The Meaning of Numbers 25:9 Explained

Numbers 25:9

KJV: And those that died in the plague were twenty and four thousand.

YLT: and the dead by the plague are four and twenty thousand.

Darby: And those that died in the plague were twenty-four thousand.

ASV: And those that died by the plague were twenty and four thousand.

What does Numbers 25:9 Mean?

Context Summary

Numbers 25:1-18 - The Zeal Of Phinehas Against Impurity
Unable to curse Israel directly, Balaam suggested to Balak the device of destroying the union between Israel and their divine Protector by enticing them into sin. Once bring license and passion into play, and let the seductions of evil prevail, and surely the holiness of God would compel Him to withdraw His protection! This was a diabolical suggestion to gain his wage. See Revelation 2:14.
The women of the land, notorious for their wantonness, seduced the men of Israel to join in the sensual rites of their worship. All did not fall into this sin. See Deuteronomy 4:3-4. But it brought terrible chastisement on the offenders, 1 Corinthians 10:8. You must amputate a gangrened limb.
For Phinehas, see Malachi 2:4, etc. Let us come out of the world, cleansing ourselves from its filthiness! 2 Corinthians 6:14, etc. There are crises when love for God's honor demands strenuous action, which never fails, as in the case of Phinehas, of an abounding recognition, Numbers 25:12. [source]

Chapter Summary: Numbers 25

1  Israel at Shittim commit unfaithfulness and idolatry
6  Phinehas kills Zimri and Cozbi
10  God therefore gives him an everlasting priesthood
16  The Midianites are to be troubled

What do the individual words in Numbers 25:9 mean?

And were those who died in the plague four and twenty thousand -
וַיִּהְי֕וּ הַמֵּתִ֖ים בַּמַּגֵּפָ֑ה אַרְבָּעָ֥ה וְעֶשְׂרִ֖ים אָֽלֶף פ

וַיִּהְי֕וּ  And  were 
Parse: Conjunctive waw, Verb, Qal, Consecutive imperfect, third person masculine plural
Root: אֶהְיֶה 
Sense: to be, become, come to pass, exist, happen, fall out.
הַמֵּתִ֖ים  those  who  died 
Parse: Article, Verb, Qal, Participle, masculine plural
Root: מוּת  
Sense: to die, kill, have one executed.
בַּמַּגֵּפָ֑ה  in  the  plague 
Parse: Preposition-b, Article, Noun, feminine singular
Root: מַגֵּפָה  
Sense: blow, slaughter, plague, pestilence, strike, smite.
אַרְבָּעָ֥ה  four 
Parse: Number, masculine singular
Root: אַרְבַּע  
Sense: four.
וְעֶשְׂרִ֖ים  and  twenty 
Parse: Conjunctive waw, Number, common plural
Root: עֶשְׂרִים  
Sense: twenty, twentieth.
אָֽלֶף  thousand 
Parse: Number, masculine singular
Root: אֶלֶף 
Sense: a thousand.
פ  - 
Parse: Punctuation