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Numbers Overview

DAILY DEVOTION

FOR

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 12

SCRIPTURE:  NUMBERS OVERVIEW

BY: Jeremy Witt

As we look at the 4th book written by Moses, we read of the numbers of Israelites counted in the census.  It happens twice in the book (chapter 1 and chapter 26) which is why its name is what it is.  It takes from Mount Sinai and preparing to go to the Promised Land the first time, wandering in the wilderness due to their unfaithfulness and disobedience, and finally to the 2nd approach to the Promised Land.

The outline of the book is as follows:

  1. Preparations for the journey to the Promised Land (1:1-10:10)
    1. 1st census
    2. Role of the Levites
    3. Purity of the camp
    4. God’s guidance for the journey
  2. First Approach to the Promised Land ( 10:11-14:45)
    1. People complain
    2. Miriam and Aaron oppose Moses
    3. Scouts report and incite rebellion
  3. Wandering in the wilderness (15:1-21:35)
    1. More regulations and laws
    2. Leaders rebel against Moses
    3. Duties of priests and Levites
    4. The new generation
  4. Second Approach to the Promised Land (22:1-36:13)
    1. Story of Balaam
    2. 2nd census
    3. Offerings and instructions for them
    4. God repays the Midianites
    5. Tribes of the Transjordan region
    6. Camp at the Moab plains

 

The nation of Israel is a nomadic people without a land of their own.  God has promised them a land.  They have left Egypt, and they are dreaming of this promised land.  They are led by Moses who is following the LORD.  God has given them directions on how to be different (pure and holy) from the peoples around them.  It is not easy.  In their first approach to the Promised Land, they send 12 spies into the land.  When the spies return, 2 spies are positive on what they see, (Joshua and Caleb) but the remaining 10 spies put fear and doubt into the conquest because the land has giants, chariots, and walled cities.  These spies say that they cannot take the land and should go back to Egypt (back to slavery).  The lack of faith of the spies and the people who doubted the LORD brought punishment from the LORD for their disbelief.  The people doubted God and Moses both.  They were griping and complaining. 

The consequence was that the entire nation would wander in the wilderness for 40 years, and those who disbelieved would never see the Promised Land.  This generation of doubters were replaced by a generation who did not remember Egypt, but had seen the power and miracles of God in the wilderness.  This 2nd generation would be the ones who would trust God and enter into the Promised Land for conquest. 

 

Here are some great stories and passages to read in Numbers.

 

Numbers 11:1-6, 14:1-4, 16:3, 16:41, 20:2-3, 21:5 the people complain

Numbers 12 Miriam and Aaron oppose Moses (He married a black woman) and they were jealous of

Moses.  God’s response to them and their punishment.

Numbers 13 Spies and their report.

Numbers 14 People rebel

Numbers 14:18 Verse to highlight and memorize

Numbers 14:22-23 God’s punishment for the disbelieving generation.

Numbers 20:1-13 Moses disobedience which cost him from entering the Promised Land. 

Numbers 21: 4-9 the bronze snake

Numbers 22 Balaam and the donkeyNumbers 27:12-23 Joshua chosen to replace Moses after his death.

Posted by Jeremy Witt with

Galatians 6

DAILY DEVOTION

FOR

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 10

 SCRIPTURE:  GALATIANS 6

BY: Jeremy Witt

If you are watching a movie and you suddenly have to leave because of a phone call, what is the question you ask when you return?  How does it end or what did I miss?  Here we are at the ending of Galatians.  Paul takes everything he has written and summarizes it, applies it to the readers, and closes with great emotion.

In verses 1-3 Paul calls the spiritually mature to help those who are weaker in a sin to get them back to the LORD.  The key that we miss in this day is with humility and gentleness, and be careful not to fall into the same temptation.  Many times people want to “help” those who are in sin, but fail at the humility and gently components of this passage.  We tend to be harsh and dogmatic.  Paul calls us not to act like those in the circumcision party.  We are to help each other as it is the law . . . . of Christ.  Not the law of circumcision, but the law of Christ as in verse 2.  Here is what we must remember.  We are just one decision, one choice, one weak moment, etc from being in sin ourselves. 

Verse 4 reminds me of Jesus’ words in Matthew 7:3-5 “how can you take the speck out of your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the log in your own eye?”  Notice verse 5.  Our world, our culture, our family, and so on needs to use this verse.  It is so much easier to point out other’s wrongs and neglect our own, isn’t it! 

In verse 6 there seems to be something specific going on in the churches of Galatia.  It doesn’t fit in my comprehension unless the churches in the area were not taking care of those spiritually leading them.  This could be referring to feeding, providing housing, clothing, or income, but it could also be that the church was not supporting those spiritually leading them but sitting back and saying nothing.  We tend to do that when confrontations come.  We just sit back and watch.  I will say from personal experience of when I facing a false accusation and a brother in Christ stood up for me.  No amount of money was worth what he did for me.  Remember our context that there were some coming in and teaching the Law as necessary for salvation.  The pastor/elder/teacher may have been standing alone and Paul is calling the churches to support the leader.

Verses 7-10 Paul reminds us that we reap what we sow.  Notice verse 10 specifically, because we overlook this verse today.  Who are we to make sure we do good towards?  You see it?  When we take care of one another, the world notices.  Go and reread Acts 2 and how the church did this.  What were the results?

Many questions come up from verse 11.  Did Paul not write these letters?  Why is he pointing out his own handwriting?  What is going on?  This was very normal in the New Testament age.  Paul, Peter, and others would use a scribe or assistant to write down what they said to the churches.  It would be similar to dictation when someone writes down as another speaks.  That one speaking was the author yet someone else wrote it down.  Because of the situation in the churches of Galatia, Paul actually wrote these last verses himself.  Verses 11-18 were written down specifically by Paul, and he wrote them bigger than the rest.  It would be LIKE READING IN ALL CAPS.  PAUL WAS “SCREAMING AT THEM” TO SHOW HIS FEELINGS.

In these verses, Paul goes again to the circumcision/Law issue, because it was the main reason for the letter.  Ultimately Paul calls it for what it was, a personal recognition among the Jews.  “Look how many I got to be circumcised!  Look at what I did!”  If it is about us, then it is not about Jesus.  Anything that isn’t about Him is not worth our attention.  We must not allow anything other than Jesus Christ to be our focus, our aim, or our goal.  Verse 15 summarizes it all for us. 

My prayer for us is verse 18. 

Posted by Jeremy Witt with

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