Bible Commentaries
Numbers 7

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Verses 1-89

  1. INTRO:
    1. The Law of Small Potatoes - Many years ago, the Chinese farmers theorized that they could eat their big potatoes and keep the small potatoes for seed. Consequently, they ate the big potatoes and planted the small potatoes. As a result of this practice for many years, the Chinese farmers made the startling discovery: nature had reduced all their potatoes to the size of marbles. A new understanding of the law of life came to these farmers. They learned through bitter experience that they could not have the best things of life for themselves and use the leftovers for seed. The law of life decreed that the harvest would reflect the planting.
      1. When it comes to generosity are you small potatoes?
    2. Ch’s 7-9 wrap up their stay at Sinai, before they hit the wilderness, on the way to the Promise Land.
      1. So they need to know how to transport the Tabernacle & furniture.
      2. Wagons were made to make this easier. (U-Haul’s of their day)
    1. ​​​​​​​OXCARTS! (1-9)
    2. This chapter points back to a month earlier when the Tabernacle had just been completed & dedicated. [Longest chapter in Numbers]
    3. In preparation for the move from Sinai to the Promised Land the tribal leaders brought to the Lord gifts of 6 wagons and 12 oxen.
    4. (9) Everybody but the Kohathites could use the carts for their work.
      1. They had to carry the Tabernacle furniture on their shoulders.2. Often times others can help us bear our burdens(Gal.6:2), but sometimes where we have to bear our own load(Gal.6:5).3. David disobeyed this law & brought judgment form God. (Uzzah)4. Appl: Don’t refuse the burdens; God will enable you to carry them.
    5. DAY 1, FIRST LEADER! (10-17)
    6. Leaders should always set the example in giving & these men did.
      1. Q: Are you a leader in our church? Q: Leading in any way?
      2. Set the example of generosity!
        1. Auto maker Henry Ford was vacationing in Ireland when he was asked to contribute toward a new orphanage. Ford wrote a check for 2000 pounds, which made headlines in the local newspaper. But the paper inadvertently reported the gift as 20,000 pounds. The director of the orphanage apologized to Ford. “I’ll phone the editor straight away and tell him to correct the mistake,” he said. “There’s no need for that,” Ford replied, and promptly wrote a check for the additional 18,000 pounds.
    7. DAY 2-12! (18-83)
    8. The gifts were Voluntary - not by compulsion.
    9. The gifts were Identical - All the remaining tribal leaders brought identical gifts, each on consecutive days.
      1. Giving was equal which prevented the possibility of any spirit of rivalry; instead realizing unity of purpose.
    10. Yet in God’s eyes...The gifts were Individual.
      1. Otherwise, why would He take up so much precious space in Holy Scripture?
        1. This could have been told in a few sentences. Yet, the elaborate attention to detail.
        2. Every man named, & every gift is recorded.
          1. So though it reveals unity of purpose, & equality of giving there is divine recognition & remarkable attention to individual devotion!
        3. For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. Heb 6:10
          1. If what we give is from the heart, presented for God’s glory, He sees it, & He will reward in His own time.
      2. In God’s book of remembrance each alabaster box is noted by itself.
      3. Other examples:
        1. David’s Mighty men in 2 Sam.23:8-39 - “The 3 Mighty men” & “the 30”.
        2. Paul in Rom.16 - Paul mentions 27 people, & reveals an intimate knowledge of their family relationships & Christian service! (Diff. Ranks; Races; & Genders)
    11. The gifts were Costly - all true gifts cost you something.
    12. The gifts were Full - not only expensive, but both were full! (13)
    13. The gifts were Practical - to be used for the service of the tabernacle.
      1. Appl: When we supply ministry tools for God’s servants, we also bring gifts to the Lord. (Ex: Women’s Retreat; Concrete Planters)
    14. DEDICATION OFFERING! (84-89)
    15. (89) Oh that we might hear the voice...from between the cherubim.
      1. The same voice that Moses heard in the burning bush, is the same voice he now hears from the mercy Seat, is the same voice we hear in Mt.11:29 that said, “Learn of me!”
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Numbers 7". "Bell's Commentary". 2017.