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Bible Commentaries

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Numbers 9

 

 

Verse 2

Numbers 9:2 Let the children of Israel also keep the passover at his appointed season.

Ver. 2. Keep the passover.] This passover; for they kept no more but this, till they came into the land of Canaan, [Joshua 5:10 Exodus 12:25] because of their often and uncertain removes. The feast of tabernacles likewise was for many ages omitted; or at least not in due manner observed, as by dwelling in booths, reading the book of the law, &c., [Nehemiah 8:16-18] which a man would wonder at. But Vexatio dat intellectum: those Jews were newly returned from captivity.


Verse 3

Numbers 9:3 In the fourteenth day of this month, at even, ye shall keep it in his appointed season: according to all the rites of it, and according to all the ceremonies thereof, shall ye keep it.

Ver. 3. According to all the rites.] It was a true saying of Socrates in Xenophon, Deum eo cultus genere coli velle, quem ipse instituerit that God must be worshipped in his own way only. Whereunto agreeth that of Cicero, Deum non superstitione coli velle, sed pietate.


Verse 5

Numbers 9:5 And they kept the passover on the fourteenth day of the first month at even in the wilderness of Sinai: according to all that the LORD commanded Moses, so did the children of Israel.

Ver. 5. And they kept the passover.] {See Trapp on "Exodus 12:1"} &c


Verse 6

Numbers 9:6 And there were certain men, who were defiled by the dead body of a man, that they could not keep the passover on that day: and they came before Moses and before Aaron on that day:

Ver. 6. They could not keep the passover.] Because they were to be unclean seven days. [Numbers 19:11] Now, among the very heathen, the sacrificers were to purify themselves some days before; they had their caena pura the night before, &c., (a) and having expiated the company, they cried, τις τηδε; who is here? to which they made reply, πολλοι κα γαθοι γε παρεισιν, Many and good are here. (b)


Verse 7

Numbers 9:7 And those men said unto him, We [are] defiled by the dead body of a man: wherefore are we kept back, that we may not offer an offering of the LORD in his appointed season among the children of Israel?

Ver. 7. And those men said unto him.] Moses they knew was a meet man to resolve this case of conscience. He was a messenger, an interpreter, "one among a thousand, to show unto man his uprightness," [Job 33:23] a merchant to sell oil and balm from Gilead, to cure consciences. [Matthew 25:9] Others may write cases, that is, covers of conscience; but resolve none. Conscience is a diamond, and will be wrought on by nothing but dust of diamond, such as contrition hath ground it to.


Verse 8

Numbers 9:8 And Moses said unto them, Stand still, and I will hear what the LORD will command concerning you.

Ver. 8. Stand still and I will hear.] Moses was but the echo of God’s voice; John Baptist, "the voice of one crying in the wilderness": St Paul "received of the Lord" what he delivered to the Church, [1 Corinthians 11:23] and took care that the faith of his hearers "might not be in the wisdom of man, but in the power of God." [1 Corinthians 2:4-5] Unwarranted doctrines come not cum gratia et privilegio.


Verse 10

Numbers 9:10 Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, If any man of you or of your posterity shall be unclean by reason of a dead body, or [be] in a journey afar off, yet he shall keep the passover unto the LORD.

Ver. 10. Or be in a journey afar off.] This rendered a man unfit to partake; because either his head would be so taken up about his business then, or his mind so set upon home, that he would have little leisure or liberty to prepare for the passover.


Verse 11

Numbers 9:11 The fourteenth day of the second month at even they shall keep it, [and] eat it with unleavened bread and bitter [herbs].

Ver. 11. With unleavened bread.] Teaching them to "purge out the old leaven," that fusty, swelling, souring, spreading, corruption of nature and practice.

And bitter herbs.] Directing them to true humiliation and bitterness for sin; without which there can be no sweetness in the blood of Christ.


Verse 12

Numbers 9:12 They shall leave none of it unto the morning, nor break any bone of it: according to all the ordinances of the passover they shall keep it.

Ver. 12. They shall leave none.] The Lord in his infinite wisdom would hereby prevent all occasions of idolatry, which is easily admitted in the reservations of holy things, as in Popery at this day.


Verse 17

Numbers 9:17 And when the cloud was taken up from the tabernacle, then after that the children of Israel journeyed: and in the place where the cloud abode, there the children of Israel pitched their tents.

Ver. 17. And when the cloud.] This visible sign they had of God’s presence, for their motion or station by night or by day, through all their pilgrimage. "In all thy ways acknowledge God, and he shall direct thy paths." [Proverbs 3:6] "When thou sittest in darkness, the Lord shall give thee light." [Micah 7:8]


Verse 19

Numbers 9:19 And when the cloud tarried long upon the tabernacle many days, then the children of Israel kept the charge of the LORD, and journeyed not.

Ver. 19. Kept the charge of the Lord.] Or, His wateh - viz., to be ready at any hour to remove. So must we always watch and be in readiness, as not knowing whether at even, or at midnight, or cock crowing, or in the dawning, Christ will come. [Mark 13:35]


Verse 22

Numbers 9:22 Or [whether it were] two days, or a month, or a year, that the cloud tarried upon the tabernacle, remaining thereon, the children of Israel abode in their tents, and journeyed not: but when it was taken up, they journeyed.

Ver. 22. When it was taken up they journeyed.] In that wilderness of Arabia there were no beaten paths, no footsteps of passengers appeared; wherefore travellers there used to steer their course, as mariners at sea do, by a mathematical chart. But these Israelites went by a better direction. So do all saints. [Hebrews 11:16]


Verse 23

Numbers 9:23 At the commandment of the LORD they rested in the tents, and at the commandment of the LORD they journeyed: they kept the charge of the LORD, at the commandment of the LORD by the hand of Moses.

Ver. 23. At the commandment of the Lord.] This signified that the saints are to rest, or go on, at the voice of Christ, [John 10:3-4] and that "whatsoever they do in word or deed, to do all in the name of the Lord Jesus," [Colossians 3:17] to seek and find all their perfection and defenee in him alone.

 


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Bibliography Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Numbers 9:4". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/numbers-9.html. 1865-1868.

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