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Bible Commentaries
Numbers 15

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Verses 1-41

  1. INTRO:
    1. Last couple of weeks learned about why this generation of Israel wasn’t going to make it into the land, but only their children. (spies bad report, see 14:34)
      1. But praise God unbelief is not genetic, so God could begin afresh with another group.
    2. One way God demonstrated His ongoing relationship with Israel was through the giving of new laws. Four sets of laws appear in ch.15.
    3. Outline: Assurance; Obedience; Arrogance; Remembrance.
    1. ​​​​​​​ASSURANCE! (1-21)
    2. (2) A word of assurance here. Despite the sin of the older generation the younger generation would still possess the promised land.
      1. 2 Tim.2:13 If we are faithless; He remains faithful!
      2. When they get into the land they were expected to give thanks to God & worship Him.
        1. Pause to thank God for sharing His blessings with you!
    3. These “supplementary Grain and Drink Offerings” are the offerings discussed here.
      1. These were voluntary, fellowship and thank or praise offerings.
        1. They were “votive” (votive candles are lit voluntarily for gratitude for a favor granted)
    4. (20) Offer up a cake - Bake Him a cake, baked from the first cutting of the grain.
      1. Why is so odd to us when many Asian cultures offer food to their gods?
    5. This morn at staff devotions I shared on the caution of substituting/replacing. [i.e. Living water for stagnant water; anxiety for prayer; etc.]
      1. Afterward a co-worker, to remain anonymous, said, “Thanks for the devotion this morning, I was getting ready to purchase my cake and balloons for the “PITY” party I had planned.” [The idea of the cake was right; just not Who it was for!]
    6. Appl: Here’s my question for U, how do you show an attitude of gratitude to your God?
      1. Are we suppose to read this today & just say, “I don’t need to do sacrifices” & then read on. What’s the heart behind it, & are we fulfilling it?
      2. How can we practically show gratitude, appreciation, thanks, indebtedness?
        1. I know some who bake Jesus a cake on Christmas [maybe biblical precedence for this?]
        2. What can we add to our regular financial sacrifice/offering? You’ve heard of sweetening the pot! (vs.3,7,10,13,14,24 sweet/pleasing aroma)
        3. How can you sweeten your thanks to him...tonight, tomorrow?
    7. OBEDIENCE! (22-29) {Unintentional Sin}
    8. God made provision for the forgiveness of unintentional sins.
      1. Of course, innocent animals had to die to provide forgiveness, just as Jesus had to die to make our cleansing possible.
    9. I love seeing that word “forgiveness”! (25,26,28)
    10. ARROGANCE! (30-36) {Intentional Sin}
    11. (30,31) Presumptuously - Defiantly, with a high hand [raised his hand, as it were, against Jehovah, or acted in open rebellion against Him,—blasphemed God]
    12. It is to sin designedly/deliberately against God’s will & glory. Job 15:25 For he stretches out his hand against God, And acts defiantly against the Almighty.
    13. (30) Brings reproach on the Lord = blaspheme. [NT - The Blaspheme of the H.S.!]
    14. It is not cursing the H.S.; It is not taking of the Lord’s name in vain; It is not calling Jesus demon possessed.
    15. It is not an ignorant blasphemer, but instead one who has heard, thought about, & rejected the Spirits loving tugs upon their heart.
    16. It is very simply, “the ongoing, continual rejection of the witness of the H.S. to the Divinity & Saviorhood of Messiah.” (Kent Hughes)
    17. The H.S. is God’s final call, His final witness to the soul. Jesus said, “When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.” (Jn.16:8-11)
      1. God has no other invitation!
    18. (32-36) This is an illustration of presumptuous/defiant sin, from vs.30,31.
    19. The man who deliberately violated the Sabbath discovered that God is not mocked.
    20. REMEMBRANCE! (37-41)
    21. They were to make every effort to remember & live by the Word of God.
    22. Small things with a big message.
    23. It is not wrong to have reminders that point us to God, provided they don’t replace God or His word.
      1. Story: My crucifix, on my paneled wall, at the end of my bed, growing up. My mom taught me to focus on.
      2. It did help me to remember to pray, & focus on His death for me. (crucifix = a cross w/a figure of Jesus on it).
    24. Explain the Talis(Europe) - Taleet(Sephardic)
      1. 4 corners of garment: 8 cords; 5 knots; & 4 sets of coils/wrappings (7,8,11,13).
      2. The 1st 3 coils 7,8,11=26 (name of God=26; Yod Hay Vav Hay; Tetragrammaton)
        1. Every Hebrew letter has a numerical equivalent.
      3. Last coil of 13 = the Hebrew letters for the word Echad/one
        1. Reminder: God is One. Hear oh Israel, the Lord our God is One.
      4. Also, the letters for the Hebrew word for Tassle(Tsee-Tseet תִציִצ)add up to 600.
        1. 600(Tsee-Tseet) + 8(Threads) + 5(knots) = 613 Commandments
    25. Taleet = Little Tent (place over head) {prayer closet}
      1. As the prayer shawl is placed over the head, it formed his own tent. Wings of the garment were formed when the arms were held out. For this reason, the corners of the prayer shawl are often called "wings."
        1. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings. Malachi 4:2
      2. Mark 6:56 Wherever He entered, into villages, cities, or the country, they laid the sick in the marketplaces, and begged Him that they might just touch the hem of His garment. And as many as touched Him were made well.
      3. The woman with an issue of blood that reached out & touched Jesus’ hem (taleet) was expressing her faith in Jesus as “the Son of Righteousness with healing in His wings” and declaring her faith in God's prophesied Messiah!
    26. David cut the corner of Saul’s garment - maybe symbolic of Saul not being obedient to God’s Law?
    27. Of course there is always the opportunity to turn a heavenly memorial into an earthly badge, & that’s what some did in Jesus’ time.
      1. Mt.23:5 all their works they do to be seen by men. They make their phylacteries broad and enlarge the borders of their garments (lengthened their fringe).
    28. Today, we have something better than the Taleet as a memorial or remembrance, we have the Holy Spirit!
      1. ​​​​​​​Jn.14:26 the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.
    29. End: Haiti prayer (Harold & Natalie & Kevin Bither; & Mike Caruso)
      1. Medical Team. Leaving May?
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Numbers 15". "Bell's Commentary". https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/cbb/numbers-15.html. 2017.
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