Lessons From Numbers

Numbers 1-4 (2/21/19)

February 21, 2019 • Benham Brothers

* Chap 1 -God had already given the people the law and they had built the tabernacle. * Now it was time for them to move into the Promised Land. * What would they do? * How would they be able to go where God wanted them to go and keep His presence among them? * This is what the book of Numbers is all about. * It’s a book that counts the people and makes them accountable so they could be counted on to fight the battles that were coming! * Numbers is a book of organization! * An organism is something that’s alive because of proper organization. * The foundation is RELATIONSHIP - they were in relationship with God and with each other. * The first item of business was the Tabernacle, which represented God’s presence. * It was the fuel for battle. * Chap 2 - Here in these verses we see very clear separation among the people. They had to remain distinct from each other. But the ultimate goal wasn’t separation, it was oneness. They would come back together “as one” under the name of God to fight the enemy. * Chaps 3-4 - These chaps outline the roles and responsibilities of the Levites in dealing with the Tabernacle (the presence of God). * They erect the boundaries for relationship. * So long as they stayed inside these boundaries they would maintain fellowship with each other and with God.

Numbers 2:1-2 (3/29/23)

March 29, 2023 • Benham Brothers • Numbers 2:1–2

Relationship is the “state of being connected.”   When God created Eve from Adam He separated feminine from masculine.   He separated what was once one so they could become one by choice.   The goal wasn’t for separation, it was for oneness.   God wanted them to come back together “as one.”   This oneness is what brings God’s:  Presence Power Why would we need those? Because we’re in a FIGHT!  Backstory - the Israelites were marching toward the Promised Land.  To get this land, they had to fight - so God prepared them for the battle.  He did several things to get them ready:  Gave them rules (the Law).  Gave them the tabernacle (His presence).  Gave them boundaries (separation).  Why? So they could be an army fit for a battle.  Here in Numbers 2 we see very clear separation among the people.  Vs 1-2 - “The Lord said to Moses and Aaron: “The Israelites are to camp around the tent of meeting some distance from it, each of them under their standard and holding the banners of their family.”  Notice:  They centered around God - “The Israelites are to camp around the tent of meeting…”  If you want power in your life and relationships, it all centers around God.  They kept their distance - “…some distance from it.”  You have to show reverence and respect toward God.  They honored their boundaries - “…each of them under their standard and holding the banners of their family.” They had to remain distinct from each other.   This kept them individually separate, but relationally whole!  Before oneness there must be “two-ness.”  Two healthy individuals coming together “as one.”  Boundaries bring freedom.  They define what’s you and what’s me.  They keep the good in and the bad out.  The above is our recipe for winning the battles that we face today.  Center on God, Reverence and Respect His Name, and Honor Boundaries. Matthew Henry - "God is the God of order, and not of confusion. These standards made this mighty army seem more beautiful to its friends and more formidable to its enemies." 

Numbers 6:2 (2/23/17)

February 23, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* A Nazarite vow was a special vow people could take if they wanted to go deeper with God and express deep devotion to Him. * It’s kindof like Hobby Lobby and Chic-Fil-A not being open on Sunday. * It consisted of three things that we can apply to our lives today if we want to go deeper with God: * 1) No wine to drink - even though wine was ok. * This symbolizes saying “no” to our senses and not indulging our appetites. * 2) No cutting of hair. * This symbolizes not being concerned about outward appearance. * A Nazarite was more concerned with what was going on inside than outside. * 3) Stay away from dead bodies. * This symbolizes staying away from places of death (bars, clubs, etc).

Numbers 6:22-27 (2/23/17)

February 23, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* Aaron and his sons, who were the priests of the day, were commanded to bless people. * Today we are priests and we must bless others the same way. * The blessing we should pray over others is five fold - that God would: * 1) Protect them. * 2) Smile on them. * 3) Be gracious to them. * 4) Show them His favor. * 5) Grant them peace. * This will keep us from ever getting bitter toward another human being.

Numbers 7:6-9 (3/11/21)

March 11, 2021 • Benham Brothers

* God is a systems-thinker. * A system is a series of steps that gives you predictable results. * God created all the systems of life (solar, ecosystem, muscular, skeletal, etc). * Systems create the boundaries upon which life can thrive. * Systems operate by two things: * 1) Rules - built on “If / Then” logic. * 2) Roles - who does what, when & how. * The only way a system works is if everyone: * 1) Obeys the rules. * 2) Stays in their role. * ** Relationships need systems to thrive. * EX: Zoom call w/Whitakers (arguments bc of no system). * God wanted His relationship with the people to thrive. * So He set up a system. * Numbers 3:21-37 - system where the tabernacle of His presence could be taken care of and transported. * He divided it into three categories, all under the Levites: * * Gershonites - the structure of the tabernacle * * Merarites - tearing down, transporting, setting up * * Kohathites - the furnishings of the tabernacle (the Holy things) * ** They were to carry the holy things on poles, not carts. * Numbers 7:1-9 - the Kohathites didn’t get what the others got. * They were called to something different than their brothers. * They had a stricter calling because they were in charge of the Holy things. * * The higher you climb the leader ladder, the more strict your rules are. * PROBLEM - we often look at the rules and roles for others and think it’s ok for us. * The result is DEATH! * 2 Samuel 6:1-8 - hundreds of years later, the Levites carried the ark on carts and Uzzah lost his life. * God’s system is set - His rules for relationship are in place - you accept whatever role He’s given you and don’t back off of it.

Numbers 8:1-2 (2/28/17)

February 28, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* The fire of God fell from heaven and consumed the sacrifice, but it didn’t light the lamps. * That was the priest’s job. * The tabernacle had no windows, so it was naturally dark without the lamps lit. * Our world is naturally dark, and it’s our job as priests to keep our lights shining. * The priests were to keep the lights continually lit. How? * 1) Keep them filled with oil - represents the Holy Spirit. * 2) Turn them toward the table of showbread - represents shining our light on Christ so others may see Him.

Numbers 8:23-26 (2/27/20)

February 27, 2020 • Benham Brothers

Numbers 8:24-26 (2/28/17)

February 28, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* John Maxwell - “The best leaders hand the baton off at top speed.” * Look at how the priesthood was run. * On the front end they had to be mature enough to handle the mantle of leadership - 25 years old. * On the bak end they had to be mature enough to hand it off - 50 years old. * In this way the older would train the younger. * The priest had 25 years to serve before his responsibility moved toward mentorship.

Numbers 9:15-23 (3/20/14)

March 20, 2014 • Benham Brothers

God led the people by using a Cloud - that was a sign of His presence. Today everything is moving to The Cloud. It represents you (everything you have is in it - pics, credit cards, social interaction, etc). Man's cloud is meant to follow / God's cloud is meant to lead. We can't ever let our cloud do the leading. God's Cloud didn't come and rest among them until the Tabernacle was erected. The tabernacle represents us - after Jesus' death our bodies became His temple. The cloud represents the Holy Spirit. We are to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit just as these people followed the leading of the Cloud. The Cloud would not rest on the tabernacle unless it was built properly and fully clean. The Holy Spirit will lead us but we must remain clean.

Numbers 9:21-23 (3/5/15)

March 5, 2015 • Benham Brothers

God led the Israelites by a cloud in the day and a fire at night. When the cloud would stop they would set up shop (the tabernacle). The cloud would descend and they would stay there until it lifted. When it lifted they would pack up the tabernacle and their houses and move until it stopped again. Here's the cool part - God never told them how long they would stay in one place or where they were going. They simply had to follow His lead and then be faithful right where He placed them. They had to wait on Him. In the process of waiting they learned to trust in Him. Actively waiting - while waiting we're busy being faithful.

Numbers 10:2 (2/28/17)

February 28, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* The making of trumpets was the last command God gave Moses on Mt. Sinai. * Trumpets were used for several reasons: * 1) To call the community together (vs 2). * 2) To get them moving forward (vs 2). * 3) Announced special celebrations (Lev 25). * 4) Prepared troops for battle (Num 31). * 5) Reminded God to give them victory in battle (Num 10). * 6) Reminded them of God’s covenant with them (Num 10). * Today we have a “Trump” in the White House. * What is God saying?

Numbers 10:29 (2/28/17)

February 28, 2017 • Benham Brothers

* Psalms 33:12 - “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.” * God blesses people individually when He blesses nations corporately. * If a nation makes God its Lord, the citizens will be blessed. * In America, look how many other religions can exist here in freedom because we were established as one nation under God. * What does it mean for a nation to make God Lord? * It means to operate under His authority. * America is “one nation under God.” * The founders put us under God’s authority - He gave us rights and the govt protects those rights. * This leads to freedom for everyone - even those who hate God.

Numbers 10:33-36 (2/26/13)

February 26, 2013 • Benham Brothers

The place of Rest is found on the path of Battle!

Numbers 11:4-6 (3/1/18)

March 1, 2018 • Benham Brothers

* The people were tired of manna - they were no longer content. * They began to crave something else. * Rejecting God’s provision is rejecting God. * Why? Because manna came directly from Him. * We can apply this in two ways: * 1) To the Church. * Look at our churches today - we don’t feed the solid bread of life like we used to because people are craving something different. * Feeding on God’s Word may feel dry, but it’s life is beyond parallel. * 2) To us personally. * We operate out of a spirit of discontent - we become ungrateful as we crave other things. * So what does God do? He gives us what we want. * And how does that work out? * vs 33-34 - “Kibroth Hattaavah” means “graves of craving.” * God will give you the desire of your heart if you insist on having something He doesn’t want for you. * But it will be the death of you. * The more we feed on the Bread of Life (Jesus) the more we’ll stay away from craving what we ought not crave.

Num 11:7 (4/4/13)

April 4, 2013 • Benham Brothers

Num 11:7 - Our Part Manna didn't come to the edge of their tents Manna came as a seed God provides the material, we provide the labor Luke 7:2-10 - Value Creator Slave was healed based upon his master's faith The master wanted his healing because of his extraordinary Value! The slave didn't even need to have faith - he was rewarded by his Master's faith! Profit chases a value-creator, and what's more profitable than an extension of your life?