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The Book of Numbers 0003 - Lesson 6

Scripture Passage: 
Numbers 16:41-50; Numbers 17:1-13

Chapter 16 (Continued)

Mutiny in the Ranks (Continued)

    1. The Murmuring of the Congregation (Numbers 16:41-43)
      1. The object of their murmuring (Numbers 16:41)
      2. The appearance of the Lord (Numbers 16:42)
    2. The Plague from the Lord (Numbers 16:44-50)
      1. The historical event
        1. The judgment of the Lord (Numbers 16:44-45)
        2. The intercession of Moses and Aaron (Numbers 16:45)
        3. The working of Aaron (Numbers 16:46-47)
          1. Take a censer.
          2. Put fire therein from off the altar.
          3. Put on incense.
          4. Go quickly into the congregation.
          5. Make atonement for them.
        4. The staying of the plague (Numbers 16:48)
        5. The effects of the plague (Numbers 16:49-50)
          1. 14,700 died.
          2. Beside those that died about the matter of Korah
      2. The typology
        1. The setting
          1. In this passage it is a dark time for the children of Israel.   They have sinned against God in murmuring and wrath comes out from the Lord.  One by one they get the plague.  Children are left alone to fend for themselves as mothers get struck with the plague and die.  Somewhere else a dad watches as his little boy breathes his last breath and slips off into eternity.  A wife clings to her husband as he closes his eyes to see her no more.  Screams are heard all around, people looking for their loved ones to see if they too have been bitten by the plague.  The only hope seems to be a quick death.
        2. The intercession of Aaron
          1. The existing plague– the plague is begun (Numbers 16:46-47).
          2. The atonement for the plague
            1. Go into the congregation (Numbers 16:46-47).
            2. Put on incense (Numbers 16:46-47).
            3. Make an atonement for the people (Numbers 16:46-47).
          3. The damage of the plague– fourteen thousand and seven hundred (Numbers 16:49)
        3. The intercession of Christ
          1. The existing plague
            1. In Adam all die (1 Corinthians 15:22).
            2. Death passed upon all men (Romans 5:12).
            3. Our nature (Psalm 51:5; Psalm 58:3)
          2. The atonement for the plague
            1. Go into the congregation.
              1. Job’s need (Job 9:30-33)
              2. A Son named Immanuel (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23)
              3. The Word became flesh (John 1:14).
              4. The Word was God (John 1:1; 1 Timothy 3:16).
            2. Put on incense– made intercession for the transgressors (Isaiah 53:12)
            3. Make an atonement for the people.
              1. His soul was made an offering for sin (Isaiah 53:10).
              2. Christ died for the ungodly (Romans 5:6).
              3. We have received the atonement (Romans 5:11).
              4. Redeemed us to God (Revelation 5:9)
        4. The intercession of believers
          1. The urgency of the plague– go quickly (Numbers 16: 46; 1 Corinthians 15:34).
          2. The answer for the plague
            1. The cure is available (Psalm 107:20).
            2. The physician is Christ.
          3. The damage of the plague – those that die without accepting Christ
          4. The responsibility of the believer
            1. To plead with man (1 Corinthians 9:20-23; Acts 20:31)
            2. To plead with God (Romans 10:1; Romans 9:1-3)

Chapter 17

The Confirmation of the High Priest

    1. The Timing of the Chapter
      1. Everything seemed to go well (Numbers 1-10).
      2. The complaining and lusting of the people (Numbers 11)
      3. The murmuring of Miriam and Aaron (Numbers 12)
      4. The evil report concerning the land of Canaan (Numbers 13)
      5. The failure to enter the land (Numbers 14)
      6. God’s instructions for future possession of the land (Numbers 15)
      7. Sin of Korah and congregation as well (Numbers 16:1-43)
      8. The work of Aaron - a picture of Jesus Christ (Numbers 16:44-50)
      9. The budding of Aaron’s rod – a picture of Jesus Christ (Numbers 17)
      10. The red heifer – a picture of Jesus Christ (Numbers 19)
      11. The rock – a picture of Jesus Christ (Numbers 20)
      12. The serpent upon the pole – a picture of Jesus Christ (Numbers 21)
      13. A sceptre rising out of Israel – the Lord Jesus Christ (Numbers 24)
      14. The work of Phinehas – a picture of Jesus Christ (Numbers 25)
    2. Division of the Chapter
      1. God’s instructions concerning the rods (Numbers 17:1-5)
      2. God’s confirmation of His priest (Numbers 17:6-9)
      3. God’s purpose for the rod (Numbers 17:10-11)
      4. The fear of the people (Numbers 17:12-13)
      5. The typology of the rod
    1. Rods Taken According to Tribe (Numbers 17:1-2)
      1. Rods in scripture
        1. Explanation
          1. The rod was probably much like a walking stick.
          2. It would have also been used as a shepherd’s staff or a weapon.
        2. Symbolism
          1. A symbol of authority and power (Exodus 4:20; Exodus 7:9-12)
          2. A symbol of judgment (Psalm 2:9; Proverbs 10:13)
          3. Related to a scepter (Ezekiel 19:14)
      2. Each head has a rod.
    2. Rods Bore the Name of the Men (Numbers 17:2-3).
      1. Write the name of each man upon his rod.
      2. Write Aaron’s name upon the rod of Levi.
    3. A Rod to be Chosen by God (Numbers 17:4-5)
      1. Lay the rods in the presence of God.
      2. The man’s rod I choose shall blossom.
    1. Rods Laid Up before the Lord (Numbers 17:6-7)
      1. Twelve rods presented to Moses
      2. Moses lays the rods before the Lord.
    2. Aaron’s Rod Chosen (Numbers 17:8)
      1. It came to pass on the morrow.
      2. Aaron’s rod chosen
      3. Three stages of fruit produced
        1. Buds
        2. Blossoms
        3. Almonds
      4. Some thoughts on the almond tree
        1. Physical description
          1. First tree to bloom in the spring
          2. Has beautiful blossoms
          3. Yields fruit about ten weeks after it blossoms
        2. Biblical usage
          1. Occurs ten times in the Bible
          2. First time in scripture is Genesis 43:11 where it is among the best of fruits
          3. Last time in scripture is Jeremiah 1:11-12 where it indicates the speedy fulfillment of God’s word
    3. The Presentation of the Rods (Numbers 17:9)
  4. GOD’S PURPOSE FOR THE ROD (Numbers 17:10-11)
    1. Aaron’s Rod Kept as a Testimony (Numbers 17:10)
      1. Aaron’s rod kept in the ark
      2. The contents of the ark
        1. Items (Hebrews 9:4)
          1. Manna
          2. Tables of stone
          3. Aaron’s rod
        2. Typology
          1. Manna – Jesus Christ as the Bread of Life (John 6:48, 51)
          2. Tables of stone – Jesus Christ as the Word of God (John 1:1-3, 14)
          3. Aaron’s rod – Jesus Christ as the Rod of God (Psalm 110:1-2)
        3. Contents removed? (1 Kings 8:8-9)
    2. Protection of the People (Numbers 17:10)
  5. THE FEAR OF THE PEOPLE (Numbers 17:12-13)
    1. The Fear of Death (Numbers 17:12)
    2. The Fear of Holy Things (Numbers 17:13)
    1. The Makeup of the Rod
      1. Aaron’s rod
        1. Aaron’s rod was wooden.
        2. Aaron’s rod had been crafted to be such.
      2. Jesus Christ
        1. The wood symbolizes humanity.  Jesus Christ was a man.
        2. God the Father prepared a body in which His Son would live (Hebrews 10:5).
    2. The Rod Had Life.
      1. Aaron’s rod
        1. This rod had at one time been a part of a living tree.
        2. This rod had been cut down.
      2. Jesus Christ
        1. Jesus Christ was a living branch (Isaiah 11:1; Isaiah 53:2).
        2. The Lord Jesus was crucified (Isaiah 53:8).
    3. The Rod Was Dead.
      1. Aaron’s rod
        1. Aaron’s rod was nothing more than a dead piece of wood.
        2. Aaron’s rod was laid in the presence of the Lord with other dead rods.
        3. Aaron’s rod was out of the site of the people.
      2. Jesus Christ
        1. Jesus Christ was dead.
        2. Jesus Christ was buried with the wicked (Isaiah 53:9).
        3. Jesus Christ was out of the sight of the people for three days and three nights but was very much alive and working.
    4. The Rod Became Alive Again.
      1. Aaron’s rod
        1. Aaron’s rod though dead received life again in the presence of God.
        2. Aaron’s rod in this time of darkness was bringing forth buds, blossoms, and almonds.
      2. Jesus Christ
        1. Jesus Christ was raised to life again.  The Father, Son and Holy Spirit each had a part in this.
        2. In the apparent absence of Christ, He was bringing forth fruit.  He did so with those in Abraham’s bosom, but He is also doing it with all of those who should trust in Him for everlasting life as well.
    5. The Rod Declared the Identity of the Priest.
      1. Aaron’s rod
        1. Though the Lord had already chosen Aaron as His high priest, the budding of the rod settled the dispute openly.
        2. Aaron’s rod was presented before the people as were the other rods.
        3. Only Aaron’s rod had received life from the dead.
      2. Jesus Christ
        1. Though God the Father had already declared the Son as His Beloved, the resurrection settled the dispute openly (Colossians 2:15; Acts 10:40).
        2. The resurrection of Christ
          1. Loosed the pains of death (Acts 2:23-24)
          2. Brought us justification (Romans 4:25; Romans 5:9)
          3. Gave us access to the Father (Ephesians 1:20; 1 Timothy 2:5)
          4. Enabled us to receive an inheritance (1 Peter 1:3-4)
          5. Qualified Him to be Judge (Romans 14:9)
        3. The Lord Jesus was presented on earth to the people (Acts 1:3-4).
        4. Consider all of the dead rods who receive the worship of men, yet only Christ has risen from the dead.
    6. The Rod was Placed Again in the Presence of the Lord.
      1. Aaron’s rod
        1. Aaron’s rod after being presented to the people was then returned to the presence of God.
        2. This was a testimony to the people that Aaron was the priest.
      2. Jesus Christ
        1. After Christ presented Himself to the people, He then returned to the presence of the Father.
        2. This places Him as the mediator between God and man.  He is the one seated on the right hand of the Father and has all authority (1 Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 10:12; 1 Peter 3:22).
Andrew Ray

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 27:2

Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips.