Today’s Passage – Numbers 16 – 18
(Second Milers also read – Acts 16 – 18; Proverbs 21; Psalms 101 – 105)
“Seemeth it but a small thing unto you, that the God of Israel hath separated you from the congregation of Israel, to bring you near to himself to do the service of the tabernacle of the LORD, and to stand before the congregation to minister unto them?” – (Numbers 16:9)
“And it came to pass, as he had made an end of speaking all these words, that the ground clave asunder that was under them: And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that appertained unto Korah, and all their goods. They, and all that appertained to them, went down alive into the pit, and the earth closed upon them: and they perished from among the congregation.” – (Numbers 16:31-33)
In chapter 16, we see a group within the congregation of the children of Israel who were rebelling against the God ordained leadership. One of the leaders of this insurrection was Korah, who was a Kohathite. The Kohathites were part of the tribe of Levi, but their specific responsibility involved transporting the ark and the other pieces of furniture and instruments that were used in the service of the Tabernacle. They were not priests, but they were servants for the Lord in the Tabernacle. In the verse above (v 9), Moses rebukes Korah for not being content with the job that the Lord had given him. Korah wanted more. He wanted to grab some of the glory that he saw Moses and Aaron getting. It reminds us of Lucifer, who was not content guarding the holiness of God. He wanted more too. This rebellion resulted in the death of Korah, along with the other men involved and their families. Further, many more people from the congregation perished the next day after they complained about the death of Korah and his bunch.
We see this same type of behavior today in our local churches. God puts in place leadership for the congregation, but there will always be some Korah’s within the congregation who will attempt to gain control. The process usually begins with murmuring and complaining about the job that the pastor, and, or deacons are doing. They will often grab the ears of other disgruntled people and try to bring them in with them. Before you know it, there is a group of people within the congregation who are gaining power, working against what the leadership is trying to do. It won’t be long before it comes to a head. Somebody will have to go. Sometimes it’s the pastor. Sometimes it will be Korah; but when he leaves, he usually pulls a bunch of people out with him.
Why can’t we just trust the leadership system that God has set up. He calls a man to a ministry. That calling is then confirmed by a vote of the congregation. The congregation still has the power to remove the man if there are serious enough issues in his ministry. But unless there is something immoral, heretical, or seriously unethical, the congregation should rally behind the pastor, pray for him, and work with him as he leads the congregation in the fulfillment of the Great Commission.
Don’t be a Korah. Support your pastor, and the other leaders that God has placed in your church. Work with him. Help him as he tries to win souls and disciple the converts. Pray for him and his family. Love him.
Posted in Thoughts from Numbers by Phil Erickson with 1 comment.