Those who have given themselves up to the leading of God’s Word and Spirit,
steer a safe course and so long as they walk in fellowship with their Guide,
they need not fear losing the way.
1 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
2 Make thee two trumpets of silver; of a whole piece shalt thou make them: that thou mayest use them for the calling of the assembly, and for the journeying of the camps.
3 And when they shall blow with them, all the assembly shall assemble themselves to thee at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
4 And if they blow but with one trumpet, then the princes, which are heads of the thousands of Israel, shall gather themselves unto thee.
5 When ye blow an alarm, then the camps that lie on the east parts shall go forward.
6 When ye blow an alarm the second time, then the camps that lie on the south side shall take their journey: they shall blow an alarm for their journeys.
7 But when the congregation is to be gathered together, ye shall blow, but ye shall not sound an alarm.
8 And the sons of Aaron, the priests, shall blow with the trumpets; and they shall be to you for an ordinance for ever throughout your generations.
9 And if ye go to war in your land against the enemy that oppresseth you, then ye shall blow an alarm with the trumpets; and ye shall be remembered before the LORD your God, and ye shall be saved from your enemies.
10 Also in the day of your gladness, and in your solemn days, and in the beginnings of your months, ye shall blow with the trumpets over your burnt offerings, and over the sacrifices of your peace offerings; that they may be to you for a memorial before your God: I am the LORD your God.
11 ¶ And it came to pass on the twentieth day of the second month, in the second year, that the cloud was taken up from off the tabernacle of the testimony.
12 And the children of Israel took their journeys out of the wilderness of Sinai; and the cloud rested in the wilderness of Paran.
13 And they first took their journey according to the commandment of the LORD by the hand of Moses.
14 ¶ In the first place went the standard of the camp of the children of Judah according to their armies: and over his host was Nahshon the son of Amminadab.
15 And over the host of the tribe of the children of Issachar was Nethaneel the son of Zuar.
16 And over the host of the tribe of the children of Zebulun was Eliab the son of Helon.
17 And the tabernacle was taken down; and the sons of Gershon and the sons of Merari set forward, bearing the tabernacle.
18 ¶ And the standard of the camp of Reuben set forward according to their armies: and over his host was Elizur the son of Shedeur.
19 And over the host of the tribe of the children of Simeon was Shelumiel the son of Zurishaddai.
20 And over the host of the tribe of the children of Gad was Eliasaph the son of Deuel.
21 And the Kohathites set forward, bearing the sanctuary: and the other did set up the tabernacle against they came.
22 ¶ And the standard of the camp of the children of Ephraim set forward according to their armies: and over his host was Elishama the son of Ammihud.
23 And over the host of the tribe of the children of Manasseh was Gamaliel the son of Pedahzur.
24 And over the host of the tribe of the children of Benjamin was Abidan the son of Gideoni.
25 ¶ And the standard of the camp of the children of Dan set forward, which was the rereward of all the camps throughout their hosts: and over his host was Ahiezer the son of Ammishaddai.
26 And over the host of the tribe of the children of Asher was Pagiel the son of Ocran.
27 And over the host of the tribe of the children of Naphtali was Ahira the son of Enan.
28 Thus were the journeyings of the children of Israel according to their armies, when they set forward.
29 ¶ And Moses said unto Hobab, the son of Raguel the Midianite, Moses’ father in law, We are journeying unto the place of which the LORD said, I will give it you: come thou with us, and we will do thee good: for the LORD hath spoken good concerning Israel.
30 And he said unto him, I will not go; but I will depart to mine own land, and to my kindred.
31 And he said, Leave us not, I pray thee; forasmuch as thou knowest how we are to encamp in the wilderness, and thou mayest be to us instead of eyes.
32 And it shall be, if thou go with us, yea, it shall be, that what goodness the LORD shall do unto us, the same will we do unto thee.
33 ¶ And they departed from the mount of the LORD three days’ journey: and the ark of the covenant of the LORD went before them in the three days’ journey, to search out a resting place for them.
34 And the cloud of the LORD was upon them by day, when they went out of the camp.
35 And it came to pass, when the ark set forward, that Moses said, Rise up, LORD, and let thine enemies be scattered; and let them that hate thee flee before thee.
36 And when it rested, he said, Return, O LORD, unto the many thousands of Israel.
Numbers 1 – J. Vernon McGee
Numbers 10:1-16 – The Trumpets Sound the March
Each trumpet was made of a solid piece of silver. They fulfilled several purposes, summoning an assembly, sounding the march, gathering for battle. They are referred to symbolically in Matthew 24:31, and I Corinthians 15:52. We are constantly being called to arise and depart! Is not the trumpet calling today to a slumbering Church to move out to the evangelization of the world? For a whole year Israel had sojourned under Sinai. They left Egypt an undisciplined crowd; they had become a nation, and a marshaled host. Each knew his pedigree and standard; every tribe had its appointed place. The soul must visit Sinai, but not live there. It must journey forth to Hermon, Olivet, and Calvary. The Church is moving on! Find thy place in the great procession and keep it. Remembered by God and saved from your enemies! Compare Numbers 10:9 and Isaiah 52:12. —Through the Bible Day by Day
Numbers 10:17-36 – “Come Thou with Us”
The invitation of Moses to Hobab is one that we may all give to our friends: “We are journeying unto the place of which the LORD said” (Numbers 10:29). We should always be on the alert for those who are not formally united to the Church, and we can always promise that we can do them good. Only good awaits those who travel with their backs to Egypt and their faces toward the Heavenly City. God has prepared for those who love Him such good things as it is beyond words to declare. See I Corinthians 2:9.
And how much we may benefit by such companionships! Hobab was probably Moses’ brother-in-law, and Jethro having returned to Midian, he was all the more needed to lead Israel to the best routes and the most suitable halting-places, where shade and water could be found. Such a guide would be invaluable. Ministers are such! For Hobab’s reward see Judges 1:16 and 4:11. Who would not follow where the Ark of the Covenant leads, and rest where the cloud broods? John 10:4. —Through the Bible Day by Day
Numbers 10:32 – What goodness the LORD shall do unto us, the same will we do unto thee.
Hobab was a Gentile by race, but he was invited to fellowship with Israel in all the blessings of their covenant. Moses reckoned that Israel was called to a stewardship of the manifold blessings of their lot. Whatever good was entrusted to them, they were called upon to distribute and pass on. As the Lord did them good, they would do Hobab good; making him, Gentile though he were, a fellow-heir, a fellow-member of the body, and a fellow-partaker of the promises of God.
We get by giving.—If the river-bed were to hoard up its waters, they would become stagnant and noisome. It is only in parting with them that it receives constant supplies from the crystal fountainhead. So, if we keep God’s good things to ourselves, we make it impossible to receive more. You cannot put more water into a full glass. But as we part with them we get more and better. Distribute five loaves, and you have twelve baskets of fragments.
We learn by teaching.—To stay in a class till you shall feel fully educated, is to miss one prime means of education. There is no way of discovering what we do not know, and getting grounded in what we do, like that of imparting what we have learned to others. Would you learn, teach. Would you grow in grace, tell of the grace which has saved you.
We keep what we give away.—Hoard your money, and you lose it. Give it away, and it is caught in bags that wax not old, and stored beyond the reach of moth or thief. “There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty” (Proverbs 11:24). This is folly to the worldling, but sober fact to the child of the King. —Our Daily Homily