Numbers: for your benefit…

Cover to Cover

Reading: Numbers 33:1-36:13

Focus: Numbers 35:6-15

In the life of any society, there are legal statutes in place to protect the livelihood of its people. There are enforcement agencies (e.g. police) which operate to maintain the livelihood which people expect from their social order. When these social structures are kept in place, it allows for a society to be confident as it seeks thrive and mature as a community. When these social structures are broken down, society struggles with issues of fear and anarchy locking down its growth rather than encouraging it.

As God continued to give instructions to Moses regarding the establishment of the nation of Israel, we find another provision for the safeguarding of society. In this instance, the establishment of cities as “cities of refuge”. These cities were to be places of refuge in the even that a person accidentally killed someone. It would act as a safe-house from those who might seek vengeance, until the person was taken to court and either acquitted or charged guilty for the act.

We take for granted the social structures which protect us and our way of life. In fact, we often despise the social structures which “limit” us from enjoying the freedom of life. Yet, it is these very social structures which give us that freedom we enjoy. The great irony is that it is maintaining and containing ourselves to these structures and boundaries, we enjoy life at its best.

God is not one who seeks to limit His people. God is not one who seeks to squash their desire to enjoy life. God is not one to rob people of their desires. Rather, quite the opposite, God desires to free His people from the limitations they find themselves stuck in. He desires to enhance their enjoyment of life. He desires to grow the passions which people have deep in their hearts. However, we must understand that He desires to give us the absolute best but it only happens when we place our trust in His way and not our own.

Next Reading: Deuteronomy 1:1-2:37