First United Methodist Church of Conway, South Carolina
Saturday, October 21, 2017

Week 8

Annotated Reading Guide
February 15-21 – Numbers 26 – Deuteronomy 26
Feb 15: Numbers 26-30
   Another pair of censuses is taken of the generation who will enter the Promised Land. First with the twelve tribes and then with a census of the Levites, who assist the high priest at the sanctuary. The only significant change in the census is for the tribe of Simeon. The loss of 37,100 may be a result of the sin of the Simeonite man in chapter 25.
   Women were usually considered to the responsibility men in their lives. The rules in chapter 30 pertain to that responsibility
Feb 16: Numbers 31-36
   Seeing the lush pastures east of the Jordan River, the tribes of Reuben and Gad ask to settle there, instead of crossing the Jordan to settle in the Promised Land.  Part of the half-tribe of Manasseh joins them. Permission is granted provided they first help with the conquest of the Promised Land. Because they do not completely conquer the land, t he Israelites will have a constant struggle with its inhabitants.  Despite the boundaries given for the Promised Land, not all of the western portion will be taken.
   The concept of cities of refuge is seen in the role of Christian churches as places of sanctuary even in the modern era. This was seen as recently as in the fall of East Germany in the latter part of the 20th century.
Feb 17: Deuteronomy 1-3
   Deuteronomy is a recollection of the laws and the wilderness experience. It is given to the Israelites on the eastern side of the Jordan River before they enter the Promised Land. Mount Sinai is referred to as Mount Horeb in Deuteronomy. It has been suggested that Horeb is general name for the region in which Sinai is the highest peak.  Remember that the Moabites and Ammonites were the descendants of Lot incestuous relationship.
   Moses is denied entry into the land as a result of not carefully following God’s instructions at Meribath-kadesh (Numbers 20:1-13).  Instead of speaking to the tock (remember that God creates through the word) Moses strikes the rock instead, thereby assuming some of the credit for the miracle.
Feb 18: Deuteronomy 4-5
   The Ten Commandments are repeated.
Feb 19: Deuteronomy 6-11
   The Great Commandment is given. These verses are known as the Shema (Hebrew for “hear” in 6:4). These important words are to be kept in one’s heart, taught to one’s children, bound on the hand and forehead and posted on one’s doorposts.  Visitors to Jerusalem see these instructions literally followed by the use of phylacteries and mezuzahs.
   Notice the emphasis on remembering God’s acts of deliverance, and passing that along to future generations through worship.
Feb 20 & 21:           Deuteronomy 12-18 and Deuteronomy 19-26
   These chapters contain laws that elaborate on the central themes of the Ten Commandments.