October 8

Numbers 28-30

We are in the World Stream reading from the International Standard Version.

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Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis

Lord God, our lives our yours, and we bring our lives to you.  We are the offering that you are really looking for. Amen.
28 –  The ten chapters of 27 – 36 are various offerings that are required to bring before the Lord. First on the list today are the daily offerings.  In today’s world we may read about this and muse, “really? God wants this ritual every day?!”  Well what do we do every day? Does all of it make sense? Is it productive? Inspiring? Healthy? Inspiring? We had a neighbor/couple years ago who would make a full size cake and eat the whole thing every day – just the two of them…this happened seven days a week, ‘wouldn’t miss it without a panic. People walk their dog every day. A woman in our church years ago wouldn’t miss this daytime show for anything.  It was mindless, unedifying, the host was vehemently anti-Christian and joked about it. It’s such a waste, but the show’s funny (I guess) so it was her daily hour long routine. She did it as religiously as she would pray for 16 seconds before her double breakfast every morning.. People check facebook three times an hour every day,  My husband had a guy on his hall in college who drank 15 cups of coffee every day – not making this up!. Take away his coffee and he was a crazed depressed soul. ‘Kind of sad isn’t it? [And he was a minister-in-training.]  What do we do daily without fail? Well God wants us to come to Him daily, to offer ourselves daily, to remember Him daily, to live for Him daily, to worship Him daily, to embrace Him daily v.s. our selves and our possessions.  This daily offering remedied all the misgivings that surely yet unwittingly takeover the lives of everyone who will not come to Him daily and make their offerings.  And to remain focused upon God continually there were the Sabbath offerings each week, the monthly offerings, the annual offerings, the offerings for the week following Passover, and also the offerings that God required during the beginning of harvest.  This is not oppressive to be living through. And also keep in mind that God doesn’t personally need this. He didn’t sit in heaven and sigh, “oh good, there’s that smoldering lamb pelt aroma/smoke coming up to me again. I need this, because this is my smoking habit.”  Not The Case.  We needed to be making offerings and going through this ritual because we are souls that are prone to wander without our regular protracted time in God’s Presence.  And in case anyone was wondering, a liquid “hin” is about a gallon.  And an ephah of grain is between 40-45 lbs.
29 – The Festival of Trumpets heralded the New Year.  It was a jubilant gathering and there was also time for solemn worship within this same holiday stretch.  It was eight days of celebration and worship. This may strike us as awfully peculiar – to be just doing a religious ordeal for eight days straight.  Well it was a party with God who had brought through another year.  And God is into celebration. Wait until we experience “day one” in heaven!  My husband finished college in Jerusalem over 30 years ago. Judaism was his major. He catered at a business in New York 1985-1988 and much of the events were Jewish holidays/weddings/festivals.  He said that much of the gatherings were so joyful with food and music and Hebrew worship dance routines that they actually became zany fun. And some went on for 2-3 days.  We cannot even think of a wedding going on for three days. We’re too preoccupied and needing to get back to our frivolity. Some of it is productive, yes, but much of it is the long path to nothing. Most of our holidays have precious little to do with God. New Years is gazoos, kisses, and fireworks. We holiday for Presidents (sort of), civil rights leaders, ground hogs (ahem), Memorial Day, 4th/July, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Pumpkins on Halloween. We do have our Christian Holidays of Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas but the pop culture is desperately trying to paganize them into bunnies, turkeys and presents floating in egg nog or whatever people are trying to do to get it secularized.  These holidays in the Bible times were the meaning of life itself; the joy of being with God. Try to see it in this light. God wants to celebrate with us.  Those who won’t celebrate with God eventually end up partying with the devil.  It’s a disastrous fact.
30 – Vows made before the Lord were taken seriously and were binding.  Vows made by females were also taken seriously and were at the same time assessed in a different manner.  It isn’t news to anyone literate that men and women think differently. They also emote (feel), and express and calculate and communicate differently. Therefore women’s vows were sifted via a different grid. Their vows whether made while single, married, widowed or divorced in the presence of her espoused or her father affected others in her household and so the man was to become involved when needed. They were even held responsible at times and were to execute leadership in these matters.  To feign oblivion against a vow that should not have been made held the household male culpable.  All this was set up because vows made by females were subject to emotions and/or illogic at times and the females nor the family members of that household were to be punished because of a vow made without their knowledge. The male head of household was to step in and remedy the situation.

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