Numbers 32:1

The Transjordan Tribes

1 The Reubenites and Gadites, who had very large herds and flocks, saw that the lands of Jazer and Gilead were suitable for livestock.

Numbers 32:1 in Other Translations

KJV
1 Now the children of Reuben and the children of Gad had a very great multitude of cattle: and when they saw the land of Jazer, and the land of Gilead, that, behold, the place was a place for cattle;
ESV
1 Now the people of Reuben and the people of Gad had a very great number of livestock. And they saw the land of Jazer and the land of Gilead, and behold, the place was a place for livestock.
NLT
1 The tribes of Reuben and Gad owned vast numbers of livestock. So when they saw that the lands of Jazer and Gilead were ideally suited for their flocks and herds,
MSG
1 The families of Reuben and Gad had huge herds of livestock. They saw that the country of Jazer and Gilead was just the place for grazing livestock.
CSB
1 The Reubenites and Gadites had a very large number of livestock. When they surveyed the lands of Jazer and Gilead, they saw that the region was a [good] one for livestock.

Numbers 32:1 Meaning and Commentary

Numbers 32:1

Now the children of Reuben and the children of Gad had a very
great multitude of cattle
By which it seems that they had more in proportion than any of the other tribes; by what means it is not easy to say; very probably they were more addicted to the pastoral life, and took more delight in breeding cattle, and were more diligent in taking care of them: however, the reason for this observation presently follows:

and when they saw the land of Jazer, and the land of Gilead;
Jazer was in the kingdom of Sihon, and Gilead in the kingdom of Og, which had been both conquered by the Israelites:

that, behold, the place was a place for cattle;
where much cattle was fed, there being a great deal of good pasturage for them: Jazer appears to be a well watered country, ( Jeremiah 48:32 ) , and Gilead and Bashan which joined and belonged to the same country of Og, who was king of Bashan, were famous for good feeding of cattle: hence we read of the bulls of Bashan, and rams of the breed of Bashan, and goats on Mount Gilead that looked plump and sleek; see ( Micah 7:14 ) ( Deuteronomy 32:14 ) ( Psalms 22:12 ) ( Song of Solomon 4:1 ) .

Numbers 32:1 In-Context

1 The Reubenites and Gadites, who had very large herds and flocks, saw that the lands of Jazer and Gilead were suitable for livestock.
2 So they came to Moses and Eleazar the priest and to the leaders of the community, and said,
3 “Ataroth, Dibon, Jazer, Nimrah, Heshbon, Elealeh, Sebam, Nebo and Beon—
4 the land the LORD subdued before the people of Israel—are suitable for livestock, and your servants have livestock.
5 If we have found favor in your eyes,” they said, “let this land be given to your servants as our possession. Do not make us cross the Jordan.”

Cross References 4

  • 1. ver 24,36; Judges 5:16
  • 2. S Numbers 21:32
  • 3. S Genesis 31:21
  • 4. Exodus 12:38