|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
14:1-4 Those who do not trust God, continually vex themselves. The sorrow of the world worketh death. The Israelites murmured against Moses and Aaron, and in them reproached the Lord. They look back with causeless discontent. See the madness of unbridled passions, which makes men prodigal of what nature accounts most dear, life itself. They wish rather to die criminals under God's justice, than to live conquerors in his favour. At last they resolve, that, instead of going forward to Canaan, they would go back to Egypt. Those who walk not in God's counsels, seek their own ruin. Could they expect that God's cloud would lead them, or his manna attend them? Suppose the difficulties of conquering Canaan were as they imagined, those of returning to Egypt were much greater. We complain of our place and lot, and we would change; but is there any place or condition in this world, that has not something in it to make us uneasy, if we are disposed to be so? The way to better our condition, is to get our spirits in a better frame. See the folly of turning from the ways of God. But men run on the certain fatal consequences of a sinful course.
Chapter 14:1. - And the people wept that night. As the spies repeated their dismal tidings, each to the leading men of his own tribe, and as the report was spread swiftly through the tents (cf. Deuteronomy 1:27) with ever-increasing exaggerations, the lamentation became universal.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And all the congregation lifted up their voice and cried,.... This is not to be understood of every individual in the congregation of Israel, but of the princes, heads, and elders of the people that were with Moses and Aaron when the report of the spies was made; though indeed the report might quickly spread throughout the body of the people, and occasion a general outcry, which was very loud and clamorous, and attended with all the signs of distress imaginable, in shrieks and tears and lamentations:
and the people wept that night: perhaps throughout the night; could get no sleep nor rest all the night, but spent it in weeping and crying, at the thought of their condition and circumstances, and the disappointments they had met with, as they conceived, of entering into and possessing the land.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
Nu 14:1-45. The People Murmur at the Spies' Report.
1. all the congregation lifted up their voice and cried—Not literally all, for there were some exceptions.
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