Numbers survey

Chapters 4 & 5


Intro: We have seen that the Book of Numbers deals primarily w/ the ORGANIZATION of God's people in Preparation for God's promise

A)And we have seen in our studies, that ORGANIZATION is essential for STABILITY


B) IF we want to be STABLE in this walk through this world, there    must be responsibility and accountability within the Body of Christ

   1) Because Accountability and responsibility lead to stability


C) EXAMPLE: Redwood trees -They are unique in the fact that they do NOT send down tap-roots { Not Deep Root System

1)   Their Root system is extremely Shallow - Their roots go out laterally instead of down


D) Yet those trees that are so Tall – are also able to weather massive storms WHAT is it that gives them such time-enduring stability?

1) As the roots go out laterally they intertwine with the     roots of other

    redwoods  { Always grow in Groves – never isolated


E) So it is As they are woven together they are stabilized


Now WHAT if Randy-Redwood decided he was just going to uproot and pull out?

A)It would be very painful to Randy and the other redwoods around him BECAUSE their roots are intertwined


B) But it would NOT only produce pain... It would jeopardize Randy's own stability -  He would become vulnerable to wind and storms


C) The Same thing is true of Believers in JC - NOTE: God says

1Pet. 2:5 You also are living stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.

Eph. 2:21- 21in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, 22in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.


In the Book of Numbers, we see that God’s people were being WOVEN         together and FIT together

A)God has declared to them WHERE they were to march.... WHAT             they were to carry in the march....


B) WHERE they were to camp and WHOM they were to camp next to

1)      All of that Structure was essential to prepare them for the warfare that awaited them


C) Now in Ch. 1& 2 we saw the ordering & the arranging of the People / the numbering of those who were able to fight

1)   Ch. 3 We saw the Ordering & the arranging of the Levites { Part of the Priestly Family


D) Divided into 3 families each having certain responsibilities

1)   Gershom – Coverings – Merari – Framework – Kohath – Sacred things


E) As we come tonight to Chapter 4 – We really have a repeat of Ch.3 but in this Chapter we are given a little more detail –

1)   Especially concerning the family of Kohath – Focus on that for a few

    minutes before going into Chapter 5    Read v. 1-3


Now this is an interesting thing to note: The Levites were to serve from the time that they were 30 yrs old until the time that they were 50 yrs

A)Does that mean that they retired when they were 50 ? { Sounds good }


B) No it doesn’t mean that they retired when they were 50 / But Once they turned 50 they were no longer involved in the Daily duties

1)    But they turned their attention to training the younger Levites – those 20 to 30 yrs old


C) This I believe is a good model for Ministry: - Some of you don’t have the same energy that you did 10 or 20 yrs ago.

1)   There needs to be a sense of passing the Baton – training our Young People


D) Given Sunday nights - Youth Focus / music is louder { Messages are little more Basic – gearing it towards the Younger people  Neat to see…..

1)   Does that mean the older people shouldn’t come ? No – There needs to be that enter- action older & younger { Ear plugs


E) Might not like the Music at times – But I love to watch the kids worship

1)   Crusade  WG – One Generation shall declare his mighty works to the next  /   Friday adult – Kids be there / Sat little more wild – Ok


F) Leaders of the Church for tomorrow they need to be trained{ We who are older need to realize God wants to use us to INFLUENCE


NOTE ALSO: This also says much for taking the time to be           trained

Jesus spent 30 years of His life in preparation for 3 years of ministry

A)The Apostle Paul, who was an AUTHORITY on the O.T.                          Scriptures


B)YET - He was taken by the Lord Jesus into the wilderness of                     Arabia for 3 years where he was taught by Jesus

1)   Moses spent 40 years in the desert being TRAINED  for ministry

Joseph spent yrs in Prison – slavery – Preparation


C) THAT is why Paul told Timothy 1Tim. 5:22   Lay hands suddenly on no man


D) See God is NOT in a hurry like we are / Something that I have had to learn { I can be so impatient at times

1) We MUST allow ourselves the time to prepare – MY OWN LIFE



In 1983 called into full time ministry – Wasn’t until 1985 that the door opened up –

A)1989 – felt called to go start a Church – but it wasn’t until 1991 – that the Lord said – NOW GO!!!!


B) Many people have zeal to serve, but they lack time of preparation

1) 1985 I thought I was ready – God broke me – after a yr. last thing I ever wanted to do!!![ I had it made here ]


C) Many people have zeal to serve, but they lack time of preparation Thus they fall into all kinds of heresies & wrong practice

1) Because The foundation is missing{ Warfare is intense


D) So we see that God had a time period of service & training for the Levites – there is wisdom in this for us even today – in our service

1) Read v.4-20 – notice the detail as we read this


Now the thing that I want you to note in this section is how each piece of sacred vessels was to be specifically covered

A)And that the vessels were to not be touched – Everything was carried w/ poles { Touched they would die } Watched by Eleazor


B) In this we are reminded of how the worship system w/ in the  Jewish Culture was sacred & Secret  – Real Aspect of MYSTERY

1) It was taken very seriously & there was an aspect of Distance involved.


C) At that is where we see a huge contrast in the NT – after the Veil was rent and the Holy of Holies was made accessible

1)   Worship is still something to be taken seriously – but now we are told to come Boldly into the throne room of God


D) Everything that was covered has been uncovered – everything that they were told to not touch – we are encouraged to touch

1)   Because Each piece of the Tabernacle spoke of Christ – And Jesus told His disciples to handle Him – Encourages us to draw near to Him

Sometimes we think I wish that God spoke to me like Abe / Noah /

A)Abe heard from God – Go – God didn’t speak to Abe again for several yrs / Noah Build – 120 yrs goes by until Noah hears from God AGAIN !!!


B) They didn’t have a Bible to read / they didn’t have the HS in their hearts

1)   We are so much more fortunate then they were – Walk w/ God / enjoy this Intimacy w/ God that they only dreamed of !!!!


C) Yet we can be so guilty of taking for granted the Access & Intimacy w/ God that is available to us

1)   The Lord says Draw near to me & I will Draw near to you!!!


D) Christianity today neat picture Christians must remember that prayer is like the mortar that holds the bricks together, or the quiet pauses in a symphony. Without the mortar everything falls apart; without the quiet between the notes, no music.  And without daily private prayer, Christians face spiritual anorexia. 


E) Now the rest of this Chapter goes over what we looked at in Chapter 3 that the Family of Gershom was in charge of Coverings

  1)Family of Merari was in Charge of the  Frame work – kind of a review of

       Chapt 3 – So lets move into Chapter 5 Rd v. 1-4


Now Leprosy is always seen in scripture as a type of Sin – Consider some of the Parallels

A)Leprosy starts small but desires to consume the whole body


B)  Sin can have a very small beginning - a little lie here - dishonesty there - but if un dealt w/ it only grows .

1) Sin desires to Consume the whole person – Sin wants to take over a

    person to lay hold of them – Hold them in Bondage


C) Pet Lion / that grew – tired of staying the Bathroom – Mauled it’s owner

1) That is what sin so often does - starts off small like that little lion cub - maybe playful - but it grows / ultimately destroys a person

D)That is why Christians should deal with sin definitely and drastically.  We must not permit any "pet" sins, to dwell in our lives                            

1)  Only by severely dealing with a sin can we be sure that we will not

     become the victim of it.



2nd thing about Leprosy is that it DESENSITIZES a person / infects the nerve system so they don’t feel things anymore { Pain / Burn

A)Sin also has a way of DESENSITIZES a person way that sin is like leprosy is that in sin  .


Bb) The Longer a person continues in sin - the more they lose their sensitivity concerning their sin - reach a point like the Leper - past feeling


B) Eph. 4:18,19 18  having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart;

19  who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.


C) Being PAST FEELING is what makes sin really  HIDEOUS

1)  That is the tragic effect of sin as it is seen in leprosy You are being

     destroyed and you don't even know it


3rd Leprosy is Extremely Contagious / So is sin

A)Your Sin will affect other people / an have you noticed how people don’t like to sin alone


B) Starts w/ Kids – Pull friends / bros / sisters into their Mischief


C) Now Because of the Contagious affect of Sin – God said to put the Leper outside of the Camp

1) What was true for them Congregationally is true for us – Individually

We need to put the sin out of our lives { no place for Compromise


Now is true & has application for us INDIVIDUALLY / but what about Congregationally –

A)Well if we started kicking everyone who sinned out of the church there wouldn’t be anyone left including the Pastor


B)Truth is All of us have been infected by sin / all of us have dropped the ball – all of us have been put outside of the camp by God –

1) Separated from God – because of our Sin


C) But we also have been brought in By Jesus – because of what Jesus did we don’t have to feel like we don’t belong

1)   Satan is good at making us feel that way –


D)Coach Clark – I dropped the Ball – Yelled at me / wouldn’t look at me

1) Satan tries to make us think that is how God is


E) Satan makes us feel condemned { belong outside the camp} but In Jesus Nothing could be further from the truth { Romans 8 nothing can separate us


Now we Pick up in v. 5-10 Interesting Portion of scripture where the Lord is showing how restitution leads to Restoration

A)It is God’s desire that we build a healthy relationships w/ our Bros / Sis/ in Christ & respectable relationships w/ those outside the Body of Christ


B) When someone has been wronged by you – the automatic response is to get even – but God says you get even w/ them first

1)   But it is in a whole different way!!


C) You go to them & make restitution and thereby setting up a Path for Restoration.

1)   And do it by adding 1/5 to whatever OWE THEM!!.


D) Can you imagine the response of a person especially a non Christian if you did this !!

Lets says you accidentally run over your neighbors mailbox – So you find out what it is going to cost to fix it !!!

A)You come to them – Sorry for running over the mailbox  here is what I owe you for it & I added 1/5th so you can take your wife out to dinner


B) Why are you doing that ? Well I am a Christian & Christ has done so much for me – and it suggest in the word this is a good thing to do!!!

1) That will make a radical impact on others –


I personally think that we could apply this principle a lot more in the body of Christ than we do

A)There is way too much what I would call Broery that goes on in the Body of Christ –  Broery – is that a word – No – but you’ll understand the concept


A) Let’s say you run over your Christian friends mailbox – Here is what happens – Bro I am so sorry – Please forgive me I didn’t see it

1)   You know I would love to pay for that Bro – but funds are a little short right now – But you understand that Bro –


B) God’s grace is Sufficient – I am sure that he will take care of it – Right Bro –

1)   Some Christians do that – They hide behind their relationship w/ Christ & abuse God’s grace to avoid being Responsible


C) I once had a guy do that to me – after he backed into my car !! denting the door – paint from his car was on there

1)    He didn’t offer to pay for it & made it virtually impossible for me to ask him to pay for it to be fixed –


D) The Scriptures clearly teach that we need to be responsible for our actions



Now v.11 –31  is Fascination & rather Bazaar portion of Scripture – It is dealing w/ the spirit of Jealousy in a marriage –  Read verses

A) Now When a man suspects that his wife has been involved in an        adulterous affair and he becomes jealous

   1) He is to take a sacrifice with NO oil....  Oil symbolizes the Holy Spirit.....

      And with NO frankincense....  Frankincense symbolizes praise...             

B) These elements are absent BECAUSE sin is being dealt with

1)   SO he brings her to the Priest  / The priest was to make this

     concoction called bitter water  (v.19)


VERSE 17 -  take holy water in an earthen vessel; and of the dust that is in the floor of the tabernacle


C) And then he is to make her drink it- BEFORE she drinks it she is to say: Amen, Amen  VERSE 22

 1) By doing so She is saying: "If I have fallen into sin, let my belly swell                       and my thigh rot"       


D) THEN they wait - Time will tell

1)   IF her belly swells and her thigh rots, THEN she is guilty of                    adultery....Priest would announce that she was GUILTY


E)IF it doesn't swell, and doesn't rot, THEN she is free-

1)   the priest would solemnly announce that if the woman was innocent of the accusation of adultery,


You women might say:  "Wait a minute - What about the man.... Why isn't the MAN     brought into this process?"

A)we have already seen in the Law that if a couple were caught in the act of adultery BOTH were to be stoned - God is NOT a respecter of persons


B) But this was to deal w/ Jealousy

     1) How did this thing work – 2 IDEAS


C) It is very possible that guilt and fear of being caught would       cause adverse physiological effects{ Kids you look at theme start crying

EXAMPLE: In Africa there are tribes that have a        customary way of determining whether or not a man was telling the truth

They would take a knife and place it in fire until it glowed. They would say: Are you lying? If he said NO, they would take the knife and have him stick out his tongue and place the knife on it.


Now  IF his mouth was moist... No problem - It would sizzle and that would be it. IF the tongue was dry... From being nervous, He'd lose his tongue


C) SO it is possible there was a Physiological  affect that took place / simply because of the guilt



But It is also possible that the Lord would cause these very things to happen- it was Supernatural

A)Now what can we possible learn thru this passage – besides weird part of Jewish history ?


B) Well This practice reminds us of a couple  things 1st of all / of the importance that God places on Domestic morality –

1) what do I mean by that?


C) Simply this - The most important place for your Christianity to be lived out is in the Home


D) Some people  sit in Church and Sing & Serve great Christians at Church but it is a different story at home

1)   It is easy to hear a sermon in Church or on the radio / read a book where God speaks to you & Say AMEN – Never apply it to your life.


E)Especially at Home – Husband & wife hear something at Church that was a good message – Never apply it never Bring it into the Home .


F) So first of all this Story reminds us of the Importance that God places on Domestic Morality –

2ndly It reminds us of the importance that God places on trust in a Relationship!!!

A)That he would allow a man to put his wife thru such an ordeal just so he could be assured that he could trust her


B) It illustrates for us the Importance of Trust in a Marriage relationship



C)Trust is a form of Commitment – Commitment to VOWS – 1st to Love the Lord / 2nd Love each other

2)   Wives to Submit / Husbands to Sacrifice


D) That commitment to seek the HS help to be Selfless instead of Selfish

1)   Trusting one another to do those things & be those things


E) Proverbs 31 Describes the Wife who is trusted by her husband – her worth is above Rubies


Trust is vitally important in a marriage – Yet this is one of the Biggest Problems we see in marriage Counseling – Lack of Trust / trust Broken

A)Broken by Infidelity / Broken by Physical violence / Broken by Porn / Broken when wife abuses the Check book / Husband runs up Credit cards


B) Destroyed by Drug & Alcohol abuse / or simply not accounting for your time


C) And once that trust has been Broken – it takes time to gain it back

1) When there is true repentance – FORGIVENESS IS TO BE IMMEDIATE / But Trust is something you earn / Something that grows


D) Even w/ the Lord – Over & over He gives us reasons to trust Him that is based on His past History w/ us

1)   So often in a marriage the guilty spouse wants immediate trust -  rarely is that possible


Here is the thing to note trust is built thru consistency – It will be seen in that persons relationship w/ the Lord

A)Keeping trust Alive – COMMUNICATION / Can your wife trust you w/ her feelings –


B) There have been times when Denise has said to me – You don’t have a clue as to how I am feeling – { Have to talk it out

1)   I have to show her that I really do want to understand


C) And then I need to seek the AID of the HS to empower me


So Communication is Key & Safe guards are a Must

A)No close friends of the opposite sex


B) No TV Or  Movies without your wife if you can’t turn off questionable things


C) Integrity on line – for Internet – { Now it is not that we don’t trust each other – it is that we don’t trust our flesh

1)   Satan is constantly bombarding us from every direction – Spirit is willing but the Flesh is week – SAFE GUARDS