Yea, they turned back, and tempted God
They talked of going back to Egypt, and of choosing a captain to lead them back thither, ( Numbers 14:3 Numbers 14:4 ) , and they turned back from the Lord, and from his good ways, and chose their own ways, and followed after idols; or the sense is, they again tempted God, not only at Meribah, but elsewhere; they tempted him again and again, even ten times, as before observed:
and limited the Holy One of Israel;
or "signed" F4 him; signed him with a sign, so the Targum; they tempted him by asking a sign of him, as Jarchi interprets it; insisting that a miracle be wrought, by which it might be known whether the Lord was among them or not, ( Exodus 17:7 ) , with which compare ( Matthew 16:1 ) , or they set bounds, so Kimchi; to his power and goodness, saying, this he could do, and the other he could not; see ( Psalms 78:19 Psalms 78:20 ) , and so men limit the Lord when they fix on a blessing they would have, even that, and not another; and the measure of it, to what degree it should be bestowed on them, as well as set the time when they would have it; whereas the blessing itself, and the degree of it, and the time of giving it, should be all left with the Lord; who knows which and what of it is most convenient for us, and when is the best time to bestow it on us.
F4 (wwth) "signaverunt", Pagninus.