Numbers 10:14
In the first place went the standard of the camp of the children of Judah according to their armies: and over his host was Nahshon the son of Amminadab.
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10:11-28 After the Israelites had continued nearly a year at mount Sinai, and all was settled respecting their future worship, they began their march to Canaan. True religion begins with the knowledge of the holy law of God, and humiliation for sin, but we must go on towards perfection, in acquaintance with Christ and his gospel, and those effectual encouragements, motives, and assistances to holiness, which it proposes. They took their journey according to the commandment of the Lord, De 1:6-8, and as the cloud led them. Those who give themselves to the direction of God's word and Spirit, steer a steady course, even when they seem bewildered. While they are sure they cannot lose their God and Guide, they need not fear losing their way. They went out of the wilderness of Sinai, and rested in the wilderness of Paran. All our removes in this world are but from one wilderness to another. The changes we think will be for the better do not always prove so. We shall never be at rest, never at home, till we come to heaven, but all will be well there.According to their armies - Compare Numbers 1:3. There were three tribal hosts in each camp; and each tribe had of course its subdivisions. 13-27. the children of Israel took their journey … by the hand of Moses—It is probable that Moses, on the breaking up of the encampment, stationed himself on some eminence to see the ranks defile in order through the embouchure of the mountains. The marching order is described (Nu 2:1-34); but, as the vast horde is represented here in actual migration, let us notice the extraordinary care that was taken for ensuring the safe conveyance of the holy things. In the rear of Judah, which, with the tribes of Issachar and Zebulun, led the van, followed the Gershonites and Merarites with the heavy and coarser materials of the tabernacle. Next in order were set in motion the flank divisions of Reuben and Ephraim. Then came the Kohathites, who occupied the center of the moving mass, bearing the sacred utensils on their shoulder. They were so far behind the other portions of the Levitical body that these would have time at the new encampment to rear the framework of the tabernacle before the Kohathites arrived. Last of all, Dan, with the associated tribes, brought up the rear of the immense caravan. Each tribe was marshalled under its prince or chief and in all their movements rallied around its own standard. No text from Poole on this verse.

In the first place went the standard of the camp of the children of Judah,.... Which tribe had the honour to go foremost and lead the van, the chief ruler, the Messiah being to come of it, as he did; who is King of Israel, and has gone forth at the head of them, fighting their battles for them:

according to their armies: having, besides the army of the tribe of Judah, the armies of the tribes of Issachar and Zebulun under his standard:

and over his host was Nahshon the son of Amminadab; he was captain general of the army of the tribe of Judah, as Nethaneel was over the host of the tribe of Issachar, Numbers 10:15; and Eliab over the host of the tribe of Zebulun, Numbers 10:16; the same commanders as were fixed at the time of settling the order of their encampment, Numbers 2:3.

In the first place went the standard of the camp of the children of Judah according to their armies: and over his host was Nahshon the son of Amminadab.
14–27. The group of tribes on the east of the Tabernacle having marched first, the hangings and structure of the Tent and the court were then carried by the Gershonites and Merarites. They were followed by the tribes on the south side; and then the sacred furniture and utensils were carried by the Kohathites. Next came the tribes on the west side, and those on the north side brought up the rear.

Verse 14. - According to their armies. In each camp, and under each of the four standards, there were three tribal hosts, each an army in itself. Numbers 10:14In vv. 13-28 the removal of the different camps is more fully described, according to the order of march established in ch. 2, the order in which the different sections of the Levites drew out and marched being particularly described in this place alone (cf. Numbers 10:17 and Numbers 10:21 with Numbers 2:17). First of all (lit., "at the beginning") the banner of Judah drew out, with Issachar and Zebulun (Numbers 10:14-16; cf. Numbers 2:3-9). The tabernacle was then taken down, and the Gershonites and Merarites broke up, carrying those portions of its which were assigned to them (Numbers 10:17; cf. Numbers 4:24., and Numbers 4:31.), that they might set up the dwelling at the place to be chosen for the next encampment, before the Kohathites arrived with the sacred things (Numbers 10:21). The banner of Reuben followed next with Simeon and Gad (Numbers 10:18-21; cf. Numbers 2:10-16), and the Kohathites joined them bearing the sacred things (Numbers 10:21). המּקדּשׁ ( equals הקּדשׁ, Numbers 7:9, and הקּדשׁים קדשׁ, Numbers 4:4) signifies the sacred things mentioned in Numbers 3:31. In Numbers 10:21 the subject is the Gershonites and Merarites, who had broken up before with the component parts of the dwelling, and set up the dwelling, עד־בּאם, against their (the Kohathites') arrival, so that they might place the holy things at once within it.
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