Thursday, February 23, 2012

February 23, 2012 … Packing for Paradise

Passage of the Day: Reference of Today’s Chronological Bible Study: Numbers, Chapters 1-2 … To study these chapters, go to this link -

Numbers 1: 1-4; … 17-19 : … [God Calls His Children to Order] 1 The LORD spoke to Moses in the tent of meeting in the Desert of Sinai on the first day of the second month of the second year after the Israelites came out of Egypt. He said: 2 “Take a census of the whole Israelite community by their clans and families, listing every man by name, one by one. 3 You and Aaron are to count according to their divisions all the men in Israel who are twenty years old or more and able to serve in the army. 4 One man from each tribe, each of them the head of his family, is to help you.
>>> 17 Moses and Aaron took these men whose names had been specified, 18 and they called the whole community together on the first day of the second month. The people registered their ancestry by their clans and families, and the men twenty years old or more were listed by name, one by one, 19 as the LORD commanded Moses.

Numbers 2: 1-2, 17 : … [God Readies His Tribes for the Journey] 1 The LORD said to Moses and Aaron: 2 “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.”
>>> 17 Then the tent of meeting and the camp of the Levites will set out in the middle of the camps. They will set out in the same order as they encamp, each in their own place under their standard.
>>> 34 So the Israelites did everything the LORD commanded Moses; that is the way they encamped under their standards, and that is the way they set out, each of them with their clan and family.

My Journal for Today: Well, … the chronological reading plan moves out of all those rules in Leviticus into the Book of Numbers; and now we begin to see the monumental task ahead for Moses, Aaron, and God’s people to get packed and to journey TOGETHER through the wilderness to where God’s promise was taking His chosen people, the Israelites.

And if one studies and meditates, as I have this morning, on all of God’s organizational orders in Numbers, chapters 1-2, you have to be impressed with how God laid out the packing and pecking orders for the journey. From just in the passages which I’ve copied above, you see that the people had to be counted/documented, ordered into tribes, and placed strategically for the journey in a specific encampment order. And did you note that all of the tribes, which were ordered by family and tribal banner to help them identify and stay ordered for the journey, were placed carefully around the exterior of God’s ordering for the travels ahead. And note where God places the Tabernacle, the Ark where the Lord was to reside during the journey, as well as the leadership of the people; yes, … right in the center of the encampment. This, of course, placed all the people, in this social/geographical arrangement, where they all could see that God was at the center of everything, leading His children, under the guidance of Moses and the Levites. God had His Tabernacle where it could be prominent and protected and where everyone could see where God was leading His people … i.e., toward the promised land.

All of this, I believe is a picture of how God wants His New Covenant CHURCH to be at the center of our world as we sojourn to His promised land … and that is, of course, heaven. God wants His church, the physical representation of His tabernacle in the world today, to be at the center of His world as we journey in this land where we must travel through the trials of life. And we know and can see what God’s primary enemy, Satan (and his system, the world), is doing everything that can be done to tear down the walls of protection for God’s church in the world. In fact, Satan is doing all he can to infiltrate His church and get into the Holy of Holies, which has been implanted into the hearts of God’s people.

But God’s Tabernacle, in the Person of God’s Spirit, is still at the center of the encampment of His true sojourners as they trek to the Promised Land. He resides in the center of my Spiritual being, my heart; and as long as I keep my heart protected and at the center of my Spiritual well-being, I will be able to follow my God as He leads me to His promised land, which is my destination, just as was depicted by the organizations of Numbers 1-2.

My Prayer Today: … Lord, keep my heart of heart, Your Holy of Holies, protected and at the center of my being as I travel through life, following You. Amen

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