The People Complain

11 Now the people became like (A)those who complain of adversity (B)in the ears of the Lord; and the Lord heard them and His anger was kindled, and the fire of the Lord burned among them and consumed some at the outskirts of the camp. (C)The people then cried out to Moses; and Moses prayed to the Lord, and the fire [a]died out. So that place was named [b](D)Taberah, because the fire of the Lord burned among them.

Now the (E)rabble who were among them [c]had greedy cravings; and the sons of Israel also wept again and said, “(F)Who will give us [d]meat to eat? (G)We remember the fish which we used to eat for free in Egypt, the cucumbers, the melons, the leeks, the onions, and the garlic; but now (H)our [e]appetite is gone. There is nothing at all [f]to look at except this manna!”

(I)Now the manna was like coriander seed, and its appearance like that of [g](J)bdellium. The people would roam about and gather it and grind it [h]between two millstones, or pound it in the mortar, and boil it in the pot and make loaves with it; and its taste was like the taste of [i]cake baked with oil. (K)When the dew came down on the camp at night, the manna would come down [j]with it.

The Complaint of Moses

10 Now Moses heard the people weeping throughout their families, each one at the entrance of his tent; and the anger of the Lord became very hot, and [k]Moses was displeased. 11 (L)So Moses said to the Lord, “Why have You [l]been so hard on Your servant? And why have I not found favor in Your sight, that You have put the burden of all this people on me? 12 Was it I who conceived all this people? Or did I give birth to them, that You should say to me, ‘Carry them [m]in your arms, as a [n](M)nurse carries a nursing infant, to the land which (N)You swore to their fathers’? 13 Where am I to get meat to give to (O)all this people? For they weep before me, saying, ‘Give us meat so that we may eat!’ 14 (P)I am not able to carry all this people by myself, because it is too [o]burdensome for me. 15 (Q)So if You are going to deal with me this way, please kill me now, if I have found favor in Your sight, and do not let me see my misery.”

Seventy Elders to Assist Moses

16 The Lord therefore said to Moses, “Gather for Me (R)seventy men from the elders of Israel, (S)whom you know to be the elders of the people and their officers, and bring them to the tent of meeting, and have them take their stand there with you. 17 (T)Then I will come down and speak with you there, and I will take away some of (U)the Spirit who is upon you, and put Him upon them; and they shall bear the burden of the people with you, so that you will not bear it by yourself. 18 And you shall say to the people, ‘(V)Consecrate yourselves for tomorrow, and you shall eat meat; for you have wept (W)in the ears of the Lord, saying, “[p]Oh that someone would give us meat to eat! For we were well-off in Egypt.” Therefore the Lord will give you meat and you shall eat. 19 You shall eat, not one day, nor two days, nor five days, nor ten days, nor twenty days, 20 [q]but for a whole month, until it comes out of your nose and [r]makes you nauseated; because (X)you have rejected the Lord who is among you and have wept before Him, saying, “Why did we ever leave Egypt?”’” 21 But Moses said, “The people, among whom I am included, are six hundred thousand on foot! Yet You have said, ‘I will give them meat, so that they may eat for a whole month.’ 22 Are flocks and herds to be slaughtered for them, so that it will be sufficient for them? Or are all the fish of the sea to be [s]caught for them, so that it will be sufficient for them?” 23 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Is (Y)the Lords [t]power too little? Now you shall see whether (Z)My word will [u]come true for you or not.”

24 So Moses went out and (AA)told the people the words of the Lord. He also gathered seventy men of the elders of the people, and positioned them around the tent. 25 (AB)Then the Lord came down in the cloud and spoke to him; and He took away some of the Spirit who was upon him and placed Him upon the seventy elders. And when the Spirit rested upon them, they prophesied. Yet they did not do it again.

26 But two men had remained in the camp; the name of the one was Eldad, and the name of the [v]other, Medad. And (AC)the Spirit rested upon them (and they were among those who had been registered, but had not gone out to the tent), and they prophesied in the camp. 27 So a young man ran and informed Moses, and said, “Eldad and Medad are prophesying in the camp.” 28 Then (AD)Joshua the son of Nun, the personal servant of Moses from his youth, responded and said, “(AE)My lord Moses, restrain them!” 29 But Moses said to him, “Are you jealous for my sake? (AF)If only all the Lords people were prophets, that the Lord would put His Spirit upon them!” 30 Then Moses [w]returned to the camp, both he and the elders of Israel.

The Quail and the Plague

31 (AG)Now a wind burst forth from the Lord and it brought quail from the sea, and dropped them beside the camp, about a day’s journey on this side and a day’s journey on the other side all around the camp, and about [x]two cubits deep on the surface of the ground. 32 And the people [y]spent all that day, all night, and all the next day, and they gathered the quail (the one who gathered least gathered [z]ten (AH)homers) and spread them out for themselves all around the camp. 33 (AI)While the meat was still between their teeth, before it was chewed, the anger of the Lord was kindled against the people, and the Lord struck the people with a very severe plague. 34 So that place was named [aa](AJ)Kibroth-hattaavah, because there they buried the people who had been greedy. 35 From Kibroth-hattaavah (AK)the people set out for Hazeroth, and they [ab]remained at Hazeroth.

The Murmuring of Miriam and Aaron

12 Then Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses because of the Cushite woman whom he had married (for he had married a (AL)Cushite woman); (AM)and they said, “Is it a fact that the Lord has spoken only through Moses? Has He not spoken through us as well?” And the Lord heard this. (Now the man Moses was (AN)very humble, more than any person who was on the face of the earth.) And the Lord suddenly said to Moses and to Aaron and Miriam, “You three go out to the tent of meeting.” So the three of them went out. (AO)Then the Lord came down in a pillar of cloud and stood at the entrance of the tent; and He called Aaron and Miriam. When they had both come forward, He said,

“Now hear My words:
If there is a prophet among you,
I, the Lord, will make Myself known to him in a (AP)vision.
I will speak with him in a (AQ)dream.
It is not this way for (AR)My servant Moses;
(AS)He is faithful in all My household;
(AT)With him I speak mouth to mouth,
That is, openly, and not [ac]using [ad]mysterious language,
And he beholds (AU)the form of the Lord.
So why were you not afraid
To speak against My servant, against Moses?”

And the anger of the Lord burned against them and (AV)He departed. 10 But when the cloud had withdrawn from above the tent, behold, (AW)Miriam was leprous, as (AX)white as snow. As Aaron turned toward Miriam, behold, she was leprous. 11 Then Aaron said to Moses, “Oh, my lord, I beg you, (AY)do not [ae]hold us responsible for this sin by which we have turned out to be foolish, and by which we have sinned. 12 Oh, do not let her be like a dead person, whose flesh is half eaten away when he comes out of his mother’s womb!” 13 So Moses cried out to the Lord, saying, “God, (AZ)heal her, please!” 14 But the Lord said to Moses, “If her father had only (BA)spit in her face, would she not be put to shame for seven days? Have her shut (BB)outside the camp for seven days, and afterward she may be received again.” 15 So (BC)Miriam was shut outside the camp for seven days, and the people did not move on until Miriam was received again.

16 Afterward, however, the people moved on from Hazeroth and camped in the wilderness of Paran.

Spies View the Land

13 Then (BD)the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, (BE)Send out men for yourself to spy out the land of Canaan, which I am going to give the sons of Israel; you shall send a man from each of their fathers’ tribes, every one a leader among them.” So Moses sent them from the wilderness of Paran at the [af]command of the Lord, all of them men who were heads of the sons of Israel. These then were their names: from the tribe of Reuben, Shammua the son of Zaccur; from the tribe of Simeon, Shaphat the son of Hori; from the tribe of Judah, (BF)Caleb the son of Jephunneh; from the tribe of Issachar, Igal the son of Joseph; from the tribe of Ephraim, (BG)Hoshea the son of Nun; from the tribe of Benjamin, Palti the son of Raphu; 10 from the tribe of Zebulun, Gaddiel the son of Sodi; 11 from the tribe of Joseph, from the tribe of Manasseh, Gaddi the son of Susi; 12 from the tribe of Dan, Ammiel the son of Gemalli; 13 from the tribe of Asher, Sethur the son of Michael; 14 from the tribe of Naphtali, Nahbi the son of Vophsi; 15 and from the tribe of Gad, Geuel the son of Machi. 16 These are the names of the men whom Moses sent to spy out the land; but Moses called (BH)Hoshea the son of Nun, [ag]Joshua.

17 When Moses sent them to spy out the land of Canaan, he said to them, “Go up there into (BI)the [ah]Negev; then go up into the hill country. 18 See what the land is like, and whether the people who live in it are strong or weak, whether they are few or many. 19 And how is the land in which they live, is it good or bad? And how are the cities in which they live, are the people in open camps or in fortifications? 20 And (BJ)how is the land, is it [ai]productive or unproductive? Are there trees in it or not? And (BK)show yourselves courageous and get some of the fruit of the land.” Now the time was the season of the first ripe grapes.

21 So they went up and spied out the land from (BL)the wilderness of Zin as far as Rehob, [aj](BM)at Lebo-hamath. 22 When they had gone up into (BN)the Negev, [ak]they came to Hebron where (BO)Ahiman, Sheshai, and Talmai, the [al]descendants of (BP)Anak were. (Hebron was built seven years before (BQ)Zoan in Egypt.)

23 Then they came to the [am]Valley of [an](BR)Eshcol, and from there they cut off a branch with a single cluster of grapes; and they carried it on a pole between two men, with some of the pomegranates and the figs. 24 That place was called the Valley of [ao]Eshcol, because of the cluster which the sons of Israel cut off from there.

The Spies’ Reports

25 When they returned from spying out the land, at the end of forty days, 26 they went on and came to Moses and Aaron and to all the congregation of the sons of Israel, [ap]in the wilderness of Paran at (BS)Kadesh; and they brought back word to them and to all the congregation, and showed them the fruit of the land. 27 So they reported to him and said, “We came into the land where you sent us, and (BT)it certainly does flow with milk and honey, and (BU)this is its fruit. 28 Nevertheless, (BV)the people who live in the land are strong, and the cities are fortified and very large. And indeed, we saw (BW)the [aq]descendants of Anak there! 29 Amalek is living in the land of (BX)the Negev, the Hittites, the Jebusites, and (BY)the Amorites are living in the hill country, and (BZ)the Canaanites are living by the sea and by the side of the Jordan.”

30 Then Caleb quieted the people [ar]before Moses and said, “We should by all means go up and take possession of it, for we will certainly prevail over it.” 31 But the men who had gone up with him said, “(CA)We are not able to go up against the people, because they are too strong for us.” 32 So they brought (CB)a bad report of the land which they had spied out to the sons of Israel, saying, “The land through which we have gone to spy out is (CC)a land that devours its inhabitants; and (CD)all the people whom we saw in it are people of great stature. 33 We also saw the [as](CE)Nephilim there (the sons of Anak are part of the Nephilim); and (CF)we were like [at]grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight.”


  1. Numbers 11:2 Lit sank down
  2. Numbers 11:3 I.e., the place for burning
  3. Numbers 11:4 Lit desired a desire
  4. Numbers 11:4 Lit flesh, and so throughout the ch
  5. Numbers 11:6 Lit soul has dried up
  6. Numbers 11:6 Lit for our eyes
  7. Numbers 11:7 I.e., a tree gum
  8. Numbers 11:8 Lit with
  9. Numbers 11:8 Lit juice of oil
  10. Numbers 11:9 Lit on
  11. Numbers 11:10 Lit it was evil in Moses’ eyes
  12. Numbers 11:11 Lit treated badly
  13. Numbers 11:12 Lit against your chest
  14. Numbers 11:12 Or foster father
  15. Numbers 11:14 Lit heavy
  16. Numbers 11:18 Or Who will give...?
  17. Numbers 11:20 Lit until a
  18. Numbers 11:20 Lit becomes nausea to you
  19. Numbers 11:22 Lit gathered
  20. Numbers 11:23 Lit hand too short
  21. Numbers 11:23 Lit happen to you
  22. Numbers 11:26 Lit second
  23. Numbers 11:30 Lit withdrew to
  24. Numbers 11:31 About 3 ft. or 90 cm
  25. Numbers 11:32 Lit arose
  26. Numbers 11:32 About 77 cubic feet or 2.2 cubic meters
  27. Numbers 11:34 I.e., the graves of greediness
  28. Numbers 11:35 Lit were
  29. Numbers 12:8 Lit in
  30. Numbers 12:8 Lit riddles
  31. Numbers 12:11 Lit place the sin on us
  32. Numbers 13:3 Lit mouth
  33. Numbers 13:16 In Heb Yehoshua
  34. Numbers 13:17 I.e., South country, and so throughout the ch
  35. Numbers 13:20 Lit fat or gaunt
  36. Numbers 13:21 Or to the entrance of Hamath
  37. Numbers 13:22 Most mss one came
  38. Numbers 13:22 Lit sons
  39. Numbers 13:23 Or wadi
  40. Numbers 13:23 I.e., cluster (of grapes)
  41. Numbers 13:24 I.e., cluster
  42. Numbers 13:26 Lit to
  43. Numbers 13:28 Lit sons
  44. Numbers 13:30 Lit toward
  45. Numbers 13:33 Lit fallen ones; LXX giants
  46. Numbers 13:33 Or locusts

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