04/26 - Numbers 25, 31 and 26

Numbers 25, Numbers 31, Numbers 26

Num. 25:10-13 - Here's an example of what it means to be zealous for God's honor. He was not concerned for his own safety - he walked in on a leader in the midst of adultry! He did not let the fact that this man's sin was between him and God stop him from stnading up for the Lord. It wasn't really just between him and God, he in open defiance, paraded her through the campo in front of the people who were trying to tunr away rom this sin. He may not have even notived thier weeping (Num. 25:6) as he brought her to his tent. He certainly did not have God or the people on his mind.

Num. 31 - It seems I should write something about this, but what? What does it say about the heart of God to see such seeming brutality? Moses is angry that they haven't killed the women and children. He even orders it done. Only the virgins survive. I can understand the anger the Isrealites felt toward them for leading them astray, especially the women. (Of course, it does seem that the Isrealites did not put up much of a fight.) BUt des that justify this? My chronilogical Bible'smnotes hint at 'cultural' things to be taken into account. It says:

In raising the moral consciencesness of first a nation, and then the world, God must take his people as he finds them and introduce principles of righteousness within a moral framework with which the people can identify.

That moral framework for the Isrealites, it says, is a culture where revenge includes complete destruction of your enemies. Still hard to accept, but it's the rest of the scriptures, the examples of God's love, patience and forgiveness that make it possible to suspend my disbelief and trust that there is an explanation.

Num. 26:1-50 - More names and numbers.

Num. 26:61 - It seems that throughout this time of wanderings and the beginings of battles against other nations, God is making a statement about holiness and His honor. Phinehas is lifted up for being zealous for God's honor and here we see mention of men who died for not having enogh respect for the Lord, using unauthorized fire. God's anger is stirred when the people are not holy,set apart for him and they are about to go to battle in the name of a pure nation of God's people in Canaan.

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