Gematria Shorts for Beha’alotcha

In the latter part of the parashah (Numbers 11:27), we find Eldad and Meidad prophecizing, “Eldad and Meidad are prophecizing in the camp” (אֶלְדָּד וּמֵידָד מִתְנַבְּאִים בַּמַּחֲנֶה). There are three different opinions (Sanhedrin 17a) regarding what they prophecized about: 1) that Moses would not enter the Land of Israel, 2) about the quail, 3) about the war of Gog and Magog. “Eldad and Meidad are prophecizing in the camp” (אֶלְדָּד וּמֵידָד מִתְנַבְּאִים בַּמַּחֲנֶה) equals 751, the same as the sum of “Moses” (מֹשֶׁה), “quail” (שְׂלָו), and “God and Magog” (גּוֹג וּמָגוֹג).

According to one opinion, Eldad and Meidad prophecized that “Moses would pass-on, and Joshua would bring-in” (Sanhedrin 17a). We can say that each had one half of the prophecy. The value of Moses (מֹשֶׁה) in ordinal numbering is 39 (מ is 13, ש is 21, and ה is 5), which is the value of Eldad (אֶלְדָּד). The value of Joshua (יְהוֹשֻׁעַ) in ordinal numbering is 58 (י is 10, ה is 5, ו is 6, ש is 21, and ע is 16), the same as the value of Meidad (מֵידָד).

Eldad and Meidad reflect the secret of pentagonal numbers (see in the Torah. There is a mathematical rule that an odd number multiplied by the sum of that number and its midpoint minus 1 equals a pentagonal number. In our case, the value of Eldad (אֶלְדָּד) is 39, an odd number. The sum of 39 and 19 (its midpoint, 20, minus 1) gives us 58, the value of Meidad (מֵידָד). Their product is 2262, a pentagonal number!

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