The Torah/Shlach

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In inner-Biblical interpretation[edit]

The Return of the Israelite Spies (woodcut by Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld from the 1860 Bible in Pictures)

Numbers chapter 13[edit]

Numbers 13:1–14:45 and Deuteronomy 1:19–45 both tell the story of the spies. Whereas Numbers 13:1–2 says that God told Moses to send men to spy out the land of Canaan, in Deuteronomy 1:22–23, Moses recounted that all the Israelites asked him to send men to search the land, and the idea pleased him.

Numbers chapter 14[edit]

In the Hebrew Bible, God’s reference to Caleb as “my servant” (עַבְדִּי, avdi) in Numbers 14:24 echoes God’s application of the same term to Abraham[1] and Moses.[2] And later, God uses the term to refer to Moses,[3] David,[4] Isaiah, [5] Eliakim the son of Hilkiah,[6] Israel,[7] Nebuchadnezzar,[8] Zerubbabel,[9] the Branch,[10] and Job[11]

Numbers chapter 15[edit]

Exodus 35:3 prohibits kindling fire on the Sabbath. Numbers 15:32–33 reports that when the Israelites came upon a man gathering wood on the Sabbath (apparently with the intent to fuel a fire), they brought him before Moses, Aaron, and the community and placed him in custody, “because it had not been declared what should be done to him.”[12] Clearing up any uncertainty about whether the man had violated the law, God told Moses that the whole community was to stone him outside the camp, and they did.[13]

Notes[edit]

  1. Genesis 26:24.
  2. Numbers 12:7, 8.
  3. Joshua 1:2, 7; 2 Kings 21:8; Malachi 3:22.
  4. 2 Samuel 3:18; 7:5, 8; 1 Kings 11:13, 32, 34, 36, 38; 14:8; 2 Kings 19:34; 20:6; Isaiah 37:35; Jeremiah 33:21, 22; 33:26; Ezekiel 34:23, 24; 37:24; Psalm 89:3, 20; 1 Chronicles 17:4, 7.
  5. Isaiah 20:3.
  6. Isaiah 22:20.
  7. Isaiah 41:8, 9; 42:1, 19; 43:10; 44:1, 2, 21; 49:3, 6; 52:13; Jeremiah 30:10; 46:27; Ezekiel 28:25; 37:25.
  8. Jeremiah 25:9; 27:6; 43:10.
  9. Haggai 2:23.
  10. Zechariah 3:8.
  11. Job 1:8; 2:3; 42:7, 8.
  12. Numbers 15:34.
  13. Numbers 15:35–36.