Numbers 32:40
And Moses gave Gilead to Machir the son of Manasseh; and he dwelled therein.
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Numbers 32:40; Numbers 32:42. Moses gave Gilead unto Machir — Not to Machir himself, who doubtless was long since dead, but the family or posterity of Machir. Nobah — Who, though not elsewhere named, was doubtless an eminent person of the tribe of Manasseh. It is observable, that these tribes, as they were placed before the other tribes, so they were displaced before them. They were carried captive by the king of Assyria, some years before the other tribes. Such a proportion does Providence frequently observe in balancing prosperity and adversity.32:28-42 Concerning the settlement of these tribes, observe, that they built the cities, that is, repaired them. They changed the names of them; probably they were idolatrous, therefore they should be forgotten. A spirit of selfishness, of seeking our own, not the things of Christ, when each one ought to assist others, is as dangerous as it is common. It is impossible to be sincere in the faith, sensible of the goodness of God, constrained by the love of Christ, sanctified by the power of the Holy Ghost, and yet be indifferent to the progress of religion, and the spiritual success of others, through love of ease, or fear of conflict. Let then your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.The children of Machir - Machir, the son of Manasseh, was long since dead: even his sons had been brought up upon Joseph's knees Genesis 50:23. But the renown acquired by his descendants raised his family almost to the dignity of a tribe; and the Machirites are in the next verse styled Machir, just as the children of Judah or of Ephraim are often spoken of as Judah or Ephraim. So in Judges 5:14 Machir is coupled with Ephraim and Zebulun.

Went - i. e., "had gone:" the statement is preparatory to the ensuing record of the grant to them of the land they had won.

Gilead - More strictly part of north Gilead; which, though inhabited by the Amorites, had belonged to the kingdom of Og. Gilead was the district from which had sprung the ancestress of the Machirites (compare 1 Chronicles 7:14).

39. Gilead—now Jelud. Unto Machir, i.e. not to Machir himself, who doubtless was long since dead; see Genesis 1:23; but the family or posterity of Machir, which are called by their father’s name; as the names of Abraham, Acts 7:16; of Isaac, Amos 7:9; of Jacob or Israel frequently; of Judah and Simeon, Judges 1:3; of David, 1 Kings 12:16; are manifestly put for their posterity. And Moses gave Gilead unto Machir the son of Manasseh,.... That is, to the children of Machir, who went and took it; though some say, as Aben Ezra observes, that Machir himself was now alive, and that it was given to him, but that is not probable; for, supposing him to be living when the children of Israel came out of Egypt, all that came from thence, who were twenty years old and upwards, died in the wilderness, excepting two, see Numbers 32:11,

and he dwelt therein; that is, the family of the Macharite; see Numbers 26:29.

And Moses gave Gilead unto Machir the son of Manasseh; and he dwelt therein.
40. A later addition to the chapter. See prelim. note. In 1 Chronicles 2:21; 1 Chronicles 2:23 the possession of Gilead by Machir is expressed by saying that Machir was ‘the father of Gilead.’Verse 40. - And he dwelt therein. This expression does not necessarily look beyond the lifetime of Moses, although it would be more naturally taken as doing so. In chapter Numbers 20:1 יֵֶּשב is used of the "abiding" of Israel at Kadesh. The Gadites built, i.e., restored and fortified, the following places. Dibon, also called Dibon Gad, an hour's journey to the north of the central Arnon. Ataroth, probably preserved in the extensive ruins of Attarus, on Jebel Attarus, between el Krriath (Kureyat) and Makur, i.e., Machaerus (see Seetzen, ii. p. 342). Aroer, not the Aroer before Rabbah, which was allotted to the Gadites (Joshua 13:25), as v. Raumer supposes; but the Aroer of Reuben in the centre of the valley of the Arnon (Joshua 12:2; Joshua 13:9, Joshua 13:16), which is still to be seen in the ruins of Araayr, on the edge of the lofty rocky wall which bounds the Modjeb (Burckhardt, p. 633). Atroth Shophan: only mentioned here; situation unknown. Jaezer: probably to be sought for in the ruins of es Szir, to the west of Ammn (see at Numbers 21:32). Jogbehah: only mentioned again in Judges 8:11, and preserved in the ruins of Jebeiha, about two hours to the north-west of Ammn (Burckhardt, p. 618; Robinson, App. p. 168). Beth-nimrah, contracted into Nimrah (Numbers 32:3), according to Joshua 13:27, in the valley of the Jordan, and according to the Onomast. (s. v. Βηθναβράν) Beth-amnaram, five Roman miles to the north of Libias (Bethharam), now to be seen in the ruins of Nimrein or Nemrin, where the Wady Shaib enters the Jordan (Burckhardt, pp. 609, 661; Robinson, ii. p. 279), in a site abounding in water and pasturage (Seetzen, ii. pp. 318, 716). Beth-Haran, or Beth-Haram (Joshua 13:27): Beth-ramphtha, according to Josephus, Ant. 18:2, 1, which was called Julias, in honour of the wife of Augustus. According to the Onomast. it was called Beth-Ramtha by the Syrians (רמתא בּית, the form of the Aramaean stat. emphat.), and was named Livias by Herod Antipas, in honour of Livia, the wife of Augustus. It has been preserved in the ruins of Rameh, not far from the mouth of the Wady Hesbn (Burckhardt, p. 661, and Robinson, ii. 305). The words וגו מבצר ערי in Numbers 32:36 are governed by ויּבנוּ in Numbers 32:34 : "they built them as fortified cities and folds for flocks," i.e., they fortified them, and built folds in them.
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