132 results for author: Mark Hathaway


Numbers 5 – Underlayment

I would like to point out something present in the text we are studying in Numbers chapter 5. This “something” is maybe less obvious but nonetheless influences our understanding of the passage. I’m not sure this thing I want to discuss is necessarily a theme, it’s almost more of an underlayment supporting and keeping level the foundation for the passage.  I see this underlaying concept all throughout scripture, both Old and New Testaments. When I mentioned it your response may very well be, “oh yeah, that”. Before I introduce this concept I offer a warning. Because of its prolific presence throughout the scriptures, many have ...

Numbers 5 – Restitution

I am thoroughly enjoying our time in the book of Numbers. I should have suspected I would be blessed slowing down and digging a little deeper into this colorful narrative. I suppose it is a bit like digging for Gold. You’re hoping to find gold as you methodically and patiently dig, but you’re a little surprised and excited as each nugget is uncovered. This is exactly how I felt when I encountered the fifth chapter of Numbers. Chapter five is about keeping the camp undefiled as YHWH walks among them, but that summary statement doesn’t really do justice to the text. We must dig a little to uncover the precious nuggets. Let’s break down ...

Number 5 – Holiness

Last time we talked about the family tabernacle assignments of the Levitical tribes, focusing mostly on the tribe of Kohath. We sort of glossed over the responsibilities of Aaron’s two priest sons. I think we will swing back around at a later time to consider these two men. Continuing into Numbers Chapter 5 we read: Numbers 5:1-2 5 And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying: 2 “Command the children of Israel that they put out of the camp every leper, everyone who has a discharge, and whoever becomes defiled by a corpse.   Wait, what? Why is this next section in the book of Numbers? Wouldn’t it have been more appropriately placed in ...

Numbers 4 – Family Tree

I’m sure it makes sense to you that in order to understand the fourth chapter of Numbers, one must understand the third. I’m not going to review chapter three, but I do want to connect it to chapter four by providing a simple three-point outline.  In chapter three God commands Moses and Aaron to number the male Levites from one month old and up. You’ll remember the other tribes were numbered starting at age twenty. Why the difference? The purpose for the census of the other tribes was to identify warriors who could fight. In contrast, the purpose of numbering the Levites at the top of chapter four was not so they could go to war, but ...

Skeptics and Believers

The whole time I’ve been studying in the book of Numbers I’ve had the skeptic in the back of my mind. I’m not sure what definition comes to mind when I say skeptic, but what I mean to say is the non-believer who is looking for every opportunity to discredit the Holy Bible. It has become a sort of mission for this individual to find every supposed contradiction and exploit them as proof that the Bible is a fictional work conjured up in the minds of religious crackpots who don’t live in the real world. They go to great lengths to demonstrate a disparity between science and the Bible. They strive to prove God to be nothing more than a figment ...

Numbers 3 – Samuel in Numbers?

My Pastor is fond of saying, and I’m fond of hearing, “review is the mother of all learning.” Don’t worry, I’m not going to review our previous discussions in the book of Numbers (didn’t mean to scare you). I agree with my Pastor. He might agree with me (maybe) in saying that principles worth knowing are worth hearing over and over again. Ok, I admit I’m about to repeat myself and maybe I’m just trying to justify it. Because I see it as critically important, I feel the need to once more encourage you to slow your reading of the Bible down and take notice of the details. I think the modern-day tendency when reading the scriptures ...

Numbers 3 – Redemption

Numbers 3:12-13            12       “Now behold, I Myself have taken the Levites from among the children of Israel instead of every firstborn who opens the womb among the children of Israel. Therefore the Levites shall be Mine,             13       because all the firstborn are Mine. On the day that I struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, I sanctified to Myself all the firstborn in Israel, both man and beast. They shall be Mine: I am the LORD.”   In order to understand the above two verses, we would, of course, need to know the previous verses in the chapter. But we can’t fully appreci...

Numbers 3 – Jesus in Numbers

Do you ever have one of those moments when you are reading the word of God and the words on the page seem to jump out at you? It’s as if the passage is pulsing with life. You respond to the passage you are reading with, “wait, what??” John 5:46-47 was just such a passage for me. We’ve been studying our way through the book of Numbers and find ourselves in chapter three. I’m sure I’ve said it before, but when studying a given passage in the Bible it is important to compare scripture with scripture. We might refer to this Bible study principle as correlation. John 5:46-47 can lend some perspective on the book of Numbers so let’s ...

Numbers 3 – Family

Let’s review. In the first chapter of Numbers God commands a census to be taken. The census is designed to answer the question, “how big is the army?” Moses is commanded to exclude the Levites from the count because they don’t go to war. In Numbers, chapter two God arranges the camp. A grade school seating chart comes to mind. Every time they set up camp they were in the exact same position in relation to everyone else in the camp and they faced the exact same direction every time.  Because we have recorded for us the exact number of the census we can fairly accurately guess the total number to be around two million people. This ...

Numbers 2 – Details Details

Last time we talked about numbers 2:1. The only thing I want to say about verse 1 now is it clearly indicates to us that the following verses are God’s instructions to Moses and Aaron. What I want us to notice today is the repeating pattern in God’s instructions here. Let’s take a closer look at Numbers 2:2-32. I won’t reprint all of those verses here so you will probably want to have your Bible open as you read this devotional (which is always a good idea anyway). In this chapter God gives specific details outlining how He wants the nation to camp. He calls out the tribes by name and where they are to be positioned. He calls out each ...