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Numbers 14:11

Context
The Punishment from God

14:11 The Lord said to Moses, “How long will this people despise 1  me, and how long will they not believe 2  in me, in spite of the signs that I have done among them?

Numbers 14:22

Context
14:22 For all the people have seen my glory and my signs that I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and yet have tempted 3  me now these ten times, 4  and have not obeyed me, 5 

Numbers 14:27

Context
14:27 “How long must I bear 6  with this evil congregation 7  that murmurs against me? I have heard the complaints of the Israelites that they murmured against me.

1 tn The verb נָאַץ (naats) means “to condemn, spurn” (BDB 610 s.v.). Coats suggests that in some contexts the word means actual rejection or renunciation (Rebellion in the Wilderness, 146, 7). This would include the idea of distaste.

2 tn The verb “to believe” (root אָמַן, ’aman) has the basic idea of support, dependability for the root. The Hiphil has a declarative sense, namely, to consider something reliable or dependable and to act on it. The people did not trust what the Lord said.

3 tn The verb נָסָה (nasah) means “to test, to tempt, to prove.” It can be used to indicate things are tried or proven, or for testing in a good sense, or tempting in the bad sense, i.e., putting God to the test. In all uses there is uncertainty or doubt about the outcome. Some uses of the verb are positive: If God tests Abraham in Genesis 22:1, it is because there is uncertainty whether he fears the Lord or not; if people like Gideon put out the fleece and test the Lord, it is done by faith but in order to be certain of the Lord’s presence. But here, when these people put God to the test ten times, it was because they doubted the goodness and ability of God, and this was a major weakness. They had proof to the contrary, but chose to challenge God.

4 tn “Ten” is here a round figure, emphasizing the complete testing. But see F. V. Winnett, The Mosaic Tradition, 121-54.

5 tn Heb “listened to my voice.”

6 tn The figure is aposiopesis, or sudden silence. The main verb is deleted from the line, “how long…this evil community.” The intensity of the emotion is the reason for the ellipsis.

7 sn It is worth mentioning in passing that this is one of the Rabbinic proof texts for having at least ten men to form a congregation and have prayer. If God called ten men (the bad spies) a “congregation,” then a congregation must have ten men. But here the word “community/congregation” refers in this context to the people of Israel as a whole, not just to the ten spies.



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