474 THE KING’S BUSINESS LESSON IV —October 26.— T h e S in of M oses and - A aron — Num, 20 : 1-1 & G olden T ext —Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be ac ceptable in thy sight, O Jehovah, my rock, and my redeemer. —Ps. 19:14. R. V. I. R ecords of th e W andering (Num. IS— 19).
are reported. Out of fellowship there is “nothing doing” (John 15*:4, 5), This re gathering was as “life from the dead” (Rom. 11:15), Great deeds followed and will (Isa. 66:19, 20). Israel’s past fore shadows his future. 3. The Death of Miriam. A few of the doomed generation still survived. Moses, Aaron and Miriam among them. It is sad and solemn when “Gone, all are gone, the old fam iliar faces,” and our populous world lives only in mem ory; when conviction deepens that we, too, must indeed go, and presently. Happy who can say, “better,” and “henceforth” (Phil. 1:23; 1 Tim. 4:645). Miriam had served, triumphed, sinned and suffered (Exod. 2:1-8; 15:20,-21; Num. 12:1, 10, 15). Now, doubtless, through grace, she left the last enemy in the deep waters and joined the dancers, “safe on Canaan’s side.” 4. The Last Test of the Wanderings. A dry season and the great host exhausted the waters of Kadesh though abundant. Israel was still carnal (1 Cor. 3:1-3); as incorrigible, disloyal, faithless, unreason able, and insensible to guilt and sin as their fathers. The flesh never improves. True, they were crazed with thirst; the trial was great, but so was their God, and He so often proved sufficient. The wish to have died with “our .brethren” (Num. 16: 26, 31, 32), showed that they deserved to have died with them. The place, they said, was* “evil.” But it was their fault that they were not now under the vines and figs of Canaan. It was not in the wilder ness but in the land God promised plenty.* To complain of a barren experience,.while rejecting the fulness of blessing in unbelief, is as wicked as it is common. 5. The Way of Moses and Aaron. They “fell on their faces” before the Lord. Why had not Israel done this? (See Israel’s
1. God-forsaking, Not God-forsaken. The Lord turned Israel back but not for ever. Already anticipating their return He gave them laws for their Canaan life (15: 2—; Rom. 11:29; Phil. 1:6). 2. A Sabbath Breaker Stoned (15:32- 36). A severe penalty? Yes; but for high treason. Had Israel heeded the warning its career of idolatry had not been. Spirit ually kept the Lord’s Day would preserve Christendom from the apostasy. 3. The Fringe of Blue (15:38-41). It was the sign of Israel’s loyalty to the covenant. Christ is the Christian's robe, and love his fringe of blue, the mark of his nativity (Rom. 13:14; John 13:35). 4. The Rebellion of Korah, Dathan, Abiram, et al. (Num. 16). It shows -the fruits of the flesh: pride, envy, ambition, rebellion, death. It warns against the an- tichristian, “We will not have this man "(this Book) to reign over us” (Luke 19: 14). 5. Aaron’s Rod (Num. 17). Life from the dead seals - the Divine commission. Christ rose, this seals Him God’s priest and King (Acts. 17:31; Rom. 1:3, 4). 6. The Ordinance of the Red Heifer (ch. 19). Numbers is the book of pilgrim age. Fittingly this ordinance occurs in this book, for it is by the way that we are stained, “spotted,” by the world. The wa ter and blood is typical (Heb. 9:13; 1 John 1:6-10; Eph. 5:6). “Keep unspotted” (James 1:27), But “if any man siti we have an Advocate” (1 John 2:1). II. T h e M urmuring at M eribah -K adesi * (ch. 20:1-6). 1. The Gathering of the Tribes. The days of doom ended (Num. 14:34, 35; Ps. 30:5) ; so again (Ps. 85:1-3) ; and they will again (Rom. 11:26-29). 2. Inglorious Years. No achievements
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