READING: Numbers 7
May I be honest with you today? At first glance, Numbers 7 looks like one of those chapters you just have to wade through. It’s all about offerings — about silver plates and silver bowls and gold dishes and bulls and rams and goats and lambs and oxen. It’s all about leaders of the tribes bringing their offerings. It’s repetitive. The names are hard to pronounce. And yet, the Word of God still powerfully teaches us.
One leader from each tribe is named, and the offering he brings on behalf of his people is described in detail. For example, look at the description of the offering from the tribe of Judah:
The one who presented his offering on the first day was Nahshon son of Amminadab from the tribe of Judah. His offering was one silver dish weighing 3¼ pounds and one silver basin weighing 1¾ pounds, measured by the standard sanctuary shekel, both of them full of fine flour mixed with oil for a grain offering; one gold bowl weighing four ounces,full of incense; one young bull, one ram, and one male lamb a year old, for a burnt offering; one male goat for a sin offering; and two bulls, five rams, five male breeding goats, and five male lambs a year old, for the fellowship sacrifice. (Num 7:12-17).
It’s not these verses that catch my attention, though. It’s the latter part of verse 17, a word pattern that is repeated twelve times in this chapter (after each description of a tribe’s offering): “This was the offering of Nahshon son of Amminadab.”
Here’s what I think about as I read these phrases over and over again in this chapter: if someone were to write in detail the offerings I give to the Lord, and then ascribed my name clearly to them (“This is the offering of Chuck son of Charles, Sr.), would I be comfortable with all of that information in writing? Would I be pleased for others to know the level of my giving?
And, I think about much more than the dollars I give. Frankly, giving financially is the easiest “sacrifice” Pam and I can make. What I wonder about is whether I genuinely give of myself sacrificially. I wonder if the offering of my life really costs me anything.
This “boring” chapter has touched my soul.
ACTION STEPS: Consider these steps today:
- Think about the same question for you: If someone wrote publicly about your offerings to the Lord, would you be okay with that?
- Sacrifice something for God today. Do whatever it takes to make Him #1 in your life.
- If God challenges you to give more financially to His work, write the check today. Don’t give yourself time to reconsider.
PRAYER: “Lord, I thank You for your Word. Please show me today how I might genuinely offer myself to You. I’m ready to hear You.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Numbers 8-10