Numbers 15


Directions concerning the different offerings they should bring

unto the Lord when they should come to the land of Canaan, 1-3.

Directions relative to the meat-offering, 4;

to the drink-offering, 5.

Of the burnt-offering, vow-offering, peace-offering,

drink-offering, &c., 6-12.

All born in the country must perform these rites, 13,

and the strangers also, 14-16.

They shall offer unto the Lord a heave-offering of the

first-fruits of the land, 17-21.

Concerning omissions through ignorance, and the sacrifices to be

offered on such occasions, 22-29.

He who sins presumptuously shall be cut off, 30, 31.

History of the person who gathered sticks on the Sabbath, 32.

He is brought to Moses and Aaron, 33.

They put him in confinement till the mind of the Lord should be

known on the case, 34.

The Lord commands him to be stoned, 35.

He is stoned to death, 36.

The Israelites are commanded to make fringes to the borders of

their garments, 37, 38.

The end for which these fringes were to be made, that they might

remember the commandments of the Lord, that they might be holy,



Verse 2. When ye be come into the land] Some learned men are

of opinion that several offerings prescribed by the law were not

intended to be made in the wilderness, but in the promised land;

the former not affording those conveniences which were necessary

to the complete observance of the Divine worship in this and

several other respects.

Verse 3. And will make an offering] For the different kinds of

offerings, sacrifices, &c., see Le 1:2, 7.

Verse 5. The fourth part of a hin] The quantity of meal and

flour was augmented in proportion to the size of the sacrifice

with which it was offered. With a LAMB or a KID were offered one

tenth deal of flour, (the tenth part of an ephah,

See Clarke on Ex 29:40,)

the fourth part of a hin of oil, and the fourth part of a hin of

wine. With a RAM, two tenth deals of flour, a third part of a

hin of oil, and a third part of a hin of wine. With a BULLOCK,

three tenth deals of flour, half a hin of oil, and half a hin

of wine. See Nu 15:4-11.

Verse 14. If a stranger sojourn] See the notes on

Le 19:33; 22:9. When the case of the Jewish people is fairly

considered, and their situation with respect to the surrounding

idolatrous nations, we shall see the absolute necessity of having

but one form of worship in the land. That alone was genuine which

was prescribed by the Almighty, and no others could be tolerated,

because they were idolatrous. All strangers-all that came to

sojourn in the land, were required to conform to it; and it was

right that those who did conform to it should have equal rights

and privileges with the Hebrews themselves, which we find was the

case. But under the Christian dispensation, as no particular form

of worship is prescribed, the types and ceremonies of the Mosaic

institution being all fulfilled, unlimited toleration should be

allowed; and while the sacred writings are made the basis of the

worship offered to God, every man should be allowed to worship

according to his own conscience, for in this respect every one is

"Lord of himself, accountable to none

But to his conscience and his God alone."

Verse 20. Ye shall offer-the first of your dough] Concerning

the offerings of first-fruits, See Clarke on Ex 22:29.

Verse 24. If aught be committed by ignorance]

See Clarke on Le 4:2, and "Le 5:17".

The case here probably refers to the whole

congregation; the cases above, to the sin of an individual.

Verse 25. The priest shall make an atonement] Even sins

committed through ignorance required an atonement; and God in his

mercy has provided one for them.

Verse 30. But the soul that doeth aught presumptuously] Bold

daring acts of transgression against the fullest evidence, and in

despite of the Divine authority, admitted of no atonement; the

person was to be cut off-to be excluded from God's people, and

from all their privileges and blessings.

Probably the presumption mentioned here implied an utter

contempt of the word and authority of God, springing from an

idolatrous or atheistical mind. ln such a case all repentance was

precluded, because of the denial of the word and being of God. It

is probably a case similar to that mentioned Heb 6:4-8; 10:26-31;

on which passages see the notes.

Verse 32. They found a man that gathered sticks upon the

Sabbath] This was in all likelihood a case of that kind supposed

above: the man despised the word of the Lord, and therefore broke

his commandment; see Nu 15:31. On this ground he was punished

with the utmost rigour of the law.

Verse 36. Stoned him] See Clarke on Le 24:23.

Verse 38. Bid them-make them fringes] We learn from Nu 15:39

that these fringes were emblematical of the various commands of

God. That there was any analogy between a fringe and a precept,

it would be bold to assert; but when a thing is appointed to

represent another, no matter how different, that first object be

comes the regular representative or sign of the other. There is

no analogy between the term bread and the farinaceous nutritive

substance thereby signified; but because this term is used to

express and represent that thing, every person thus understands

it; and when the word bread is seen or heard, a perfect knowledge,

not of the letters which compose that word, but of the thing

signified by it, is conveyed to the mind. So the fringes, being

appointed by God to represent and bring to mind the commandments

of God, Nu 15:39, the mention or sight of them conveyed the

intelligence intended. All the Jews wore these, and so probably

did our Lord; see Mt 9:20, where the word κρασπεον is rather to

be understood of the fringe than of the hem of his garment.

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