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7.2. Camp of Israel

דֶּגֶל [deḡel] , a standard, banner, or flag, denotes primarily the larger field sign, possessed by every division composed of three tribes, which was also the banner of the tribe at the head of each division; and secondarily, in a derivative signification, it denotes the army united under one standard, like σημεία [sēmeia] , or vexillum. It is used thus, for example, in Num. Num. 2:17, Num. 2:31, Num. 2:34, and in combination with מַחֲנֶה [maḥăneh] in Num. Num. 2:3, Num. 2:10, Num. 2:18, and Num. 25:1, where “standard of the camp of Judah, Reuben, Ephraim, and Dan” signifies the hosts of the tribes arranged under these banners. אֹתֹת [ʾōṯōṯ] , the signs (ensigns), were the smaller flags or banners which were carried at the head of the different tribes and subdivisions of the tribes (the fathers’ houses).5

4 Ibid.

5 Keil, Commentary on the Old Testament, 1:660.

6 See also [John MacArthur, The MacArthur Study Bible (Nashville, TN: Word Publishing, 1997), 199] and [W. A. Criswell and Paige Patterson, eds., The Holy Bible: Baptist Study Edition (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1991), 192].

7 Keil, Commentary on the Old Testament, 1:660.

8 A. R. Fausset, “The Revelation of St. John the Divine,” in Robert Jamieson, A. R. Fausset, and David Brown, A Commentary, Critical and Explanatory, on the Old and New Testaments (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1997, 1877), Rev. 4:8.

9 John MacArthur, Revelation 1-11 : The MacArthur New Testament Commentary (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1999), Rev. 4:8.

10 J. A. Seiss, The Apocalypse: Lectures on the Book of Revelation (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1966), 106.

11 William Varner, Jacob’s Dozen: A Prophetic Look at the Tribes of Israel (Bellmawr, NJ: Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, 1987), s.v. “The Tribal Encampment.”

12 R. Torrey, The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, 1995), Num. 2:2.

13 Chaim Potok, Wanderings (New York, NY: Ballantine Books, 1978), 268.

14 Flavius Josephus, The Complete Works of Josephus (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1981), s.v. “Ant. XVIII, v3.”

15 Keil, Commentary on the Old Testament, 1:660n11.

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