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Monday, February 18 2019

A Bible Journey, 121: The Three Branches Of Levi

"The sons of Levi; Gershon, Kohath, and Merari"

The Israelite patriarch Levi was one of the many sons (and one daughter; see A Bible Journey, 34: The Daughter Of Israel) of Jacob who were born in Syria before the LORD (Who was and is Jesus Christ; see The Real Jesus: The Word Of The LORD God and A Bible Journey, 56: The Sacred Name) changed his father Jacob's name to "Israel" (see A Bible Journey, 32: Thy Name Shall Be Called No More Jacob, But Israel).

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"35:23 The sons of Leah [see The Mothers Of The Patriarchs: Leah]; Reuben, Jacob's firstborn, and Simeon, and Levi, and Judah, and Issachar, and Zebulun:

35:24 The sons of Rachel [see The Mothers Of The Patriarchs: Rachel]; Joseph, and Benjamin:

35:25 And the sons of Bilhah [see The Mothers Of The Patriarchs: Bilhah], Rachel's handmaid; Dan, and Naphtali:

35:26 And the sons of Zilpah [see The Mothers Of The Patriarchs: 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 himself had three sons, Gershon, Kohath and Merari, who entered Egypt with the Israelites during Jacob / Israel's lifetime (see A Bible Journey, 46: The Family At The Heart Of A Nation).

"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 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 (see A Bible Journey, 118: The Reckoning Of Israel In The Sinai).

The Levites were set apart, after the Exodus, by the LORD to prophetically serve Him at the Tabernacle (see A Bible Journey, 120: Why Was The House Of Aaron Made Holy? and A Bible Journey, 111: The Thousand Year Priesthood) 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 Kohathite branch:

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 Gershonite branch:

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 Merarite branch:

"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 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, February 18

1229: During the Sixth Crusade (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy and Emperor Constantine's Sun Dogs and A History Of Jerusalem: Constantine and Muhammad), "Holy Roman Emperor" (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation) Frederick II signed a truce with al-Kamil, thereby regaining Jerusalem.

Crusaders

1248: Imperial forces under Frederick II were defeated at Parma in Italy.

1478: George, the Duke of Clarence, was convicted of treason against his brother Edward IV, and then killed in the Tower of London by being drowned in a wine barrel.

1503: Henry Tudor (later Henry VIII) was made Prince of Wales.

1516: Mary I, Queen of England, was born. The daughter of Henry VIII and his first wife Catherine of Aragon (the Spanish-born daughter of the Roman Catholic monarchs King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain - the employers of Christopher Columbus and the founders of the Spanish Inquisition, including the torture of non-Catholics with "waterboarding"), she became known as "Bloody Mary" after her campaign against Protestants in England.

1546: Martin Luther, a monk who became a leader of the Protestant reformation, died at age 62. Despite their "protest," the Protestant churches maintain most of Rome's anti-Biblical doctrines (see Why Call Me, Lord, Lord, and Do Not The Things Which I Say?).

1564: Michelangelo Buonarotti (popularly known simply as "Michelangelo"), Italian painter, sculptor and architect, died.

Michelangelo

1574: Zeeland fell to Dutch rebels.

1678: John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress was first published, in Britain (see also The Pilgrims).

1688: Quakers in Germantown, Pennsylvania, adopted the first formal antislavery resolution in North America.

1861: In Italy, the first parliament met and proclaimed Victor Emmanuel as the first king of Italy.

1900: The Battle of Paardeberg began in the second Boer War. The Boers under Piet Cronje eventually surrendered on February 27 under British artillery.

1915: During the First Word War (1914-1918; see also The Assassination That Triggered Two World Wars), Germany began a submarine blockade of England.

1930: Clyde Tombaugh, working with photographic plates at the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona, discovered "Pluto," the 9th and smallest planet in the solar system.

1967: Robert Oppenheimer died. He was a prominent member of the team of physicists that produced the U.S. atomic bombs that incinerated the civilian populations (the Japanese attack on Pearl harbor was an attack on a military base) of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 (see also Who Would Throw A Nuclear Boomerang?).

The famous U.S. military photograph below shows the 20,000 foot "mushroom cloud" that was produced by the bombing of Hiroshima - a seething holocaust of dust and ashes that included the incinerated remains of about 150,000 men, women and children.

Hiroshima

Three days later, a second U.S. atomic bomb destroyed another Japanese city - Nagasaki. The photograph below shows the towering "mushroom cloud" from that bombing - that also included the incinerated remains of over 100,000 men, women and children.

Nagasaki

1979: Snow fell in the Sahara Desert in southern Algeria, the only time in recorded history.

1994: Representatives from 135 countries announced at a United Nations environmental conference that greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced to stop "global warming."


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