Continuing a plan to get through the entire Bible in a year, follow as I journal through the reading. I have chosen a straightforward approach that begins in Genesis and ends in Revelation. This will not be an in-depth study or a comprehensive commentary. There are plenty of sources for such material. This is stage one Bible reading, taking the text at face value and sharing impressions.
Today’s reading comes from the book of Numbers, chapters 33 and 34, as Israel prepares to enter the Promised Land. Some impressions from the text:
- Of note, yet easy to miss in Moses’ recount of Israel’s journey through the wilderness, is this statement about Egypt. “On their gods also the Lord executed judgments.” This may be a reference to the ten plagues, each of which demonstrated the Lord’s mastery over aspects of nature which Egypt claimed various gods controlled.
- As God instructs Moses and Israel to drive out the Moabites from Jericho, He takes special care to warn them against sparing anyone. “But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then those of them whom you let remain shall be as barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they shall trouble you in the land where you dwell.” It is presumptuous to think of one’s self as somehow more merciful than God, something which skeptics, atheists, and even some believers do all the time. A good god wouldn’t do X, we might say, or a good god would do Y. No, a good god would do as the one true God has, and we stand in no position to judge.
Return soon as we continue our year-long journey through the text of the Bible.
Catch up on the previous entries:
The book of Numbers lives up to its name. – Numbers 1-2
Tests and tributes. – Numbers 5-6
God leads Israel from Sinai into the wilderness. – Numbers 8-10
Rebellion and disobedience run rampant among Israel. – Numbers 11-13
Rebellion proves costly. – Numbers 14-15
Korah’s rebellion. – Numbers 16-17
Sin at Meribah, and the death of Aaron. – Numbers 18-20
Salvation. Our choice. His work. – Numbers 21-22
You can’t outmaneuver God. – Numbers 23-25
Preparing to enter the Promised Land. – Numbers 26-27
Honoring God with offerings and vows. – Numbers 28-30
Israel goes to war with the Midianites. – Numbers 31-32