Central to this last week’s Parashah (Numbers 8:1-12:16) is our namesake “Beha’alotcha,” or, “when you set up,” is if’s opening passage in stating,
“… Tell Aharon, When you set up the lamps, the seven lamps are to cast their light forward the front of the menorah.” (vs. 1-2) For every serious student of Scripture, a survey of these verses reveals two important points which we should not miss.
First, we discover that there were ministerial duties that God had designated for the cohanim to performed and secondly, and as part of their priestly duties, they were to ensure that the lights of lampstands in the Mishkan were to stay lid and to illuminate in the direction of the Menorah at all times. In this, the Levitical duties of the Cohanim in Beha’alotcha are significant in that such service could only be performed by a cohen and because of their sacred service, all others in the household of Israel, under the leadership of Moshe (Numbers 12:7) were able to reap its benefit.
In reading the Book of Numbers, two points stand out that the cohanim alone were called of God to serve in the Temple and if a non-Levite were to perform priestly duties, they would be judged and even put to death by Adonai! This is a strong reminder for us in our calling as both Jews and like-minded Gentile believers in Yeshua in seeking out the callings that Messiah has given each and everyone of us. In this however, the lesson is not that an infraction could result in capital punishment, but instead, as a reminder from our loving Heavenly Father that we all have distinct callings and tasks within the Kingdom of God, as we work together to fulfill Tikkun Olam and God’s purposes on earth.
With the purposes of the Priests and non-priests alike, all of Israel has a calling, a mission and responsibility in stating, “…The people of Israel acted in accordance with everything that Adonai had ordered Moshe in regards to the L’vi’im.” It was not that non-Levites had less of an important role to play, but instead that each tribe and individual bore the equal responsibility to uphold the covenant and be faithful to God. This is equally true for us as Messianic believers where Rav Sha’ul (Paul) strongly exhorts, “… Let each person live the life the Lord has assigned him and live in the condition he was when God called him…”. (1 Corinthians 7:17-20) Sha’ul’s instruction here was clear that Jews are called to remain as Jews, and Gentiles were called of God to remain in the state in which they were called. For non-Jews in Messiah, becoming Jewish was never really to be the issue or goal, but instead we both as a Jews and Gentiles are called of God to keep the commandments of Adonai.
Dear friends, lets embrace and walk out this prophetic calling as both Jews and Gentiles together!
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