Numbers 26-36 Highlights
- A census is taken after the plague of the new generation of God’s people
- Joshua chosen to succeed Moses as the leader of Israel
- Instructions are given for different offerings to be made to the Lord
- Instructions are given or the making of vows, for both men and women
- Midian is overtaken by Israel
- Chapter 33 gives a recount of the history of Israel since they were delivered out of slavery in Egypt
- Boundaries of the land of Israel are drawn by God
- Cities of refuge are commanded by God once His people enter the promised land
Deuteronomy 1-5 Highlights
- Israel commanded to leave Horeb and continue to toward the promised land
- Leaders chosen to help Moses lead as Israel has grown too large for one man to do all the things needed
- Israel refuses to enter the land promised to them and are disciplined by the Lord
- A recounting of Israel in the wilderness is given
- Moses is forbidden to enter the land God has promised
- Moses commands obedience from Israel and reminds Israel that The Lord alone is the one true God
- Israel is given for a second time the 10 commandments from God
Psalms 35, 36 Highlights
- Psalm 35 starts with David asking God to go before him and fight his battles. David shows a recognition of our dependence upon God for help in times of difficulty. David doesn’t look inward, but upward. David also recognizes God’s goodness in asking for help. Verse 27 states, “Great is the Lord who delights in the welfare of his servant!” God delights in us, and in our joy, which comes from Him! This is profound – God delights in us as His creation, and delights in our welfare. We worship a good and loving God.
- Psalm 36 contrasts those who don’t fear the Lord, those who hold themselves up as their own gods, with God Himself. The words of the wicked are trouble and deceit, doesn’t act wisely or do good, and plots trouble while embracing evil. God, on the other hand, is a God of steadfast love, faithful at all times, righteous, and a saving God. This is why David says and compels us to take refuge in Him. His faithfulness goes to the clouds, meaning it is never ending. His steadfast love goes to the heavens. We should take refuge in a God who offers this kind of love, faithfulness, and righteousness to His people.
Luke 2-6 Highlights
- Birth of Jesus Christ, the Son of God
- John the Baptist prepares the way for Christ’s earthly ministry
- Jesus is baptized by John the Baptist
- Jesus’ genealogy is given at the end of chapter 3
- Jesus is tempted by Satan, and withstands all of Satan’s attacks
- Jesus is rejected at Nazareth
- Jesus heals many and drives out unclean spirits
- The first disciples of Jesus are called to follow him
- Jesus shows he has the power over all things, even to forgive sin
The latter part of Numbers is mainly concerned with Israel’s future life in the promised land that God has prepared for them. This starts with a census, so Israel can be prepared for how much land each tribe will need when they go into the promised land. God has given Israel everything necessary to enter the promised land, down to even seemingly smaller details. Because of Moses’ sin, Joshua is chosen as the leader to succeed Moses and lead Israel to take the land God has given them.
The common theme of ‘remembering’ in the Old Testament is seen again in Numbers 33 as the journey of Israel is recounted. At any point of disobedience, God calls Israel to remember who He is and what He has done for them. This is good for our soul, to consistently remember our God and all He has done in our lives. In times of difficulty we are prone to forget God’s goodness, prone to wander and search for other things to provide comfort of peace in our lives. This is what Israel so often did – they would turn from God and worship false gods of other nations. We do the same thing – look to other things to satisfy us, comfort us, provide security for us; things only God can provide. God would call us to remember as he did Israel, to remember mainly what He did for us in His Son Christ. Thinking daily on Christ and how he saved us from sin and to a relationship with God should prompt in us humility, awe, and thankfulness which leads to holy living.
The gospel of Luke was written to gentile Christians who has been introduced to Christ but Luke wants to provide them certainly of what they have been taught with an orderly account of the life and ministry of Jesus Christ. Luke starts with a fulfillment of prophecy concerning the forerunner to Jesus Christ, John the Baptist. His birth is foretold, as is the birth of Jesus. John the Baptist then fulfills prophecy as the forerunner to Christ and his earthly ministry. John the Baptist proclaims a message of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. He is preparing people to hear and receive the message of Christ.
Jesus is seen as the fulfillment of the promised coming Savior from the Old Testament. This is seen in Jesus being tempted in the wilderness by Satan. Satan tempts Jesus three separate times and Jesus each time responds with Scripture and resists the temptations of Satan. Jesus succeeds in every place where the first Adam failed in the garden. We can see here the perfection of Christ. Jesus begins to call his first disciples and beginning his earthly ministry, which will take shape over the coming chapters in the book of Luke.