Full text of Zac Poonen’s teaching on the Book of Numbers which is part of the popular series called Through The Bible.
Listen to the MP3 Audio here:
Zac Poonen – Bible Teacher
Well, we’re going to turn today to the Book of Numbers. This is the fourth of the books that Moses wrote, and this deals with Israel’s wanderings and Israel’s wars in the wilderness. And there are a number of important chapters… as you’ve probably been noticing; we can’t go into every chapter in a brief study like we are having, where we mostly take just one session to cover a book.
So what I want to share with you is the important chapters and I hope that it whets your appetite to study the Scriptures more deeply and intensely on your own.
Now this book is called NUMBERS because the people of Israel were numbered twice. Moses took a census of the Israelites, for it says in Numbers 1:3: “from twenty years old and upwards – all those who were able to go out to war.”
They took a census according to the families once at the beginning of their wanderings. And then later on towards the end of their wanderings as well, that you read in chapter 26.
NUMBERS 2: discipline and orderliness
And in chapter 2 you have the arrangement in which the camps of Israel were to be placed. God is a God of order, and one of the things you learned from this is: the discipline and orderliness which God taught His people. Remember they were a bunch of totally undisciplined slaves in Egypt, and God… when He led them out not only redeemed them, not only baptized them in the Red Sea, and baptized them in the cloud, but began to teach them order, cleanliness, laws of hygiene.
Now these are important lessons for us, because there are lots of Christians who say, ‘well I’m saved, I’m born-again by the blood of the Lamb,’ but they are not clean; they don’t have any sense of hygiene or cleanliness in their lives or in their home. There is no sense of orderliness in their life; there’s no discipline in the way they spend their time or their money or the way they keep their rooms. And all this affects our growth.
I’ve discovered that whatever experience of the Holy Spirit you may have, if you are not disciplined in your life, you cannot become a Godly person. Don’t think that just because you got experiences and you know the Lord, that’s good enough. The orderliness with which you see the detail that you see in the Book of Numbers — so many details, don’t just get bored reading all that, but what you can generally learn from those many details is the orderliness with which God conducted and led His people on. And the discipline He wanted them to have. God is a God of order.
And when there is a lack of discipline in our life, we cannot be the men and women God wants us to be. I find that — let me give you an example. There are people who say: ‘The Apostles never went to a Bible School, so we don’t need to go either.’
Well if you’re a thoroughly disciplined person listening to the Holy Spirit, I agree with you; I never went to one. But I disciplined myself to study the Word. I’ve discovered a lot of people who try to follow the Apostles without the discipline that the Apostles had; they know nothing. And one thing that some of you get here is a discipline of the study of the Word.