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Numbers: The Book of Pilgrimage (7 of 54)
Series: Through the Bible Survey
Pastor Stan Coffey
BACKGROUND: The title of this book ''Numbers'' is based upon the two numberings of censuses, which appear in Chapters 1 and 26. The five books of Noses, called the Pentateuch, comprise a whole of which Numbers is the fourth book.
The Book of Numbers logically bridges the third and fifth books recording the 40 years in the wilderness. It shows the sin and disobedience of the people and presents the conditions for claiming the land of promise as being faith and obedience. Numbers gets its name from the Greek name ''Arithmai'', which in Latin is ''Numeri'' and in English ''Numbers.''
AUTHOR: Generally, the question of authorship for any of the books of the Pentateuch, (the first five books of the Bible) stands or falls as a whole. Moses is mentioned in every chapter of Numbers, except one section. (Ch. 22-24). Use of a third person may seem unusual to the western mind, but it was commonly employed by ancient writers and is used consistently in each book in which the name of Moses appears. Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch is affirmed by Jesus in the New Testament writers. (Matt. 8:4; 22:24; Mark 10:3-4; Mark 12:19; Acts 3:22; 7:37; 13:39; 26:22).
DATE: The Book of Numbers was written during the forty years of wandering in the wilderness, which followed the exodus from Egypt. The wilderness wanderings began when the Hebrews departed from Sinai 1445BC. Numbers is the record of the events of the 40 year span of time from the exodus in 1445BC to the first penetrations into Canaan in 1405BC.
THEME: The Book of Numbers is more than a diary of wilderness episodes. While Leviticus deals with the believers worship, Numbers deals with the believers walk. Someone has suggested that Numbers should be called the Book of Murmurings, because from beginning to end it is filled with the spirit of rebellion against God (Psalm 95:10). The failure of Israel to immedia ...
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