Summarize what you read in one paragraph:
In these chapters, Israel has just defeated the Canaanites and is settling down for a while in the land of Moab. In Chapter 21, the Israelites spoke against God, so in order for the Israelites to be spared God’s wrath in the form of fiery serpents, God told Moses to create a serpent made of bronze and put it on a pole so that whoever looked at the serpent would live. In Chapters 22-24, Balak, the king of Moab, enlists Balaam, a foreteller of events, to curse Israel in the Name of God, so that Moab may emerge victorious in battle against Israel. Whenever Balaam sets out to do this, God speaks to him and has him bless Israel instead and even has him go on to prophetize Moab’s destruction to Balak. Chapter 25 ends with some of the Israelites praying to the false gods of Moab, so in order to save Israel from the plague, two people, a man of Israel and a Midianite woman are sacrificed by Phinehas, son of Eleazar.
What is one key verse?
Numbers 24 8-9 “God brought them out of Egypt; they have the strength of a wild ox. They devour hostile nations and break their bones in pieces; with their arrows they pierce them. Like a lion they crouch and lie down, like a lioness–who dares to rouse them? May those who bless you be blessed and those who curse you be cursed!”
How does what you read change your vision of God?
Reading about when Israel suffered from the serpents and how Moses responded made me really think about what we need to do when we’re facing a crisis. Moses could have tried to handle the situation on his own, but instead, he first turned to God and prayed to God for an answer, in which God was able to provide an answer that would directly foreshadow Jesus’ crucifixion centuries later.
How does what you read change your vision of yourself or others?
I feel that I can find myself complaining about situations in my life somewhat often when I should be grateful for all that God has given me. Just like with Israelites, who had many blessings, they instead looked at what they were going through, which led them to ungratefulness. I want to look more to the blessings God has given me and praise Him more often for everything He has done in my life.
How will you Go With God because of this reading? (What is an action step?)
Like Balaam, who was unable to see the angel of the Lord and hit his donkey three times, I need to pay more attention to where God is in my life. I find myself going through life and not seeing where God is a lot of the time and feel that I can keep a better eye out for God in my walk with Him.
Where did you see Jesus in these chapters? (What made you think about Jesus?)
In chapter 21, Moses set up the bronze serpent on the pole and whoever looked at it would live from their snakebite, which is similar to how we see Jesus today with Him being crucified. The Israelites sinned and were bitten by serpents for their sin, but similar to how our sins are forgiven today, Jesus was stood up on a cross and we look to Him to forgive us for our sins.