Matthew Poole's Commentary
And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,Of meat and drink offerings, Numbers 15:1-16. The law of the first of the dough for a peace-offering, Numbers 15:17-21. The sacrifice for sins of ignorance of the whole congregation, Numbers 15:22-26; or when a single soul is guilty, Numbers 15:27-29. Punishments for presumptuous sinners, Numbers 15:30,31. Of the man that gathered sticks on the sabbath day, and his death, Numbers 15:32-36. God commandeth them to wear fringes on their garments, Numbers 15:37,38. The use thereof, Numbers 15:39-41.
No text from Poole on this verse.
Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land of your habitations, which I give unto you,i.e. Will certainly give you notwithstanding this great provacation, and my unchangeable commination. And for their better assurance hereof, he repeats and amplifies the laws of sacrifices, whereby through Christ he was or would be reconciled to them and theirs upon their repentance.
And will make an offering by fire unto the LORD, a burnt offering, or a sacrifice in performing a vow, or in a freewill offering, or in your solemn feasts, to make a sweet savour unto the LORD, of the herd, or of the flock:A sacrifice, i.e. a peace-offering, as appears,
1. Because that word put by itself is oft so taken, as Exodus 18:12 Leviticus 17:5,8 23:37 Deu 12:27.
2. Because the offerings for sins and trespasses had no meat-offerings and drink-offerings attending upon them, excepting only the case of the
leper’s cleansing, Leviticus 14:10.
3. Because this is explained by and called peace-offereings, Numbers 15:8.
4. From the words here following, because peace-offerings were commonly offerede either in performance of a vow, or freely, or by God’s command in their solemn feasts, all which are here expressed.
Then shall he that offereth his offering unto the LORD bring a meat offering of a tenth deal of flour mingled with the fourth part of an hin of oil.A tenth deal, or tenth part, to wit, of an ephah, i.e. an omer, Exodus 16:36.
Mingled with oil; wherein it seems to differ from such meat-offerings as were solitary, and not accessories to other sacrifices.
And the fourth part of an hin of wine for a drink offering shalt thou prepare with the burnt offering or sacrifice, for one lamb.No text from Poole on this verse.
Or for a ram, thou shalt prepare for a meat offering two tenth deals of flour mingled with the third part of an hin of oil.Two tenth deals; because this belonged to a better sacrifice than the former; and therefore in the next sacrfice of a bullock there are three tenth deals. So the accessory sacrifice grows proportionably with the principal.
And for a drink offering thou shalt offer the third part of an hin of wine, for a sweet savour unto the LORD.No text from Poole on this verse.
And when thou preparest a bullock for a burnt offering, or for a sacrifice in performing a vow, or peace offerings unto the LORD:i.e. Or any other peace-offerings, to wit, such as were offered either freely or by command, which may be called
peace-offerings or thank-offerings, by way of eminency, because such are offered purely by way of gratitude to God, and with single respect to his command and honour; whereas the peace-offerings made it performance of a vow were made and offbred by way of contract, and with design of getting some advantage by them.
Then shall he bring with a bullock a meat offering of three tenth deals of flour mingled with half an hin of oil.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt bring for a drink offering half an hin of wine, for an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the LORD.No text from Poole on this verse.
Thus shall it be done for one bullock, or for one ram, or for a lamb, or a kid.No text from Poole on this verse.
According to the number that ye shall prepare, so shall ye do to every one according to their number.i.e. As many cattle as ye sacrifice, so many meat and drink offerings ye shall offer.
All that are born of the country shall do these things after this manner, in offering an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the LORD.No text from Poole on this verse.
And if a stranger sojourn with you, or whosoever be among you in your generations, and will offer an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the LORD; as ye do, so he shall do.A stranger, to wit, proselyte, for such offerings were not accepted from others.
One ordinance shall be both for you of the congregation, and also for the stranger that sojourneth with you, an ordinance for ever in your generations: as ye are, so shall the stranger be before the LORD.i.e. As to the worship of God; his sacrifices shall be offered in the same manner, and accepted by God upon the same terms, as yours; which was a presage of the future calling of the Gentiles. And this is added by way of caution and distinction, to show that strangers were not upon this pretence to partake of thcir civil privileges.
One law and one manner shall be for you, and for the stranger that sojourneth with you.No text from Poole on this verse.
And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,No text from Poole on this verse.
Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye come into the land whither I bring you,No text from Poole on this verse.
Then it shall be, that, when ye eat of the bread of the land, ye shall offer up an heave offering unto the LORD.When ye eat, i.e. when you are about to eat it; for before they did eat it, they were to offer this offering to God.
Of the bread, i.e. the bread-corn, as that word is used. Job 28:5 Psalm 104:15 Isaiah 28:22.
Unto the Lord, i.e. to the priest of the Lord, as appears from Ezekiel 44:30.
Ye shall offer up a cake of the first of your dough for an heave offering: as ye do the heave offering of the threshingfloor, so shall ye heave it.i.e. Of the corn in the threshing-floor, as Deu 16:13, when you have gathered in your corn.
So shall ye heave it, i.e. you shall offer this in the same proportion, to the same persons, i.e. the priests, and with the same rites.
Of the first of your dough ye shall give unto the LORD an heave offering in your generations.No text from Poole on this verse.
And if ye have erred, and not observed all these commandments, which the LORD hath spoken unto Moses,To wit, those now spoken of, those which concern the outward worship and servicc of God, or the rites or ceremonies belonging to it. And herein principally this law may seem to differ from that Leviticus 14:13, which speaks of some positive miscarriage, or doing that which ought not to have been done about the holy things of God, whereas this speaks only of an omissiou of somcthing which ought to have been done about holy ccrcmonies. But besides this, that law, Leviticus 4:13, concerns the whole congregration of Israel, as it is there expressed, but this concerns only the congregation, or a congregation, as it is here expressed, Numbers 15:24, i.e. any particular congregation of Israelites, whether of a whole tribe meeting together by their representatives, or a lesser congregation, such as there were to be many in Canaan; and the words rendered all the congregation may be, and are by some here, rendered every congregation. And by virtue of this law, as some suppose, the Israelites newly after their return from the captivity offered twelve bullocks, one for each tribe, Ezra 8:35.
Even all that the LORD hath commanded you by the hand of Moses, from the day that the LORD commanded Moses, and henceforward among your generations;No text from Poole on this verse.
Then it shall be, if ought be committed by ignorance without the knowledge of the congregation, that all the congregation shall offer one young bullock for a burnt offering, for a sweet savour unto the LORD, with his meat offering, and his drink offering, according to the manner, and one kid of the goats for a sin offering.In Le 4 the bullock is for a sin-offering, here it is for a burnt-offering, either because they are different laws, as hath been said; or because here is added a new penalty, to breed the greater caution and diligence in the Israelites, who had given many instances, and now a fresh and eminent instance, of their heedlessness in observing the commands of God; and so, besides that bullock for a sin-offering, which he leaves to be gathered out of Leviticus 4:11, he now requires another bullock for a burnt-offering.
And the priest shall make an atonement for all the congregation of the children of Israel, and it shall be forgiven them; for it is ignorance: and they shall bring their offering, a sacrifice made by fire unto the LORD, and their sin offering before the LORD, for their ignorance:No text from Poole on this verse.
And it shall be forgiven all the congregation of the children of Israel, and the stranger that sojourneth among them; seeing all the people were in ignorance.No text from Poole on this verse.
And if any soul sin through ignorance, then he shall bring a she goat of the first year for a sin offering.No text from Poole on this verse.
And the priest shall make an atonement for the soul that sinneth ignorantly, when he sinneth by ignorance before the LORD, to make an atonement for him; and it shall be forgiven him.No text from Poole on this verse.
Ye shall have one law for him that sinneth through ignorance, both for him that is born among the children of Israel, and for the stranger that sojourneth among them.No text from Poole on this verse.
But the soul that doeth ought presumptuously, whether he be born in the land, or a stranger, the same reproacheth the LORD; and that soul shall be cut off from among his people.Ought; understand such things as ought not to be done and things relating to the worship of God;
presumptously, Heb. with a high or lifted hand i. e. knowingly willfully, boldly, resolvedly, deliberately, designedly. So this phrase is elsewhere used. See Exodus 14:8 Leviticus 26:21 Numbers 33:3 Job 15:26 Psalm 19:13.
Reproacheth the Lord, i.e. he sets God at defiance, and exposeth him to contempt, as if he were unworthy of any regard, and unable to punish transgressors.
Because he hath despised the word of the LORD, and hath broken his commandment, that soul shall utterly be cut off; his iniquity shall be upon him.i.e. The punishment shall be confined to himself, and not fall upon the congregation, as it will do, if they neglect to cut him off.
And while the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they found a man that gathered sticks upon the sabbath day.This seems to be added as an example of a presumptuous sin; for as the law of the sabbath was plain and positive, so this transgression of it must needs be a known and wilful sin.
And they that found him gathering sticks brought him unto Moses and Aaron, and unto all the congregation.i.e. To the rulers of the congregation, who, as they represented and governed the congregation, are called by the name of the congregation.
And they put him in ward, because it was not declared what should be done to him.i.e. Moses and Aaron, and the seventy rulers last mentioned.
What should be done to him, i.e. in what manner he was to be cut off, or by what kind of death he was to die, which therefore God here particularly determines; otherwise it was known in general that sabbath-breakers were to be put to death, from Exodus 31:14 35:2.
And the LORD said unto Moses, The man shall be surely put to death: all the congregation shall stone him with stones without the camp.No text from Poole on this verse.
And all the congregation brought him without the camp, and stoned him with stones, and he died; as the LORD commanded Moses.No text from Poole on this verse.
And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,No text from Poole on this verse.
Speak unto the children of Israel, and bid them that they make them fringes in the borders of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of the borders a ribband of blue:Fringes were certain threads or ends of their garments, standing out a little further than the rest of their garments, left there for this use.
In the borders, i.e. in the four borders or quarters, as it is Deu 22:12. Heb. wings, which is oft used for borders or ends, as Ruth 3:9 1 Samuel 15:27 24:5, &c.
Of their garments, i.e. of their upper garment, or that wherewith they covered themselves, as is expressed Deu 22:12. This was practised by the Pharisees in Christ’s time, who are noted for making their borders larger than ordinary, Matthew 23:5; and by Christ himself, as may gathered from Luke 8:44.
A riband, to make it more obvious to the sight, and consequently more serviceable to the use here mentioned.
Of blue, or, of a purple colour, as the Jewish writers agree, whose opinion is the more considerable, because it was matter of constant practice among them.
And it shall be unto you for a fringe, that ye may look upon it, and remember all the commandments of the LORD, and do them; and that ye seek not after your own heart and your own eyes, after which ye use to go a whoring:It, i.e. the riband,
shall be unto you, i.e. shall serve you
for the fringe, to wit, to render it more visible and notorious by its certain, and remarkable, and distinct colour, whereas the fringe without this was of the same piece and colour with the garment, and therefore less observable. Or, it, i.e. the riband, shall be in your fringes, or, put to your fringes, fastened to them, that by looking upon it you may remember, that your eye may affect your mind and heart.
That ye seek not, or, inquire not, for other rules or ways of serving me than I have prescribed you.
After your own heart, and your own eyes, i.e. neither after the devices and inventions of your own minds or hearts, as Nadab and Abihu did when they offered strange fire, and as you now did, when you pretended to serve and please me by going up the hill and towards Canaan without and against my command; nor after the examples or inventions of others which your eyes see, as you did when you were set upon worshipping a calf after the manner of Egypt. To go a whoring, i.e. to depart from me, and to prefer your own fancies before my commands, and to live only by present sight or sense, and not at all by faith in my promises.
That ye may remember, and do all my commandments, and be holy unto your God.No text from Poole on this verse.
I am the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: I am the LORD your God.Though I am justly displeased with you, for your frequent and horrid rebellions, for which also I will keep you forty years in the wilderness, yet I will not utterly cast you off, but will continue to be your God, to preserve and provide for you there, and after that time to bring you into Canaan.