Numbers 11:30
And Moses gat him into the camp, he and the elders of Israel.
Jump to: BarnesBensonBICalvinCambridgeClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctGaebeleinGSBGillGrayGuzikHaydockHastingsHomileticsJFBKDKJTLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWParkerPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBWESTSK
Numbers 11:30. Moses gat him into the camp — Among the people; he and the elders of Israel — To exercise the gifts and authority they had now received.

11:24-30 We have here the fulfilment of God's word to Moses, that he should have help in the government of Israel. He gave of his Spirit to the seventy elders. They discoursed to the people of the things of God, so that all who heard them might say, that God was with them of a truth. Two of the elders, Eldad and Medad, went not out unto the tabernacle, as the rest, being sensible of their own weakness and unworthiness. But the Spirit of God found them in the camp, and there they exercised their gift of praying, preaching, and praising God; they spake as moved by the Holy Ghost. The Spirit of God is not confined to the tabernacle, but, like the wind, blows where He listeth. And they that humble themselves shall be exalted; and those who are most fit for government, are least ambitious of it. Joshua does not desire that they should be punished, but only restrained for the future. This motion he made out of zeal for what he thought to be the unity of the church. He would have them silenced, lest they should occasion a schism, or should rival Moses; but Moses was not afraid of any such effects from that Spirit which God had put upon them. Shall we reject those whom Christ has owned, or restrain any from doing good, because they are not in every thing of our mind? Moses wishes all the Lord's people were prophets, that he would put his Spirit upon all of them. Let the testimony of Moses be believed by those who desire to be in power; that government is a burden. It is a burden of care and trouble to those who make conscience of the duty of it; and to those who do not, it will prove a heavier burden in the day of account. Let the example of Moses be followed by those in power; let them not despise the advice and assistance of others, but desire it, and be thankful for it. If all the present number of the Lord's people were rendered prophets, or ministers, by the Spirit of Christ, though not all agreed in outward matters, there is work enough for all, in calling sinners to repentance, and faith in our Lord Jesus.Enviest thou for my sake? - (Compare Mark 9:38 ff) The other members of the Seventy had been with Moses (compare Numbers 6:16, Numbers 6:24-25) when the gift of prophecy was bestowed on them. They received "of the spirit that was upon him," and exercised their office visibly through and for him. Eldad and Medad prophesying in the camp seemed to Joshua to be acting independently, and so establishing a separate center of authority.26-29. But there remained two of the men in the camp—They did not repair with the rest to the tabernacle, either from modesty in shrinking from the assumption of a public office, or being prevented by some ceremonial defilement. They, however, received the gifts of the Spirit as well as their brethren. And when Moses was urged to forbid their prophesying, his answer displayed a noble disinterestedness as well as zeal for the glory of God akin to that of our Lord (Mr 9:39). Among the people, to exercise the gifts and authority now or formerly received.

And Moses got him into the camp,.... From the door of the tabernacle, where he had been settling the elders in their office, and now betook himself to the camp of Israel, perhaps to look more particularly into the affair of Eldad and Medad, and settle that, and put them among the elders; for they were of them that were written, whose names were put down for elders in the paper Moses had written for that purpose, and in the summons that were given; or more generally to do public business, to exercise rule and government, with this new assistance granted him, as follows:

he and the elders of Israel; he went in company with them, to impart to them the honour and glory they were to share with him in the government, as Aben Ezra observes; or they went together, to observe what would be done for the people, according to the promise of the Lord, to give them flesh; who had made good his word to Moses, by taking of his Spirit and putting it on seventy men for his assistance; the other remained to be done, and was done as follows.

And Moses gat him into the camp, he and the elders of Israel.
Verse 30. - Moses gat him into the camp. Although the tabernacle stood in the midst of the camp, yet it was practically separated from the tents of the other tribes by an open space and by the encampments of the Levites. There is, therefore, no ground for inferring from this and similar expressions that the record really belongs to a time when the tabernacle was pitched outside the camp. Numbers 11:30Moses returned with the elders into the camp, sc., from the tabernacle, which stood upon an open space in the midst of the camp, at some distance from the tents of the Levites and the rest of the tribes of Israel, which were pitched around it, so that whoever wished to go to it, had first of all to go out of his tent.

(Note: For the purpose of overthrowing the historical character of this marvellous event, the critics, from Vater to Knobel, have identified the appointment of the seventy elders to support Moses with the judicial institute established at Sinai by the advice of Jethro (Exodus 18), and adduce the obvious differences between these two entirely different institutions as arguments for the supposed diversity of documents and legends. But what ground is there for identifying things so totally different from one another? The assertion of Knobel, that in Deuteronomy 1:9-18, Moses "evidently" refers to both events (Exodus 18 and Numbers 11), is unfounded and untrue. Or are the same official duties and rank assigned to the elders who were chosen as judges in Exodus 18, as to the seventy elders who were called by God, and endowed with His Spirit, that they might help Moses to govern the people who had rebelled against him and against Jehovah on account of the want of flesh, and to restore and uphold the authority of Moses as the divinely chosen leader of Israel, which had been shaken thereby? Can the judges of a land be identified without reserve with the executive of the land? The mere fact, that this executive court was chosen, like the judges, from the whole body of elders, does not warrant us in identifying the two institutions. Nor does it follow from the fact, that at Sinai seventy of the elders of Israel ascended the mountain with Moses, Aaron, and his sons, and there saw God (Exodus 24:9.), that the seventy persons chosen here were the same as the seventy mentioned there. The sameness of the numbers does not prove that the persons were the same, but simply that the number seventy was the most suitable, on account of its historical and symbolical significance, to form a representation of the whole body of the people. For a further refutation of this futile objection, see Ranke, Unterss. b. d. Pent. II. pp. 183ff.)

No account has been handed down of the further action of this committee of elders. It is impossible to determine, therefore, in what way they assisted Moses in bearing the burden of governing the people. All that can be regarded as following unquestionably from the purpose given here is, that they did not form a permanent body, which continued from the time of Moses to the Captivity, and after the Captivity was revived again in the Sanhedrim, as Talmudists, Rabbins, and many of the earlier theologians suppose (see Selden de Synedriis, l. i. c. 14, ii. c. 4; Jo. Marckii sylloge dissertatt. phil. theol. ad V. T. exercit. 12, pp. 343ff.). On the opposite side vid., Relandi Antiquitates, ss. ii. 7, 3; Carpz. apparat. pp. 573f., etc.

Numbers 11:30 Interlinear
Numbers 11:30 Parallel Texts

Numbers 11:30 NIV
Numbers 11:30 NLT
Numbers 11:30 ESV
Numbers 11:30 NASB
Numbers 11:30 KJV

Numbers 11:30 Bible Apps
Numbers 11:30 Parallel
Numbers 11:30 Biblia Paralela
Numbers 11:30 Chinese Bible
Numbers 11:30 French Bible
Numbers 11:30 German Bible

Bible Hub

Numbers 11:29
Top of Page
Top of Page