Because it’s so important, let’s go over the established God-pattern of redemption given to us in the Torah thus far.
And remember, “redemption” is simply the proper Biblical word for what the gentile church calls “salvation”.
Here is the 2-step pattern and I think while studying this formula you will recall many things you went through in your personal walk of faith with the Lord.
STEP ONE-GOD RESCUED OR “REDEEMED” ISRAEL FROM EGYPT:
Understand that when God removed Israel from Egypt, it was a surgery of major portions for both Israel and Egypt.
Egypt pretty much lost their labor force which is why the Pharaoh was so violently reluctant to let them go.
And, for Israel, although they were slaves, their redemption from Israel was a painful removal from everything of which they were familiar.
Within the space of literally about 24 hours they were uprooted from what had been their homes for centuries and thrust into the unknown!!!
Now when you’re thrust into the unknown, what happens?
I’ll tell you what happens!!!
All of your fears and insecurities, literally all of your weaknesses as a human being come out.
When you’re full of anxiety and scared, our first natural response is to want to turn back to the familiar and what we’ve known all our lives even though God has instructed us that we are NOT to go back to Egypt.
Keep this in mind when studying Numbers and don’t be so quick to judge the Israelites for their lapses in faith when things get tough on their journey.
It takes time and in some cases many, many years to be remolded into God’s image.
Recall this statement from the Prophet Isaiah.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
and your ways are not my ways,” says Adonai.
As high as the sky is above the earth
are my ways higher than your ways,
and my thoughts than your thoughts.“
Darn, this post is becoming much longer than I wanted it to be.
STEP TWO-THE LORD BEGINS TEACHING ISRAEL HIS WAYS
Once some distance was placed between Israel’s former way of life and the present, God began teaching Israel His ways.
And how was this accomplished?
Through the very TORAH we have been studying together over the past couple of years.
And remember TORAH means “teaching“, it does NOT mean Law!
I want you to think really hard about this point I just made.
It is through God’s instructions, rules, and commands that we learn about who God is!!!
Gentiles carry a serious misperception when it comes to God’s Torah.
They view it as being human-centric, in other words they view God’s commands as being a list of DOs and DON’Ts for human beings.
Here’s the truth.
The commands in the Torah are ALL ABOUT God!
They are a reflection of God’s HOLINESS!!!
Taken as a whole, God’s commands comprise the very definition of YHWH’s HOLINESS.
For instance, when you choose not to eat unclean foods, at that moment you are reflecting God’s HOLINESS.
So remember this divine 2-step pattern that was established nearly 3000 years ago.
First comes redemption (or “salvation”).
Second comes learning about God via His Commands.
The problem with Christianity is that since they’ve thrown the Torah in the trash, they teach that the knowledge of God is only to come to us through some whacky esoteric or mystical process via the Holy Spirit.
Take a look at the Pentecostal church for example.
They have people bouncing over benches, barking like dogs, babbling in tongues, and in general going into crazy states of delirium all at the supposed leading of the “Holy Spirit“.
There is practically zero emphasis placed on learning God’s commands, in fact the opposite is true.
Christians are taught to avoid God’s commands because one might be in danger of attempting to “earn their salvation“.
It’s unfortunate the church teaches that nothing outside of one’s salvation experience matters when the truth is one’s salvation experience is just the beginning.
There is absolutely NOTHING in Scripture that says once we’ve been saved it’s okay to just sit on our butts for the rest of our lives!
Your redemption is just the beginning.
And here’s something else to chew on.
Was Israel saved by the “knowledge” of God?
Or were they saved by a “work” of God?
Were all of the awesome plagues that freed Israel from slavery an intellectual thing that only occurred inside the mind of God?
Or was it an awesome work of God that occurred in the physical world?
Are we not to imitate our Father in Heaven?
If so, then we have to get off our butts and OBEY His commands.
You can’t philosophize or intellectualize your way into a deep relationship with our Father in Heaven.
If you want to know your Father in Heaven, you have to OBEY HIS COMMANDS!