Tag Archives: answers

Numbers 15 – Answers

I copied over this chapter a couple of days ago, and my initial reaction to it was one of surprise.  Numbers 14, the chapter before, was all about how the people did not listen to YHWH, but took the bad report from their leaders and instead disobeyed God.  As a result of that, the people are sent to the wilderness for another 40 years so that they will die in the wilderness and their children will inherit the land.  Yet, here we are in Numbers 15 and the chapter starts out; “Now the LORD (YHWH) spoke to Moses, saying, Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, “When you enter the land where you are to live, which I am giving you, then make an offering by fire to the LORD, a burnt offering or a sacrifice to…“, and it goes on.

Am I the only one that is a little confused about this?  The people have just been told that because of their sin, they will spend the next 40 years wandering around in the wilderness.  They will die and will never see the land promised to their forefathers by YHWH.  Now suddenly YHWH is telling them that when they enter the land that He is giving them, they are to make an offering by fire to Him, and then He proceeds to explain the offering to them!?

That question went to the back of my mind as the chapter went on.  Any sacrifice made by someone who is an alien (later to be referred to as gentile) or sojourner was to be the same as that of the native (Jew).  The firstfruits were to be lifted up as an offering, and offering for unintentionally sinning.  There was a man who had been gathering wood on the Sabbath day, and the people’s response to that.  Then finally it ends with YHWH instructing the people to put tassels on the corners of their garments each with a cord of blue to remind them of YHWH’s laws and to obey them.

However, this morning i turned to Numbers 15 to write this post, and the answer hit me.  It wasn’t that YHWH was trying to be cruel to them, or that He was trying to tell them that they actually would enter the promised land.  It was not Him teasing the people, it was about Him giving them hope.  Because of their sin to God, the people have just lost everything that they had been working towards.  The wilderness was now all that they would know and see.  As a result the people would become demoralized and hope / vision less, and as Proverbs 29:18 says, “Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained,  But happy is he who keeps the law.

These statements are made to provide the people with hope.  To give them something to look to.  The people’s hope and purpose is now to raise up their children to be the generation that will not turn away from YHWH, that will go forward and take the land.  They may not be entering it themselves, but their children would, and they needed them to be ready!

These three abide / remain / are not consumed; faith, hope, and love!  With YHWH these will always be.  The people needed the answer of hope.  What do you need?

Rev. John J. Camiolo Jr.

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Matthew 2 – Coming Together

This is one of those things that i find so awesome about the Bible and the scriptures.  How even the little things mean a whole lot.  And, how everything seems to just come together.  It becomes clear that God is a step ahead of man and his work… or hundreds, even thousands of years ahead.  In this chapter we see AT LEAST four different prophecies being fulfilled in those first years of His life.

What’s even more interesting to me is that of these four prophecies, three of them seem to be contradictory of one another.  The first one states that from Bethlehem of Judah will come forth the ruler (Messiah).  Thus Jesus, the Christ, is born in Bethlehem.  The second says that “Out of Egypt I called My Son”.  So the Messiah is to come out of Egypt… wasn’t He supposed to come out of Bethlehem of Judah, not Egypt?  Yet here He is, the Messiah coming out of Egypt as well.  Then there’s the prophecy that, “He shall be called a Nazarene.”  He shall be called a Nazarene because He came out of Nazareth.  So now we have three different conflicting prophecies being fulfilled by the same child.

This is what i love about the scriptures.  In what seems like an insurmountable conflict and opposing ideas, there is a smooth and elegant solution that surpasses and bypasses our lack of understanding.  Prior to understanding how all of this comes together in the end, these three passages could almost seem impossible to reconcile together.  Yet God / YHWH brought it all together.  That brings us back to the conflict mentioned in chapter 1’s post.  The conflict seems almost insurmountable with no real answer in sight, and it may remain that way through your entire life.  Yet, as we can see from this chapter; what seems impossible to man, is more than possible with God / YHWH.

I have answers to the conflict of Chapter 1, but i will not give them at this time.  Faith, Hope, and Love abide.  In this conflict, pursue those things.

Rev. John Camiolo

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Exodus 28 – The Robes

As i began reading this chapter i began thinking about the purpose of the priestly garments and the relationship between man and God.  The question popped into my mind, “Does God need the priest to be dressed in special visually attractive garments?  Are these garments related to giving honor and glory to YHWH because He IS God, or are they aesthetically pleasing and more serve the purpose of giving the Israelites an identity of worship to YHWH?  Is it that elegant clothing somehow draws YHWH to the priests and His people more than plain clothing would?… I know, to some extent that sounds silly… Is it about giving YHWH glory and honor by bringing only the best into His presence? …like somehow He NEEDS that?  Or; is it like when God spoke aloud honored Christ before the disciples not for Christ’s sake, but for theirs?  Does this relate to God’s need for honor or glory, or the people’s need to be able to honor and glorify him through beautiful worship and sacrifice?

I thought it was a really interesting question and i really liked the direction that the question was leading.  It’s a question that was definitely worth pursuing even if i already had a good idea as to the answer.  Then i hit the end of verse two, and in all honesty i felt a little gipped.  There was the answer sitting right in front of me; “for glory AND for beauty”.  My reaction was, “Awe come on!  You’re just going to GIVE me the answer!  That’s no fun!”  I figured that the answer was probably going to somehow be both, but it’s just so much fun to process through.  At least i got to do it here.

The other thing i wanted to note really quickly is that the robes; the priestly garments seem to be given the same attention to detail and significance as the temple building itself.  It started to get me thinking about the parallels between the temple as the outward covering of the Glory of God, and the priestly garments as an outward covering bringing glory to the priest.

Well, that’s all for now!

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