Primitive Christianity Revived, Again
Numbers 33 - Recounts in detail the route the Israelites take into the Promised Land and the division of that land: Egypt to Sinai (42 stations in all).
Sinai to Kadesh; then Mt. Hor to Ezion-geber; and finally, Ezion-geber to the Plains of Moab. Moses tells the people when they enter the lands the Lord is giving them and destroy the stone figures and images of the people whose land they will be taking. “[I]f you fail to drive out the people who live in the land,…Continue
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 23, 2013 at 5:31am — No Comments
May 22, 2013
In this month’s “Communicator,” the yearly meeting’s newsletter, Indiana Yearly Meeting’s Superintendent, Doug…Continue
Numbers 31 - Twelve thousand men, 1000 from each of the tribes, are sent out by Moses to attack the Midianites and execute vengeance upon them in the name of the Lord. Phinehas is the priest of the campaign.
Every male is killed, plus five kings, and Balaam--women and children are taken captive along with other booty. They are taken to Moses at his camp on the plains of Moab. Moses becomes angry with the officers for their having spared the…Continue
Numbers 29 - Continuing on with this reprise of the sacrificial offerings throughout the year:
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 21, 2013 at 5:30am — No Comments
No one knows better than a person of German ancestry the shame at disgust. Whether idleness when there is work to be done or laziness when things need to be cleaned and put away, the disgust of waste shames those who do not suffer inactivity well. But from whence has Quakerism's penchant for activism arisen?
Is it derived from a puritanical ancestry and its ethic of work? Is it a natural balance to what seems like inactivity in our worship? Or, is it shame at our disgust of…Continue
Today, I meet with a representative of NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness. The nature of my visit is to see what resources they, as an organization, can share with us, the Meeting. A previously established program of theirs exists to educate houses of worship on these sorts of issues.…Continue
Numbers 27 – The question arises what to do with the portion of property belonging to a family if no son is left, but there are daughters. Moses consults the Lord and He tells Moses their cause is just. Daughters should be able to inherit if there are no sons. If there are no daughters, the land should go to the man’s brothers or to his father’s brothers or the nearest relative in the clan.
The Lord sends Moses up into the Abarim Mountains (east of the…Continue
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 20, 2013 at 6:23am — No Comments
Numbers 25 – Israel is encamped at Shittim (at the foot of the mountains in northeaster part of Moab). And the people go immediately astray—giving themselves to debauchery with the women of Moab and worshiping their gods. So God gets furious with them. He tells Moses that the leaders must be “impale[d]” (Jerusalem Bible 25:4). Moses turns this task over to the judges he has appointed.
Phineas (name of Egyptian origin, grandson of Aaron) executes judgment on…Continue
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 19, 2013 at 6:29am — No Comments
Numbers 23 – Balaam tells King Balak of Moab to build seven altars and to prepare seven bulls and seven rams for sacrifice on the altars. Then he goes off to consult the Lord.
When he returns, he delivers the following oracle: King Balak has called him to come and curse Israel, but “How can I curse whom God has not cursed?” (23:8) “Let me die the death of the upright, and let my end be like his!” (23:10) He can’t do it.
King Balak takes him to where…Continue
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 18, 2013 at 6:20am — No Comments
Like many Friends I watched the realignment proceedings of Indiana Yearly Meeting over the past couple years with a mixture of concern, confusion, consternation, and a strong sense that it is really none of my business. It’s like any divisive issue in the Christian church; we want to dismiss what we may perceive to be petty bickering in “our larger community” (the community of faith), but when it happens in our own little Religious Society of Friends, it’s…
Numbers 22 - The Israelites camp on the plains of Moab, across the Dead Sea from Jericho. Balak, son of Zippor (a name very like Moses’ wife, Zipporah), is the king of Moab. He is afraid of the Israelites and sends elders from Moab and Midian to Balaam of Pethor on the Euphrates.
Balaam is a pagan prophet known for his occult powers. He is asked by Balak to come and curse the intruders. Now God Himself comes to Balaam (at night so perhaps in a…Continue
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 17, 2013 at 5:32am — No Comments
May 16, 2013
The question is on her mind (her answer is no) because of a blog post by Tim Challies, a prominent evangelical, on The Boundaries of Evangelicalism.…Continue
Numbers 21 – The king of Arad, just west of the Dead Sea in the Negeb, comes out to fight the Israelites and takes some captive. Verse 3 refers to a vague later time when the Lord will deliver them up to the Israelites but that time is not now apparently.
They set out on the Red Sea road to bypass Edom; and again the people grumble against God and Moses – this time about the wretched food. The Lord sends saraph [burning] serpents to punish them, and they repent and ask…Continue
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 16, 2013 at 6:14am — No Comments
Our incoming class for the 2013-14 academic year is just beginning to take shape. We're excited to introduce to you some of our new students who will be joining us for the fall semester. Today's featured student is Angela Roesler, who is an MDiv Access student from Indianapolis, IN:…
Added by Earlham School of Religion on 5th mo. 15, 2013 at 9:20am — No Comments
Numbers 20 – The people arrive at Kadesh in the desert of Zin, southwest of the Dead Sea. Here Miriam dies. But the focus of the chapter is on another rebellion, this time over the lack of water at Kadesh. When Moses consults the Lord, He tells Moses to order water to issue from a rock to satisfy the people. When Moses does this he strikes the rock twice and orders it to yield the promised water, saying, “Listen to me, you rebels! Are we to bring water for you out of this…Continue
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 15, 2013 at 6:00am — No Comments
Numbers 19 - This reading has to do with the preparation of “lustral water” which is necessary under the law for purifying or cleansing those who have had some kind of contact with death. The water is made first of all by sacrificing an unblemished red heifer as a sin [hattat] offering, outside the camp, burning its remains with some cedar wood, hyssop and scarlet yarn, all suggestive of blood as is the color of the heifer.
The ashes from this burning are…Continue
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 14, 2013 at 6:00am — No Comments
Another interesting fundraising story from this spring: a lifelong Friend in his twenties wrote asking if he could sponsor the project for more than the typical $10/month plan. He explained that he was going to be living in the area of the world without an active Quaker community, and planned on using online forums like QuakerQuaker as his means of staying in touch with the Quaker world. He wanted to set up a donation schedule that matched what…Continue
May 13, 2103
For a very long while the Bible was clearly an unfinished work. I believe it is still.
The books in the Hebrew Testament were written over several centuries, probably most before 500 BCE. The set of books we have today were in final form by about 100 BCE – that is a few decades before Jesus’s birth. The books in the New Testament were mostly written in…Continue
Added by Doug Bennett on 5th mo. 13, 2013 at 8:40am — No Comments
Numbers 18 - In this chapter it is made very explicit that for all times only the Levites are to do service at the tent of meeting and of the Levites only those of Aaron’s family are to be priests of the sanctuary. Out of the offerings and sacrifices established the Levites shall be entitled to the meat.
They are also entitled to every first-born male but he is to be ransomed by payment of five shekels of silver. The Levites are entitled to this…Continue
Added by Irene Lape on 5th mo. 13, 2013 at 6:03am — No Comments