Notes on the Bible, by Albert Barnes, , at sacred-texts.com
On the day that - i. e. "at the time that," compare Gen 2:4. The presentation of the gifts in fact occupied twelve days, as the sequel shows.
The enactments set forth in the chapters from Lev. 10 to Num. 6 inclusive, were doubtless promulgated at various times between the consecration of the tabernacle and the departure from Sinai, but are for convenience set out connectedly. The contents of the present chapter are accordingly placed after them. The order pursued throughout is justly noted as one which would naturally suggest itself to a narrator who was contemporary with the events.
Covered wagons - Some prefer to render "litter Isa 66:20 wagons:" i. e. litters which were not on wheels, but borne by two oxen, one in front and one behind. Such conveyances would probably be more convenient than wheeled wagons in the rough country to be traversed.
To the Gershonites, who had to transport the hangings and coverings of the tabernacle, two wagons are assigned: to the Merarites, who had the charge of the solid parts of the tabernacle, four wagons. The furniture and vessels the Kohathites were to carry on their own shoulders. Compare Num 3:25-26, Num 3:31, Num 3:36-37.
The several princes make their offerings in the order assigned to the tribes Num. 2. It was doubtless the tribes themselves which presented these gifts through their chiefs. The twelve offerings are strictly alike, and were offered on twelve separate days.
The aggregate worth, by weight, of the whole of the offerings was about 438 British pounds: But the real worth of such a sum, when measured by the prices of clothing and food at that time, must have been vastly greater.
With him - i. e. as marginal, "with God," not (as some) with himself.
He heard the voice of one speaking - Rather, he heard the voice speaking, or conversing. The effect was as though Moses was audibly addressed by another person: how this effect was produced we are not told.
Thus was the promise of Exo 25:20-22 fulfilled; and that as an immediate response on the part of God to the cheerful readiness with which the tribes had made their offerings, and supplied everything needful for the Holy place and its service. All being now complete as God had appointed, and the camp purified from defilements, God meets Moses the mediator of the people, not as before on the peak of Sinai far away, but in the midst of them, in the dwelling-place which He henceforth vouchsafed to tenant.