The cloud (Num 9:15-9:23)

“On the day that the tabernacle was set up, the cloud covered the tabernacle, the tent of the covenant.  From evening until morning it was over the tabernacle, having the appearance of fire.  It was always so.  The cloud covered it by day and the appearance of fire by night.  Whenever the cloud lifted from over the tent, then the Israelites would set out.  In the place where the cloud settled down, there the Israelites would camp.  At the command of Yahweh the Israelites would set out.  At the command of Yahweh they would camp.  As long as the cloud rested over the tabernacle, they would remain in camp.  Even when the cloud continued over the tabernacle many days, the Israelites would keep the charge of Yahweh, and would not set out.  Sometimes the cloud would remain a few days over the tabernacle.  According to the command of Yahweh, they would remain in camp.  Then according to the command of Yahweh, they would set out.  Sometimes the cloud would remain from evening until morning.  When the cloud lifted in the morning, they would set out, or if it continued for a day and a night, when the cloud lifted they would set out.  Whether it was two days, or a month, or a longer time, that the cloud continued over the tabernacle, resting upon it, the Israelites would remain in camp and not set out.  But when it lifted they would set out.  At the command of Yahweh they would camp.  At the command of Yahweh they would set out.  They kept the charge of Yahweh at the command of Yahweh by Moses.”

Just like in Exodus, chapter 40, if the cloud stayed, they did not move.  The cloud covered the tabernacle by day and appeared like fire at night.  So when the cloud moved away from the tabernacle, then the children of Israel set out on their journey.  Wherever the cloud settled down, there the Israelites would camp. At the command of Yahweh they would set out or camp.  However, if the cloud rested over the tabernacle they would remain in camp days, months, or even longer.  When the cloud lifted they would set out. They followed the commandment of Yahweh via Moses.  The cloud told them to move or not to move.

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