THE BOOK OF NUMBERS
THE BOOK OF NUMBERS
Written by Rachael
STUDY ON - THE BOOK OF NUMBERS
T R E A S U R E... S E E K E R S ... I N ... T H E ... O L D ... T E S T A M E N T - NUMBERS
'Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path......Where your treasure is
there is your heart also'
TREASURE SEEKERS IN THE OLD TESTAMENT
Hello and welcome to this weeks treasure seekers..... :)
Lets open with prayer....
Lord pray that people learn about the fruits of obediance.....that trusting and listening out for You, learning to be still and hear that still voice of Yours...to learn Your Truth and Your directing....
Pray that in not only looking out or seeing or hearing Your Truth, that we all have the courage to take those steps of Faith and Trusting You in that.....knowing that You have already prepared a way as a way of providence for all Your children
Pray that only Your Truth be layed on peoples hearts tonight, and that anything not of You be wiped from their hearts and minds....ask this in Your name Jesus.....Amen
To say the book of Numbers is complicated and complex to understand for me is an understatement!
In researching for this weeks study, i have to say i have learnt an incredible amount...
Complex as it is, i will try to break it down a little, and maybe try and put it in an understandable way....
It is the story about the journey of the Israelites from Mount Sinai to the Promised Land
How they sinned and were punished, and then how they prepare to try again.
It reflects and shows what happens when you do not place your trust in Gods Power, but that God plans to be good to His people.
You even get about the first equal rights for women, you can find that in ...
8 "Say to the Israelites, 'If a man dies and leaves no son, turn his inheritance over to his daughter. 9 If he has no daughter, give his inheritance to his brothers. 10 If he has no brothers, give his inheritance to his father's brothers. 11 If his father had no brothers, give his inheritance to the nearest relative in his clan, that he may possess it. This is to be a legal requirement for the Israelites, as the LORD commanded Moses.' "
The Israelites had been led from slavery in Egypt and were on their way to the Promised Land...from Mount Sinai to the plains of Moab.
Those that God had set free from captivity in Egypt, had made a covenant at Mount Sinai responded not with faith, thankfulness or obediance.....
But with unbelief, ingratitude and repeated acts of rebellion, which cameto a head when they refused to battle the battle at Canaan...which resulted in their part in the Promised Land...were condemned to live out their lives in the desert ... wandering the wildnerness for 40 years!
Only their children would enjoy the fulfilment of the promise that had originally been theirs.
Illustrates the importance of obediance to God with all of our heart, and trusting and having faith in His leading...
We are shown in Isaiah 42, that He leads His people from darkness to Light, makes the rough smooth, but for that to happen we have to be obediant to Him leading us down those roads or paths, even when they are proving difficult to do so....
Remember also that perseverance has its own rewards, and when we ask we are to ask without doubting.
Also shows Gods Patience with His people, patiently and persistently discipling them in their stubborness....remember He is not slow as you understand slowness in keeping His Promises....He is patient, not wanting any to perish...
Are you picking up yet on some biblical themes that run through more than 1 book of the bible?
The Book of Numbers gets its name really from the Census taken at the beginning and at the end of the book, but its translation of the Hebrew... bemidbar 'In the Desert' is more accurate!
Again the author of the book of Numbers is reputed to be Moses, it was directed to the people of Israel.
It is 36 Chapters long, and was wrote circa (around) 1450-1410 B.C.
Moses was head, the leader.....then Aaron and his sons the priesthood.
God commanded them to take a census first of all the Israelites minus the Levites family, of men 20 and above who would form the army of Israel......which numbered in total 603,550...........
The Levites were set aside for Gods work alone with the Tabernacle, as the firstborn males of Israelite women........
After the initial countup God then ordered the countup of the Levites firstborn, which was 22000 in total...........
When God wanted Aaron to know something, He would speak to Moses who then spoke to Aaron, any instructions for the Israelites went through Moses and passed down from the 'head' that way.
The total of the Israelites first born being 22,273 so the difference of 273 firstborns, there was paid 5 pieces of silver for each one to the priests...Aaron and his sons, for their work with the Tabernacle.
If there were 603,550 men, there must have been a total population of more than two million Israelites. This population grew from Jacob's family which consisted of 70 people. Isnt that amazing? The record tells us that the Israelites who descended from Jacob's family had a population explosion!
That is like the entire population of Wales more than two million people...marching into London!
So during that time it was Aaron and Moses responsibility to maintain order, can you think of that, the multitude spread over about 12 square miles!
Since they remained in Egypt more than 400 years they had enough time to grow into a huge population. God provided for them all in the desert, not one was lost there, except for natural deaths.
How much more can He not feed the current earths population?
All the bad habits were put to death in that desert, and by the time, the old had all died off, the new were already living in the faith necessary to cross over...
You are a new creation, the old has gone the new has come!
Each Tribe and their respective clans, had specific directing of what their role in the desert/army was. God directed what side of the tent they would set up camp, and they always camped in the same places, marching out in the same order and camping in the same order...
Working together as a body, each having their own roles....
For example Aaron and his sons were the only ones permitted to see let alone touch the Holy things from within the inner chamber beyond the veil....all things Holy had to be covered up first....because if anyone entered who should not have been there, and they saw these Holy things, they would have died!
Jesus on the cross said 'it is finished' and the veil was torn in two, He became the ultimate sacrifice, Sacrificial Lamb, there is no need for any more burnt offerings...
Jesus came to fulfill the law and not abolish it, and this is how it is fulfilled, no need for anymore burnt offerings...
All have access to the inner chamber now without the need for anything to be covered up first, all can see what is 'within' whereas before, unless Aaron and his children, ie the priests covered up everything holy first, then those that entered wouldnt die..........but the veil was torn....it is finished!
So, we all now have access to the inner room, does that mean that we are now a part of the priesthood?
One Priesthood, and now Jesus seated in Heavenly places is maintaing that order for the current population!
look to [b]Ephesians 2...
4But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.[/b]
God has already prepared your providence, before you step out! Remember that even when you are suffering a trial or feel like you are in the desert, that God has prepared you a way, prepare yourself for the Lord...prepare ye a way for the Lord!
So they are heading towards the Promised Land, they are placed and marching in the exact sequence God would have them do it, they are directed when to move and when to stay...
When the cloud lifted off the tent, they knew to move, and when it rested on the tent, they knew not to move
The picture illustrates both how they camped and the cloud
See how that compares to God in Isaiah when He never leaves His place from in front of you, you are guided by a pillar of cloud by day
He will never leave you nor forsake you, and the battle belongs to the Lord, so put your trust in Him, and be obediant to His directing, even if it takes you out of your comfort zones!
Did you know it took 40 years to rid Israel of the rebellious people, and lead in the new generations? they were the ones that obeyed and were led in....
The children that were born during those 40 years in the wilderness, were the heart of Israel, and the ones that saw the importance of obedience, by then the older ones had all died
It took 40 years for old customs and things to die off, and thats very relevant in our lives today in our walk with Jesus
Our walk can take us 40 years, shorter or longer, depends if we listen to God and trust Him in all things, for the whole part of our old nature to die off, so we can truly know and understand His peace....peace that surpasses all understanding....
Also it is good to use those 40 years that we have in walking and giving over of self, to train up the new generations
Being lights of Christ, shining out, guiding in all Truth, working in the fruits, for His good and purpose God provided their substenance with manna....
7 The manna was like coriander seed and looked like resin. 8 The people went around gathering it, and then ground it in a handmill or crushed it in a mortar. They cooked it in a pot or made it into cakes. And it tasted like something made with olive oil. 9 When the dew settled on the camp at night, the manna also came down.
There came a point after eating manna everyday from God, that the Israelites started moaning about this, they wanted meat.
Moses went to God exasperated, what am i to do Lord, this is too much for me.......so God provided....He provided with 70 Elders.
They want to go back, they are not satisfied with the same taste everyday, because they have no clue about the substanance it was giving them...
16 The LORD said to Moses: "Bring me seventy of Israel's elders who are known to you as leaders and officials among the people. Have them come to the Tent of Meeting, that they may stand there with you. 17 I will come down and speak with you there, and I will take of the Spirit that is on you and put the Spirit on them. They will help you carry the burden of the people so that you will not have to carry it alone.
Remember God would never give you anything you cannot handle, and you can do all things through Him who strengthens you! His burden is light!
So God told moses He would provide that.......and He sent more than enough, and people were taking in more than their share of meat....God gets angry...
31 Now a wind went out from the LORD and drove quail in from the sea. It brought them [c] down all around the camp to about three feet [d] above the ground, as far as a day's walk in any direction. 32 All that day and night and all the next day the people went out and gathered quail. No one gathered less than ten homers. [e] Then they spread them out all around the camp. 33 But while the meat was still between their teeth and before it could be consumed, the anger of the LORD burned against the people, and he struck them with a severe plague. 34 Therefore the place was named Kibroth Hattaavah, [f] because there they buried the people who had craved other food.[/b]
The desert was not a punishment but a training ground, the Lord cannot and wont have disruption, and so he weaned them in the desert off the idols, and the bad habits.
So it is in our lives today, He weans us, trials and tribulations, even if we not aware at the time, to grow....teaches us perseverance....self control...look at the attributes of love...teaches you many of these...as a Loving Father would....
4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8Love never fails.
The Israelites at some point in their journey in Numbers experienced the opposite of the above, God is Love and in this journey they had to endure, because they was coming out of Egypt, and so God also used the opportunity, in His Fatherly guiding way, to teach them about the varying aspects of Love, in experiencing the opposite, they learnt the Truth...Fruits in the Old Testament? maybe...for you to interpret!
But you shall know them by their fruit, and love is a fruit, and God prepared in them as He prepares in you today, the Holy Spirit teaches you and lays on your heart Gods Truths....
Through obediance to His Truths and directing, guidance and instructions, your path from darkness to light, from Egypt to the Promised Land is made straighter.....submit to Him in all of your ways and He will make straight your paths.
A voice of one calling: "In the desert prepare the way for the LORD ; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God.
Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live!
You also have the accounts of Balaam in Numbers, the more renowned one for the talking donkey/ass
I would say if your pet talked you would listen up and sit up straight and quick....at least Balaam listened when his pet talked......because that advice kept him out of some serious trouble....even tho later on he led the Israelites into sin...but the time he listened?...
The veil is torn we can enter the Promised Land today...if He sets you free you are free indeed!
There is other things in Numbers we could have looked at, like Balaam for example, but tonight the direction seemed to be more in opening peoples eyes to obediance, and through listening, hearing, seeing, applying, actioning, your paths are made straighter, that even if that takes you out of your comfort zones, know that God has already prepared a way for you in advance!
Okay that finishes a look at the book of Numbers and how it relates to you today, and how Gods message is the same throughout the bible, it is just portrayed in a different way, the Old Testament explains the New