Monday, April 23, 2012

120419 - Numbers 04 - Wrapped in His Righteousness

Thursday SOAP: Contact with the holy objects is made possible only by covering them with the veil. The veil represents the incarnation of Jesus. We are saved from wrath through Him.

S: The LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, “Let not the tribe of the clans of the Kohathites be destroyed from among the Levites, but deal thus with them, that they may live and not die when they come near to the most holy things: Aaron and his sons shall go in and appoint them each to his task and to his burden, but they shall not go in to look on the holy things even for a moment, lest they die.” (Numbers 4:17-20)
O: Some of this is so methodical, so matter-of-fact, that this is inserted to remind the workers of how serious their work was. Only Aaron and his sons could wrap up the Ark and other furnishings of the Tabernacle. (vv. 5-15) The Kohathites were to carry them after they had been covered, but were not allowed to touch them (v. 15) or even look on them, upon penalty of death.
A: Is it scary to think about a God who might kill His worshipers if they mishandle the appointments of the Tabernacle? If this is true, then how scary is it to think how casual the worship can be in the average church service? Yet no one is struck dead. What makes the difference? I'm reminded of one of the thoughts from last month ) about the veil. The New Testament equates that veil with Jesus' flesh. So the only way it was safe for the Kohathites to handle the holy things - including the broken Law - was because they were covered by the Incarnation of Christ.

Today, we are "safe" from the wrath our sometimes horrifyingly casual attitudes deserve ONLY because Christ's obedience to that Law covers it all for us because He is the Last Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45) - the Son of Man. So why is it that the preaching of that message sometimes seems to encourage such an unconcerned air in the worshiper? Some would say it is because the penalty itself is not clearly delineated. However, I also think another reason is that one of the principles from yesterday's study is not always made clear: when a person has been redeemed, God is now the absolute owner. We live not unto ourselves, and "holy, acceptable living sacrifice" is a reasonable service. It takes discipleship before His holiness and Lordship becomes clear.
P: Father, from eternity past you have marked out the day of my birth, chosen me in Christ Jesus and ordained good works for me to do. You have also appointed the day of my death and it is precious in your sight. Keep me from presumptuous sin and teach me to number my days, that I may present to you a heart of wisdom.

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