September 28, 2015: Daily Bible Reading with Commentary for Numbers 29-32
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Context: Chapter 29 continues listing the feasts and offerings required by the Israelites. Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice for us and we can rejoice in knowing Him! In chapter 30, special attention is paid towards women and vows. At first read, it may appear as if women have no control over their lives. A deeper study reveals God’s plan is for the well-being of the family. Women who are not dependent on a man were free to make their own vows. Within a family, it is the responsibility of the husband or father to see to the well-being of the family. If a woman’s vow would threaten the well-being of the family, the vow can be nullified. The freedoms of women are not being restricted, rather the well-being of the family, of which the woman is a part, must come first. Vows to God should not be made arbitrarily. They are not required, but once one is made, we will be held accountable for it. In chapter 31, Moses leads the Israelites to battle against the Midianites, who sought Balaam to curse the Israelites. God gave the Israelites a great victory, but they did not kill the women who had led them into sin. Chapter 32 remembers the reason the Israelites had been wandering in the desert for the past 40 years. A new generation has come who needed reminded of the hard learned lesson. Two tribes and a half tribe asked Moses if they could remain on this side of the Jordan River. Across the river is the Promised Land. Moses fears that, like their forefathers, the tribes do not trust the Lord to deliver on His promise. Moses grants them their wish, after they promise to send men to help fight on the other side of the Jordan River. Sometimes, we must wait for God’s plan to be revealed to understand the blessings it will give us. We should not be willing or eager to settle for less than what God is willing to give us.