What happened to the Eirev Rav after the Jews entered Israel? They were open trouble makers in the desert, yet nothing was mentioned of them later?

Did they clean up their act? Did they die out?

  • 5
    +1 Perhaps they are included in the "dor hamidbar" that died out, and their children were not considered "eirev rav".
    – HodofHod
    Jan 31, 2012 at 3:04
  • 3
    It could also be that they all died out in the plagues following [insert story where God gets angry at the people and kills a whole bunch of them].
    – Double AA
    Jan 31, 2012 at 5:48
  • Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/108413/… Please include that fact into your question, as 2.4M seems a pretty large number.
    – Al Berko
    Sep 17, 2019 at 5:48

2 Answers 2


In the writings of the Ari, the souls of the Erev Rav reincarnate in every generation (in the leaders) as does the soul of Moshe, who comes to prevent them from derailing the Jewish people and to rectify their souls.


"In any case, we see that our generation is a reincarnation of the Generation of the Desert, and that the Mixed Multitude has also been reincarnated, and Moses is together with both of them."


The gemara, Beitzah 32b (?), says something about a rabbi who saw a Jew who gave tzedakah was assumed to be from the offspring of Avraham Avinu, and one who did not was descend from the erev rav. I have heard that the Zohar and other kabbalistic literature say that Jews who sin, if you investigate their lineage far enough back, you can possibly find that they actually aren't Jewish. The Vilna Gaon also said something about the erev rav in his day. I heard someone recently compare some of the Russians who live in Israel today who are not Jewish to be similar in this regard.

  • 2
    Compare judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/2348/….
    – Alex
    Jan 31, 2012 at 6:10
  • 2
    @Alex, thank you. The pdf that Menachem quoted in his answer is something that I have seen previously. Kol hakavod for finding and posting that URL for all of us! Jan 31, 2012 at 6:17
  • 3
    Doesn’t make any sense. Everyone sins, and the Erev Rav converted Aug 23, 2019 at 14:03
  • 2
    I have heard that when torah sources refer to ppl as ''descendents of the erev rav'' (I think one example is the Rambam's Iggeres Teiman) it means ideologically, not biologically.
    – nosh
    Sep 17, 2019 at 6:37

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .