Today we are reading Numbers 33. In this chapter we read about Moses’ record of the wilderness wandering. “These are the stages of the people of Israel, when they went out of the land of Egypt by their companies under the leadership of Moses and Aaron. Moses wrote down their starting places, stage by stage, by command of the Lord, and these are their stages according to their starting places. They set out from Rameses in the first month, on the fifteenth day of the first month. On the day after the Passover, the people of Israel went out triumphantly in the sight of all the Egyptians, while the Egyptians were burying all their firstborn, whom the Lord had struck down among them. On their gods also the Lord executed judgments.”
‭‭Numbers‬ ‭33‬:‭1‬-‭4‬ ‭ESV‬‬ For forty years the Israelites wandered. Moses wrote down every place they stayed. We know many of the stories of their travels because God told Moses to keep an account. Think back over your life with God. Are there things you wish you remembered more clearly? What lessons have you learned along the way? How can you tell your story to future generations? What do your children know about your experience? Bless them with your Godly wisdom! Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Numbers 32. In this chapter we read about the tribes that settled east of the Jordan River. “Now the people of Reuben and the people of Gad had a very great number of livestock. And they saw the land of Jazer and the land of Gilead, and behold, the place was a place for livestock. So the people of Gad and the people of Reuben came and said to Moses and to Eleazar the priest and to the chiefs of the congregation, “Ataroth, Dibon, Jazer, Nimrah, Heshbon, Elealeh, Sebam, Nebo, and Beon, the land that the Lord struck down before the congregation of Israel, is a land for livestock, and your servants have livestock.” And they said, “If we have found favor in your sight, let this land be given to your servants for a possession. Do not take us across the Jordan.”” Numbers‬ ‭32‬:‭1‬-‭5‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Our family has a similar story. When my ancestors were leaving Minnesota for Texas, they got as far as Oklahoma and decided that was far enough. The decision ended up costing them prosperity. The land they were headed for in Texas had oil discovered on it! The tribes of Reuben and Gad decided the land east of the Jordan was to their liking. The difficulty was that the Jordan River separated them from their brothers. Have you ever felt distant from certain relatives? Now with technology we can keep in touch and reunite with old friends. How do you make an effort to stay close to your family? How do you communicate your faith to those who are distant? May you remember your family in prayer as the come to your mind. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Numbers 31. In this chapter we read about vengeance against Midian. “The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Avenge the people of Israel on the Midianites. Afterward you shall be gathered to your people.” So Moses spoke to the people, saying, “Arm men from among you for the war, that they may go against Midian to execute the Lord’s vengeance on Midian.”
‭‭Numbers‬ ‭31‬:‭1‬-‭3‬ ‭ESV‬‬ The Israelites were authorized to go to war against the army of Midian but not the people—the women and children were not part of the deal. Moses and Eleazar overstepped their authority and treated the Midianite people horribly. Yes, the Midianites did the same to Israel and this kind of brutality was common in those days. However, God’s people do not have a license to imitate the horrible sins of the pagans around them. We too must refrain from imitating the sins common in our culture. May God give you a clear view of His will in your life. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Numbers 30. In this chapter we read about vows and pledges. “Moses spoke to the heads of the tribes of the people of Israel, saying, “This is what the Lord has commanded. If a man vows a vow to the Lord, or swears an oath to bind himself by a pledge, he shall not break his word. He shall do according to all that proceeds out of his mouth. “If a woman vows a vow to the Lord and binds herself by a pledge, while within her father’s house in her youth, and her father hears of her vow and of her pledge by which she has bound herself and says nothing to her, then all her vows shall stand, and every pledge by which she has bound herself shall stand. But if her father opposes her on the day that he hears of it, no vow of hers, no pledge by which she has bound herself shall stand. And the Lord will forgive her, because her father opposed her.” Numbers‬ ‭30‬:‭1‬-‭5‬ ‭ESV‬‬ A man has an increased responsibility for vows when his wife or daughter makes them. The same is true for us when it comes to liabilities. Sometimes our family members make commitments we end up handling. How can we be compassionate and wise in managing these things? May God bless you with both as you walk. Through life’s ups and downs. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Number 29. In this chapter we read about offerings for various feasts. ““These you shall offer to the Lord at your appointed feasts, in addition to your vow offerings and your freewill offerings, for your burnt offerings, and for your grain offerings, and for your drink offerings, and for your peace offerings.” So Moses told the people of Israel everything just as the Lord had commanded Moses.” Numbers‬ ‭29‬:‭39‬-‭40‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Bulls, rams, lambs and goats—it sure sounds like a lot of animals were sacrificed to God. Why do you think there were so many? What else did the Israelites have in great quantities? All these sacrifices were not only required, they were also necessary to compensate for the sins of the Israelites. How cumbersome! We have the much preferred opportunity to go directly to Jesus for forgiveness. What God really wants is a broken and contrite heart. May you walk daily in God’s grace. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Numbers 28. In this chapter we read about daily offerings. “The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Command the people of Israel and say to them, ‘My offering, my food for my food offerings, my pleasing aroma, you shall be careful to offer to me at its appointed time.’ And you shall say to them, This is the food offering that you shall offer to the Lord: two male lambs a year old without blemish, day by day, as a regular offering. The one lamb you shall offer in the morning, and the other lamb you shall offer at twilight; also a tenth of an ephah of fine flour for a grain offering, mixed with a quarter of a hin of beaten oil. It is a regular burnt offering, which was ordained at Mount Sinai for a pleasing aroma, a food offering to the Lord. Its drink offering shall be a quarter of a hin for each lamb. In the Holy Place you shall pour out a drink offering of strong drink to the Lord. The other lamb you shall offer at twilight. Like the grain offering of the morning, and like its drink offering, you shall offer it as a food offering, with a pleasing aroma to the Lord.”
‭‭Numbers‬ ‭28‬:‭1‬-‭8‬ ‭ESV‬‬ The Israelites had specified offerings they were required to make. What is it that you offer to the Lord? What is the purpose of the offering? When you give to the Lord, what goes through your mind? May your gifts to God be an expression of your love to Him. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Numbers 27. In this chapter we read about the commissioning of Joshua to succeed Moses. “So the Lord said to Moses, “Take Joshua the son of Nun, a man in whom is the Spirit, and lay your hand on him. Make him stand before Eleazar the priest and all the congregation, and you shall commission him in their sight. You shall invest him with some of your authority, that all the congregation of the people of Israel may obey. And he shall stand before Eleazar the priest, who shall inquire for him by the judgment of the Urim before the Lord. At his word they shall go out, and at his word they shall come in, both he and all the people of Israel with him, the whole congregation.” And Moses did as the Lord commanded him. He took Joshua and made him stand before Eleazar the priest and the whole congregation, and he laid his hands on him and commissioned him as the Lord directed through Moses.” Numbers‬ ‭27‬:‭18‬-‭23‬ ‭ESV‬‬ So, Moses will not enter the Promised Land but Joshua will succeed him and lead Israel in the conquest. For the nation of Israel this is a big transition! Who was this Joshua? Is he ready to step up? The real question is, how does God feel about it? If God is for it, then it’s all good. What difficult transitions have you been through? How did God help you? How does God continue to help you? May God be with you as you walk through the valley. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Numbers 26. In this chapter we read about the census that was taken of Israel before they entered the Promised Land. “After the plague, the Lord said to Moses and to Eleazar the son of Aaron, the priest, “Take a census of all the congregation of the people of Israel, from twenty years old and upward, by their fathers’ houses, all in Israel who are able to go to war.” And Moses and Eleazar the priest spoke with them in the plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho, saying, “Take a census of the people, from twenty years old and upward,” as the Lord commanded Moses.

Numbers‬ ‭26‬:‭1‬-‭4‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Why did God command a census to be taken? The Israelites were at this time nomads with no permanent home. God commanded the census so that they could portion out the land according to the size of your tribe. Big tribe = big piece of the Promised Land etc. God was very specific in this process. Our lives are different and yet somehow the same. God gives us wealth and prosperity but some have more than they need and some have too little. The sinful greed of man steps in and causes hardship. In my experience, we have always had enough. Why do you think some in poorer parts of the world don’t have enough? How do you think God wants us to respond to those who are suffering in poverty? Why do you think you have more than you need? May God give you a generous heart. Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Numbers 25. In this chapter we read about the Israelites chasing after pagan women and their gods. “While Israel lived in Shittim, the people began to whore with the daughters of Moab. These invited the people to the sacrifices of their gods, and the people ate and bowed down to their gods. So Israel yoked himself to Baal of Peor. And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel. And the Lord said to Moses, “Take all the chiefs of the people and hang them in the sun before the Lord, that the fierce anger of the Lord may turn away from Israel.” And Moses said to the judges of Israel, “Each of you kill those of his men who have yoked themselves to Baal of Peor.”” Numbers‬ ‭25‬:‭1‬-‭5‬ ‭ESV‬‬ The young nation of Israel struggled to remain faithful to God. God took idolatry very seriously. Imagine if all the people that today worship false gods were put to death! We are so easily led astray. The truth is that only believers in the One True God will be spared from God’s wrath. May you be spared! Pastor Tim

Today we are reading Numbers 24. In this chapter we read about Balaam’s final oracle against Moab. “And Balak’s anger was kindled against Balaam, and he struck his hands together. And Balak said to Balaam, “I called you to curse my enemies, and behold, you have blessed them these three times. Therefore now flee to your own place. I said, ‘I will certainly honor you,’ but the Lord has held you back from honor.” And Balaam said to Balak, “Did I not tell your messengers whom you sent to me, ‘If Balak should give me his house full of silver and gold, I would not be able to go beyond the word of the Lord, to do either good or bad of my own will. What the Lord speaks, that will I speak’?”
‭‭Numbers‬ ‭24‬:‭10‬-‭13‬ ‭ESV‬‬ Balaam’s steadfastness is impressive! He will not be bribed. He will not compromise God’s word. The king could have had him killed or imprisoned him. Balaam is unafraid. How have you done in similar circumstances? Have you sold out rather than remaining steadfast? Have you yielded to the temptation to be prosperous? May God show His faithfulness through you! Pastor Tim