The Census of Israel’s Warriors

Now the Lord spoke to Moses in the wilderness of Sinai, in the tent of meeting, on (A)the first day of the second month, in the second year after they had come out of the land of Egypt, saying, (B)Take a [a]census of all the congregation of the sons of Israel, by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, every male, head by head from (C)twenty years old and upward, whoever is able to go to war in Israel. You and Aaron shall [b]count them by their armies. With you, moreover, there shall be a man of each tribe, (D)each one head of his father’s household. These then are the names of the men who shall stand with you: (E)of the tribe of Reuben, Elizur the son of Shedeur; of the tribe of Simeon, Shelumiel the son of Zurishaddai; of the tribe of Judah, (F)Nahshon the son of Amminadab; of Issachar, Nethanel the son of Zuar; of Zebulun, Eliab the son of Helon; 10 of the sons of Joseph: of Ephraim, Elishama the son of Ammihud; of Manasseh, Gamaliel the son of Pedahzur; 11 of Benjamin, Abidan the son of Gideoni; 12 of Dan, Ahiezer the son of Ammishaddai; 13 of Asher, Pagiel the son of Ochran; 14 of Gad, Eliasaph the son of (G)Deuel; 15 of Naphtali, Ahira the son of Enan. 16 These are the men who were (H)called from the congregation, the leaders of their fathers’ tribes; they were the (I)heads of [c]divisions of Israel.”

17 So Moses and Aaron took these men who had been designated by name, 18 and they assembled all the congregation on the (J)first day of the second month. Then they registered by (K)ancestry in their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, head by head, 19 just as (L)the Lord had commanded Moses. So he counted them in the wilderness of Sinai.

20 (M)Now the sons of Reuben, Israel’s firstborn, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, head by head, every male from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 21 their numbered men of the tribe of Reuben were 46,500.

22 (N)Of the sons of Simeon, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, their numbered men, according to the number of names, head by head, every male from twenty years old and upward, (O)whoever was able to go to war, 23 their numbered men of the tribe of Simeon were 59,300.

24 (P)Of the sons of Gad, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 25 their numbered men of the tribe of Gad were 45,650.

26 (Q)Of the sons of Judah, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 27 their numbered men of the tribe of Judah were 74,600.

28 (R)Of the sons of Issachar, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 29 their numbered men of the tribe of Issachar were 54,400.

30 (S)Of the sons of Zebulun, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 31 their numbered men of the tribe of Zebulun were 57,400.

32 (T)Of the sons of Joseph, namely, of the sons of Ephraim, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 33 their numbered men of the tribe of Ephraim were 40,500.

34 (U)Of the sons of Manasseh, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 35 their numbered men of the tribe of Manasseh were 32,200.

36 (V)Of the sons of Benjamin, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 37 their numbered men of the tribe of Benjamin were 35,400.

38 (W)Of the sons of Dan, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 39 their numbered men of the tribe of Dan were 62,700.

40 (X)Of the sons of Asher, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 41 their numbered men of the tribe of Asher were 41,500.

42 (Y)Of the sons of Naphtali, their descendants by their families, by their fathers’ households, according to the number of names, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war, 43 their numbered men of the tribe of Naphtali were 53,400.

44 These are the ones who were numbered, whom Moses and Aaron counted, with the leaders of Israel, twelve men, each of whom was of his father’s household. 45 So all the numbered men of the sons of Israel by their fathers’ households, from twenty years old and upward, whoever was able to go to war in Israel, 46 all the numbered men were (Z)603,550.

Levites Exempted

47 (AA)The Levites, however, were not counted among them by their fathers’ tribe. 48 For the Lord had spoken to Moses, saying, 49 “Only the tribe of Levi (AB)you shall not count, nor shall you take their [d]census among the sons of Israel. 50 And you shall (AC)appoint the Levites over the [e]tabernacle of the testimony, and over all its furnishings and over everything that belongs to it. They shall carry the tabernacle and all its furnishings, and they shall take care of it; they shall also camp around the [f]tabernacle. 51 (AD)So when the tabernacle is to move on, the Levites shall take it down; and when the tabernacle encamps, the Levites shall set it up. But (AE)the [g]layman who comes near it shall be put to death. 52 (AF)So the sons of Israel shall camp, each man by his own camp, and each man by his own [h]flag, according to their armies. 53 (AG)But the Levites shall camp around the tabernacle of the testimony, so that there will be (AH)no divine wrath against the congregation of the sons of Israel. (AI)So the Levites shall be responsible for service to the tabernacle of the testimony.” 54 And the sons of Israel did so; in accordance with all that the Lord had commanded Moses, so they did.

Footnotes

  1. Numbers 1:2 Lit sum
  2. Numbers 1:3 Lit muster, and so throughout the ch
  3. Numbers 1:16 Lit thousands; or clans
  4. Numbers 1:49 Lit sum
  5. Numbers 1:50 Lit dwelling place, and so throughout the ch
  6. Numbers 1:50 Lit dwelling place, and so throughout the ch
  7. Numbers 1:51 Lit stranger
  8. Numbers 1:52 Or division