1-2 The Lord gave these further instructions to Moses and Aaron: “Each tribe will have its own tent area, with its flagpole and tribal banner; and at the center of these tribal compounds will be the Tabernacle.” 3-31 Here are the tribal locations:[a]

TribeLeaderLocationCensus
JudahNahshon (son of Amminadab)East side of Tabernacle74,600
IssacharNethanel (son of Zuar)Next to Judah54,400
ZebulunEliab (son of Helon)Next to Issachar57,400

So the total of all those on Judah’s side of the camp was 186,400. These three tribes led the way whenever the Israelites traveled to a new campsite.

ReubenElizur (son of Shedeur)South side of Tabernacle46,500
SimeonShelumiel (son of Zurishaddai)Next to Reuben59,300
GadEliasaph (son of Reuel*)Next to Simeon45,650

So the total of the Reuben side of the camp was 151,450. These three tribes were next in line whenever the Israelis traveled.

Next in the line of march was the Tabernacle, with the Levites. When traveling, each tribe stayed together under its own flag, just as each was separate from the others in camp.

EphraimElishama (son of Ammihud)West side of Tabernacle40,500
ManassehGamaliel (son of Pedahzur)Next to Ephraim32,200
BenjaminAbidan (son of Gideoni)Next to Manasseh35,400

So the total on the Ephraim side of the camp was 108,100, and they were next in the line of march.

DanAhiezer (son of Ammishaddai)North side of Tabernacle62,700
AsherPagiel (son of Ochran)Next to Dan41,500
NaphtaliAhira (son of Enan)Next to Asher53,400

So the total on Dan’s side of the camp was 157,600. They brought up the rear whenever Israel traveled. 32-33 In summary, the armies of Israel totaled 603,550 (not including the Levites, who were exempted by Jehovah’s commandment to Moses). 34 So the people of Israel set up their camps, each tribe under its own banner, in the locations indicated by the Lord to Moses.

Footnotes

  1. Numbers 2:3 Here are the tribal locations, implied. Reuel. Deuel in ch. 1.
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The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

The Arrangement of the Tribal Camps

The Lord said to Moses and Aaron: “The Israelites are to camp around the tent of meeting some distance from it, each of them under their standard(A) and holding the banners of their family.”

On the east, toward the sunrise, the divisions of the camp of Judah are to encamp under their standard. The leader of the people of Judah is Nahshon son of Amminadab.(B) His division numbers 74,600.

The tribe of Issachar(C) will camp next to them. The leader of the people of Issachar is Nethanel son of Zuar.(D) His division numbers 54,400.

The tribe of Zebulun will be next. The leader of the people of Zebulun is Eliab son of Helon.(E) His division numbers 57,400.

All the men assigned to the camp of Judah, according to their divisions, number 186,400. They will set out first.(F)

10 On the south(G) will be the divisions of the camp of Reuben under their standard. The leader of the people of Reuben is Elizur son of Shedeur.(H) 11 His division numbers 46,500.

12 The tribe of Simeon(I) will camp next to them. The leader of the people of Simeon is Shelumiel son of Zurishaddai.(J) 13 His division numbers 59,300.

14 The tribe of Gad(K) will be next. The leader of the people of Gad is Eliasaph son of Deuel.[a](L) 15 His division numbers 45,650.

16 All the men assigned to the camp of Reuben,(M) according to their divisions, number 151,450. They will set out second.

17 Then the tent of meeting and the camp of the Levites(N) will set out in the middle of the camps. They will set out in the same order as they encamp, each in their own place under their standard.

18 On the west(O) will be the divisions of the camp of Ephraim(P) under their standard. The leader of the people of Ephraim is Elishama son of Ammihud.(Q) 19 His division numbers 40,500.

20 The tribe of Manasseh(R) will be next to them. The leader of the people of Manasseh is Gamaliel son of Pedahzur.(S) 21 His division numbers 32,200.

22 The tribe of Benjamin(T) will be next. The leader of the people of Benjamin is Abidan son of Gideoni.(U) 23 His division numbers 35,400.

24 All the men assigned to the camp of Ephraim,(V) according to their divisions, number 108,100. They will set out third.(W)

25 On the north(X) will be the divisions of the camp of Dan under their standard.(Y) The leader of the people of Dan is Ahiezer son of Ammishaddai.(Z) 26 His division numbers 62,700.

27 The tribe of Asher will camp next to them. The leader of the people of Asher is Pagiel son of Okran.(AA) 28 His division numbers 41,500.

29 The tribe of Naphtali(AB) will be next. The leader of the people of Naphtali is Ahira son of Enan.(AC) 30 His division numbers 53,400.

31 All the men assigned to the camp of Dan number 157,600. They will set out last,(AD) under their standards.

32 These are the Israelites, counted according to their families.(AE) All the men in the camps, by their divisions, number 603,550.(AF) 33 The Levites, however, were not counted(AG) along with the other Israelites, as the Lord commanded Moses.

34 So the Israelites did everything the Lord commanded Moses; that is the way they encamped under their standards, and that is the way they set out, each of them with their clan and family.

Footnotes

  1. Numbers 2:14 Many manuscripts of the Masoretic Text, Samaritan Pentateuch and Vulgate (see also 1:14); most manuscripts of the Masoretic Text Reuel
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