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the Week of Proper 6 / Ordinary 11
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Bible Commentaries
Numbers 25

Everett's Study Notes on the Holy ScripturesEverett's Study Notes

Verses 1-18

Numbers 25:1-18 Israel Commits Whoredom In Numbers 25:1-18 we have the account of Israel committing whoredom with the daughters of the Moabites and Midianites. We read in the previous passage of Scripture (Numbers 22:1 to Numbers 24:25) how Balaam, who had been hired by Balac, king of Moab, to curse the children of Israel, found he could only bless them. The next we read is how Israel is committing whoredom with the same people who tried to destroy them. Revelation 2:14 gives us a clue as to why this took place. Because Balaam could not curse Israel, he advised Balak on how to remove them out from under God’s blessings through whoredom. Thus, they began “to eat things sacrificed unto idols” (Numbers 25:1), and “to commit fornication’ (Numbers 25:1).

Revelation 2:14, “But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.”

Numbers 25:5 Comments - In God’s judgment of Israel, a few were sacrificed that the rest may live (Galatians 5:9). Sin is judged within the camp and in New Testament Church (see 1 Corinthians 5:1-5). If we do not judge ourselves, God will judge us (1 Corinthians 11:31).

Galatians 5:9, “A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.”

1 Corinthians 5:7, “Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us.”

1 Corinthians 11:31, “For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.”

Numbers 25:8 And he went after the man of Israel into the tent, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel.

Numbers 25:8 Comments - We are the “Israel of God” (Galatians 6:16), and our bodies are the temple of God (1 Corinthians 3:16-17; 1 Corinthians 6:19). We are to told to “Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry:” (Colossians 3:5)

Galatians 6:16, “And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.”

1 Corinthians 3:16, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?”

1 Corinthians 3:17, “If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.”

1 Corinthians 6:19, “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?”

Numbers 25:11 Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned my wrath away from the children of Israel, while he was zealous for my sake among them, that I consumed not the children of Israel in my jealousy.

Numbers 25:12 Wherefore say, Behold, I give unto him my covenant of peace:

Numbers 25:13 And he shall have it, and his seed after him, even the covenant of an everlasting priesthood; because he was zealous for his God, and made an atonement for the children of Israel.

Numbers 25:11-13 Comments - The Zeal of Phinehas - Phinehas later becomes the high priest, after Eleazar, his father, handed over the office. Phinehas later will lead the army of Israel to war (Numbers 31:6).

Numbers 31:6, “And Moses sent them to the war, a thousand of every tribe, them and Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, to the war, with the holy instruments, and the trumpets to blow in his hand.”

Numbers 25:17 Vex the Midianites, and smite them:

Numbers 25:17 Comments - The Midianites were smitten in Numbers 31:1-12. Although this Midianite woman was among the Moabites (Numbers 25:15), it was the nation of the Moabites that committed harlotry with Israel.

Numbers 31:1-2, “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Avenge the children of Israel of the Midianites: afterward shalt thou be gathered unto thy people.”

Bibliographical Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Numbers 25". Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghe/numbers-25.html. 2013.
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