Our teaching from Torah, The Law of Moses will continue from Numbers 21.1-9.
AND THE TITLE OF OUR MESSAGE IS, THE BATTLE IS NOT YOURS, BUT GOD’S.
And with that said, let’s read Numbers 21.1-9.
NUMBERS 21.1 King Arad and his region called Arad is generally identified in Canaan as being between Beersheba and the Dead Sea in the south of present-day Israel.
So this king Arad the Canaanite, after hearing that Israel came by the way of the spies, came out with his armies and fought with Israel and took some of them prisoners.
NUMBERS 21.2-3 So after Israel vowed a vow to The LORD asking Him to deliver those Canaanites into their hand, GOD answered by delivering the Canaanites to Israel. And Israel utterly destroyed them and their cities, and no doubt freed the Israeli prisoners. And GOD called the name of that place Hormah, meaning utter destruction.
For some reason, the nations that seek to harm, destroy and slander Israel and the Jewish People do not realize that The GOD of Creation, The HOLY ONE OF ISRAEL is always with His people Israel. And the enemies of the Jewish People and Israel will in time end up as those Canaanites, utterly destroyed because the battle belongs to GOD, THE MIGHTY GOD OF ISRAEL. GENESIS 12.3, MATTHEW 25.31-46
And when Israel entered Canaan, Joshua and the armies of Israel killed king Arad and thirty other Canaanite kings. And the Children of Israel possessed their land. JOSHUA 12.1, 14
As a note of interest, the way of the spies from the wilderness of Zin in the present-day Sinai Peninsula led them up to the Euphrates River, the northern boundary of the Land of Israel that GOD gave to the Jewish People for an everlasting possession.
And the city of Aleppo, yes, that city in Syria that is being bombed daily is not very far from the Euphrates River. And Aleppo is well known in Judaism for the Aleppo Codex.
The Aleppo Codex is the oldest existing manuscript of the TNAKH, The Hebrew Bible.
The Aleppo Codex, or The Aleppo Manuscript was NOT written in Allepo. It was written in Tiberius, the Israeli city by the Sea of Galilee in 930 C.E./A.D. from the Biblical texts as handed down for centuries by the schools of the Masorites, a Jewish People.
The Codex, or the Manuscript was later taken to the city of Aleppo by a fifth generation descendant of Maimonides, the famous Jewish sage who immigrated to Aleppo. And he took the Codex with him. That is where the Aleppo Codex got its name.
In 1948 when the war for Israel’s independence broke out, anti-Jewish rioting began in Aleppo where there was a large Jewish community. And the great Synagogue that was built in the fifth century that housed the Aleppo Codex was desecrated and looted and partially burned. But eventually the Aleppo Codex found its way to Jerusalem where it remains today in the Israel Museum in the section called The Shrine of The Book. NUMBERS 13.21-22, GENESIS 15.17-21, GENESIS 17.7-8
NUMBERS 21.4 So the People journeyed from Mount Hor which is in today’s Sinai Peninsula by the Gulf of Aqaba. The Gulf of Aqaba is a narrow strip of the Red Sea that flows to the southern tip of Israel.
And it was a long journey south for the Children of Israel because the Edomites, the descendants of Esau would not allow Israel to pass through their country. So Israel had to journey down to the Gulf of Aqaba to go around Edom and up to Canaan, the Promised Land. NUMBERS 20.14-21
And the Children of Israel were discouraged because their journey from Egyptian slavery to Canaan was hard and difficult.
And sometimes being GOD’S Chosen People as are the Jewish People, and as is the non-Jewish Person who serves The LORD, and is grafted in with the Jewish People, life can be difficult at times also. And The Bible says, the soul of the People was much discouraged because of the way. ISAIAH 56.6-7
NUMBERS 21.5-6 And again the People spoke against GOD, and against Moses, saying, Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in this wilderness? There is no bread or water here. And we are disgusted with this light bread that apparently was manna.
And The LORD sent fiery serpents among the People, and they bit the People. And many of the People of Israel died.
This was a journey of forty hard years from Egyptian slavery. That slavery looked pretty good to some of the People compared to forty hard years of travel on foot through the wilderness where The LORD their GOD led them, some three million People. And humbled them, and tested them, as we are sometimes tested by GOD. To know what is in our heart. Whether we will keep His Commandments, His Statutes and His Laws, or not. DEUTERONOMY 8.2
This journey to the Promised Land happened some 3,400 years ago. Heaven can also be called the Promised Land.
But 3,400 years ago there were no airplanes, no El Al flights from Egypt to Israel in thirty minutes. But rather from Egypt to the new Jewish Homeland for Israel in forty years by foot. In wagons, on camels, on horseback, and mule. Living in tents and booths. Eating manna and quail every day. Fighting wars with nations that hated them, who wanted them killed.
This was a tough trip, and they became discouraged. And life today can sometimes be tough and discouraging for us.
But I think of Paul’s words that read, “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed to us.” ROMANS 8.18
But this forty year journey to the Promised Land proved that GOD keeps His Word. Even in impossible situations, He brought His People to the Land He Promised them. To give them their own Homeland, The Land of Israel.
GOD showed His People His greatness, His power, His wonderful and marvelous works. His miracles, and His love and mercy.
GOD protected His People, and watched over them, He led them, and taught His people His Word and His Laws that man does not live by bread only, but by every Word that proceeds out of the Mouth of The LORD does man live.
And GOD miraculously fed His people and their animals thousands upon thousands of meals daily where there were no stores or McDonalds.
He protected them in a harsh desert climate day and night.
And led them by a cloud in the day time, and a pillar of fire in night time.
And GOD defended His People in wars they never wanted, and never started. Until they entered Canaan where the Jewish People with GOD’S great help destroyed the Canaanites and conquered their land for their own Homeland.
And GOD caused His People to be slaves in Egypt for 400 years to make of Israel a great nation. From seventy People to some three million. To bring them into their own Homeland where Israel has been the Jewish Homeland for 3,400 years. GENESIS 12.2
GOD showed His glory and His Being to His People daily.
He taught His People to be Holy, pleasing to The LORD,
To love our neighbor as we love ourselves. DEUTERONOMY 8.3, LEVITICUS 19. 2, 18
GOD TAUGHT HIS PEOPLE TO BE JEWISH BECAUSE THE GOD OF CREATION, THEIR FATHER IS JEWISH. ISAIAH 9.5, CHRISTIAN BIBLE ISAIAH 9.6, MATTHEW 1.1-2, 16, DEUTERONOMY 8.3, LEVITICUS 19.2,18
GOD also showed His anger to His Jewish People because we provoked Him to anger.
And yet, GOD chose His Jewish People to be His Chosen People and His Witnesses to the world. To be a Holy People to The LORD THEIR GOD, and a special People to Himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth.
And the Jewish People are the People from whom The Messiah Yeshua as a human being was born.
And no people can replace the Jewish people as GOD’S Chosen People. That is foolishness, and stupid.
But non-Jewish People can become fully part of of GOD’S Chosen People by loving Israel and His Jewish People, and serving The LORD by keeping His Commandments and Laws that are written in The Law of Moses. DEUTERONOMY 7.7-8, ISAIAH 43.10, ROMANS 11.29, ISAIAH 56. 6-7, PSALM 105. 8-10, 1 CHRONICLES 16.15-17
And the Chosen of GOD, Jewish and non-Jewish People who serve GOD will face hardships in life. That we know. That we have experienced. But GOD will never leave you nor forsake you. For the battle is not yours, but GOD’S. DEUTERONOMY 31.6, 1 PETER 1.6-7
All GOD asked of His People in the wilderness was to love Him and obey Him. The same that He asks of us today. To love Him and obey Him. To love Him with all our heart and obey His every Word that proceeds out of the Mouth of GOD.
And when we do that, GOD assures us that we will spend eternity in Heaven with Him. And GOD is The Messiah Yeshua from Whom you have your Atonement. MATTHEW 4.4, LUKE 4.4 DEUTERONOMY 8.3
But the People again spoke against GOD and against Moses. The trip was wearing them out, and they acted foolishly. They revolted against GOD and Moses because things weren’t going the way they wanted them to go. And GOD sent fiery serpents among them, and they bit the people, and many died.
You know what GOD wants from us? He wants us to be humble. Humble is a word that means submissive. Submissive to GOD, not being proud or arrogant. Obedient to GOD’S Word. And The LORD will exalt you in due time.
Let’s read Peter’s words in 1 PETER 5.6-11
Jehoshophat, King of Judah was told that certain great armies were on their way to attack Judah and Jerusalem.
And Jehoshophat humbled himself before The LORD his GOD, THE MIGHTY GOD OF ISRAEL.
And GOD miraculously delivered him and his People because the battle was not theirs, but GOD’S
Let’s read 2 CHRONICLES 17.1-4 and 2 CHRONICLES 20.1-30
So yes, the battle is not yours, but GOD’S. Go to The LORD in prayer, often with a humble and a submissive heart.
Perhaps repenting of a sin or sins you might have committed. Having patience, maybe long patience, and GOD will deliver you, and give you the desires of your heart. PSALM 37.3-5, PROVERBS 16.3, MATTHEW 7.7-8, LUKE 18.1-8
Back to the wilderness where the People spoke against GOD and against Moses and got themselves into a whole lot of trouble. NUMBERS 21.7-9
The serpent of brass on the pole possessed no magic. It was just a serpent of brass on a pole.
But GOD said, when a person is bitten by a serpent, and looks at the serpent of brass on the pole, he will live. Why? Because when that person believed GOD, and did what GOD said, and looked at the serpent of brass on the pole, that person lived.
It’s as simple as that.
The same formula applies today. When you believe what GOD says in The Bible, and you do what He says, you too will live. You will live with GOD forever.
On the other hand, the person, even the person who claims to believe in Messiah Yeshua, Jesus Christ, if that person refuses to believe GOD, and will not do what GOD says in The Bible, I quote Messiah’s Words, “Not everyone that says to Me Lord, Lord shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, but he that does the WILL of My Father which is in Heaven.”
ON THE OTHER HAND, MESSIAH SAID, “FOR WHOSOEVER SHALL DO THE WILL OF GOD, THE SAME IS MY BROTHER, AND MY SISTER, AND MOTHER.” MATTHEW 7.21, MARK 3.35
GOD’S will is His Decree and His Desire. And GOD’S Decree is His Law. The will of GOD for you is to do what GOD desires of you. To obey Him by doing His Decree, His Laws that are written in The Law of Moses.
Ira Weinstein, Congregational Leader