Numbers 2:5
And those that do pitch next to him shall be the tribe of Issachar: and Nethaneel the son of Zuar shall be captain of the children of Issachar.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
2:1-34 The order of the tribes in their tents. - The tribes were to encamp about the tabernacle, which was to be in the midst of them. It was a token of God's gracious presence. Yet they were to pitch their tents afar off, in reverence to the sanctuary. The children of Israel put themselves in their posts, without murmuring or disputing; and as it was their safety, so it was their beauty. It is our duty and interest to be contented with the place allotted to us, and to endeavour to occupy it in a proper manner, without envying or murmuring; without ambition or covetousness. Thus the gospel church ought to be compact, according to the Scripture model, every one knowing and keeping his place; and then all that wish well to the church rejoice, beholding their order, Col 2:5.The following plan shows the general arrangement of the camp, which would vary in different places according to local exigencies. The area of the camp might be about three square miles:5. those that pitch next unto him—that is, on the one side. Issachar and Zebulun were Leah’s two youngest sons, and therefore would more contentedly submit to Judah. And those that do pitch next unto him shall be the tribe of Issachar,.... Who with Zebulun, after mentioned, as placed with him under the same standard, were the brethren of Judah, by the same mother Leah, and so fitly put together, as most likely to continue in harmony and love; and being the youngest sons of Leah, and brethren of Judah, would, without any reluctance or murmuring, pitch under their elder brother's standard:

and Nethaneel, the son of Zuar, shall be captain of the children of Issachar; see Numbers 1:8.

And those that do pitch next unto him shall be the tribe {b} of Issachar: and Nethaneel the son of Zuar shall be captain of the children of Issachar.

(b) Judah, Issachar and Zebulun the sons of Leah were of the first standard.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
5, 7. Issachar is said to ‘pitch next unto’ Judah, and similarly in the other three cases. The important tribe thus appears to be placed in the centre, between the other two.Verse 5. - Next unto him. Whether the leading tribe occupied the center or one extreme of its own side of the encampment is a matter of mere speculation. Moses was not to muster the tribe of Levi along with the children of Israel, i.e., with the other tribes, or take their number, but to appoint the Levites for the service of the dwelling of the testimony (Exodus 38:21), i.e., of the tabernacle, that they might encamp around it, might take it down when the camp was broken up, and set it up when Israel encamped again, and that no stranger (zar, non-Levite, as in Leviticus 22:10) might come near it and be put to death (see Numbers 3:10). The rest of the tribes were to encamp every man in his place of encampment, and by his banner (see at Numbers 2:2), in their hosts (see Numbers 2), that wrath might not come upon the congregation, viz., through the approach of a stranger. קצף, the wrath of Jehovah, breaking in judgment upon the unholy who approached His sanctuary in opposition to His command (Numbers 8:19; Numbers 18:5, Numbers 18:22). On the expression "keep the charge" (shamar mishmereth), see at Genesis 26:5 and Leviticus 8:35.
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