Numbers 33

Stages in Israel’s Journey

1 Here are the stages in the journey of the Israelites when they came out of Egypt by divisions under the leadership of Moses and Aaron.
2 At the LORD’s command Moses recorded the stages in their journey. This is their journey by stages:
3 The Israelites set out from Rameses on the fifteenth day of the first month, the day after the Passover. They marched out defiantly in full view of all the Egyptians,
4 who were burying all their firstborn, whom the LORD had struck down among them; for the LORD had brought judgment on their gods.
5 The Israelites left Rameses and camped at Sukkoth.
6 They left Sukkoth and camped at Etham, on the edge of the desert.
7 They left Etham, turned back to Pi Hahiroth, to the east of Baal Zephon, and camped near Migdol.
8 They left Pi Hahiroth[a] and passed through the sea into the desert, and when they had traveled for three days in the Desert of Etham, they camped at Marah.
9 They left Marah and went to Elim, where there were twelve springs and seventy palm trees, and they camped there.
10 They left Elim and camped by the Red Sea.[b]
11 They left the Red Sea and camped in the Desert of Sin.
12 They left the Desert of Sin and camped at Dophkah.
13 They left Dophkah and camped at Alush.
14 They left Alush and camped at Rephidim, where there was no water for the people to drink.
15 They left Rephidim and camped in the Desert of Sinai.
16 They left the Desert of Sinai and camped at Kibroth Hattaavah.
17 They left Kibroth Hattaavah and camped at Hazeroth.
18 They left Hazeroth and camped at Rithmah.
19 They left Rithmah and camped at Rimmon Perez.
20 They left Rimmon Perez and camped at Libnah.
21 They left Libnah and camped at Rissah.
22 They left Rissah and camped at Kehelathah.
23 They left Kehelathah and camped at Mount Shepher.
24 They left Mount Shepher and camped at Haradah.
25 They left Haradah and camped at Makheloth.
26 They left Makheloth and camped at Tahath.
27 They left Tahath and camped at Terah.
28 They left Terah and camped at Mithkah.
29 They left Mithkah and camped at Hashmonah.
30 They left Hashmonah and camped at Moseroth.
31 They left Moseroth and camped at Bene Jaakan.
32 They left Bene Jaakan and camped at Hor Haggidgad.
33 They left Hor Haggidgad and camped at Jotbathah.
34 They left Jotbathah and camped at Abronah.
35 They left Abronah and camped at Ezion Geber.
36 They left Ezion Geber and camped at Kadesh, in the Desert of Zin.
37 They left Kadesh and camped at Mount Hor, on the border of Edom.
38 At the LORD’s command Aaron the priest went up Mount Hor, where he died on the first day of the fifth month of the fortieth year after the Israelites came out of Egypt.
39 Aaron was a hundred and twenty-three years old when he died on Mount Hor.
40 The Canaanite king of Arad, who lived in the Negev of Canaan, heard that the Israelites were coming.
41 They left Mount Hor and camped at Zalmonah.
42 They left Zalmonah and camped at Punon.
43 They left Punon and camped at Oboth.
44 They left Oboth and camped at Iye Abarim, on the border of Moab.
45 They left Iye Abarim and camped at Dibon Gad.
46 They left Dibon Gad and camped at Almon Diblathaim.
47 They left Almon Diblathaim and camped in the mountains of Abarim, near Nebo.
48 They left the mountains of Abarim and camped on the plains of Moab by the Jordan across from Jericho.
49 There on the plains of Moab they camped along the Jordan from Beth Jeshimoth to Abel Shittim.
50 On the plains of Moab by the Jordan across from Jericho the LORD said to Moses,
51 “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘When you cross the Jordan into Canaan,
52 drive out all the inhabitants of the land before you. Destroy all their carved images and their cast idols, and demolish all their high places.
53 Take possession of the land and settle in it, for I have given you the land to possess.
54 Distribute the land by lot, according to your clans. To a larger group give a larger inheritance, and to a smaller group a smaller one. Whatever falls to them by lot will be theirs. Distribute it according to your ancestral tribes.
55 “ ‘But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land, those you allow to remain will become barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides. They will give you trouble in the land where you will live.
56 And then I will do to you what I plan to do to them.’ ”

Numbers 33 Commentary

Chapter 33

Encampments of the Israelites. (1-49) The Canaanites to be destroyed. (50-56)

Verses 1-49 This is a brief review of the travels of the children of Israel through the wilderness. It is a memorable history. In their travels towards Canaan they were continually on the remove. Such is our state in this world; we have here no continuing city, and all our removes in this world are but from one part a desert to another. They were led to and fro, forward and backward, yet were all the while under the direction of the pillar of cloud and fire. God led them about, yet led them the right way. The way God takes in bringing his people to himself is always the best way, though it does not always seem to us the nearest way. Former events are mentioned. Thus we ought to keep in mind the providences of God concerning us and families, us and our land, and the many instances of that Divine care which has led us, and fed us, and kept us all our days hitherto. Few periods of our lives can be thought upon, without reminding us of the Lord's goodness, and our own ingratitude and disobedience: his kindness leaves us without excuse for our sins. We could not wish to travel over again the stages we have passed, unless we could hope, by the grace of God, to shun the sins we then committed, and to embrace such opportunities of doing good as we have let slip. Soon will our wanderings end, and our eternal state be fixed beyond recall; how important then is the present moment! Happy are those whom the Lord now guides with his counsel, and will at length receive to his glory. To this happiness the gospel calls us. Behold now is the accepted time, now is the day of salvation. Let sinners seize the opportunity, and flee for refuge to the hope set before them. Let us redeem our time, to glorify God and serve our generation; and he will carry us safely through all, to his eternal kingdom.

Verses 50-56 Now that they were to pass over Jordan, they were entering again into temptation to follow idols; and they are threatened that, if they spared either the idols or the idolaters, their sin would certainly be their punishment. They would foster vipers in their own bosoms. The remnant of the Canaanites, if they made any peace with them, though but for a time, would be pricks in their eyes, and thorns in their sides. We must expect trouble and affliction from whatever sin we indulge; that which we are willing should tempt us, will vex us. It was intended that the Canaanites should be put out of the land; but if the Israelites learned their wicked ways, they also would be put out. Let us hear this and fear. If we do not drive out sin, sin will drive us out. If we are not the death of our lusts, our lusts will be the death of our souls.

Cross References 61

  • 1. Exodus 17:1; Exodus 40:36
  • 2. Numbers 1:1; Micah 6:4
  • 3. S Exodus 4:16; Exodus 6:26; Psalms 77:20
  • 4. S Exodus 17:14
  • 5. S ver 1
  • 6. Numbers 10:2
  • 7. S Genesis 47:11
  • 8. Joshua 5:10; Exodus 13:4
  • 9. S Exodus 14:8
  • 10. S Exodus 4:23
  • 11. 2 Chronicles 24:24; Jeremiah 15:3; Ezekiel 14:21
  • 12. S Exodus 12:12
  • 13. Exodus 12:37
  • 14. Exodus 13:20
  • 15. Exodus 14:9
  • 16. S Exodus 14:2
  • 17. Exodus 14:2
  • 18. S Exodus 14:22
  • 19. S Exodus 15:23
  • 20. Exodus 15:27
  • 21. Exodus 16:1
  • 22. S Exodus 16:1
  • 23. S Exodus 15:22; S Exodus 17:2
  • 24. S Exodus 17:1
  • 25. S Exodus 19:1
  • 26. S Numbers 11:34
  • 27. Numbers 11:35
  • 28. Joshua 10:29; Joshua 12:15; Joshua 15:42; Joshua 21:13; 2 Kings 8:22; 2 Kings 19:8; 2 Kings 23:31; 1 Chronicles 6:57; 2 Chronicles 21:10; Isaiah 37:8; Jeremiah 52:1
  • 29. Deuteronomy 10:6
  • 30. Deuteronomy 10:6
  • 31. Deuteronomy 10:7
  • 32. Deuteronomy 2:8; 1 Kings 9:26; 1 Kings 22:48
  • 33. S Numbers 13:21; Numbers 20:1
  • 34. S Numbers 20:22
  • 35. S Genesis 36:16; S Numbers 20:16; Numbers 21:4
  • 36. S Numbers 27:13; Deuteronomy 10:6
  • 37. S Exodus 16:35
  • 38. Numbers 20:25-28
  • 39. S Genesis 10:18
  • 40. S Numbers 21:1
  • 41. S Genesis 12:9
  • 42. Numbers 21:10
  • 43. S Numbers 21:11
  • 44. Numbers 27:12
  • 45. Numbers 32:3
  • 46. Numbers 27:12
  • 47. S Numbers 26:3
  • 48. S Genesis 13:10
  • 49. Numbers 22:1; Joshua 12:9
  • 50. Joshua 12:3; Joshua 13:20; Ezekiel 25:9
  • 51. S Numbers 21:16; Numbers 25:1
  • 52. ver 48
  • 53. Numbers 34:2; Joshua 3:17
  • 54. Exodus 23:24; Exodus 34:13; S Leviticus 26:1; Deuteronomy 7:2,5; Deuteronomy 12:3; Joshua 11:12; Psalms 106:34-36
  • 55. Deuteronomy 11:31; Deuteronomy 17:14; Joshua 1:11; Joshua 21:43
  • 56. S Leviticus 16:8; Numbers 36:2
  • 57. Numbers 26:54
  • 58. Numbers 35:8
  • 59. Joshua 18:10
  • 60. Joshua 23:13; Judges 2:3; Psalms 106:36; Isaiah 55:13; Ezekiel 2:6; Ezekiel 28:24; Micah 7:4; 2 Corinthians 12:7
  • 61. Numbers 14:28

Footnotes 2

  • [a]. Many manuscripts of the Masoretic Text, Samaritan Pentateuch and Vulgate; most manuscripts of the Masoretic Text "left from before Hahiroth"
  • [b]. Or "the Sea of Reeds" ; also in verse 11

Chapter Summary


This chapter gives an account of the journeys of the people of Israel, from their first coming out of Egypt, to their arrival in the plains of Moab by Jordan, and the names of the various stations where they rested are given, Nu 33:1-49 and they are ordered, when they passed over Jordan, to drive out the Canaanites, destroy their idols, and divide the land among their families in their several tribes, Nu 33:50-54 or otherwise it is threatened the Canaanites should be troublesome and vexatious to them, even those that remained; and it might be expected God would do to the Israelites as he thought to do to those nations, Nu 33:55,56.

Numbers 33 Commentaries

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