Numbers 11:12
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
Did I conceive all these people? Did I give them birth? Why do you tell me to carry them in my arms, as a nurse carries an infant, to the land you promised on oath to their ancestors?

New Living Translation
Did I give birth to them? Did I bring them into the world? Why did you tell me to carry them in my arms like a mother carries a nursing baby? How can I carry them to the land you swore to give their ancestors?

English Standard Version
Did I conceive all this people? Did I give them birth, that you should say to me, ‘Carry them in your bosom, as a nurse carries a nursing child,’ to the land that you swore to give their fathers?

New American Standard Bible
"Was it I who conceived all this people? Was it I who brought them forth, that You should say to me, 'Carry them in your bosom as a nurse carries a nursing infant, to the land which You swore to their fathers '?

King James Bible
Have I conceived all this people? have I begotten them, that thou shouldest say unto me, Carry them in thy bosom, as a nursing father beareth the sucking child, unto the land which thou swarest unto their fathers?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Did I conceive all these people? Did I give them birth so You should tell me, 'Carry them at your breast, as a nursing woman carries a baby,' to the land that You swore to give their fathers?

International Standard Version
Did I conceive this people or give birth to them, so that you would tell me to carry them near my heart like a wet nurse carries a suckling baby to the land that you promised to their forefathers?

NET Bible
Did I conceive this entire people? Did I give birth to them, that you should say to me, 'Carry them in your arms, as a foster father bears a nursing child,' to the land which you swore to their fathers?

New Heart English Bible
Have I conceived all this people? Have I brought them forth, that you should tell me, 'Carry them in your bosom, as a nurse carries a nursing infant, to the land which you swore to their fathers?'

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Am I their mother? Did I give birth to them? Are you really asking me to carry them in my arms-as a nurse carries a baby-all the way to the land you promised their ancestors with an oath?

JPS Tanakh 1917
Have I conceived all this people? have I brought them forth, that Thou shouldest say unto me: Carry them in thy bosom, as a nursing-father carrieth the sucking child, unto the land which Thou didst swear unto their fathers?

New American Standard 1977
“Was it I who conceived all this people? Was it I who brought them forth, that Thou shouldest say to me, ‘Carry them in your bosom as a nurse carries a nursing infant, to the land which Thou didst swear to their fathers’?

Jubilee Bible 2000
Have I conceived all these people? Have I begotten them, that thou should say unto me, Carry them in thy bosom, as a nurse carries a sucking child, unto the land which thou hast sworn unto their fathers?

King James 2000 Bible
Have I conceived all this people? have I begotten them, that you should say unto me, Carry them in your bosom, as a nurse bears the nursing child, unto the land which you swore to give unto their fathers?

American King James Version
Have I conceived all this people? have I begotten them, that you should say to me, Carry them in your bosom, as a nursing father bears the sucking child, to the land which you swore to their fathers?

American Standard Version
Have I conceived all this people? have I brought them forth, that thou shouldest say unto me, Carry them in thy bosom, as a nursing-father carrieth the sucking child, unto the land which thou swarest unto their fathers?

Douay-Rheims Bible
Have I conceived all this multitude, or begotten them, that thou shouldst say to me: Carry them in thy bosom as the nurse is wont to carry the little infant, and bear them into the land, for which thou hast sworn to their fathers?

Darby Bible Translation
Have I conceived all this people, have I brought them forth, that thou sayest to me, Carry them in thy bosom, as the nursing-father beareth the suckling, unto the land which thou didst swear unto their fathers?

English Revised Version
Have I conceived all this people? have I brought them forth, that thou shouldest say unto me, Carry them in thy bosom, as a nursing-father carrieth the sucking child, unto the land which thou swarest unto their fathers?

Webster's Bible Translation
Have I conceived all this people? have I begotten them, that thou shouldest say to me, Carry them in thy bosom, as a nursing-father beareth the sucking child, to the land which thou sworest to their fathers?

World English Bible
Have I conceived all this people? Have I brought them forth, that you should tell me, 'Carry them in your bosom, as a nurse carries a nursing infant, to the land which you swore to their fathers?'

Young's Literal Translation
I -- have I conceived all this people? I -- have I begotten it, that Thou sayest unto me, Carry it in thy bosom as the nursing father beareth the suckling, unto the ground which Thou hast sworn to its fathers?
Study Bible
The Complaint of Moses
11So Moses said to the LORD, "Why have You been so hard on Your servant? And why have I not found favor in Your sight, that You have laid the burden of all this people on me? 12"Was it I who conceived all this people? Was it I who brought them forth, that You should say to me, 'Carry them in your bosom as a nurse carries a nursing infant, to the land which You swore to their fathers'? 13"Where am I to get meat to give to all this people? For they weep before me, saying, 'Give us meat that we may eat!'…
Cross References
1 Corinthians 4:15
Even if you have ten thousand guardians in Christ, you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I became your father through the gospel.

Genesis 24:7
"The LORD, the God of heaven, who took me from my father's house and from the land of my birth, and who spoke to me and who swore to me, saying, 'To your descendants I will give this land,' He will send His angel before you, and you will take a wife for my son from there.

Exodus 13:5
"It shall be when the LORD brings you to the land of the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Amorite, the Hivite and the Jebusite, which He swore to your fathers to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey, that you shall observe this rite in this month.

Exodus 13:11
"Now when the LORD brings you to the land of the Canaanite, as He swore to you and to your fathers, and gives it to you,

Exodus 33:1
Then the LORD spoke to Moses, "Depart, go up from here, you and the people whom you have brought up from the land of Egypt, to the land of which I swore to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, saying, 'To your descendants I will give it.'

2 Kings 10:1
Now Ahab had seventy sons in Samaria. And Jehu wrote letters and sent them to Samaria, to the rulers of Jezreel, the elders, and to the guardians of the children of Ahab, saying,

2 Kings 10:5
And the one who was over the household, and he who was over the city, the elders, and the guardians of the children, sent word to Jehu, saying, "We are your servants, all that you say to us we will do, we will not make any man king; do what is good in your sight."

Isaiah 49:23
"Kings will be your guardians, And their princesses your nurses. They will bow down to you with their faces to the earth And lick the dust of your feet; And you will know that I am the LORD; Those who hopefully wait for Me will not be put to shame.
Treasury of Scripture

Have I conceived all this people? have I begotten them, that you should say to me, Carry them in your bosom, as a nursing father bears the sucking child, to the land which you swore to their fathers?

carry them

Isaiah 40:11 He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs …

Ezekiel 34:23 And I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, …

John 10:11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd gives his life for the sheep.

as a nursing

Isaiah 49:15,23 Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion …

Galatians 4:19 My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ …

1 Thessalonians 2:7 But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherishes her children:

the land

Genesis 13:15 For all the land which you see, to you will I give it, and to your …

Genesis 22:16,17 And said, By myself have I sworn, said the LORD, for because you …

Genesis 26:3 Sojourn in this land, and I will be with you, and will bless you; …

Genesis 50:24 And Joseph said to his brothers, I die: and God will surely visit you…

Exodus 13:5 And it shall be when the LORD shall bring you into the land of the …

(12) Have I conceived . .?--The personal pronoun is emphatic in this and the following clause: Is it I who have conceived all this people? Is it I who have brought them forth? (or, begotten them), as in Genesis 4:18; Genesis 10:8.

Verse 12. - Carry them in thy bosom, as a nursing father. Probably he meant to say that this was the part and the duty of God himself as the Creator and Father of Israel. Compare the reading, which is perhaps the correct one, in Acts 13:18: Τεσσαρακονταετῆ χρόνον ἐτροφοόρησεν αὐτοὺς ἑν τῇ ἐρήμῳ. Have I conceived all this people? have I begotten them?.... Conceived them as a mother, or begotten them as a father? am I a parent of either sort to them, in a literal sense, that I should have the like care of them as parents of their children? but though this was not the case, yet, in a civil and political sense, he was their parent, as every king and governor of a country is, or should be, the father of it, and should have a paternal affection for his subjects, and a tender care of them, and a hearty concern for their good and welfare: this, in a spiritual sense, may denote the weakness of the law of Moses, as Ainsworth observes, which has no concern in the regeneration of the spiritual Israel of God; who are born not of blood, nor of the will of men, nor of the will of the flesh, but of God; he only does and can regenerate men by his Spirit and grace; and though ministers of the word are instruments, yet it is not through the law, but through the Gospel that they beget souls to Christ, even by the word of truth, the Gospel of salvation, by that word which lives and abides for ever; it is not through the doctrine of the law, but through the doctrine of faith, that the Spirit, as a spirit of regeneration and sanctification, is received; faith, hope, and love, and every other grace, come the same way; see 1 Corinthians 4:15,

that thou shouldest say unto me; as in Exodus 32:34; "go, lead the people unto the place", &c. which words, Jarchi thinks, are here referred to:

carry them in thy bosom as a nursing father beareth the sucking child,

unto the land which thou swarest to their fathers? the land of Canaan: kings should be nursing fathers; civil governors should rule with gentleness and mildness; such are most beloved, and most cheerfully obeyed by their people: the Targums of Jonathan and Jerusalem interpret the word for "nursing father", by "pedagogue", which is the same word the apostle uses of the law, Galatians 3:24; that indeed was a severe schoolmaster, that menaced, whipped, and scourged for every fault, and not a tender nursing father; there is not one kind tender word in the law; it accuses of sin, pronounces guilty of it, curses and condemns for it; but the Gospel ministry, and ministers of it, use men gently; the apostles of Christ were gentle, as a nurse cherisheth her children, 1 Thessalonians 2:7; fed men as they were able to bear it; and when they delivered out their charges, it was in a kind manner, and even their reproofs were in love; and especially Christ himself was so, by whose meekness and gentleness the Apostle Paul beseeches men, 1 Corinthians 10:1; who gathers the lambs in his arms, carries them in his bosom, and gently leads those that are with young; and supplies them with food, and brings them all safely to Canaan's land, the heavenly glory, where the law and the deeds of it will never bring men, Isaiah 40:11. 11:10-15 The provocation was very great; yet Moses expressed himself otherwise than became him. He undervalued the honour God had put upon him. He magnified his own performances, while he had the Divine wisdom to direct him, and Almighty power to dispense rewards and punishments. He speaks distrustfully of the Divine grace. Had the work been much less he could not have gone through it in his own strength; but had it been much greater, through God strengthening him, he might have done it. Let us pray, Lord, lead us not into temptation.
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OT Law: Numbers 11:12 Have I conceived all this people? Have (Nu Num.) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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