25:6 Just then 1 one of the Israelites came and brought to his brothers 2 a Midianite woman in the plain view of Moses and of 3 the whole community of the Israelites, while they 4 were weeping at the entrance of the tent of meeting.
25:14 Now the name of the Israelite who was stabbed – the one who was stabbed with the Midianite woman – was Zimri son of Salu, a leader of a clan 5 of the Simeonites. 25:15 The name of the Midianite woman who was killed was Cozbi daughter of Zur. He was a leader 6 over the people of a clan of Midian. 7
25:16 Then the Lord spoke to Moses: 25:17 “Bring trouble 8 to the Midianites, and destroy them, 25:18 because they bring trouble to you by their treachery with which they have deceived 9 you in the matter of Peor, and in the matter of Cozbi, the daughter of a prince of Midian, 10 their sister, who was killed on the day of the plague that happened as a result of Peor.”
1 tn The verse begins with the deictic particle וְהִנֵּה (vÿhinneh), pointing out the action that was taking place. It stresses the immediacy of the action to the reader.
2 tn Or “to his family”; or “to his clan.”
3 tn Heb “before the eyes of Moses and before the eyes of.”
4 tn The vav (ו) at the beginning of the clause is a disjunctive because it is prefixed to the nonverbal form. In this context it is best interpreted as a circumstantial clause, stressing that this happened “while” people were weeping over the sin.
6 tn Heb “head.”
7 sn The passage makes it clear that this individual was a leader, one who was supposed to be preventing this thing from happening. The judgment was swift and severe, because the crime was so great, and the danger of it spreading was certain. Paul refers to this horrible incident when he reminds Christians not to do similar things (1 Cor 10:6-8).
8 tn The form is the infinitive absolute used in place of a verb here; it clearly is meant to be an instruction for Israel. The idea is that of causing trouble, harassing, vexing Midian. The verb is repeated as the active participle in the line, and so the punishment is talionic.
9 tn This is the same word as that translated “treachery.”
10 sn Cozbi’s father, Zur, was one of five Midianite kings who eventually succumbed to Israel (Num 31:8). When the text gives the name and family of a woman, it is asserting that she is important, at least for social reasons, among her people.