Thursday, May 14, 2009


Numbers 11

Following up on yesterday’s thoughts on the first part of Numbers 11 we find something very interesting in the last part of the chapter.

Moses did what God commanded him to do. He found seventy elders, leaders and officials from the tribes of Israel and he brought them to stand around the Tent of Meeting. The Lord came down in a cloud and took of the Spirit that was on Moses and put the Spirit on the seventy elders. As a sign to them and to the people the newly anointed elders prophesied.

But we have these two appointed elders who for some reason did not join the others at the Tent of Meeting, Eldad and Medad. They were still in the camp when the Spirit was put onto the others. Even though they weren’t out at the tent these two men received the Spirit as well and began prophesying also. A young man heard them prophesying and ran to tell Moses about it. Joshua was upset with this development and entreated Moses to stop Eldad and Medad from prophesying. Moses responded to Joshua, Are you jealous for my sake? I wish that all the LORD’s people were prophets and that the LORD would put his Spirit on them!

Here is another parallel with the life of Christ. “Teacher,” said John, “we saw a man driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us.” “Do not stop him,” Jesus said. “No one who does a miracle in my name can in the next moment say anything bad about me, for whoever is not against us is for us” (Mark 9:38-40).

So much of the church is like Joshua, John, and the other apostles. I, for one, had that same attitude for many years in the ministry. Picking at nits while swallowing camels. Those who didn’t toe the line theologically were just wrong and had to be changed! I acted like it was my calling to make sure they changed! I feared to work together with other churches, particularly mainline denominations, because I didn’t want to be lumped in with them. After several years of sitting under the rod of the Lord I have come to understand that the mission of Christ will be fulfilled only as the church comes together and works together in unity. It is time for us to affirm the fundamentals of the faith and let our secondary differences fall to the wayside. If I would have had my way, all the churches who didn’t believe as I did would have been stopped from working in the name of Christ in order that only those who agreed with me would have center stage in the kingdom. After all, they weren’t one of us! I have repented that arrogance and now seek to work with the holy catholic church, the true body of Christ. I don’t think we need to destroy denominationalism. Rather, we need to step over the lines that have separated Christ’s body for far too long and show the world that there really is only one body of Christ. God used Jesus’ prayer in John 17 to convict me of my wrong thinking. My prayer is not for them alone, I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. (John 17:20, 21)

Thank God that Moses’ wish came true and God’s Spirit rests on all his people without consideration of denomination! May that Spirit draw us together as one!


Post a Comment

<< Home