Saturday, June 30, 2018

Life in the Desert - Numbers 10b-14 – To the Border of the Promised Land

Numbers chapters 10-14 document the events leading up to the great rebellion and the divine sentence it incurred. Then chapters 15-21 narrate the story of the "lost generation," give miscellaneous laws and regulations, and trace the resumed journey to Moab.
Broad Outline of Numbers: Three Stages
Sinai: Preparation to Enter Land
Time: 20 days (Cf. 1:1; 10:11)
From Sinai to Moab: Failure to Enter Land
Time: 38 years, 3 months, 10 days
Plains of Moab: Preparation #2 to Enter Land
Time: c. 5 months
These are lesson notes, not written in a polished or finished manuscript form.  
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Numbers 10
10:1-10 The Silver Trumpets (end of last class)
10:11-12:16 Marching from Sinai to Kadesh
10:11-28 Israel’s Departure from Sinai
In the exact order God had specified. Good start!
10:29-32 Request to Hobab to Accompany Israel
Moses’ bro-in-law. “Do you good.” “Be our eyes.”
10:33-36 The First Three Days
Ark – God’s leadership (in battle) and protection.
Numbers 11
From salvation to obedience to complaining to unbelief to rebellion to judgment. Why? How?
11:1-3 Complaint of Adversity. Fire – Taberah.
11:4-9 Complaint re: Meat. Tired of this manna!
How accurate are their memories of Egypt?
11:10-15 Moses’ Entreaty: “Too Much for Me!”
How does Moses react to this situation and why?
Why do leaders burn out?
How can followers and leaders prevent burnout?
11:16-30 God’s Two-Part Reply to Moses’ Plea
1. 70 elders to share burden. 2. Abundant meat.
Moses’ objection: 600,000 (soldiers) on foot!
Note Joshua’s reaction and Moses’ reply to him.
11:31-35 Blessing of Quail; Curse of Greed
Small partridge. Piled 3 feet high on the ground.
Least: 10 homers = 60 bushels or 2,200 liters.
What is the cause of greed? What is its cure?
Kibroth Hattaavah = “graves of greediness.”
Numbers 12
12:1-3 Miriam’s and Aaron’s Criticism of Moses
Was it really about Moses’ wife? Explain.
12:4-10 Yahweh’s Answer; Miriam’s Leprosy
What makes Moses’ attitude and role unique?
How does God treat insubordination and rivalry?
12:11-13 Aaron’s Plea; Moses’ Intercession
Aaron: 6 mos. older. Moses: leader as intercessor.
12:14-16 Miriam’s Healing and “Time Out”
Forgiveness, yet consequences. Why?
Numbers 13
13:1-19:22 Forty Years Near Kadesh
13:1-14:45 Spies’ Mission, National Rebellion
13:1-16 God’s Command; Choice of Spies
Why send spies? Why “chiefs?” Opinion leaders.
Note: “Hoshea” >> “Joshua.” Meaning?
13:17-20 Moses’ Instructions to the Spies
13:21-25 Spies’ Expedition
“Eshcol” = cluster (of grapes). Visual proof.
Place names often given after, because of event.
13:26-29 Ten Spies’ Pessimistic Report
Fruitful land yes. But strong people. Large, fortified cities. Anakim (lit. long-necks = tall) and Nephilim (13:33), mighty men of renown (Gen 6:4) (lit. fallen ones). KJV and NKJV – “giants.”
13:30-33 People’s Rejection of Caleb’s Counsel
What does Caleb see / believe that they do not?
What risk would they actually be taking?
When does risk express faith, and when … folly?
The Spies’ Journey
For 40 days the spies traveled throughout Canaan, from the Negeb (south country) to Rehob and back again—a distance of over 500 miles.
Numbers 14
14:1-4 The People’s Rebellious Reaction
“Oh to die in – or return to – Egypt!” Why?
14:5-9 Joshua’s and Caleb’s Plea
“If Yahweh delights in us … Do not rebel or fear!”
“They are our bread, their protection removed.”
14:10-12 People’s Response; God’s Threat
Why does Yahweh get “put out” with His people?
What does He intend to do? Cf. Ex 32:10.
14:13-19 Moses’ Plea for Forgiveness – Again
Based on God’s reputation, promises, and grace.
14:20-35 God’s Pardon and Penalty
Does forgiveness cancel all consequences?
40 days of spying > 40 years of wandering.
20 years old and upward, who have grumbled.
Children suffer consequences, but not guilt.
Idea of an “age of accountability.”
14:36-38 Death of the Faithless Spies
These “chiefs,” driven by fear, not faith, all died.
Leaders – immediate, stricter judgment. Why?
14:39-45 Failed Attempt at Conquest
Penitent people: “We will go up!” Good, right?
What is the sin of presumption?
Hormah: “utter defeat.” From Heb., haram.
Another place named after, because of event.

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