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Friday, November 22 2013

Numbers 4: The Levite Clans

Levi was one of the sons of Jacob, born in Syria before the LORD (Who was and is Jesus Christ; see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God) changed his father Jacob's name to "Israel" (see A Biography Of Jacob: The Jacobites Of Syria and A Biography Of Jacob: When Jacob Became Israel i.e. only three tribal patriarchs were born after Jacob became Israel - Benjamin, who was the only patriarch born in the land of Canaan, and Ephraim and Manasseh who were born in Egypt; see The Rachel Prophecies and Genesis 48: The Adoption Of Ephraim and Manasseh).

"35:23 The sons of Leah; Reuben, Jacob's firstborn, and Simeon, and Levi, and Judah, and Issachar, and Zebulun:
35:24 The sons of Rachel; Joseph, and Benjamin:
35:25 And the sons of Bilhah, Rachel's handmaid; Dan, and Naphtali:
35:26 And the sons of Zilpah, Leah's handmaid; Gad, and Asher: these are the sons of Jacob, which were born to him in Padanaram." (Genesis 35:23-26 KJV)

Levi had three sons, Gershon, Kohath and Merari, who entered Egypt with the Israelites during Jacob / Israel's lifetime (see Genesis 46: The First Census Of Israel and Jacob's Mummy).

"46:2 And God spake unto Israel in the visions of the night, and said, Jacob, Jacob. And he said, Here am I. 46:3 And he said, I am God, the God of thy father: fear not to go down into Egypt; for I will there make of thee a great nation: 46:4 I will go down with thee into Egypt; and I will also surely bring thee up again: and Joseph shall put his hand upon thine eyes. 46:5 And Jacob rose up from Beersheba: and the sons of Israel carried Jacob their father, and their little ones, and their wives, in the wagons which Pharaoh had sent to carry him. 46:6 And they took their cattle, and their goods, which they had gotten in the land of Canaan, and came into Egypt, Jacob, and all his seed with him:" (Genesis 46:2-6 KJV)

46:11 And the sons of Levi; Gershon, Kohath, and Merari." (Genesis 46:11 KJV)

The Israelites grew into a great multitude during the four hundred years that they remained in Egypt (see Exodus 1: I Will There Make Of Thee A Great Nation). By the time of the Exodus, each tribe had itself grown into a multitude of tens of thousands. The Levites were set apart by the LORD to serve Him at the Tabernacle (see Exodus 26: The First Christian Tabernacle) according to the clans that descended from Levi's three sons Gershon, Kohath and Merari.

  • The first level was composed of Aaron and his offspring, who were descended from Levi's son Kohath. They formed the priesthood.

  • The second level was made up of all of the other descendants of Kohath who were not descendants of Aaron. They were in charge of the most sacred parts of the Tabernacle.

  • The third level consisted of all of the descendants of Gershon and Merari, who were assigned general duties of the Tabernacle.

The Kohathites:

Levites

"4:1 And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, 4:2 Take the sum of the sons of Kohath from among the sons of Levi, after their families, by the house of their fathers, 4:3 From thirty years old and upward even until fifty years old, all that enter into the host, to do the work in the tabernacle of the congregation. 4:4 This shall be the service of the sons of Kohath in the tabernacle of the congregation, about the most holy things: 4:5 And when the camp setteth forward, Aaron shall come, and his sons, and they shall take down the covering vail, and cover the ark of testimony with it: 4:6 And shall put thereon the covering of badgers' skins, and shall spread over it a cloth wholly of blue, and shall put in the staves thereof.

4:7 And upon the table of shewbread they shall spread a cloth of blue, and put thereon the dishes, and the spoons, and the bowls, and covers to cover withal: and the continual bread shall be thereon: 4:8 And they shall spread upon them a cloth of scarlet, and cover the same with a covering of badgers' skins, and shall put in the staves thereof.

4:9 And they shall take a cloth of blue, and cover the candlestick of the light, and his lamps, and his tongs, and his snuffdishes, and all the oil vessels thereof, wherewith they minister unto it: 4:10 And they shall put it and all the vessels thereof within a covering of badgers' skins, and shall put it upon a bar.

4:11 And upon the golden altar they shall spread a cloth of blue, and cover it with a covering of badgers' skins, and shall put to the staves thereof:

4:12 And they shall take all the instruments of ministry, wherewith they minister in the sanctuary, and put them in a cloth of blue, and cover them with a covering of badgers' skins, and shall put them on a bar:

4:13 And they shall take away the ashes from the altar, and spread a purple cloth thereon: 4:14 And they shall put upon it all the vessels thereof, wherewith they minister about it, even the censers, the fleshhooks, and the shovels, and the basons, all the vessels of the altar; and they shall spread upon it a covering of badgers' skins, and put to the staves of it.

4:15 And when Aaron and his sons have made an end of covering the sanctuary, and all the vessels of the sanctuary, as the camp is to set forward; after that, the sons of Kohath shall come to bear it: but they shall not touch any holy thing, lest they die. These things are the burden of the sons of Kohath in the tabernacle of the congregation.

4:16 And to the office of Eleazar the son of Aaron the priest pertaineth the oil for the light, and the sweet incense, and the daily meat offering, and the anointing oil, and the oversight of all the tabernacle, and of all that therein is, in the sanctuary, and in the vessels thereof.

4:17 And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying, 4:18 Cut ye not off the tribe of the families of the Kohathites from among the Levites: 4:19 But thus do unto them, that they may live, and not die, when they approach unto the most holy things: Aaron and his sons shall go in, and appoint them every one to his service and to his burden: 4:20 But they shall not go in to see when the holy things are covered, lest they die." (Numbers 4:1-20 KJV)

The Gershonites:

The Camp

"4:21 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,

4:22 Take also the sum of the sons of Gershon, throughout the houses of their fathers, by their families; 4:23 From thirty years old and upward until fifty years old shalt thou number them; all that enter in to perform the service, to do the work in the tabernacle of the congregation.

4:24 This is the service of the families of the Gershonites, to serve, and for burdens:

4:25 And they shall bear the curtains of the tabernacle, and the tabernacle of the congregation, his covering, and the covering of the badgers' skins that is above upon it, and the hanging for the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, 4:26 And the hangings of the court, and the hanging for the door of the gate of the court, which is by the tabernacle and by the altar round about, and their cords, and all the instruments of their service, and all that is made for them: so shall they serve.

4:27 At the appointment of Aaron and his sons shall be all the service of the sons of the Gershonites, in all their burdens, and in all their service: and ye shall appoint unto them in charge all their burdens.

4:28 This is the service of the families of the sons of Gershon in the tabernacle of the congregation: and their charge shall be under the hand of Ithamar the son of Aaron the priest." (Numbers 4:21-28 KJV)

The Merarites:

"4:29 As for the sons of Merari, thou shalt number them after their families, by the house of their fathers;

4:30 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old shalt thou number them, every one that entereth into the service, to do the work of the tabernacle of the congregation. 4:31 And this is the charge of their burden, according to all their service in the tabernacle of the congregation; the boards of the tabernacle, and the bars thereof, and the pillars thereof, and sockets thereof, 4:32 And the pillars of the court round about, and their sockets, and their pins, and their cords, with all their instruments, and with all their service: and by name ye shall reckon the instruments of the charge of their burden.

4:33 This is the service of the families of the sons of Merari, according to all their service, in the tabernacle of the congregation, under the hand of Ithamar the son of Aaron the priest." (Numbers 4:29-33 KJV)

Moses and Aaron were brothers, of the Kohath clan (see also The Meeting Of Moses And Aaron).

The Camp

"4:34 And Moses and Aaron and the chief of the congregation numbered the sons of the Kohathites after their families, and after the house of their fathers, 4:35 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old, every one that entereth into the service, for the work in the tabernacle of the congregation: 4:36 And those that were numbered of them by their families were two thousand seven hundred and fifty. 4:37 These were they that were numbered of the families of the Kohathites, all that might do service in the tabernacle of the congregation, which Moses and Aaron did number according to the commandment of the LORD by the hand of Moses.

4:38 And those that were numbered of the sons of Gershon, throughout their families, and by the house of their fathers, 4:39 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old, every one that entereth into the service, for the work in the tabernacle of the congregation, 4:40 Even those that were numbered of them, throughout their families, by the house of their fathers, were two thousand and six hundred and thirty. 4:41 These are they that were numbered of the families of the sons of Gershon, of all that might do service in the tabernacle of the congregation, whom Moses and Aaron did number according to the commandment of the LORD.

4:42 And those that were numbered of the families of the sons of Merari, throughout their families, by the house of their fathers, 4:43 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old, every one that entereth into the service, for the work in the tabernacle of the congregation, 4:44 Even those that were numbered of them after their families, were three thousand and two hundred. 4:45 These be those that were numbered of the families of the sons of Merari, whom Moses and Aaron numbered according to the word of the LORD by the hand of Moses.

4:46 All those that were numbered of the Levites, whom Moses and Aaron and the chief of Israel numbered, after their families, and after the house of their fathers, 4:47 From thirty years old and upward even unto fifty years old, every one that came to do the service of the ministry, and the service of the burden in the tabernacle of the congregation, 4:48 Even those that were numbered of them, were eight thousand and five hundred and fourscore.

4:49 According to the commandment of the LORD they were numbered by the hand of Moses, every one according to his service, and according to his burden: thus were they numbered of him, as the LORD commanded Moses." (Numbers 4:34-49 KJV)

Fact Finder: (a) How and when was the Levite priesthood established? (b) How did the Levite priesthood change after the Babylonian exile? (c) How were faithful Levites always Christian, whether in the "Old" Testament era or the "New" Testament era?
(a) See Leviticus 8: The Prophecy Of The Blood Upon The Anointed One and The Origin Of The Levite Priesthood
(b) See How Did The Messiah's Levite Priesthood Change?
(c) See The Levites Of Christ and Leviticus 12: The Messiah's Levitical Birth


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This Day In History, November 22

498: Upon the death of Pope Anastasius II, Symmachus was elected Pope in the Lateran Palace, while Laurentius was elected Pope in Santa Maria Maggiore (see The Struggle For The Papacy).

845: Nominoe, the first King of all Brittany, defeated the Frankish king Charles the Bald at the Battle of Ballon, near Redon.

John F. Kennedy 1220: Frederick II was crowned Holy Roman Emperor by Pope Honorius III at St. Peter's in Rome (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation and Emperors and Popes). Frederick pledged to defend the Catholic Church and launch the next "Crusade" for the Church of Rome (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy).

1497: Vasco Da Gama of Portugal became the first navigator to sail around the Cape of Good Hope in his search for a sea route to India.

1718: Edward Teach, the English pirate known as "Blackbeard," was killed off the east coast of North America.

1757: Austrian forces defeated the Prussians at Breslau during the Seven Years War.

1830: The Belgian Congress voted to establish the country into a monarchy.

1837: Scottish-born Canadian journalist and politician (he was the first Mayor of the city that is known today as Toronto) William Lyon Mackenzie called for a revolution against the United Kingdom in his essay "To the People of Upper Canada." Mackenzie fled to the U.S. after the people of Canada rejected his rebellion.

1860: Prior to the U.S. Civil War, a secessionist meeting was held in Abbeville, South Carolina, causing some to refer to the city as "The Birthplace and Deathbed of the Confederacy" (Jefferson Davis held one of his last cabinet meetings there on May 2 1865).

1869: In Dumbarton, Scotland, the clipper Cutty Sark was launched. It was one of the last clippers ever built, and the only one still surviving today.

1878: In Afghanistan, the British under Sir Samuel Browne bombed and captured the Ali Masjid fortress, thus beginning the Second Afghan War.

1906: The International Radio Telecommunications Commission adopted "SOS" as a new distress call.

1942: The Soviet army completed the encirclement of the German Sixth Army at Stalingrad during the Second World War (listen also to our Sermon The European World Wars).

1943: Lebanon became independent after 23 years of French rule.

1963: U.S. President John F. Kennedy was assassinated at age 46. The shots were allegedly fired in Dallas from the Texas School Book Depository by a former U.S. Marine, Lee Harvey Oswald, 24, who himself was shot and killed 2 days later while denying the charge and claiming "I'm just a patsy."

1967: United Nations Resolution 242 was passed by the Security Council. It intended to provide Israel with secure frontiers, while at the same time requiring it to return "conquered" territories, and stated a need for a just solution for the Palestinian refugees (see Israel In History and Prophecy: The Balfour Declaration).

1975: Juan Carlos was sworn in as king of Spain, the first Spanish monarch since Alfonso XIII went into exile in 1931. General Francisco Franco, who had ruled Spain since 1939, died 2 days earlier.

1990: Margaret Thatcher announced her resignation as British Prime Minister after 11 years in office.

1991: The UN Security Council chose Egyptian Deputy Prime Minister Boutros Boutros Ghali to be UN Secretary General, succeeding Javier Perez de Cuellar.

2005: Angela Merkel became the first female Chancellor of Germany.


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