This last week we made our way through the book of Numbers. We learned how this book, filled with some pretty famous Sunday School type of stories, is also shot-through with the sad themes of unbelief and rebellion. It is shocking how a people who experienced so many displays of God’s faithfulness could still be ungrateful and unsatisfied with his provision and timing. Which ironically makes it so relevant for our study, for we all struggle with being satisfied with the circumstances of our lives.
We also discovered that while God must address such an attitude with his justice and discipline, he also continually displayed his mercy toward his people. In fact, we were able to see how his justice can actually function as mercy, for Israel, and for us.
If you would like to continue exploring this section of The Whole Story found in Numbers, the resources below are a great place to start:
- Review last week’s sermon on Numbers.
- Watch the Numbers video that is part of the Bible Project’s Torah series for an extremely helpful overview, and for how this story points us to the grace of God in Jesus.
- Click here to find a whole page of videos, milestones, study resources, and recommendations for further reading and study on Numbers.
One of the other things that we explored this last Sunday was a little on how to read the Story of the Bible. Namely, how Numbers should be understood as a story that stands on its own, how it functions within the overall story of the Old Testament, as well as how the New Testament authors (e.g., Jesus and Paul) understood it as part of the Whole Story. If you’d like more instruction on how to understand the broader scope of Scripture, I highly commend this six-part video series on How to Read the Bible.
Each video is only about six minutes in length, and you will find a study guide on the webpage for use along with the videos.
As always, please feel free to email me with questions or ideas for The Whole Story. I look forward to seeing you on Sunday, when we will begin the next chapter of the drama by studying Deuteronomy. Be sure to read it before you come!
Overflowing with thanksgiving for the snake-crusher and sin-bearer, Jesus,
Samuel Johnson was born on September 18, 1709, and was an English writer who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer.
How Can We Pursue A Long Repentance In The Same Direction?
This last Sunday, in Calvary’s morning gathering, we studied the book of Haggai together as part of God’s Whole Story. Together we heard God speak through his prophet to his people after the exile, challenging them to remain faithful and to rebuild the temple.
The book of Haggai is the second shortest book in the Old Testament. It has 4 oracles (think: sermons), 2 chapters, and about 1,100 words.
In the book of Jeremiah we read of God’s intention for Daniel and all of those with him who have been exiled from the land of promise.
We are in a sermon series called The Whole Story, so named because we started off with the assumption, and belief really, that the whole Bible is a unified story that leads to Jesus. Each and every book is a bit like a chapter that contributes to the overall story that God is telling.
We Are Calvary
To say that we live in times of rapid change may be the very height of understatement. Our culture, and its norms, is changing at an unprecedented rate, making it increasingly challenging for the church to remain relevant—and faithful—in proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God, in a way that will bring about the expansion of that kingdom.
This past Sunday we (finally) made it out of the weighty, dark, somber, and serious writings of the Prophets of the Exile, and stepped into the Return from Exile of the people of God. Our first look into this aspect of the redemptive drama comes via three courageous servants of Yahweh—Zerrubabel, Ezra, and Nehemiah. There story is found in the book of Ezra-Nehemiah (although our English Bibles separate them, through the centuries the Jewish people have always treated them as one book; so we will too.)
Especially When You Don't Feel Like It
Sunday is just about my favorite day of the week (“just about”…because my day off each week, our family’s Sabbath Saturday, is a tie or really close second). I love getting up that morning, making my smoothie, sitting in my favorite chair in our fireplace room, and pulling my Bible onto my lap. I relish the time spent listening to my Father speak, and I delight in those moments spent talking with him about the morning’s ministry, the people in our gathering that I hope he will transform, as well as the eleven other pastors (and their congregations) on whom I pray his blessing every Sunday.