Numbers 19 – Purpose
We talked about the weight of being chosen and the wages as well. Now we look at the purpose. Aaron & his sons and the rest of the Levites were not chosen for the fun of it. They were given a reason, a purpose. This is where we begin to see that.
This is where we see the ordinance of the red heifer. The red heifer is meant to be a sacrifice, but not just any sacrifice. It is the sacrifice that cleanses the tabernacle. That is one of the primary roles and purposes of the priest. They are to offer the sacrifices and teach the people so that they can be purified and so that their sins can be covered. Their purpose is to serve YHWH, and to help the unclean to become clean before the LORD.
What happens when the unclean does not become clean… when the priest does not do his duty as he has been called by YHWH to do?
20 ‘But the man who is unclean and does not purify himself from uncleanness, that person shall be cut off from the midst of the assembly, because he has defiled the sanctuary of the LORD;
If the priest did not do his duty, the peoples sins were not covered, and they were forever separated from the assembly … the people … the congregation of YHWH. That’s quite the responsibility.
Aren’t you glad that there is both a perfect Sacrifice and a perfect Priest. One who cannot fail in his priestly duties because He is both the one who cleanses us, and the one who makes us clean. The one sent of YHWH to answer the perfect call with perfect purpose.
Thank you Jesus the Christ. The one prophesied to come, and the one to fulfill all of the prophesies. Now we too can have a purpose!
Rev. John Camiolo Jr.
Numbers 18 – Weight & Wages
YHWH has shown who He has chosen. He has made it clear that HE has chosen Aaron and his line for the priesthood. This is the calling of the LORD.
Last chapter so many were seeking it, but only one was chosen. Verse 1 of chapter 18 says, “So the LORD said to Aaron, ‘You and your sons and your father’s household with you shall bear the guilt in connection with the sanctuary, and you and your sons with you shall bear the guilt in connection with your priesthood.” Wait a minute? I thought that the priesthood was supposed to be a blessing! Yet as soon as it is clear that Aaron’s line is chose, the weight of that choice is laid out.
Oh, to be the chosen of the LORD! Tevya (Fiddler on the Roof) said, ”I know, I know. We are Your chosen people. But, once in a while, can’t You choose someone else?” The Levites are the chosen people, but it also means that they have a huge responsibility. If anything goes wrong, the blame fell squarely on them. Being chosen is a blessing, but it comes at a price. Look at anyone chose of YHWH. The prophets were chosen of God, yet so many of them were rejected and killed for speaking the truth. Job was chosen to be blessed of the LORD, yet look at the trial he went through. The disciples were chosen, yet martyrdom became their prize. The Messiah Himself came and fulfilled His purpose. The purpose outlined in Isaiah 52-53. 53:7 says,
“He was oppressed and He was afflicted,
Yet He did not open His mouth;
Like a lamb that is led to slaughter,
And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers,
So He did not open His mouth. “
That’s what it means to truly means to be chosen.
That is not the end of the chapter. That may be the weight, but there are still the wages. The priests may have had to bear the weight and the responsibility of priesthood, but they were not without the wages. Many of the sacrifices offered to YHWH were the priests payment. In vs. 17, it says, “…they are a gift to you, dedicated to the LORD…” Given to the LORD, yet payment to the priests.
This principle should still exist today. Those called to be pastors have a HUGE responsibility. More so than even they realize most times. However, there should be no one more blessed in all the congregation than the pastor who has been called of God. It comes at a price. A price that is overwhelming. BUT, it should not be without the blessing. Keep that in mind if / when you are ready to be critical of a pastor. Chances are, they are holding the responsibility, are you giving them the blessing?
John J. Camiolo Jr.