Numbers 7 to 12 Daily Devotionals by Kevin E. Jesmer 2016

Numbers 7 to 12 Daily Devotionals by Kevin E. Jesmer 2016

OXYGEN Volume 21

Sunday, September 11


Numbers 7:1-89

The Lord said to Moses, 5 “Accept these from them, that they may be used in the work at the tent of meeting. Give them to the Levites as each man’s work requires.” (4-5)

First, the anointing and consecration of the altar and gifts (1-9). Gifts for the Tabernacle were presented by the twelve tribes. God stirred the hearts of the people and they rose to the occasion. Moses was dedicating these items to the Lord. They could only be used for the Lord’s purposes, for his glory alone. There are things that are declared holy and are set apart for the glory of God.

Second, God accepted the offerings and honored each of the leaders and their tribes (10-89). When the altar was dedicated, each of the tribal leaders brought an offering. Their offering truly reflected their love for and their faith in God. We might be tempted to skip over the details the offerings since they were all identical offerings. But to God, each person and tribe is so precious, that every detail is repeated. It is a comfort to know that God sees and recognizes individual acts of faith.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for accepting our offerings and seeing us as individuals. We offer our lives to you.

One Word: Lord, consecrate me to yourself

Monday, September 12




Numbers 8:1-26

And I have taken the Levites in place of all the firstborn sons in Israel. (18)

First, the light of the lamps (1-4). Lighting was an aid in worship, representing God’s presence. In the midst of the darkness was God. God is light; in him there is no darkness. His light revealed his truth, his life, his wisdom, his hope and his way. God is always with his people shedding his light. The lampstands were very ornate. This too has spiritual meaning. It reveals the beautiful fruit that grows among those who dwell in the light of God.

     Second, the Levites declared the praises of God (5-26). All Israel belonged to God, but the firstborn males belonged to him in a unique way. God appointed them as Levites whom he set apart to serve at the Tent of Meeting on behalf of all the people. They were consecrated to God. All the Israelites laid hands on them to dedicate them to God. In some sense, all Christians are meant to serve as a type of Levite, revealing God’s glory among the people. They are a kingdom of priests.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for calling people for ministerial roles among your people. Equip them to serve you, so that they can point the people to you in worship.

One Word: Called to declare God’s praises

Tuesday, September 13




Numbers 9:1-14

“Have the Israelites celebrate the Passover at the appointed time.” (2)

First, celebrate at God’s time, in God’s way (1-5). Celebrating the Passover was to remember God’s grace and protection. All the people would be drawn to God and to fellowship with one another. Specific dates were set. They needed to commemorate it so they could celebrate all together. It was a time of joyful celebration in the harsh, barren desert. God’s deliverance needs to be passed down to future generations.

Second, unity among God’s people (6-14). There were certain circumstances which prevented a person from celebrating the Passover at the proper time. Some people really wanted to worship, but they couldn’t because of the law. So they brought their predicaments to Moses. God opened the way for them. They could worship one month later. God really wanted everyone to participate, even the foreigners among them. There is a way to solve the problem when we humbly come to God.

Prayer: Lord, bring us together. Make us one. Build unity among us as we celebrate your grace.

One Word: Worship the Lord in his way in his time with the rest of God’s people

Wednesday, September 14




Numbers 9:15-23

 “ Whenever the cloud lifted from above the tent, the Israelites set out; wherever the cloud settled, the Israelites encamped.” (17)

First, the holy God is now able to dwell among his people (15-16). The sacrificial system was given, so that God might dwell with his people. God has always longed to dwell among his people. Normally, this is impossible because God is extremely holy and human beings are born into sin. By nature he could not dwell in the hearts of sinners nor dwell among them. But God made a way. In the Old Testament era he made a through the Tabernacle and the sacrificial system. The holy God could now dwell among his people.

Second, God is leading the nation (17-23).  When the cloud lifted, the Israelites set out on their journey. When the cloud settled, the Israelites encamped. Whenever God moved, the people moved with him. Whenever God commanded the people they responded. God was their guide. He was their shepherd.

Prayer: Lord, help me to closely follow your guidance in the path you have shown.

One Word: God is with us and he will lead…trust him and follow him

Thursday, September 15




Numbers 10:1-36

“When you go into battle in your own land against an enemy who is oppressing you, sound a blast on the trumpets. Then you will be remembered by the Lord your God and rescued from your enemies.”(9)


First, obeying the trumpet call (1-10). Two silver trumpets were used to co-ordinate the tribes in battle. They gave a decisive blast. The blast was like a shout of victory. It was also a reminder of God’s grace, for the blasts reminded Israel of God’s protection. They were also blown when the sacrifices were offered. A modern day equivalent of the trumpets can be the Word of God properly presented. God wants his people to move ahead as one, with full assurance of God’s grace and leading.


Second, the Israelites left Sinai at God’s command (11-36). When the cloud moved on ahead of his people, God was leading them in victory. When the cloud rested, God was protecting and caring for them. They had rested for one year, but now it as time to break camp. The Israelites were constantly moving through the desert. They were able to handle these changes because God’s presence in the Tabernacle was with them.


Prayer: Lord, open the ears of my heart to hear your trumpet call and follow you, along with your people.


One Word: Listen, to the trumpet call of God’s word

Friday, September 16




Numbers 11:1-15

“Now the people complained about their hardships in the hearing of the Lord, and when he heard them his anger was aroused. Then fire from the Lord burned among them and consumed some of the outskirts of the camp.”  (1)


First, the people were full of complaints (1-9). The Israelites complained about their hardships that accompanied their redemption. They were delivered from bondage, but they forgot God and complained about the food he provided. They ignored God’s grace. Freedom is not free. They needed to embrace the cost and see what God was accomplishing. God’s will for his people is that they be thankful in all circumstances (1Th 5:18). There is spiritual victory ahead and he will strengthen us.


Second, Moses took his complaints to God (10-15). He could endure no longer. Moses started to complain too. But God responded positively to Moses, for he was submitted to God. He took his complaints to God, who alone could solve any problem. The people must take their complaints to the only one who can do something about their problems…to God himself and he will respond.


Prayer: Lord, you are leading me out of the darkness into your light. Your provision is the best. Thank you. I trust and I follow you.


One Word:  Take all of our complaints to God

Saturday, September 17




Numbers 11:16-23

The Lord answered Moses, ‘Is the Lord’s arm too short? Now you will see whether or not what I say will come true for you.’” (23)


First, God will provide leadership (16-17). When we think about the Lord’s arm providing, we usually think about food and material things. But it also means leadership. Moses could never lead the people on his own. God knew this and called and empowered elders to assist. They would share the burden of leadership. They represented the people. The elders were not voiceless. God spoke through them, for they prophesied by the Spirit of God.


Second, God would provide the food (18-23).    Though God was angry with the complaints, he was going to feed his people and weed out the complainers. Moses was not sure that the Lord had enough power and resources to do what he planned. He was questioning God’s ability. God reminded him of his unlimited power to act and his unlimited resources to provide. God wants his people to have complete faith in his power to deliver. God will come through in his way and in his time. His arm is never too short.


Prayer: Lord, you are strong enough and powerful enough to provide for your people. I trust you.


One Word: The Lord’s arm is more than long enough

Sunday, September 18




Numbers 11:24-35

“But Moses replied, ‘Are you jealous for my sake? I wish that all the Lord’s people were prophets and that the Lord would put his Spirit on them!’” (29)


First, Moses was pleased with God working through the elders (24-30). God granted them his Spirit, allowing them to prophesy. God even blessed two elders who could not come to the tent with the others. The Spirit of God came down on them too. Not everyone was happy. Joshua was upset about these two elders, feeling that they had no right to prophesy along with the rest, for they did not show up. But Joshua was wrong. God approved of them. Moses saw God’s work in them and was satisfied. He actually wished that all of God’s people were prophets with the Spirit of the Lord on them (29).


Second, God delivered the quail as promised. He provided a way that was a blessing to some and a punishment to others for their complaining born out of their cravings. By the Lord’s arm, clouds of quail flew into the camp. They gorged themselves until they were tired of quail. God also punished the people with a plague. God was serious about sin.


Prayer: Lord, open my eyes to see through whom you are working. May all of your people speak your words.


One Word: Have eyes to see how God is working

Monday, September 19




Numbers 12:1-16

 “(Now Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth.)”(3)




First, Moses was more humble than anyone on the face of the earth (1-3). Moses wasn’t born humble. He wasn’t humble when he killed the Egyptian. Yet, God acknowledged Moses as being extremely humble. God made him humble through Moses being faithful to all of God’s house (7). Moses also ministered to the flock, some of which complained about him. Through his struggles as the shepherd of God’s people, Moses grew in humility and had a strong relationship with God. God was also helping Miraim and Aaron to be humble. But this came through harsh experiences.

Second, God’s mercy prevails (4-16). Miriam paid dearly for her complaints. She became leprous, and lived outside the camp for a week. Miriam should have died, and Aaron punished in some way. But God granted a lenient sentence and her healing from the leprosy. God was merciful while at the same time maintaining his justice.

Prayer: Lord, forgive me of my false pride and help me to grow in humility and in fellowship with you.

One Word: God forgives and grows us in humility.

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