Summary of passage: The Lord tells Moses how to bless the Israelites. In Numbers 7, Moses anoints and consecrates the tabernacle and its furnishings. The leaders of the tribes brought gifts and offerings, which were given to the Levites as they needed them. God told Moses that each day a leader is to bring an offering for the dedication of the altar. Each leader brought silver and gold and animals.
Numbers 8: Lamps were set up. The Levites were purified, cleansed, and atoned for in order to be set apart as God’s. They are to replace the firstborn and to do work at the Tent of Meeting so that no plague will strike the Israelites. The Levite men are to work from the age of 25-50.
8 ) Personal Question. My answer: This one is too perfect to re-word in my opinion. The Lord bless you and keep you and may His face shine upon you and receive His grace. May He forever be watching you and give you peace. Someone in need or struggling. This is a great daily prayer for the family as well.
9) Personal Question. My answer: Each brought his best and it was a lot and each tribe brought the same thing. The Levites took only what was needed to do their tasks assigned by God. I should give my best for God’s glory and expect no recognition from man, only God. It is about the heart, not the offering itself.
10a) They are to do the work at the Tent of Meeting. They have been given to the Lord in place of the firstborn who has given them to the priests (Aaron and his sons).
b) First of all, God has the right to do whatever He wants without question from us. To answer the question, God has taken them in place of the firstborn, which the Lord demanded in Exodus 13:2 during the Exodus from Egypt. He gave them to Aaron and the priests to help them with the monumental task of administering atonement (think of all those sacrifices) to the Israelite people and so that no plague will strike the Israelites when they go near the sanctuary. Basically, Aaron’s task is the most important task the Israelites perform and Aaron needed help so God provided it.
c) Age 25-50
[Numbers 4:3, 4:23, and 4:30 says age 30 begin. Scholars believe there was a 5 year apprenticeship.]
Conclusions: Not for sure why we needed to re-invent the wheel on question 8. It’s hard to mince perfection. Furthermore, a prayer dictated to man by God is extremely rare. Scholars say free prayers are best but in terms of a benediction, God gave us this so man wouldn’t corrupt it. These are God’s words and saying to re-word them to me makes it seem as if they are in some way inadequate. Aaron had to memorize these words and bless the people with them every day. In essence, this is God himself blessing us every day with these words. So much more in the Aaronic blessing to explore that I believe this one question does no justice (see my End Notes for more) for what God is saying to us here.
Didn’t like the tone or wording of 10b. God can do whatever He wants whenever He wants. It is merely for us to obey.
End Notes: Numbers 6: Note the first thing God wants in the Aaronic blessing is to bless us. He wants this above all else for us. Furthermore, we need God’s blessing or everything else we achieve is fruitless.
To have God’s face shine upon us is a blessing–because we are in Jesus and not because we have done anything to deserve Him.
Scholars say the three “Lord” ‘s used here illustrates the Trinity.
Six times the word “you” is repeated. God’s blessings are for you and not someone else. If every one of us truly believed this, our worlds would change in miraculous ways.
The Hebrew word for peace is “shalom”, which encompasses more than the peace we think of. It is complete and total rest, happiness, satisfaction, holiness, and goodness in our life.
God’s name is written on us, marking us as His, and when God says “I will” all the powers of darkness tremble. “I will bless them” holds for every believer in Christ.
Numbers 7: This offering may be out of order. This may have happened at the end of Exodus when the tabernacle was finished.
The carts given to the Levites to transport the tabernacle at this time in history were scarce. This was a huge gift and a very costly one to the Levites. This explains why the Kohathites received no carts. First, they were to carry them by God’s orders (Numbers 4). Second, they had no carts to spare! Scholars say this is so the Kohathites wouldn’t disobey God’s orders but there is a practical side that I see here as well.
The offerings brought are very generous. This is in indication of people who rely on God to provide their needs. Note how each tribe brought exactly the same thing. The gift was for God, not for man to brag about how he gave more. It is about God’s glory, not our own.
Again, the repetition serves a purpose: all gave the same and all gave.
Moses speaks to God and hears from God. We need leaders who do the same. We ourselves need to do the same.
Numbers 8: The lamps would need to be continually filled with oil to give light. Revelation 1:20 has lamp stands as the church but Jesus is the light we need.
Leviticus 8 & 9 had the priests being dedication to the Lord. Here we see the Levites being dedicated to the Lord.
Shaving of all the hair conveyed the idea of being re-born like a newborn babe and beginning anew.
Numbers 4:3, 4:23, and 4:30 shows that the true age of work was age 30. Scholars believe at age 25 one began an apprenticeship for five years.