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Matthew Henry

Matthew Henry's Complete Commentary - Numbers 18:1-7

The coherence of this chapter with that foregoing is very observable. I. The people, in the close of that chapter, had complained of the difficulty and peril that there were in drawing near to God, which put them under some dreadful apprehensions that the tabernacle in the midst of them, which they hoped would have been their joy and glory, would rather be their terror and ruin. Now, in answer to this complaint, God here gives them to understand by Aaron that the priests should come near for... read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Numbers 18:1

And the Lord spake unto Aaron ,.... As the things spoken were such as concerned Aaron, he might be only and immediately spoken unto: thou, and thy sons, and thy father's house with thee ; meaning both priests and Levites, the priests by him and his sons, and the Levites by his father's house: shall bear the iniquity of the sanctuary ; the blame of any evil committed there, the punishment of it; the priests, Aaron and his sons, if they did not perform the duty of their office aright,... read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Numbers 18:2

And to thy brethren also of the tribe of Levi, the tribe of thy father ,.... For his father Amram was of that tribe, and so the Levites were his brethren, as he is directed to consider them; which might serve to conciliate their minds, and make them easy with respect to his enjoyment of the priesthood: bring them with thee ; into the court of the tabernacle, for further they might not go: that they maybe joined unto thee : as their name of Levites signifies, persons joined and united... read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Numbers 18:3

And they shall keep thy charge, and the charge of all the tabernacle ,.... That is, the Levites, whatever Aaron and his sons, the priests, should charge them to do, or commit to their care and charge, that they should observe; as to watch and keep out all unfit persons, to take down and set up the tabernacle when needful, &c.; only they shall not come nigh the vessels of the sanctuary ; as the ark and mercy seat in the holy of holies, the shewbread table, and candlestick in the holy... read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Numbers 18:4

And they shall be joined unto thee ,.... As assistants in the sacred service: and keep the charge of tabernacle of the congregation, for all the service of the tabernacle ; See Gill on Numbers 3:7 and See Gill on Numbers 3:8 , and a stranger shall not come nigh unto you ; not any of the other tribes, only such as were of the tribe of Levi; they only were to be brought with them, and joined unto them, and assist them, and minister to them, as in Numbers 18:2 ; though the Jews ... read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Numbers 18:5

And ye shall keep the charge of the sanctuary ,.... That is, the priests, Aaron and his sons; the high priest was to keep the charge of the most holy place particularly, and do what was to be done in that on the day of atonement; and the common priests to keep the charge of the holy place, and do everything relating to the altar of incense, the shewbread table, and candlestick: and the charge of the altar ; of burnt offering, which stood in the court of the tabernacle: that there be... read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Numbers 18:6

And I, behold, I have taken your brethren the Levites, from among the children of Israel ,.... See Gill on Numbers 3:12 ; where the same is said, only they, are here called the brethren of the priests for the reason given, Numbers 18:2 , to you they are given as a gift for the Lord, to do the service of the tabernacle of the congregation ; See Gill on Numbers 3:7 , Numbers 3:8 , and See Gill on Numbers 3:9 . read more

John Gill

John Gills Exposition of the Bible Commentary - Numbers 18:7

Therefore thou and thy sons with thee shall keep your priest's office ,.... Observe all the duties of it, and keep out others from intruding into it: for everything of the altar : both of incense and of burnt offering with respect to burning incense on the one, and offering sacrifices on the other; both were to be done by priests, and by no other: and within the vail ; in the most holy place, where the high priest entered but once a year, and he only with incense, and the blood of... read more

Adam Clarke

Adam Clarke's Commentary on the Bible - Numbers 18:1

Thou and thy sons - shall bear the iniquity of the sanctuary, etc. - That is, They must be answerable for its legal pollutions, and must make the necessary atonements and expiations. By this they must feel that though they had got a high and important office confirmed to them by a miraculous interference, yet it was a place of the highest responsibility; and that they must not be high-minded, but fear. read more

Adam Clarke

Adam Clarke's Commentary on the Bible - Numbers 18:2

Thy brethren also of the tribe of Levi - may be joined unto thee - There is a fine paronomasia, or play upon words, in the original. לוי Levi comes from the root לוה lavah , to join to, couple, associate: hence Moses says, the Levites, ילוו yillavu , shall be joined, or associated with the priests; they shall conjointly perform the whole of the sacred office, but the priests shall be principal, the Levites only their associates or assistants. read more

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