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Now these are the names of the tribes:
Beginning from the north end, along the side of the road to Hethlon as far as Lebo-hamath, Hazar Enan at the border of Damascus, northward beside Hamath, (and they will have their sides extend from east to west), Dan, one portion. Bible

Beginning from the north end.” That is, the north end of the Promised Land as it will be divided into tribal areas in the Millennial Kingdom.

“Dan, one portion.” The twelve tribes of Israel that were allotted a land area by Joshua (cp. Joshua 13-19) will receive a land area in the Millennial Kingdom. At the time of Joshua, the land was divided by lot. The High Priest would draw lots and the lot would determine how the Promised Land was to be allocated (Num. 26:55-56; 33:54; 34:13; 36:2; Josh. 14:2). However, it was believed that Yahweh determined how the lot fell. In the Millennial Kingdom the lot will not be used to determine the various tribal areas, but Yahweh will simply decree the areas of land the various tribes will get.

It seems fitting that in the Millennial Kingdom the tribe of Dan will get the northernmost section of land, furthest from Jerusalem and the temple. When Joshua divided up the Promised Land, Dan got a tribal area quite close to Jerusalem (Josh. 19:40-48). However, the Danites failed to conquer their land (Judg. 1:34-36), which they could have done with more focus, prayer, godly behavior, and possible help from other tribes. Then, instead of doing what it took to acquire the land that God had given them by lot, the majority of the tribe moved north and conquered the city of Laish and settled there, and immediately began worshipping idols (Judg. 18). Since the Danites chose to be the northernmost tribe throughout the Old Testament, it is fitting that God assigned them the northernmost tribal area in the Millennial Kingdom.

Nothing is said about the width of each tribal area except it seems that they are equal. Also, since the scholars are somewhat divided on the exact north and south boundaries of the Land, it is hard to exactly divide them. The result of that is that we are not sure how wide from north to south each tribal area is. [For more on the future earth and Christ’s kingdom on earth, see Appendix 3, “Christ’s Future Kingdom on Earth”]


Commentary for: Ezekiel 48:1