Content: Numbers is the story of nearly 40 years of wilderness wandering by the Israelites between the times of 2 separate censuses of the people. The first census is of the old generation, the generation that came up out of Egypt. It takes place at Mount Sinai in the second year of the exodus. The second census is of the new generation. It takes place on the plains of Moab, opposite Jericho, 38 years later just prior to the nation’s entering of Canaan. Even thought the old generation (with the exception of Joshua and Caleb) is not allowed to enter the promised land, God still provides for and sustains the people through these wanderings.
Background: The fourth book of the Pentateuch, Numbers, is a continuation of the story in the book of Leviticus. Approximately one month elapses from the time the tabernacle is constructed at the end of Exodus to the time of the census at the beginning of Numbers. During that month the instructions in the book of Leviticus are given.
Date Written: Between 1450 and 1400 B.C.