Numbers 32:8
Thus did your fathers, when I sent them from Kadeshbarnea to see the land.
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32:6-15 The proposal showed disregard to the land of Canaan, distrust of the Lord's promise, and unwillingness to encounter the difficulties and dangers of conquering and driving out the inhabitants of that land. Moses is wroth with them. It will becomes any of God's Israel to sit down unconcerned about the difficult and perilous concerns of their brethren, whether public or personal. He reminds them of the fatal consequences of the unbelief and faint-heartedness of their fathers, when they were, as themselves, just ready to enter Canaan. If men considered as they ought what would be the end of sin, they would be afraid of the beginning of it.Your fathers - The generation of the Exodus was now substantially extinct. Compare Numbers 26:64-65.

Kadesh-barnea - See Numbers 13:26.

6-19. Moses said unto the children of Gad and to the children of Reuben, Shall your brethren go to war, and shall ye sit here—Their language was ambiguous; and Moses, suspicious that this proposal was an act of unbelief, a scheme of self-policy and indolence to escape the perils of warfare and live in ease and safety, addressed to them a reproachful and passionate remonstrance. Whether they had really meditated such a withdrawal from all share in the war of invasion, or the effect of their leader's expostulation was to drive them from their original purpose, they now, in answer to his impressive appeal, declared it to be their sincere intention to co-operate with their brethren; but, if so, they ought to have been more explicit at first. No text from Poole on this verse.

Thus did your fathers,.... Meaning not particularly and only the fathers of these two tribes he was speaking to, but of them and the other tribes also, who acted much such a part; did not choose to go into the good land to possess it, when they were bid to do it, but were for sending spies first, which brought an ill report of it, and discouraged the people from going into it; the history of which Moses here gives:

when I sent them from Kadeshbarnea to see the land; called only Kadesh, Numbers 13:26 the reason of the name See Gill on Numbers 32:13.

Thus did your fathers, when I sent them from Kadeshbarnea to see the land.
8–13. Moses refers to the narrative of the spies in chs. 13 f. In the preliminary note to ch. 13 it is shewn that that narrative is a combination of the traditions of J E and of P ; and both of these supply material to the present passage. The starting-point and the destination of the spies (Kadesh and Eshcol) are from the former, and the mention of Joshua from the latter.

Verse 8. - Thus did your fathers. It is impossible not to see that this mode of address is in striking contrast to that used in the Book cf. Deuteronomy (e.g., in Numbers 1:22, 27; Numbers 5:3, 23). At the same time it is obviously the more natural, and the more in accordance with facts, because there was not a man left of all those who had rebelled at Kadesh. At Kadesh-Barnea. This mode of writing the name forms a link between the closing chapters of Numbers (here and in Numbers 34:4) and the two following books. In Deuteronomy it occurs four times, and "Kadesh" twice. In Joshua "Kadesh-Barnea" occurs exclusively. In the later books "Kadesh" only is used, as in Genesis and in the previous chapters of Numbers. The meaning of the combination is uncertain, and the etymology of "Barnea" altogether obscure. It may be an old name attaching to the place before it became known as a sanctuary. The Septuagint has Κάδης τοῦ Βαρνή in one place, as though it were the name of a man. Numbers 32:8Moses first of all blames their want of brotherly feeling: "Shall your brethren go into the war, and ye sit here?" He then calls their attention to the fact, that by their disinclination they would take away the courage and inclination of the other tribes to cross over the Jordan and conquer the land, and would bring the wrath of God upon Israel even more than their fathers who were sent from Kadesh to spy out the land, and who led away the heart of the people into rebellion through their unfavourable account of the inhabitants of Canaan, and brought so severe a judgment upon the congregation. מן את־לב הניא, to hold away the heart, i.e., render a person averse to anything. The Keri תּניאוּן, as in Numbers 32:9, is unquestionably to be preferred to the Kal תּנוּאוּן, in the Kethib of Numbers 32:7. - In Numbers 32:8-13, Moses reminds them of the occurrences described in ch. 13 and 14. On the expression, "wholly followed Jehovah," cf. Numbers 14:24. The words, "He drove them about in the desert," caused them to wander backwards and forwards in it for forty years, point back to Numbers 14:33-35.
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