7:1 1 When Moses had completed setting up the tabernacle, 2 he anointed it and consecrated it and all its furnishings, and he anointed and consecrated the altar and all its utensils. 7:2 Then the leaders of Israel, the heads of their clans, 3 made an offering. They were the leaders of the tribes; they were the ones who had been supervising 4 the numbering. 7:3 They brought 5 their offering before the Lord, six covered carts 6 and twelve oxen – one cart for every two of the leaders, and an ox for each one; and they presented them in front of the tabernacle.
7:4 Then the Lord spoke to Moses: 7:5 “Receive these gifts 7 from them, that they may be 8 used in doing the work 9 of the tent of meeting; and you must give them to the Levites, to every man 10 as his service requires.” 11
7:6 So Moses accepted the carts and the oxen and gave them to the Levites. 7:7 He gave two carts and four oxen to the Gershonites, as their service required; 7:8 and he gave four carts and eight oxen to the Merarites, as their service required, under the authority 12 of Ithamar son of Aaron the priest. 7:9 But to the Kohathites he gave none, because the service of the holy things, which they carried 13 on their shoulders, was their responsibility. 14
[7:1] 1 sn This long and repetitious chapter has several parts to it: the introduction (vv. 1-3), the assigning of gifts (vv. 4-9), the time of presentation (vv. 10-11), and then the tribes (vv. 12-83), and then a summary (vv. 84-89).
[7:1] 2 tn The construction of this line begins with the temporal indicator (traditionally translated “and it came to pass”) and then after the idiomatic “in the day of” (= “when”) uses the Piel infinitive construct from כָּלָה (kalah). The infinitive is governed by the subjective genitive, “Moses,” the formal subject of the clause. The object of the infinitive is the second infinitive, “to set up” (לְהָקִים, lÿhaqim). This infinitive, the Hiphil, serves as the direct object, answering the question of what it was that Moses completed. The entire clause is an adverbial clause of time.
[7:1] sn This chapter belongs chronologically after Lev 8:11, because Aaron and his sons were not yet made the celebrants and officiants of the new shrine (completed in Exodus). Here then chapters 7-9 are actually earlier than chapters 1-6, and form a supplement by adding information not found in Exodus and Leviticus. The first verse here recapitulates the first act of Moses in consecrating the shrine (Exod 30:23-31).
[7:2] 4 tn The form is the Qal active participle from the verb “to stand” (עָמַד, ’amad). The form describes these leaders as “the ones standing over [the ones numbered].” The expression, along with the clear indication of the first census in chapter 1, shows that this was a supervisory capacity.
[7:5] 8 tn The verb is the perfect tense with vav (ו) consecutive; following the imperative, this could be given an independent volitive translation (“they shall be”), but more fittingly a subordinated translation expressing the purpose of receiving the gifts.