Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Part XXXVIII: Blessing By Resting In The THOROUGHNESS Of God's Livelihood Oversight
(Numbers 34-36)
  1. Introduction
    1. Though we anticipate entering heaven, much of our time as believers is spent acquiring a livelihood in care of the necessities of this life. Indeed, earning a living is commanded of Christian heads of households as part of their testimony 1 Timothy 5:8.
    2. Yet, the believer is commanded by God to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all his earthly needs will be met (Luke 12:22-31), meaning he should not fret about his livelihood needs.
    3. The thoroughness of God's livelihood provisions seen in His provisions for Israel's land inheritance underscores the degree to which we can REST in God's care for our livelihood needs as follows:
  2. Blessing By Resting In The THOROUGHNESS Of God's Livelihood Oversight, Numbers 34-36.
    1. God gave detailed directions so EVERY tribe in Israel had an adequate homeland, Numbers 34:1-29:
      1. First, God laid out the nation's national, outlying borders as an adequate homeland, Numbers 34:1-15:
        1. God first laid out the boundaries of the 9 tribes in the land of Canaan (34:13): their border (1) on the south would include land going from the southern edge of the Dead Sea south along the border of Edom, then turning west south of Kadesh Barnea in the Wilderness of Zin and going east toward the Mediterranean Sea, Numbers 34:1-5. (2) On the west, these tribes would have the Mediterranean Seacoast as their border, Numbers 34:6. (3) On the north, these tribes would have the boundary that ran from the Mediterranean east to Mount Hor, then over and about to Hazar Enan, Numbers 34:7-9. (4) On the east, God assigned land just east of the Sea of Galilee and running down along the Jordan River and along the Dead Sea, Numbers 34:10-12.
        2. The 2 tribes of the Transjordan lands were noted as already receiving their lands, Num. 34:14-15.
      2. He then revealed Eleazar the priest and Joshua the son of Nun, Moses' successor, along with one leader from each of the tribes would cast the lots before the Lord for the Lord to determine how the land was to be divided among them, Numbers 34:16-29.
    2. God gave detailed directions so all the priests who were not granted tribal land inheritances could nevertheless have a home in the land, Numbers 35:1-5, 7-8:
      1. Though the priests did not inherit tribal lands, they nevertheless had to house their families; thus, God prescribed 48 cities scattered throughout Israel with adequate pasture lands for each city (stretching out in a 1,500 feet radius from the town wall) for the Levites, 35:1-5, 7. (Ryrie St. Bib., KJV, ftn. 35:4-5)
      2. God decreed each tribe give up cities in proportion to their population: bigger tribes were to grant a greater number of cities for the priests, and less-populated tribes would give up fewer cities to the priests so the burden of providing cities for the priests would be evenly shared among the tribes, 35:8.
    3. God gave detailed directions so every innocent fugitive could have a home as well, Numbers 35:6-33:
      1. Knowing the culture allowed for those who had accidentally killed another to be avenged by a relative of the deceased, God limited such vengeance by providing a protected home for innocent FUGITIVE.
      2. Hence, six of the 48 cities of the priests, three on each side of the Jordan within a day's flight for anyone in Israel were set aside for safe-havens for such fugitives, Numbers 35:13-14.
      3. God then supplied detailed instructions for discerning between innocent and guilty fugitives, and for rules governing life for such fugitives were they to take advantage of these cities of refuge, 35:9-33.
    4. God finally gave detailed directions so every inheritance complication that threatened any Hebrew descendant in Israel could have an adequate, legal home as well, Numbers 36:1-13: when women who inherited land married, they were to wed within their own tribe to protect the inheritance of future heirs.
Lesson: God went to EXACTING lengths to provide a home for every tribe, Levite, innocent fugitive and descendant of a woman who inherited land. Thus, we can REST in the fact that God's livelihood provisions for His own will be SUFFICIENT for EVERY need of EVERY party among God's people.

Application: In our efforts toward gaining or sustaining a livelihood, let us also RELAX in our MINDS in the OVERSIGHT of our GOD to meet these needs in the end, cf. Luke 12:24-31!