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Numbers 1

Talks for Growing Christians

A Census of the Children of Israel

Numbers 1

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Lesson Number 1

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. God expects His people to maintain order.
  2. God expects His people to maintain holiness.

Practical Application

  1. Assume the clarity of Scripture.

Questions

  1. Who was the author of Numbers?
  2. When do the events recorded in Numbers begin?
  3. What span of time does the book of Numbers cover?
  4. What is a theme of the book of Numbers?
  5. Why did the Lord command Moses to take a census of the people?
  6. What was the special responsibility of the tribe of Levi?

Answers

  1. Moses wrote the book of Numbers, along with the other four books of the Pentateuch: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy.
  2. One year and one month after the children of Israel left Egypt; one month after the tabernacle was set up
  3. Numbers covers about 40 years, from the Israelites’ time at Mount Sinai until they are ready to enter the Land.
  4. Wilderness Wanderings
  5. The census was taken for military purposes, to determine how many men could go to war (Numbers 1:3).
  6. The Levites were responsible for caring for everything concerning the tabernacle.

Discuss/Consider

  1. Many of us skip chapters like Numbers 1 when we read through the Bible! Is there anything practical God wants us to gain from this military census? One lesson could be, “God expects His people to maintain order.” God expects His people to maintain order in the church today. Read 1 Corinthians 14, especially focusing on verse 40. What can you do to help your church services function decently and in order?
  2. The Levites were responsible for caring for the tabernacle and protecting it from enemies. As Christians, we have the responsibility to protect the holy character of God’s table and worship. Read 1 Peter 1:15-16. God must judge His people when they do not maintain holiness. How can you encourage respect and honor of God’s holiness from the people in your life?

Challenge

  1. Numbers 1:46 records that there were 603,550 Israelite men eligible for war. This means there were several million Israelites total! Do you acknowledge the God who can care for this many people for 40 years? Realize that He cares for you as well.

Key Verses

  • “So all who were numbered… who were able to go to war in Israel…were six hundred and three thousand five hundred and fifty.” Numbers 1:45-46
  • “The Levites shall keep charge of the tabernacle of the Testimony.” Numbers 1:53

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