EBible Fellowship Sunday Bible Class II – 15-Feb-2009


by Chris McCann


Let us go back to the book of Numbers, to Numbers 25, just to recap a little bit of what we were talking about last week.  In Numbers 31 (and we are going to go back there today), there are several numbers that God gives us of the spoils of victory, as there was a battle that took place between Israel and Midian.  Following the battle, they brought back to their camp all kinds of animals and hostages or captives, women and children.  Then God goes on to command them to number all the prey, to number the animals and the people together. 

We saw last week that the one main number was 840,000, which was just adding up the sheep, the beeves, the asses, and the people.  The number 84 is very important and very significant because it is used repeatedly with the time of great tribulation, the number 84.  When you add zeroes to a number or multiples of ten, it does not change the meaning of that number.  It adds a little bit more information, like completeness, because the number 10 points to completeness; but if it is 840, 8400, 840,000, or the number 84, the number 84 is teaching the same spiritual truth that God has in mind in using that number.  God did give us a Bible that is full of numbers. 

Now, why did the Lord have Israel smite Midian?  Well, in Numbers 25:1-9, it says: 

And Israel abode in Shittim, and the people began to commit whoredom with the daughters of Moab. And they called the people unto the sacrifices of their gods: and the people did eat, and bowed down to their gods. And Israel joined himself unto Baalpeor: and the anger of JEHOVAH was kindled against Israel. And JEHOVAH said unto Moses, Take all the heads of the people, and hang them up before JEHOVAH against the sun, that the fierce anger of JEHOVAH may be turned away from Israel. And Moses said unto the judges of Israel, Slay ye every one his men that were joined unto Baalpeor. And, behold, one of the children of Israel came and brought unto his brethren a Midianitish woman in the sight of Moses, and in the sight of all the congregation of the children of Israel, who were weeping before the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. And when Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, saw it, he rose up from among the congregation, and took a javelin in his hand; And he went after the man of Israel into the tent, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel. And those that died in the plague were twenty and four thousand.

I will stop reading there. 

These are the circumstances that lead Moses to command the army to go smite Midian, to vex the Midianites, because Moses said, under the inspiration of God, “They do vex us with their wiles.” 

The problem was, and it is mentioned here, Baalpeor.  Baalpeor was the problem.  The problem was the council of Balaam who counseled Moab and Midian to infiltrate or to become friendly with the people of Israel so that their daughters would go to the men of Israel; and, in turn, the men of Israel’s daughters would go with the Midianites.  As a result, there was this intermingling of the true believers, we could say, or the true people of God, with the world, which is really what it is picturing.  Being “unequally yoked” is how the New Testament puts it. 

God commands that a believer should only marry another believer.  That would be an equal yoke.  An unequal yoke is when a believer marries an unbeliever.  An unbeliever can also have a profession of faith.  There are many unbelievers today who call themselves “Christian.”  So a true believer, one who really knows that God and His Word is the truth and wants to follow it, could meet up with someone who says that they are a Christian.  To outward appearances you would not say that they were unequally yoked, except when you talk to that person and they have no real understanding of the Gospel, of the Bible.  They do not know many teachings of the Bible and they live, basically, as the world.  This, according to the Bible, would still be an unequal yoke. 

Actually, today there are even more problems and troubles.  If you have a true believer who knows that the Bible teaches that we are to come out of the church and then when they are out of the church, through circumstances, they meet someone who even seems faithful, like they have an understanding of the Bible but they are in a church and yet God has said that the church age is over—“Come out of her, My people” is the command for our day and we are never to go back—well, if this person gets together with the other person, they are unequally yoked because they will have all kinds of trouble. 

What are they going to do on Sunday?  The one understands that the Bible said that they cannot go to church, “It is the last place in the world that I would go to because Satan is ruling in all of the congregations”; but the other one does not see this at all, “What are you talking about?  The church is still teaching the same as it as always taught and the pastor is faithful; it is a good church, so I am going to church.” 

If there was ever a recipe for disaster in a marriage, this is it.  They begin this way, “Well, I will stay home, dear.  I will read my Bible while you go to church.”  Then if they have children, where are the children going to go on Sunday?  There is going to be a tug of war with one of them grabbing one arm and the other grabbing the other arm.  The poor child is going to be hauled off to church, in all probability, where there is no possibility of salvation. 

You see, that is a miserable mess.  If anyone who understands the truths of what God is teaching today concerning coming out of the churches is even considering a person as a mate who is in the church, that might even be worse than marrying a complete unbeliever who has nothing to do with the church.  At least they would say, “Okay, go read your Bible at home.  I am going to watch the game.” 

You see, there would be more compatibility with a complete atheist than there would be with someone who is in the church and who is hostile, because the churches and congregations have been given up.  They have been given up at this time.  There is still hope, yes, for some people.  There is still hope for anyone that God might save them, but the hope is in coming out of the church and leaving the church. 

To marry someone and hope, “Well, I will keep talking to them and maybe they will understand.”  Well, that is just the same thing that people have in mind when they meet someone whom they are really attracted to who does not know anything about the Gospel, “I will bring them the Gospel.  I will get them saved,” yet you cannot get anybody saved. 

For many marriages in the past, that was the hope and desire of the one partner; and it never happened.  A lot of times, they ended badly; and it would be the same thing with the idea of marrying someone in a church. 

Well, with Baalpeor, it is interesting that Balaam (if we go a little earlier in Numbers, Numbers 22:41), as Balaam was hired to curse Israel, every time he tried, he blessed Israel, because it is impossible to curse those whom God has blessed.  Israel represented the elect people of God and they could not be cursed because no one could take their salvation from them, and it says in Numbers 22:41:

And it came to pass on the morrow, that Balak took Balaam, and brought him up into the high places of Baal, that thence he might see the utmost part of the people.

Now, it is from those high places that Balaam was attempting to curse Israel. 

Over in Numbers 23:28, it says: 

And Balak brought Balaam unto the top of Peor, that looketh toward Jeshimon.

Then they prepared their sacrifice and Balaam sought the word of the Lord, but that is Baalpeor.  In each of the three instances that Balaam went into the high places to view Israel, he was offering sacrifice but not according, really, to how God specifies in His Word.  Baal worship was idolatry.  Even though Balaam, at times, speaks of Jehovah, he was a false prophet who was doing things contrary to the way in which God would want them to be done. 

After this encounter at Peor when he tried to curse Israel and God made him to bless them, in all probability, this is when he had a discussion with Balak regarding teaching Balak to deceitfully use romantic relationships in order to become friends with the people of Israel. 

This is what Moses says in Numbers 31.  In Numbers 31, they slew Balaam, along with five kings of Midian.  When they came back from the battle of destroying the Midianites, they brought the spoil; they brought all of the animals. 

Also, it says in Numbers 31:11-18: 

And they took all the spoil, and all the prey, both of men and of beasts. And they brought the captives, and the prey, and the spoil, unto Moses, and Eleazar the priest, and unto the congregation of the children of Israel, unto the camp at the plains of Moab, which are by Jordan near Jericho. And Moses, and Eleazar the priest, and all the princes of the congregation, went forth to meet them without the camp. And Moses was wroth with the officers of the host, with the captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, which came from the battle. And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive? Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against JEHOVAH in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of JEHOVAH. Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

You see, it was a very serious matter that Israel fell into idolatrous worship and spiritual fornication or adultery with Baal through the council of Balaam, which was to get the women and the men of Israel, the young men, together and so forth, and Israel did fall for it.  Remember that we read in Numbers 25 that an Israelite man brought a Midianitish woman into the camp in the sight of everyone. 

Now, on one hand, those poor people, that poor couple.  If it was today, who would have noticed or cared?  Anything goes today.  But, you see, they were living at a time when God was writing the Bible and God wanted to make an example of them.  So they came into the camp, a young couple in love—this is how the world would view it.  It is even noteworthy; it is noble that these two were breaking barriers.  They were coming together.  So they come into the camp without a care in the world, probably holding hands and everything is wonderful, and yet a plague has begun within the camp of Israel because of this very matter of Baalpeor, that Israel is disobeying the law of God, the command of God, to remain faithful to God’s Word, which says that you do not become unequally yoked.  So Eleazar rises up and runs after this man and woman into the tent with the javelin, which is a spear, and he thrusts them through the belly, both of them.  He kills them and the plague is stayed.  The plague is stopped.  It killed 24,000 people, 24,000 in total. 

How many did it kill in one day?  23,000, and then the next day or thereafter, one other thousand died, because we know that 1 Corinthians 10:8 tells us this: 

Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand.

Now, God is in control of who lives and who dies and when we live and when we die, and so He had 23,000 die in one day in order to prove a point, to tie in that idolatrous situation with the number 23 and the completeness of that number, which relates to the great tribulation at the end of the world that we are currently in.  Then God had another 1,000 die after that day at another point in time. 

This is how we harmonize Scripture and can reconcile the two passages that give two different numbers.  It is always a test and it is always a trap that God sets; it is a snare.  For anyone who does not want to believe the Bible, God gives verses like this where someone can say that there is a mistake, but there is no mistake.  Actually, this just shows the precision and the accuracy of the Word of God and that God is so exact in everything that He does. 

Here, there are 23,000 who died because of the plague.  So as a result of the intermingling with the Midianites, God tells Moses to vex them, to slay them.  Numbers 31:1-2: 

And JEHOVAH spake unto Moses, saying, Avenge the children of Israel of the Midianites: afterward shalt thou be gathered unto thy people.

So they were to destroy Midian.  Following that, Moses would be gathered. 

Now, the interesting thing is that the Israelites had just wandered through the wilderness for 40 years.  They were in their 40th year and they were at their last encampment, which was at Shittim.  They were at Shittim, which was the 42nd encampment.  You can find this out in Numbers 33.  You go through and just number each one of the movements, because it gives us the whole outline of the movements during the wilderness sojourn.  The last one mentioned is in Number 33:49: 

And they pitched by Jordan, from Bethjesimoth even unto Abelshittim in the plains of Moab. 

This says, “Abelshittim,” but back in Numbers 25:1, it said: 

And Israel abode in Shittim, and the people began to commit whoredom with the daughters of Moab. 

Well, the reference to Abelshittim in Numbers 33 is the only reference to Abelshittim.  This is the only time that this word “Abel” is put in front of “Shittim.” 

If we go to Joshua 2:1, it says: 

And Joshua the son of Nun sent out of Shittim two men to spy secretly… 

Or go to Joshua 3:1: 

And Joshua rose early in the morning; and they removed from Shittim, and came to Jordan, he and all the children of Israel, and lodged there before they passed over. 

So Shittim was the 42nd encampment, by the river Jordan.  From there, they crossed the Jordan into the promised land.  They did not make any further movements on that side of the river.  That was the last spot, even though it is called “Abelshittim” in Numbers 33. 

The word “Abel” is not a reference to Abel who was the son of Adam and Eve.  It is not a reference to him.  The word “Abel” there means “meadow.”  “Shittim” means “acacia tree.”  So it is the “meadow of the acacia tree” in Numbers 33.  In other places where it speaks of Shittim, it is just referring to the tree. 

So it is sad, but we understand what is going on.  Here, it is the very last camp, the very last, number 42.  They are right near the river Jordan and soon they are going to cross over.  Moses will die.  They know that it is the 40th year.  They know that God told them that they would wander in the wilderness for forty years, each year for a day that they searched out the land when they came back with their evil report, and yet they cannot help themselves from going after a false god.  This has been their nature.  It is their character throughout the wilderness sojourn.  Now at the end, they go after this false worship of Baal in the matter of Baalpeor.  God destroys 23,000 of them, and that number 23 is related to the great tribulation, as well as the number 42. 

Now, when we were looking at the numbers in Numbers 31:26-27, it goes on to say there: 

Take the sum of the prey that was taken, both of man and of beast, thou, and Eleazar the priest, and the chief fathers of the congregation: And divide the prey into two parts; between them that took the war upon them… 

Those are the 12,000 soldiers. 

…who went out to battle, and between all the congregation: 

They brought the spoil of victory back, and then God says “Divide it; divide it into two parts.  One part goes to the 12,000 soldiers” (and that was pretty good pay; that was really pretty good pay when we see the amount of spoil there was); “the other parts goes to the congregation.”  It was to be divided evenly. 

Numbers 31:32:

And the booty, being the rest of the prey which the men of war had caught… 

Now, it says, “the rest of the prey.”  Remember earlier, they slew the women who had known man and the little boys.  So this is the residue or remnant of the prey, because God said, “Take the sum of the prey, both of man and beast.” 

So man was considered part of the prey, and they killed probably tens of thousands of women who knew man and little boys.  We do not know how many.  We do know the number of young ladies and young girls who were left.  Those who did not know man were 32,000.  So this was a pretty significant number of people whom they had brought back after the battle. 

I know that it sounds awful that God, through Moses, had them kill the little boys and the women that knew man, those who had relations with men, but keep in mind that what is going on here is teaching us about May 21st in 2011.  Is God going to slay little children at that time?  Little boys?  Yes.  If they are not saved, they will be destroyed.  What about women?  Yes.  Women will also be destroyed on that day. 

There is no age restriction.  God is not a respecter of persons.  The soul that sins, it shall die.  Whether young or old, whether male or female, the soul that sins, it shall die, or he or she shall die, and the only way to escape that destruction is through the salvation of the Lord Jesus Christ.  There is no other way. 

Here, God is indicating that, yes, it is a terrible time of destruction; but then in Numbers 31:32-35: 

And the booty, being the rest of the prey which the men of war had caught, was six hundred thousand and seventy thousand and five thousand sheep.

That is 675,000 sheep. 

And threescore and twelve thousand beeves,

That word “beeves” is translated as “calf,” “cow,” and “heifer,” in various ways.  In all probability, they were various animals, even like a bullock.  The word “beeves” expands the meaning so that you do not have to say that there were so many cows; there could have been other similar types of animals. 

And threescore and twelve thousand beeves,

That would be 72,000. 

And threescore and one thousand asses, 

That is 61,000. 

And thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him. 

Did anyone add this up over the last week?  I hope that you are not trusting my math.  Did anyone add this up?  You should have.  It is 840,000, and you should check this out.  It is 840,000; the number 84. 

This is because the Lord is teaching us that this has to do with May 21st, 2011.  Why?  Why would I say this?  Because May 21 st, 2011, is the end of 23 years.  This is a matter of Baalpeor, after 23,000 are slain.  At the end of 23 years of the great tribulation will come the resurrection of the dead, the rapture of God’s people, and that awful five-month period of destruction across the face of the earth, and the number 23, or 23 years, is 8400 days. 

It is God’s doing that He worked that out this way, because the number 84 has everything to do with the great tribulation.  The famine in Joseph’s day was a picture of the great tribulation; 7 years of famine x 12 months = 84 months.  The 70-year judgment on Judah, with the destruction by the Babylonians and going into captivity, is related to 84.  70 x 12 is 840 months, and there are 3 ˝ days mentioned in Revelation 11, which is 84 hours.  The last half of Daniel’s week: a week has 168 hours, the last half, from the cross until May 21st, 2011, is 84 hours.  If you take 7,000 years from the flood, multiplied by 12, it is 84,000 months, which ends on May 21st, 2011, to the very month, to the day and month, because that is the 17th day of the 2nd month: 84, 84, 84. 

It is not just the great tribulation, but the end.  That is the 8400th day.  The periods that are from the beginning, in between, and all the way up are not really associated with 84.  84 comes to the very end of the great tribulation, and here is a battle after the 42nd encampment, and the number 42 relates to the great tribulation.  There were 42 children who mocked Elisha.  Let us go to 2 Kings 2:23-24:

And he went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head. And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the name of JEHOVAH. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them. 

In Proverbs, it speaks of a wicked ruler being like a ranging bear, which has in view Satan, Satan who is ruling in the churches and congregations where little children are found.  According to the Apostle John, “I write unto you, little children,” and he is writing to the church, and here the church has lost all respect for the true Word of God.  They are mocking a faithful man of God, and the number 42 is not a coincidence or an accident.  God destroys them with two she bears to teach us that this is the character of the great tribulation, where the little children are torn up and they are destroyed.  They are killed and that is what is going on today. 

Let us go to 2 Kings 10:13-14: 

Jehu met with the brethren of Ahaziah king of Judah, and said, Who are ye? And they answered, We are the brethren of Ahaziah; and we go down to salute the children of the king and the children of the queen. And he said, Take them alive. And they took them alive, and slew them at the pit of the shearing house, even two and forty men; neither left he any of them. 

Again, Jehu was commissioned by God to destroy the house of Ahab, as Satan has been commissioned to destroy the churches and congregations.  42 relatives of Ahaziah were killed. 

Go back a couple of chapters in 2 Kings to 2 Kings 8:25-26: 

In the twelfth year of Joram the son of Ahab king of Israel did Ahaziah the son of Jehoram king of Judah begin to reign. Two and twenty years old was Ahaziah when he began to reign; and he reigned one year in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Athaliah, the daughter of Omri king of Israel.

So he was 22 and then he reigned one year, so how old would he be?  He would be 23.  There is that number 23. 

Well, God also says of this same man in another passage that he was 42.  Ahaziah was 42; one place said that he was 22 and the other place said that he was 42.  For a couple of different reasons, God wants to identify him with the great tribulation.  He reigned one year, so the number 23 identifies him; but also, in another place, it says that he was 42 because that ties in with the number associated with great tribulation. 

How can God say that he was 22 and 42?  It has to do with the house of Omri and Ahab, with that line.  He was of that line that God had cursed, and so it goes back 20 years prior to the time when he became king.  He was actually 22, but his house, the house of Omri, goes back, and so God speaks of him as being 42. 

The passage where God speaks of Ahaziah as being 42 is found in 2 Chronicles 22:2: 

Forty and two years old was Ahaziah when he began to reign, and he reigned one year in Jerusalem. His mother’s name also was Athaliah the daughter of Omri.

So we know that this is exactly the same person. 

Do you see how God is using 23 and 42 with this individual because he is going to be killed and his relatives are going to be killed, 42 of them?  It is the great tribulation.  It is the time of God’s judgment upon His people. 

If we go to Revelation 11, we also find the number 42.  Revelation 11:2:

But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.

Or 3 ˝ years, but the number 42 is used in association with months: 42 months. 

Go to Revelation 13:5, speaking of the beast who is Satan, as the beast is the name that God gives Satan during the time, especially, of the great tribulation: 

And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.

So 42 has to do with great tribulation.  You have 840,000 souls, beasts and men, or people; they were actually all women or female.  840,000 souls divided in half, what number do you get?  420,000 and 420,000, or the number 42 in multiples of 10. 

God tells them to divide it in half, and now they have two halves: 420,000 and 420,000.  But there is now a formula because the Lord has to take His tribute, and then there is also a portion for, I think, the congregation, which goes to the Levites. 

Here is the formula.  In math, you are given formulas to come to your answers.  It says in Numbers 31:28: 

And levy a tribute unto JEHOVAH of the men of war which went out to battle: one soul of five hundred, both of the persons, and of the beeves, and of the asses, and of the sheep:

One out of 500.  What is the percentage of that?  It is about a 20th of one percent.  If you took one of 500, it would be two out of 1000.  From there, you can count on.  But God actually does the math a little further, after He gives the amounts of the prey.  After it is divided, He says in Numbers 31:32-40: 

And the booty, being the rest of the prey which the men of war had caught, was six hundred thousand and seventy thousand and five thousand sheep. And threescore and twelve thousand beeves, And threescore and one thousand asses, And thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him. And the half, which was the portion of them that went out to war, was in number three hundred thousand and seven and thirty thousand and five hundred sheep: And JEHOVAH’S tribute of the sheep was six hundred and threescore and fifteen (675). And the beeves were thirty and six thousand; of which JEHOVAH’S tribute was threescore and twelve (72). And the asses were thirty thousand and five hundred; of which JEHOVAH’S tribute was threescore and one (61). And the persons were sixteen thousand; of which JEHOVAH’S tribute was thirty and two persons.

So add it up: 675 + 72 + 61 + 32.  What do you get?  You get 840 exactly.  There are 840 for Jehovah’s tribute.  There are 840,000 souls.  If you divide them in half, you have 420,000.  Now, Jehovah wants a tribute from that.  I think that it was identified as a heave offering.  A heave offering, many times, is like the shoulder portion of an animal.  We are not to think that the people were sacrificed, because there were 16 persons amongst that number; they probably would have done service in the temple as part of Jehovah’s tribute.  But there were 840 and that is the second time that we see 84, and there is more.  There is another formula because there is the other half of the animals. 

If we go back to Numbers 31:29-30: 

Take it of their half, and give it unto Eleazar the priest, for an heave offering of JEHOVAH. And of the children of Israel’s half, thou shalt take one portion of fifty, of the persons, of the beeves, of the asses, and of the flocks, of all manner of beasts, and give them unto the Levites, which keep the charge of the tabernacle of JEHOVAH.

Now, what is one out of 50?  That percentage is 2%; it would be two out of 100.  So it is a higher percentage than the Lord’s tribute, which was a 20th of a percent.  This is 2%.  Out of 420,000 souls, you take 2%. 

Now, God did not do the math on this.  He did not spell it out like He did with the Lord’s tribute and tell us the exact numbers, but I did.  For the tribute to the people, the sheep are 337,500, and 1 out of 50 or 2% would be 6750.  For the beeves, it was 36,000; 2% would be 720.  For the asses of 30,500 would be 610.  And for the persons of 16,000, it would be 320, totaling 8400—84.  An easier way of doing it, we have 840 for the Lord’s tribute x 10, because 1 out of 50 is 10 more than 1 out of 500, and you get 8400. 

So this is the third time in the same chapter that God is dealing with numbers of a booty or a prey that He relates to the time of the great tribulation and He is giving us the number 84, 84, 84.  It is His purpose (because it is done three times) that we understand that on May 21st, 2011, on the 8400th day of the great tribulation will be the time when the spoils are taken from this world.  The prey is taken out of the world. 

Does God look on what is going on in this world as a battle?  Yes, a spiritual battle has been raging throughout history between the Kingdom of God and the kingdom of Satan, the Kingdom of Light and the kingdom of darkness, and the spoils are taken. 

When a strongman keeps his house, what do you have to do?  You have to bind the strongman and then you are able to spoil his house, and that is what Christ did to Satan.  Yes, He has been taking the spoils all throughout history in saving individuals.  During the church age, He took the spoils in plundering Satan’s house, but when is the grand finale?  When is the most tremendous gathering of the spoils going to happen?  It is going to happen when the great multitude comes out of great tribulation.  When are they going into heaven and when will the victory be won, ultimately and finally and completely?  It will be won on the day of resurrection and the day of rapture, which is the 8400th day of the great tribulation when God will gather His people together and He will gather the spoils. 

Now, there is a lot more in this chapter.  A couple of these things, I want to look at.  If you go to Numbers 31:48-49, it says: 

And the officers which were over thousands of the host, the captains of thousands, and captains of hundreds, came near unto Moses: And they said unto Moses, Thy servants have taken the sum of the men of war which are under our charge, and there lacketh not one man of us.

The captains of thousands and the captains of hundreds would have been 12 captains of thousands because it was 12,000 men, and 120 captains of hundreds because in each thousand there would have been 10 captains of hundreds; totaling 132 captains.  They took a census of the army and they looked at the soldiers who went to the battle and this is their casualty report.  They did not lose a single man, not one person.  That is impossible, apart from the mighty hand of God and Him performing a miracle. 

You know, we are not talking about a nuclear strike.  We are not talking about modern-day warfare where you bomb them from a distance and you destroy the cities of Midian and their kings.  This was up close with a sword and a spear.  12,000 men of Israel marched on these Midianite cities.  Just gauged on the number of captives of females, children, and young ladies who did not know man of 32,000, there had to be tens of thousands of men.  Tens of thousands of men who would have been desperate to protect their family and desperate to protect their city and king and country, and they all died but not one Israelite.  Wow! 

Even today, with modern warfare and tanks and planes and long-range missiles, there are deaths.  If you remember when America bombed Iraq in the early days, there were casualty reports from the American side through accidents or through mistakes.  You know, it is inevitable; there have to be some.  But here, with the battle face-to-face and weapons like that, how could not even one Israelite die?  That is amazing! 

Now, there is a reference in 2 Samuel where there is a battle between Abner and Joab.  They were fighting for a period of time, and it says in 2 Samuel 2:30-31: 

And Joab returned from following Abner: and when he had gathered all the people together, there lacked of David’s servants nineteen men and Asahel.

There were 20 who died. 

But the servants of David had smitten of Benjamin, and of Abner’s men, so that three hundred and threescore men died (360).

In that battle, 20 men of David, who were mighty men, died battling Abner who lost 360.  Now, with that ratio, you would have to say, wow, that was a wonderful battle for David’s men, that they won the victory even though they lost 20 battling several hundred of Abner’s people.  You see, that is realistic and that is understandable.  You would still say that it was great and tremendous that so few of David’s men died.  But to have nobody die and to bring back the spoil of the Midianites could only happen because of God. 

This makes us think of another battle in 2 Chronicles 20 of Jehoshaphat and his men who were told, “You have no need to fight in this battle, for the battle is the Lord’s,” and we know that this battle is the Lord’s because Jehoshaphat and his men are picturing God’s people who are taken up into heaven.  When they go to the watchtower in the wilderness on the cliff of Ziz, it is as though they are watching right from Heaven itself where no harm can come to them, and then they see all their enemies as dead men because God fought for them and had them slay one another.  Yet in that battle, Israel lost none and the enemy lost all, and that is the battle that we are talking about in Numbers 31.  The enemy lost everything and Israel lost nothing and they gathered the spoils. 

Why don’t we go to 2 Chronicles 20.  In 2 Chronicles 20:25, it says after they had gone to view all of the dead:

And when Jehoshaphat and his people came to take away the spoil of them, they found among them in abundance both riches with the dead bodies, and precious jewels, which they stripped off for themselves, more than they could carry away: and they were three days in gathering of the spoil, it was so much. 

You see, the people of God inherit the earth.  We inherit the earth.  This is the spoil of the war, of the battle.  We inherit the new heavens and the new earth, eternal life.  We are going to be with the Lord forevermore.  It is a tremendous reward that God gives His people, each and every one getting the same reward of eternal life, and that is what is in view. 

Now, I do not know if we are going to come back to Numbers 31 to discuss more information because I do not know if there is enough there to warrant another hour of study, so I will just mention this now.  God said to Moses in Numbers 31:2: 

Avenge the children of Israel of the Midianites: afterward shalt thou be gathered unto thy people. 

This is referring to Moses who was 120 years old.  This is the same length of time as what?  Before the flood, in Genesis 6, God numbered their days to 120 years.  And it was in the 120th year that God came to Noah and said, “Yet seven days.”  So after 120 years, the flood came and it was the end of the first world.  Really, it pictures also the end of our world, the end of time, as Moses was 120 years old when God took him. 

Why did God take him?  I know that there is spiritual meaning with him representing the law and smiting the rock and that the law cannot bring us into the promised land, but I think that there is more there, too, that God took him.  God makes a point of telling us, “his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated.”  In other words, he was perfectly healthy.  He was perfectly healthy.  He could have lived on, but God said, “No, you are not going over into Canaan after this 42nd encampment.”  They did go over into Canaan, into the promised land, which pictures heaven after that 42nd encampment.  “You are not going to go, but rather you are going to die,” and God killed him.  He just took his spirit.  God buried him and no man knows where.  He died, but, amazingly, in the New Testament, we find that he is on the Mount of Transfiguration with Elijah and the Lord Jesus. 

So God, at some point, resurrected him.  He resurrected him.  Why God would go through the trouble of burying him just to resurrect him later?  I do not know.  But then in the Epistle of Jude, the devil and Michael the Archangel are contending about the body of Moses. 

What was the devil’s complaint or contention?  “Well, I understand Elijah; he never died.  I understand Enoch; he was taken up and he never died.  Moses died.  Why did You resurrect him?”  He resurrected Moses, “Because after you smite the Midianites, you will be gathered unto your people because it is typifying the end of the 120 years of the flood, it is typifying the end of the 8400th day, which will happen on May 21st, 2011, and on that day, it is the day of resurrection, and so Moses was resurrected.”  I think that is one of the ways that we can understand this.  There is a lot more. 

You know, Moses is interesting as God writes about him in the Bible.  For instance, God also says that death reigned from Adam to Moses, and He had reasons for saying that.  We know that people have been continuing to die since then and that God gave that statement for a very specific reason, but it also tells us in a symbolic way that following Moses, as he is resurrected, that death ceased to reign because there is victory.  There is victory over death on May 21st

Okay, let us stop here.