And the LORD spake unto Moses in the wilderness of a
Sinai, in the tabernacle of the congregation, on the first [day] of the b
second month, in the second year after they were come out of the land of Egypt, saying,
The Argument - In that as God has appointed that his Church in this world shall be under the cross, both so they could learn not to put their trust in worldly things, and also feel his comfort, when all other help fails: he did not immediately bring his people, after their departure out of Egypt, into the land which he had promised them: but led them to and fro for the space of forty years, and kept them in continual exercises before they enjoyed it, to try their faith, teach them to forget the world, and to depend on him. Which trial greatly profited, to discern the wicked and the hypocrites from the faithful and true servants of God, who served him with pure heart, while the other, preferring their earthly lusts to God's glory, and making religion to serve their purpose, complained when they lacked enough to satisfy their lusts, and despised those who God had appointed as rulers over them. By reason of which they provoked God's terrible judgments against them, and are set forth as a notable example for all ages, to beware how they abuse God's word, prefer their own lusts to his will, or despise his ministers. Nonetheless, God is always true to his promise, and governs his by his Holy Spirit, that either they fall not to such inconveniences, or else return to him quickly in true repentance: and therefore he continues his graces toward them, he gives them ordinances and instructions, as well for religion, as outward policy: he preserves them against all deceit and conspiracy, and gives them many victories against their enemies. To avoid all controversies that might arise, he takes away the occasions, by dividing among all the tribes, both the land which they had won, and that also which he had promised, as seemed best to his godly wisdom.
(a) In the place in the wilderness that was near mount Sinai.
(b) Which is part of April and part of May.