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Bible Commentaries

The Biblical Illustrator
Numbers 28

 

 

Verses 1-31

Numbers 28:1-31

After this manner ye shall offer daily.

Of the daily sacrifices

All these laws were in a manner before handled while the people abode at Mount Sinai. If any ask the question, why then they are here repeated? I answer, first, because they were now come to enter into the land, being in a manner upon the borders thereof (Numbers 27:12). God would therefore put them in mind of this that, when they should possess the land, they must be mindful of His worship and their own duty. Secondly, because few at this time remained alive which had heard, or if they had heard, could remember these laws that then were published. Thirdly, the ceremonial worship had been intermitted in the wilderness for many years, as circumcision (Joshua 5:1-15.) and many other like ordinances by reason of their continual journeys, or at least continual expectation of them. Lastly, God doth hereby comfort and confirm His people after their manifold provocations and murmurings, testifying thereby that as a merciful Father He is reconciled unto them, and the remembrance of their sins buried, and that He hath determined to do them good all the days of their life. Now, the first thing to be considered is the daily sacrifice, in which was to be offered, morning and evening, a lamb, fine flour, wine, and oil; these were to be offered continually as a burnt offering upon the altar, which law was not to take place until they came into the land, as we heard before in the like case (Numbers 15:2), because in the desert they wanted many things necessary (Deuteronomy 12:8) which was a sufficient dispensation for the omitting of them; for when God doth require anything He giveth means to perform it, and did never impute it as a sin unto them when an inevitable necessity did hinder them, and the desire to obey is no less accepted than obedience itself. Of this daily sacrifice with the rites thereof to be performed every morning and evening we read at large (Exodus 29:38), they must do it day by day continually. So 1 Kings 18:1-46., when Elijah convinced Baal’s priests, there is mention made of their choosing, dressing, and offering a bullock in the morning (verse 26), and of his doing the like “at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice” (verse 36). Likewise “Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour” (Acts 3:1). This was the time, being three of the clock in the afternoon, when the evening sacrifice was wont to be offered, unto which prayer also was wont to be joined. We see their practice what it was daily ; now let us come to the uses toward ourselves.

1. First, see from hence by consideration of this daily offering--“a lamb every morning and a lamb every evening”--a great difference between the Old and New Testament.

2. Secondly, we must understand from hence, that as all sacrifices under the law did as it were lead us to Christ, “who is the end of the law of righteousness to every one that believeth” (Romans 10:4); so did this daily sacrifice of “the two lambs offered morning and evening” most plainly. He is both the Altar and the Sacrifice (Hebrews 13:10).

3. Lastly, this daily sacrifice importeth the daily sacrifice of prayer which we ought to offer to God as our daily service due unto Him (1 Kings 18:36). And thus do the Hebrew doctors speak, “The continual sacrifice of the morning made atonement for the iniquities that were done in the night, and the evening sacrifice made atonement for the iniquities that were by day.” It is therefore required of us to pray unto God, not once in a month, or once a week, nor only upon the Sabbath day, or publicly in the assemblies of the faithful, but we must remember Him daily that remembereth us every hour. (W. Attersoll.)

In the beginnings of your months.--

The new moon festival

The moon is no unapt emblem of the Church, shining in borrowed splendour, and deriving all her light, even when clearest and full-orbed, from the sun, whose glory she reflects as she travels through the night. And very fitly she represents the economy of the law, at its highest attainments only a faint resemblance of the glory to come, and from which in reality all its own splendour was derived, sometimes only but partly shining on the Church, and often obscured and dim. The beginning of every month bespoke renewal and increase. Filling her horn night after night, and becoming larger and larger, she increases in brightness to full-orbed beauty. As the moon increased, so increased the sacrifices of the economy she was an emblem of. The natural divisions of time, days multiplying into weeks, weeks into months, and months into years, became regulating signs to obligation and hope. But progress, as light increasing more and more, bespoke imperfection, and the repetition of every new moon, denoting inefficiency, waited for something to come. “It was not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sin.” Had the offerings of holy times increased to ever such a number, and the cattle upon a thousand hills been sacrificed, all they could have affected would have been infinitely short of the results attributable alone to the death of Christ. Rivers of wine and oil could not be a libation ; neither was “Lebanon sufficient to burn, nor the beasts thereof sufficient for a burnt-offering.” To redeem a soul, to cleanse from guilt and save from death, more than all the world is required, infinite excellence, Almighty love. (W. Seaton.)
.


Verses 1-31

Numbers 28:1-31

After this manner ye shall offer daily.

Of the daily sacrifices

All these laws were in a manner before handled while the people abode at Mount Sinai. If any ask the question, why then they are here repeated? I answer, first, because they were now come to enter into the land, being in a manner upon the borders thereof (Numbers 27:12). God would therefore put them in mind of this that, when they should possess the land, they must be mindful of His worship and their own duty. Secondly, because few at this time remained alive which had heard, or if they had heard, could remember these laws that then were published. Thirdly, the ceremonial worship had been intermitted in the wilderness for many years, as circumcision (Joshua 5:1-15.) and many other like ordinances by reason of their continual journeys, or at least continual expectation of them. Lastly, God doth hereby comfort and confirm His people after their manifold provocations and murmurings, testifying thereby that as a merciful Father He is reconciled unto them, and the remembrance of their sins buried, and that He hath determined to do them good all the days of their life. Now, the first thing to be considered is the daily sacrifice, in which was to be offered, morning and evening, a lamb, fine flour, wine, and oil; these were to be offered continually as a burnt offering upon the altar, which law was not to take place until they came into the land, as we heard before in the like case (Numbers 15:2), because in the desert they wanted many things necessary (Deuteronomy 12:8) which was a sufficient dispensation for the omitting of them; for when God doth require anything He giveth means to perform it, and did never impute it as a sin unto them when an inevitable necessity did hinder them, and the desire to obey is no less accepted than obedience itself. Of this daily sacrifice with the rites thereof to be performed every morning and evening we read at large (Exodus 29:38), they must do it day by day continually. So 1 Kings 18:1-46., when Elijah convinced Baal’s priests, there is mention made of their choosing, dressing, and offering a bullock in the morning (verse 26), and of his doing the like “at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice” (verse 36). Likewise “Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour” (Acts 3:1). This was the time, being three of the clock in the afternoon, when the evening sacrifice was wont to be offered, unto which prayer also was wont to be joined. We see their practice what it was daily ; now let us come to the uses toward ourselves.

1. First, see from hence by consideration of this daily offering--“a lamb every morning and a lamb every evening”--a great difference between the Old and New Testament.

2. Secondly, we must understand from hence, that as all sacrifices under the law did as it were lead us to Christ, “who is the end of the law of righteousness to every one that believeth” (Romans 10:4); so did this daily sacrifice of “the two lambs offered morning and evening” most plainly. He is both the Altar and the Sacrifice (Hebrews 13:10).

3. Lastly, this daily sacrifice importeth the daily sacrifice of prayer which we ought to offer to God as our daily service due unto Him (1 Kings 18:36). And thus do the Hebrew doctors speak, “The continual sacrifice of the morning made atonement for the iniquities that were done in the night, and the evening sacrifice made atonement for the iniquities that were by day.” It is therefore required of us to pray unto God, not once in a month, or once a week, nor only upon the Sabbath day, or publicly in the assemblies of the faithful, but we must remember Him daily that remembereth us every hour. (W. Attersoll.)

In the beginnings of your months.--

The new moon festival

The moon is no unapt emblem of the Church, shining in borrowed splendour, and deriving all her light, even when clearest and full-orbed, from the sun, whose glory she reflects as she travels through the night. And very fitly she represents the economy of the law, at its highest attainments only a faint resemblance of the glory to come, and from which in reality all its own splendour was derived, sometimes only but partly shining on the Church, and often obscured and dim. The beginning of every month bespoke renewal and increase. Filling her horn night after night, and becoming larger and larger, she increases in brightness to full-orbed beauty. As the moon increased, so increased the sacrifices of the economy she was an emblem of. The natural divisions of time, days multiplying into weeks, weeks into months, and months into years, became regulating signs to obligation and hope. But progress, as light increasing more and more, bespoke imperfection, and the repetition of every new moon, denoting inefficiency, waited for something to come. “It was not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sin.” Had the offerings of holy times increased to ever such a number, and the cattle upon a thousand hills been sacrificed, all they could have affected would have been infinitely short of the results attributable alone to the death of Christ. Rivers of wine and oil could not be a libation ; neither was “Lebanon sufficient to burn, nor the beasts thereof sufficient for a burnt-offering.” To redeem a soul, to cleanse from guilt and save from death, more than all the world is required, infinite excellence, Almighty love. (W. Seaton.)
.

 


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Bibliography Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Numbers 28:4". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/numbers-28.html. 1905-1909. New York.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, December 8th, 2019
the Second Week of Advent
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