After engaging in a battle with the Midianites Moses instructs the the Israelites to wash their clothes and purify themselves on the seventh day.The Seventh day usually was the Sabbath day which prohibited work like washing ones clothes.

Numbers 31:24 KJV

And ye shall wash your clothes on the seventh day, and ye shall be clean, and afterward ye shall come into the camp.

Did they not violate the Sabbath here?

1 Answer 1


Consider what is said five verses earlier, in Numbers 31:19:

(KJV) And do ye abide without the camp seven days: whosoever hath killed any person, and whosoever hath touched any slain, purify both yourselves and your captives on the third day, and on the seventh day.

(NLT) And all of you who have killed anyone or touched a dead body must stay outside the camp for seven days. You must purify yourselves and your captives on the third and seventh days.

They are told to stay away "for seven days", and to purify themselves on the third and seventh day.

This is "the seventh day" of verse 24, with no implication that it refers to the weekly Sabbath day.

  • +1. Good simple, practical answer.
    – Dottard
    Commented Oct 17, 2023 at 20:00

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