessing of Naphtali. The favour of God is the only favour satisfying to the soul. Those are happy indeed, who have the favour of God; and those shall have it, who reckon that in having it they have enough, and desire no more.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
They shall call the people unto the mountain,.... To the mountain of the house of the sanctuary, as all the three Targums; to the temple built on a mountain, which Moses by a spirit of prophecy foresaw would be, to which the tribes of Zebulun and Issachar would not only come up themselves, though at the more distant parts of the land; but call and urge others, both Israelites and Gentiles, to do the same, partly by their example, and partly by persuasions and arguments; not the tribes of Israel that lay nearest them only, but the Heathens, the Tyrians and Sidonians, on whom they bordered, and the Gentiles in Galilee of the Gentiles, which were neighbours to them; a like instance see in Isaiah 2:2; and perhaps this may have respect to the times of Christ and his apostles, and to their being in those parts where the Gospel was preached, and many people were called, Matthew 4:13,
there they shall offer sacrifices of righteousness; or true sacrifices, as the Targums of Jonathan and Jerusalem, in opposition to illegitimate ones, which were not according to the law, that had blemishes and defects in them, and to such as were gotten by robbery, or in an unlawful way; and may signify all righteous actions and good works done in faith, and from right principles, though not to be depended upon for a justifying righteousness before God; and all spiritual sacrifices, especially the sacrifices of praise for all blessings, and particularly for the righteousness of Christ; and these are to be offered in the church of God, and upon the altar, which sanctifies every gift, and from whence they come up with acceptance to God:
for they shall suck of the abundance of the sea; get a great deal of riches by trading at sea, and therefore under great obligations to offer sacrifices to the Lord, by whom they were prospered:
and of the treasure hid in the sand; as gold and silver, pearls and corals, and the like, extracted from thence; or riches buried there through shipwrecks; or it may design the great wealth and riches they got by glass made of sand, taken out of the river Belus, which washed the coast of the tribe of Zebulun, as many historians relate (z).
(z) Strabo. Geograph. l. 16. p. 521. Plin. Nat. Hist. l. 5. c. 19. Tacit. Hist. l. 5. c. 7.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
19. shall suck of the abundance of the seas, and of treasures hid in the sand—Both tribes should traffic with the Phonicians in gold and silver, pearl and coral, especially in murex, the shellfish that yielded the famous Tyrian dye, and in glass, which was manufactured from the sand of the river Belus, in their immediate neighborhood.
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