First purifying ourselves from all sin

Numbers 7 gives a detailed list of the gifts and offerings for the dedication of the altar by the leaders of the 12 tribes of Israel. This shows the quality of the leaders, who gave an example of what godly leadership symbolises viz.wholehearted giving unto the Lord of themselves and their gifts and offerings too.

Further the items that they gave, were well thought of, such that it would help meet the need for the services to be performed by the Levites. The seven lamps on the lampstand were supposed to throw light forward. Numbers 8:2, Similarly, our lives should shine the light of God’s glorious nature upon all those who come in touch with us.

The Levites could begin to serve in the tent of meeting only after they were offered as a wave offering unto the Lord in place of the firstborn sons of Israel. Further, they had to be purified with the water of purification and have their clothes and bodies washed with water.

Next, the relevant purification and burnt offerings were offered on their behalf. So also, before we venture to do any service for the Lord, it is imperative for us to cleanse ourselves from all sin so that no power of the enemy can cause us harm as a result, vs 6-22. There was a distinction made between those who intentionally did not celebrate the Passover at the appointed time when they could do so, and those who wanted to celebrate it but couldn’t do so because they were ceremonially unclean at that time, Numbers 9.

While the former would be cut off from God’s people, the latter were given the option of celebrating the Passover on the same date in the following month. Thus, we see that God makes a difference between wilful disobedience and that which is not for He is always fair in His judgments, vs 2-14. The cloud that hovered above the tabernacle was their guiding light just like the Holy Spirit seeks to guide us in all our going ins and coming outs, vs 15-23.

As we follow His leading and refuse to lean on our own understanding, we will be protected and provided for and enjoy God’s presence, peace and joy at all times! Two silver trumpets were to be sounded either individually or collectively to signify different happenings in the camp, Numbers 10:2-10. Likewise for every reason, and in every season of our lives we can sound the trumpet of prayer or praise as the need may be, James 5:13,14. As we do so in faith and obedience, God will surely hear us and guide and deliver us as the need may be.

Moses’ seeking help from his brother in law, Hobab, vs 29-32, seems a bit strange, since they already had the cloud to direct and protect them by day and night. Let us examine our lives too incase we rely more on unbelievers than on God for our guidance and protection unless God Himself is leading us to do so.

So, let us ensure to serve God wholeheartedly and willingly with our gifts and talents, but only after first purifying ourselves from all sin.

Let us seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit at all times on sounding the trumpets of prayer and praise as the need may be and be rest assured that God will never let us down as we refuse to put our trust on the arm of flesh but wholeheartedly put our trust in Him alone!

Rowena Thomas
Mumbai, India.