Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Numbers 28:1-30:16


A funny thing happened this afternoon. Not Rule of Threes ha-ha funny. More like, "What a coincidence" funny. A friend called to ask if I had any insights about Numbers 27-36. She was writing a devotional about those chapters. I don't think she has been reading this blog.

I told her that it was an interesting block of Scripture because it is bracketed with the story of the daughters of Zelophehad. In chapter 27, these women are granted their inheritance. In chapter 36, they basically lose it.

My friend chuckled when I said "It's a man's world." Mind you it was a man's world back in Bible times. Some Christians seem to want to re-create the Bible's partiarchalism. The world has changed, however and I, for one, think that's a good thing.

The daughters of Zelophehad thing wasn't working for my friend. So, I leafed through chapters 28 and 29.  I muttered something about "the sanctification of time." I started to mumble something else but my friend said "Ooh! I can use that." So I stopped myself.

"What else were you going to say?" she asked.

"Nothing," I said. "I got you to go 'ooh!' so I'm quitting while I'm ahead."

Numbers 27-28 contains instructions for sacrifices that the Israelites were to offer daily, weekly, monthly, and on annual festivals. One of the functions that religion plays in human life is to make time, seasons, occasions, and life passages holy.

Chapter 29 concerns making vows. Men are responsible for the vows they make. Women may make vows, but their fathers or husbands can nullify them. If the menfolk say nothing, it is taken as tacit approval.

It is was a man's world.

Next: Numbers 31-32

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