TODAY’S BIBLE READING CHALLENGE:
We’re trucking down the Bible highway! We’ve completed 5 books of the Bible and will begin Luke today!
Numbers 19:2 — Jimmy DeYoung has some great insights on the red heifer:
The ordinance of the “Red Heifer” was given to the Jewish people, from God, through Moses. This ordinance was for the “cleansing of those desecrated”, desecrated by coming in contact with “death”. Any such contact would make that Jewish person “un-pure” and with the need of “purification”.
The “ordinance of the Red Heifer” was given after the “Ten Commandments”, to Moses as the spokesman for God, to the Jewish people. It is a “prophecy”, in symbolic form, which was fulfilled by Jesus Christ.
As you can see by reading our devotional passage for today, the “red heifer” was to have never worn a “yoke” and was to be without a blemish of any type, verse 2. The “red” color of the young cow must also be without any other spot of any other color. The priest was to lead the red heifer to an “alter without the gate”, meaning 3,000 feet away from the Tabernacle or Temple, and “before his face”, verse 3, meaning to the “east” of the Tabernacle or Temple. “His face” is referring to the “Glory of the Lord” that hovered over the “Ark of the Covenant”. After the priest “ceremonially killed” the red heifer it was placed on a “fire” of cedar wood and reduced to ashes. While that was happening the priest added a “scarlet ribbon” and some “hyssop”, a sponge-like plant, and the ashes of these ingredients were then added to a “stone jar” with “living water”, running water or “rain water”. Then this “ashen-water” was sprinkled on that or those desecrated. This ordinance will be reinstated during the Tribulation Period but is only a prototype of the “purification by the blood of Jesus Christ”, to cleanse each of us from our personal desecration, the result of sin. By the way, there is now a report that a Red Heifer is ready to be used during the Tribulation Period, that yet future time of Judgment on the Earth.
Numbers 19:20 — If you refuse the water of separation (baptism into Christ – Galatians 3:26-27, Ephesians 4:4-6, I Peter 3:21) made possible by the death of the perfect sacrifice, you will be cut off from the congregation. John 3:36 reiterates this.
Numbers 20:8-12 — Moses had been faithful to God for multiple books of the Bible, enduring the murmuring of Israel and much more. Why is God so upset with Moses? Was it that he made himself equal with God (note the ‘we’ in vs. 10)? The problem is that Moses disobeyed. The first time he was commanded to strike the rock (Exodus 17). The second time he was commanded to speak to the rock. What was so important about the rock?
1 Corinthians 10:4 tells us that the Rock was Christ. Christ was sacrificed once (Hebrews 9:28). Unfortunately, many today still attempt to sacrifice Christ afresh (impossible per Hebrews 6:6)! We do not need to crucify Him again. We need to merely speak to Him. As Romans 10:13 says, “Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Numbers 20:24 — God had demonstrated His Gospel message, and Moses and Aaron destroyed the picture and were judged. Aaron was not punished for making the golden calf or rebelling against Moses with Miriam but for tampering with the Gospel!
Luke 1:17 — John the Baptist would make ready a people prepared for the Lord. All the prophecies we read about today – the Red Heifer and the Rock in the Wilderness – were culminated in the message of John: “Get ready! Jesus is Coming!” Today we have a very similar message: “Jesus is Coming Again!”
Psalm 56:3 — Short, simple, and true!
Proverbs 11:8 — The result of Psalm 56:3.
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