Numbers 34

Boundaries of Canaan

1 The LORD said to Moses,
2 “Command the Israelites and say to them: ‘When you enter Canaan, the land that will be allotted to you as an inheritance is to have these boundaries:
3 “ ‘Your southern side will include some of the Desert of Zin along the border of Edom. Your southern boundary will start in the east from the southern end of the Dead Sea,
4 cross south of Scorpion Pass, continue on to Zin and go south of Kadesh Barnea. Then it will go to Hazar Addar and over to Azmon,
5 where it will turn, join the Wadi of Egypt and end at the Mediterranean Sea.
6 “ ‘Your western boundary will be the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. This will be your boundary on the west.
7 “ ‘For your northern boundary, run a line from the Mediterranean Sea to Mount Hor
8 and from Mount Hor to Lebo Hamath. Then the boundary will go to Zedad,
9 continue to Ziphron and end at Hazar Enan. This will be your boundary on the north.
10 “ ‘For your eastern boundary, run a line from Hazar Enan to Shepham.
11 The boundary will go down from Shepham to Riblah on the east side of Ain and continue along the slopes east of the Sea of Galilee.[a]
12 Then the boundary will go down along the Jordan and end at the Dead Sea. “ ‘This will be your land, with its boundaries on every side.’ ”
13 Moses commanded the Israelites: “Assign this land by lot as an inheritance. The LORD has ordered that it be given to the nine-and-a-half tribes,
14 because the families of the tribe of Reuben, the tribe of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh have received their inheritance.
15 These two-and-a-half tribes have received their inheritance east of the Jordan across from Jericho, toward the sunrise.”
16 The LORD said to Moses,
17 “These are the names of the men who are to assign the land for you as an inheritance: Eleazar the priest and Joshua son of Nun.
18 And appoint one leader from each tribe to help assign the land.
19 These are their names: Caleb son of Jephunneh, from the tribe of Judah;
20 Shemuel son of Ammihud, from the tribe of Simeon;
21 Elidad son of Kislon, from the tribe of Benjamin;
22 Bukki son of Jogli, the leader from the tribe of Dan;
23 Hanniel son of Ephod, the leader from the tribe of Manasseh son of Joseph;
24 Kemuel son of Shiphtan, the leader from the tribe of Ephraim son of Joseph;
25 Elizaphan son of Parnak, the leader from the tribe of Zebulun;
26 Paltiel son of Azzan, the leader from the tribe of Issachar;
27 Ahihud son of Shelomi, the leader from the tribe of Asher;
28 Pedahel son of Ammihud, the leader from the tribe of Naphtali.”
29 These are the men the LORD commanded to assign the inheritance to the Israelites 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 34

  • 1. S Numbers 33:51
  • 2. Genesis 17:8; Deuteronomy 1:7-8; Joshua 23:4; Psalms 78:54-55; Psalms 105:11
  • 3. Ezekiel 47:15
  • 4. Numbers 13:21; Joshua 15:1-3
  • 5. S Genesis 14:3
  • 6. Joshua 15:3; Judges 1:36
  • 7. Numbers 32:8
  • 8. Joshua 15:4
  • 9. Genesis 15:18; Joshua 15:4
  • 10. Joshua 1:4; Joshua 9:1; Joshua 15:12,47; Joshua 23:4; Ezekiel 47:10,15; Ezekiel 48:28
  • 11. Ezekiel 47:19-20
  • 12. Ezekiel 47:15-17
  • 13. S Numbers 20:22
  • 14. Numbers 13:21; Joshua 13:5
  • 15. Joshua 15:5
  • 16. 2 Kings 23:33; 2 Kings 25:6,21; Jeremiah 39:5; Jeremiah 52:9,27
  • 17. Joshua 15:32; Joshua 21:16; 1 Chronicles 4:32
  • 18. Deuteronomy 3:17; Joshua 11:2; Joshua 13:27
  • 19. S Leviticus 16:8; Joshua 18:10; Micah 2:5
  • 20. Joshua 13:6; Joshua 14:1-5; Isaiah 49:8; Isaiah 65:9; Ezekiel 45:1
  • 21. Numbers 32:19; Deuteronomy 33:21; Numbers 32:33; Joshua 14:3
  • 22. Numbers 11:28; Deuteronomy 1:38; Joshua 14:1
  • 23. S Numbers 1:4; Numbers 1:4,16
  • 24. Joshua 14:1
  • 25. ver 29
  • 26. S Numbers 26:65
  • 27. Genesis 29:35; Deuteronomy 33:7; Psalms 60:7
  • 28. S Genesis 29:33; Genesis 49:5
  • 29. Genesis 49:27; Judges 5:14; Psalms 68:27
  • 30. Numbers 1:34
  • 31. Numbers 1:32
  • 32. S Genesis 30:20
  • 33. Numbers 1:40
  • 34. ver 19

Footnotes 1

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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