February 23, 2022
The book of Numbers in the Scripture begins with a seemingly laborious account of a census taken of all the Israelites after they came out of Egypt. But this very accounting has a purpose. As always, it teaches us something about God.
GOD IS FAITHFUL TO HIS PROMISE
God had given Abraham a promise that a son would be born to him in his old age and from that son, a nation would grow as many as the sand on the seashore. When Jacob traversed into Egypt, they were a mere 75 people. When they came out of Egypt 400 years later, we have this accounting.
The census revealed 600,000+ men over 20. This does not account for their wives and many children. Estimates are that there were between three and six million people! God had answered His promise.
Then consider that God fed and clothed those millions EVERY DAY during their wilderness wanderings with daily manna from heaven and their “shoes did not wear out.” God is an overwhelmingly sufficient and faithful Provider.
GOD CARES FOR HIS SHEEP
A good shepherd in Moses’ day took a daily, perhaps hourly accounting of his sheep. If a single sheep was missing, he went to find them.
God had Moses number the people, by tribes and families, so they would know their flock and take good care of them. This accounting provided appropriate order and care for the people He loved. God loves His people and takes meticulous care over each of us.
GOD MUST ALWAYS BE AT THE CENTER
When the accounting was finished, God ordered them to place the tabernacle (the place of His presence) in the middle and every tribe surrounded the tabernacle and faced it. Thus, the reminder that God was to always be at the center. God was always to be faced and focused upon. If they lost this orientation, there would be chaos and disorder.
God is faithful to His promises and everlasting in His care. We must draw near, facing Him to find the order in our lives, our families, our churches, our nation that we need. A great reminder for us about our great Father. Whenever we lose Him at the center we are lost.
Father, thank You that You have never failed in any promise You have made to us. We can trust You, Lord. You take care of the lilies of the field, and You will take care of us. Help us stay near today and follow Your leadership. Be the center and focus of our lives today.
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