Promises of God!
Scripture reading for February 21st: Numbers 34-36
God told Moses in today’s reading about the boundaries of the land He was giving them and how to divide it when they took possession of it. (Numbers 34:2) They had yet to own any of it. These instructions were words to inspire faith in God’s people. They were to cast lots for their portion in the land. (Numbers 34:13)
As the Israelites entered the land and took possession of it, God had Moses appoint a leader from each tribe to oversee the assignment of the inheritance. One name that stands out in this list is Caleb. He and Joshua are the only ones left from the generation 20 years old and older who had not perished in the wilderness on the way to the promised land. These two are examples of the veracity of God’s promises. “God is not a man that he should lie.” (Numbers 23:19)
In these last chapters of Numbers, we find provision for cities of refuge. God knew that his people would need mercy. Emotions get out of control and things happen. Revenge instincts are strong and sometimes violence that causes death erupts. The cities of refuge were scattered throughout the land and provided a place where someone who had killed another could flee from the avenger of blood. (Numbers 35:6) These cities were Levite cities. The Levites had no inheritance but were given cities and pastureland throughout the promised land to use and to minister to the people. Six of these forty eight towns were cities of refuge. They were to mediate these serious situations when someone came for refuge.
What lessons can we get from these final chapters of Numbers? First, our God does know everything and has good plans for us. (Jeremiah 29:11) He wants us to know those plans and walk by faith and claim our inheritance! He has provided a refuge for any who sin. We can flee to Jesus Christ, our rock and redeemer and find grace and help in time of need! (Hebrews 4:14-16) He mediates all our sins and provides refuge and mercy to those who repent!
“What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all–how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:31-32