Numbers 34

Instruction for Apportioning Canaan

1 Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying,
2 "Command the sons of Israel and say to them, 'When you enter 1the land of Canaan, this is the land that shall fall to you as an inheritance, even the land of Canaan according to its borders.
3 '2Your southern sector shall extend from the wilderness of Zin along the side of Edom, and your southern border shall extend from the end of the Salt Sea 3eastward.
4 'Then your border shall turn direction from the south to the ascent of Akrabbim and continue to Zin, and its termination shall be to the south of 4Kadesh-barnea; and it shall reach Hazaraddar and continue to Azmon.
5 'The border shall turn direction from Azmon to the brook of Egypt, and its termination shall be at 5the sea.
6 'As for the western border, you shall have the Great Sea, that is, its coastline; this shall be your west border.
7 '6And this shall be your north border: you shall draw your border line from the Great Sea to Mount Hor.
8 'You shall draw a line from Mount Hor to 7the Lebo-hamath, and the termination of the border shall be at Zedad;
9 and the border shall proceed to Ziphron, and its termination shall be at Hazar-enan. This shall be your north border.
10 'For your eastern border you shall also draw a line from Hazar-enan to Shepham,
11 and the border shall go down from Shepham to 8Riblah on the east side of Ain; and the border shall go down and reach to the slope on the east side of the Sea of 9Chinnereth.
12 'And the border shall go down to the Jordan and its termination shall be at the Salt Sea. This shall be your land according to its borders all around.' "
13 So Moses commanded the sons of Israel, saying, "10This is the land that you are to apportion by lot among you as a possession, which the LORD has commanded to give to the nine and a half tribes.
14 "11For the tribe of the sons of Reuben have received theirs according to their fathers' households, and the tribe of the sons of Gad according to their fathers' households, and the half-tribe * of Manasseh have received their possession.
15 "The two and a half tribes have received their possession across * the Jordan opposite Jericho, eastward toward the sunrising."
16 Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying,
17 "12These are the names of the men who shall apportion the land to you for inheritance: Eleazar the priest and Joshua the son of Nun.
18 "You shall take one leader of every tribe to apportion the land for inheritance.
19 "These are the names of the men: of the tribe of 13Judah, 14Caleb the son of Jephunneh.
20 "Of the tribe of the sons of 15Simeon, Samuel the son of Ammihud.
21 "Of the tribe of 16Benjamin, Elidad the son of Chislon.
22 "Of the tribe of the sons of Dan a leader, Bukki the son of Jogli.
23 "Of the sons of Joseph: of the tribe of the sons of Manasseh a leader, Hanniel the son of Ephod.
24 "Of the tribe of the sons of Ephraim a leader, Kemuel the son of Shiphtan.
25 "Of the tribe of the sons of Zebulun a leader, Elizaphan the son of Parnach.
26 "Of the tribe of the sons of Issachar a leader, Paltiel the son of Azzan.
27 "Of the tribe of the sons of Asher a leader, Ahihud the son of Shelomi.
28 "Of the tribe of the sons of Naphtali a leader, Pedahel the son of Ammihud."
29 These are those whom the LORD commanded to apportion the inheritance to the sons of Israel in the land of Canaan.

Numbers 34 Commentary

Chapter 34

The bounds of the promised land. (1-15) Those appointed to divide the land. (16-29)

Verses 1-15 Canaan was of small extent; as it is here bounded, it is but about 160 miles in length, and about 50 in breadth; yet this was the country promised to the father of the faithful, and the possession of the seed of Israel. This was that little spot of ground, in which alone, for many ages, God was known. This was the vineyard of the Lord, the garden enclosed; but as it is with gardens and vineyards, the narrowness of the space was made up by the fruitfulness of the soil. Though the earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof, yet few know him, and serve him; but those few are happy, because fruitful to God. Also, see how little a share of the world God gives to his own people. Those who have their portion in heaven, have reason to be content with a small pittance of this earth. Yet a little that a righteous man has, having it from the love of God, and with his blessing, is far better and more comfortable than the riches of many wicked.

Verses 16-29 God here appoints men to divide the land to them. So sure must they feel of victory and success while God fought for them, that the persons are named who should be intrusted with the dividing of the land.

Cross References 16

  • 1. Genesis 17:8; Psalms 78:54, 55; Psalms 105:11
  • 2. Joshua 15:1-3
  • 3. Joshua 15:5
  • 4. Numbers 32:8
  • 5. Joshua 15:4
  • 6. Ezekiel 47:15-17
  • 7. Joshua 13:5
  • 8. 2 Kings 23:33
  • 9. Deuteronomy 3:17; Joshua 13:27
  • 10. Genesis 15:18; Numbers 26:52-56; Deuteronomy 11:24; Joshua 14:1-5
  • 11. Numbers 32:33
  • 12. Joshua 14:1, 2
  • 13. Genesis 29:35; Deuteronomy 33:7; Psalms 60:7
  • 14. Numbers 13:6, 30; Numbers 26:65; Deuteronomy 1:36
  • 15. Genesis 29:33; Genesis 49:5; Ezekiel 48:24
  • 16. Genesis 49:27; Deuteronomy 33:12; Psalms 68:27

Footnotes 10

Chapter Summary


In this chapter the bounds and borders of the land Canaan are described, according to the direction of the Lord to Moses, Nu 34:1,2, the south border, Nu 34:3-5, the western border, Nu 34:6, the north border, Nu 34:7-9, the east border, Nu 34:10-12, which is ordered to be divided by lot to the nine tribes and a half, two tribes and a half having received their inheritance on the other side Jordan, Nu 34:13-15, and the persons are nominated to divide the land, Eleazar and Joshua, with one prince out of every tribe, and who are mentioned by name, Nu 34:16-29.

Numbers 34 Commentaries

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