Numbers 16:21
Separate yourselves from among this congregation, that I may consume them in a moment.
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(21) Separate yourselves from among this congregation . . . —By their obedience to the summons of Korah the congregation generally, or at Yeast a large portion of it, had made themselves partakers in his sin, and had become obnoxious to the Divine wrath.

16:16-22 The same glory of the Lord that appeared to place Aaron in his office at first, Le 9:23, now appeared to confirm him in it; and to confound those who set up against him. Nothing is more terrible to those who are conscious of guilt, than the appearance of the Divine glory. See how dangerous it is to have fellowship with sinners, and to partake with them. Though the people had treacherously deserted them, yet Moses and Aaron approved themselves faithful shepherds of Israel. If others fail in their duty to us, that does not take away the obligations we are under to seek their welfare. Their prayer was a pleading prayer, and it proved a prevailing one.Wilt thou put out the eyes of these men? - i. e. "blind them to the fact that you keep none of your promises;" "throw dust in their eyes." 20, 21. the Lord spake unto Moses and Aaron, saying, Separate yourselves from among this congregation—Curiosity to witness the exciting spectacle attracted a vast concourse of the people, and it would seem that the popular mind had been incited to evil by the clamors of the mutineers against Moses and Aaron. There was something in their behavior very offensive to God; for after His glory had appeared—as at the installation of Aaron (Le 9:23), so now for his confirmation in the sacred office—He bade Moses and Aaron withdraw from the assembly "that He might consume them in a moment." To wit, Korah and his two hundred and fifty men, and the people whom he gathered against Moses and Aaron, Numbers 16:19.

Separate yourselves, from among this congregation,.... Not only from Korah's company, but from the congregation of the children of Israel, whom Korah had got together, besides the two hundred fifty men that were at first with him; who by their words and behaviour, and particularly by their association and standing along with him, showed them to be on his side, which greatly provoked the Lord:

that I may consume them in a moment; by fire from him, as the two hundred fifty men were afterwards consumed, Numbers 16:35.

Separate yourselves from among this congregation, that I may consume them in a moment.
Verse 21. - That I may consume them in a moment. Literally, "and I will consume them." The same thing must be said of this as of Numbers 14:11, 12. Numbers 16:21The next day the rebels presented themselves with censers before the tabernacle, along with Moses and Aaron; and the whole congregation also assembled there at the instigation of Korah. The Lord then interposed in judgment. Appearing in His glory to the whole congregation (just as in Numbers 14:10), He said to Moses and Aaron, "Separate yourselves from this congregation; I will destroy them in a moment." By assembling in front of the tabernacle, the whole congregation had made common cause with the rebels. God threatened them, therefore, with sudden destruction. But the two men of God, who ere so despised by the rebellious faction, fell on their faces, interceding with God, and praying, "God, Thou God of the spirits of all flesh! this one man (i.e., Korah, the author of the conspiracy) hath sinned, and wilt Thou be wrathful with all the congregation?" i.e., let Thine anger fall upon the whole congregation. The Creator and Preserver of all beings, who has given and still gives life and breath to all flesh, is God of the spirits of all flesh. As the author of the spirit of life in all perishable flesh, God cannot destroy His own creatures in wrath; this would be opposed to His own paternal love and mercy. In this epithet, as applied to God, therefore, Moses appeals "to the universal blessing of creation. It is of little consequence whether these words are to be understood as relating to all the animal kingdom, or to the human race alone; because Moses simply prayed, that as God was the creator and architect of the world, He would not destroy the men whom He had created, but rather have mercy upon the works of His own hands" (Calvin). The intercession of the prophet Isaiah, in Isaiah 64:8, is similar to this, though that is founded upon the special relation in which God stood to Israel.
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