Korach: Rebellion

Numbers 16:1-3

(א) וַיִּקַּ֣ח קֹ֔רַח בֶּן־יִצְהָ֥ר בֶּן־קְהָ֖ת בֶּן־לֵוִ֑י וְדָתָ֨ן וַאֲבִירָ֜ם בְּנֵ֧י אֱלִיאָ֛ב וְא֥וֹן בֶּן־פֶּ֖לֶת בְּנֵ֥י רְאוּבֵֽן׃ (ב) וַיָּקֻ֙מוּ֙ לִפְנֵ֣י מֹשֶׁ֔ה וַאֲנָשִׁ֥ים מִבְּנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל חֲמִשִּׁ֣ים וּמָאתָ֑יִם נְשִׂיאֵ֥י עֵדָ֛ה קְרִאֵ֥י מוֹעֵ֖ד אַנְשֵׁי־שֵֽׁם׃ (ג) וַיִּֽקָּהֲל֞וּ עַל־מֹשֶׁ֣ה וְעַֽל־אַהֲרֹ֗ן וַיֹּאמְר֣וּ אֲלֵהֶם֮ רַב־לָכֶם֒ כִּ֤י כׇל־הָֽעֵדָה֙ כֻּלָּ֣ם קְדֹשִׁ֔ים וּבְתוֹכָ֖ם יְיָ וּמַדּ֥וּעַ תִּֽתְנַשְּׂא֖וּ עַל־קְהַ֥ל יְיָ׃

(1) Now Korah, son of Izhar son of Kohath son of Levi, took,* along with Dathan and Abiram sons of Eliab, and On son of Peleth—descendants of Reuben — (2) They stood up before Moses, together with two hundred and fifty Israelites, chieftains of the community, chosen in the assembly, men of repute. (3) They gathered against Moses and Aaron and said to them, “You have gone too far! For all the community are holy, all of them, and Adonai is in their midst. Why then do you raise yourselves above Adonai’s congregation?”

ויקח קרח. לָקַח אֶת עַצְמוֹ לְצַד אֶחָד לִהְיוֹת נֶחֱלָק מִתּוֹךְ הָעֵדָה לְעוֹרֵר עַל הַכְּהֻנָּה.

ויקח קרח lit., AND KORAH TOOK — He betook himself on one side with the view of separating himself from out of the community so that he might raise a protest regarding the priesthood to which Moses had appointed his brother.

ויקח קרח. אנשים דרך קצרה... ויאמר ר' יונה כי פירוש ויקח לקח לקום על משהו:

NOW KORAH…TOOK. This is short for, now Korah took men... Rabbi Jonah says that the meaning is: now Korah took himself to rise against Moses.

Ramban on Numbers 16:1

ויקח קרח lit., AND KORAH TOOK -- The midrash is not saying what Rashi thinks. They are reading Korah as the object of the verb, not the subject. Something "took Korach" and possessed his heart, which moved him to split himself off from the community, as in "How your heart has carried you away."