Division of Land
NUMBERS 33:53, “Take possession of the land and settle in it; for I have given you the land to possess.”
Numbers 32:1, “The Reubenites and Gadites, who had very large herds and flocks, saw that the lands of Jazer and Gilead were suitable for livestock.” These are the sacrifices recorded in the first year offered by the priests. God faithfully keeps His word and He wants His people to do the same. God faithfully opposes sin. Is this a flashback to 38 years ago when the spies returned and did not want to go into Canaan?
A compromise is reached. The women and children will stay with the herds and flocks. The men will help to conquer the Promised Land for the Israelites and then return home to their families. What is going on here? If we refer back to Numbers 32:1, we saw that the lands of Jazer and Gilead were suitable for livestock. The Reubenites and Gadites saw — they were living by sight and not by faith.
2 Corinthians 5:7, “For we live by faith, not by sight.”
God’s people are to live by faith not by sight.
We know a couple of examples in the Bible of living by sight:
- Eve saw the fruit was good instead of trusting God’s Word.
- Lot saw the plain of Jordan was well-watered and decided to separate from his Uncle Abraham. He and his family became infected with the sin in Sodom and Gomorrah.
Choosing with our eyes is the battle we face every day. We choose cars, jewelry, homes– things we can see rather than the eternal things. When we choose careers and professions for ourselves and our children we focus on the income potential rather than our God-given gifts and how we can use them.
Do I trust God for the things I cannot see?
Numbers 33 is the record of the Israelites’ journey. It lists the starts and stops. This record would bring back memories and reminders of God’s faithfulness to the people. It was a record of God’s faithfulness and the Israelite’s physical and spiritual journey for future generations.
God uses every part of life’s journey to mature His people.
It was a record of the sanctification of the Israelites. God is making the people holy. There is a record of God’s faithfulness — even when the people were not faithful.
God wants His people to remember His faithfulness.
Numbers 34 gives us the boundaries of Canaan.
Numbers 35 makes provisions for the Levites.
Numbers 35:10-11, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘When you cross the Jordan into Canaan, select some towns to be your cities of refuge, to which a person who has killed someone accidentally may flee.”
God had the Israelites establish cities of refuge for those killed someone unintentionally– manslaughter versus murder. These cities point to our ultimate refuge in Jesus Christ.
God faithfully provides refuge through His Son, Jesus.
Have I fled to Jesus Christ for escape from the punishment of my sin?
Thank You, God for being always faithful. Thank You for continually encouraging me. Thank You for changing me. You will give me perspective. You provide hope and all I need.