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Numbers 14:6-9

Context
14:6 And Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh, two of those who had investigated the land, tore their garments. 14:7 They said to the whole community of the Israelites, “The land we passed through to investigate is an exceedingly 1  good land. 14:8 If the Lord delights in us, then he will bring us into this land and give it to us – a land that is flowing with milk and honey. 2  14:9 Only do not rebel against the Lord, and do not fear the people of the land, for they are bread for us. 3  Their protection 4  has turned aside from them, but the Lord is with us. Do not fear them!”

1 tn The repetition of the adverb מְאֹד (mÿod) is used to express this: “very, very [good].”

2 tn The subjective genitives “milk and honey” are symbols of the wealth of the land, second only to bread. Milk was a sign of such abundance (Gen 49:12; Isa 7:21,22). Because of the climate the milk would thicken quickly and become curds, eaten with bread or turned into butter. The honey mentioned here is the wild honey (see Deut 32:13; Judg 14:8-9). It signified sweetness, or the finer things of life (Ezek 3:3).

3 sn The expression must indicate that they could destroy the enemies as easily as they could eat bread.

4 tn Heb “their shade.” The figure compares the shade from the sun with the protection from the enemy. It is also possible that the text is alluding to their deities here.



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