Numbers 26:62
And those that were numbered of them were twenty and three thousand, all males from a month old and upward: for they were not numbered among the children of Israel, because there was no inheritance given them among the children of Israel.
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(62) Twenty and three thousand.—At the former census the number was 22,000 or 22,300 (See Numbers 3:39, and Note.)

26:57-62 Levi was God's tribe; therefore it was not numbered with the rest, but alone. It came not under the sentence, that none of them should enter Canaan excepting Caleb and Joshua.The total number of male Levites, 23,000, shows an increase of 1,000 on the number at Sinai Numbers 3:39. It is doubtless to be taken as a round number; and, as before, includes the male children from a month old and upward, as well as the male adults. 62. twenty and three thousand—so that there was an increase of a thousand (Nu 3:39).

males from a month old and upward—(See on [93]Nu 3:14).

Twenty and three thousand; one thousand more than they were Numbers 3:39. The reason of which different way of numbering, see on Numbers 3:15. And these are they that were numbered of the Levites, after their families,.... And they were numbered not with the rest of the tribes of Israel, but by themselves, as they were at the first numbering of the tribes; the three principal families of which were, the Gershonite, the Kohathite, and Merarite, so called from the three sons of Levi; but all their sons are not mentioned, of the sons of Gershon only Libni, from whom was the family of the Libnites; not Shimei, because, as Aben Ezra conjectures, either he had no sons, or, if he had, they died without any, and so there was no family from them; and of the sons of Kohath no mention is made of Uzziel, nor of Izhar, but in the Korhites, only of the Hebronite family from Hebron; and of Amram, whose wife Jochebed is spoken of as a daughter of Levi, whom Levi's wife, as Jarchi rightly supplies it, bore to him in Egypt, and which Jochebed was the mother of Aaron, Moses, and Miriam; and it is observed that Aaron had four sons, Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar, the two first of which died for offering strange fire to the Lord, and the two last were now living: from Merari, another son of Levi, sprang two families, the Mahlite, and the Mushite; and the whole number of the Levites at this time taken was 23,000 males of a month old and upward; so that here was an increase of 1,000 males since the former numbering of them: the reason why they were not numbered with the other tribes was, because they had no part of the land of Israel divided to them, and had no inheritance in it. And those that were numbered of them were twenty and three thousand, all males from a month old and upward: for they were not numbered among the children of Israel, because there was no inheritance given them among the children of Israel.
62. twenty and three thousand] At the first census the Levites numbered 22,000.Verse 62. - Those that were numbered of them. We have here again a round number (23,000), showing an increase of 1000 since the former census. It is evident that the males of Levi were not counted by anything less than hundreds, and probable that they were counted by thousands (see note on chapter Numbers 3:29). The smallness of the increase in a tribe which was excepted from the general doom at Kadesh, and which in other ways was so favourably situated, seems to point to some considerable losses. It is possible that portions of the tribe suffered severely for their share in the rebellion of Korah; if so, the families of the Shimites and of the Uzzielites may have been so much reduced as to be merged in the remaining families. Instructions concerning the Distribution of the Land. - In Numbers 26:53, Numbers 26:54, the command is given to distribute the land as an inheritance among the twelve tribes ("unto these"), according to the number of the names (Numbers 1:2-18), i.e., to the tribes and families that contained only a few persons, they were to make it small; to every one according to the measure of its mustered persons (ל must be repeated before אישׁ). In Numbers 26:55, Numbers 26:56, it is still further commanded that the distribution should take place by lot. "According to the names on their paternal tribes shall they (the children of Israel) receive it (the land) for an inheritance." The meaning of these words can only be, that every tribe was to receive a province of its own for an inheritance, which should be called by its name for ever. The other regulation in Numbers 26:56, "according to the measure of the lot shall its inheritance (the inheritance of every tribe) be divided between the numerous and the small (tribe)," is no doubt to be understood as signifying, that in the division of the tribe territories, according to the comparative sizes of the different tribes, they were to adhere to that portion of land which fell to every tribe in the casting of the lots. The magnitude and limits of the possessions of the different tribes could not be determined by the lot according to the magnitude of the tribes themselves: all that could possibly be determined was the situation to be occupied by the tribe; so that R. Bechai is quite correct in observing that "the casting of the lot took place for the more convenient distribution of the different portions, whether of better or inferior condition, that there might be no occasion for strife and covetousness," though the motive assigned is too partial in its character. The lot was to determine the portion of every tribe, not merely to prevent all occasion for dissatisfaction and complaining, but in order that every tribe might receive with gratitude the possession that fell to its lot as the inheritance assigned it by God, the result of the lot being regarded by almost all nations as determined by God Himself (cf. Proverbs 16:33; Proverbs 18:18). On this ground not only was the lot resorted to by the Greeks and Romans in the distribution of conquered lands (see the proofs in Clericus, Rosenmller, and Knobel), but it is still employed in the division of lands. (For further remarks, see at Joshua 14:1.).
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