Daily Devotional

by Larry Stockstill

One rod ended an entire insurrection. What a powerful rod this was to have amazed, confounded, and brought to repentance the powerful forces opposing Moses! The miracle of this rod was that it represented something impossible: a resurrection. How could a dead stick-separated from the tree trunk, polished and smoothed- suddenly sprout leaves, buds, and almonds? Only by the resurrection power of God!

Christianity is the only religion whose leader was dead for three days and then physically resurrected. While all other religions are as mere sticks with man-made claims to authority, Christianity is distinguished by the fact that Jesus' rod has budded. This budding rod has persuaded millions that He is truly the Son of God. People of every nation stand in awe that someone beaten, crucified, and speared in the side could stand three days later and say, "All hail."

His name has all authority over demons, disaster, and disease (Mark 16:17-18). We, as His disciples, can stand holding the rod of the resurrection in our hands. Let us preach the Gospel of the resurrected Christ to all creation and watch the Lord confirm His Word with signs following (Mark 16:20)!

Numbers 16:41-18:32

41 The next day the whole Israelite community grumbled against Moses and Aaron. “You have killed the Lord’s people,” they said.

42 But when the assembly gathered in oppositionS ver 19 to Moses and Aaron and turned toward the tent of meeting, suddenly the cloud covered it and the glory of the LordEx 16:7; Nu 14:10 appeared.43 Then Moses and Aaron went to the front of the tent of meeting,44 and the Lord said to Moses,45 “Get away from this assembly so I can put an endS Ex 32:10 to them at once.” And they fell facedown.

46 Then Moses said to Aaron, “Take your censerS Lev 10:1 and put incense in it, along with burning coals from the altar, and hurry to the assemblyLev 10:6 to make atonementS Ex 29:36 for them. Wrath has come out from the Lord;S Nu 1:53 the plagueS Lev 26:25; Nu 8:19; Ps 106:29 has started.”47 So Aaron did as Moses said, and ran into the midst of the assembly. The plague had already started among the people,Nu 25:6-8 but Aaron offered the incense and made atonement for them.48 He stood between the living and the dead, and the plague stopped.Nu 25:8; Ps 106:3049 But 14,700 people died from the plague, in addition to those who had died because of Korah.ver 3250 Then Aaron returned to Moses at the entrance to the tent of meeting, for the plague had stopped.In Hebrew texts 16:36-50 is numbered 17:1-15.

The Budding of Aaron’s Staff

17 In Hebrew texts 17:1-13 is numbered 17:16-28.The Lord said to Moses,“Speak to the Israelites and get twelve staffsS Ge 32:10; S Ex 4:2 from them, one from the leader of each of their ancestral tribes.Nu 1:4 Write the name of each man on his staff.On the staff of Levi write Aaron’s name,S Nu 1:3 for there must be one staff for the head of each ancestral tribe.Place them in the tent of meetingS Ex 40:2 in front of the ark of the covenant law,ver 7; Ex 16:34 where I meet with you.Ex 25:22The staff belonging to the man I chooseS Nu 16:5 will sprout,ver 8 and I will rid myself of this constant grumblingS Ex 16:7 against you by the Israelites.”

So Moses spoke to the Israelites, and their leaders gave him twelve staffs, one for the leader of each of their ancestral tribes, and Aaron’s staff was among them.Moses placed the staffs before the Lord in the tent of the covenant law.S Ex 38:21

The next day Moses entered the tentver 7; Nu 1:50 and saw that Aaron’s staff,ver 2, 10 which represented the tribe of Levi, had not only sprouted but had budded, blossomed and produced almonds.Eze 17:24; Heb 9:4Then Moses brought out all the staffsver 2 from the Lord’s presence to all the Israelites. They looked at them, and each of the leaders took his own staff.

10 The Lord said to Moses, “Put back Aaron’s staffS ver 8 in front of the ark of the covenant law, to be kept as a sign to the rebellious.S Ex 23:21; Dt 9:24; Ps 66:7; 68:18; Pr 24:21 This will put an end to their grumbling against me, so that they will not die.”11 Moses did just as the Lord commanded him.

12 The Israelites said to Moses, “We will die! We are lost, we are all lost!Jdg 13:22; Isa 6:5; 15:113 Anyone who even comes near the tabernacle of the Lord will die.Nu 1:51 Are we all going to die?”

Duties of Priests and Levites

18 The Lord said to Aaron, “You, your sons and your family are to bear the responsibility for offenses connected with the sanctuary,S Ex 28:38 and you and your sons alone are to bear the responsibility for offenses connected with the priesthood.Bring your fellow Levites from your ancestral tribe to join you and assist you when you and your sons ministerNu 3:10 before the tent of the covenant law.They are to be responsible to youS Nu 3:32 and are to perform all the duties of the tent,Nu 1:51 but they must not go near the furnishings of the sanctuary or the altar. Otherwise both they and you will die.ver 7They are to join you and be responsible for the care of the tent of meeting—all the work at the tent—and no one else may come near where you are.S Nu 3:38

“You are to be responsible for the care of the sanctuary and the altar,ver 3; Lev 6:12 so that my wrath will not fall on the Israelites again.I myself have selected your fellow Levites from among the Israelites as a gift to you,S Nu 3:9 dedicated to the Lord to do the work at the tent of meeting.Nu 3:8But only you and your sons may serve as priests in connection with everything at the altar and inside the curtain.Heb 9:3, 6 I am giving you the service of the priesthood as a gift.ver 20; Ex 29:9; 40:13; Heb 5:4 Anyone else who comes near the sanctuary is to be put to death.ver 3; Nu 3:10

Offerings for Priests and Levites

Then the Lord said to Aaron, “I myself have put you in charge of the offerings presented to me; all the holy offerings the Israelites give me I give to you and your sons as your portion,S Lev 2:2 your perpetual share.Lev 6:16; 7:6, 31-34, 36; Dt 18:1; 2Ch 31:4You are to have the part of the most holy offeringsS Lev 6:17 that is kept from the fire. From all the gifts they bring me as most holy offerings, whether grainLev 2:1 or sinOr purificationLev 6:25 or guilt offerings,S Lev 5:15 that part belongs to you and your sons.10 Eat it as something most holy; every male shall eat it.S Lev 6:16 You must regard it as holy.Lev 6:17, 18

11 “This also is yours: whatever is set aside from the gifts of all the wave offeringsEx 29:26; Lev 7:30; Nu 6:20 of the Israelites. I give this to you and your sons and daughters as your perpetual share.Lev 7:31-34 Everyone in your household who is ceremonially cleanLev 13:3; 22:1-16 may eat it.

12 “I give you all the finest olive oil and all the finest new wine and grainDt 7:13; 11:14; 12:17; 28:51; 2Ki 18:32; 2Ch 31:5; Ne 10:37; Jer 31:12; Eze 23:41; Hos 2:8; Joel 1:10; Hag 1:11 they give the LordS Ge 4:3 as the firstfruits of their harvest.Ex 23:19; 34:26; Ne 10:3513 All the land’s firstfruits that they bring to the Lord will be yours.S Ex 29:27 Everyone in your household who is ceremonially clean may eat it.ver 11

14 “Everything in Israel that is devotedThe Hebrew term refers to the irrevocable giving over of things or persons to the Lord. to the LordS Lev 27:21; Jos 6:17-19 is yours.15 The first offspring of every womb, both human and animal, that is offered to the Lord is yours.Ex 13:2 But you must redeemS Nu 3:46 every firstbornS Ge 10:15 son and every firstborn male of unclean animals.S Ex 13:1316 When they are a month old,S Nu 3:15 you must redeem them at the redemption price set at five shekelsThat is, about 2 ounces or about 58 gramsS Lev 27:6 of silver, according to the sanctuary shekel,S Ex 30:13 which weighs twenty gerahs.Nu 3:47

17 “But you must not redeem the firstborn of a cow, a sheep or a goat; they are holy.S Lev 27:9 Splash their bloodS Lev 3:2 against the altar and burn their fatS Ex 29:13 as a food offering, an aroma pleasing to the Lord.S Lev 1:918 Their meat is to be yours, just as the breast of the wave offeringLev 7:30 and the right thigh are yours.ver 1119 Whatever is set aside from the holy2Ki 12:4 offerings the Israelites present to the Lord I give to you and your sons and daughters as your perpetual share. It is an everlasting covenant of saltS Lev 2:13 before the Lord for both you and your offspring.”

20 The Lord said to Aaron, “You will have no inheritance in their land, nor will you have any share among them;Nu 26:62; Dt 12:12 I am your share and your inheritancever 24; Dt 10:9; 14:27; 18:1-2; Jos 13:33; Eze 44:28 among the Israelites.

21 “I give to the Levites all the tithesver 24; S Ge 28:22; Nu 31:28; Dt 14:22; Ne 10:37; 13:5; Mal 3:8 in Israel as their inheritanceLev 27:30-33; Heb 7:5 in return for the work they do while serving at the tent of meeting.Nu 1:5322 From now on the Israelites must not go near the tent of meeting, or they will bear the consequences of their sin and will die.S Ex 28:4323 It is the Levites who are to do the work at the tent of meeting and bear the responsibility for any offenses they commit against it. This is a lasting ordinanceS Ex 12:14; S 27:21 for the generations to come.Nu 10:8 They will receive no inheritancever 20; Nu 26:62; Dt 10:9 among the Israelites.Eze 44:1024 Instead, I give to the Levites as their inheritance the tithes that the Israelites present as an offering to the Lord.Lev 27:30; Dt 26:12 That is why I said concerning them: ‘They will have no inheritance among the Israelites.’”

25 The Lord said to Moses,26 “Speak to the Levites and say to them: ‘When you receive from the Israelites the tithe I give youver 21 as your inheritance, you must present a tenth of that tithe as the Lord’s offering.ver 28; Ne 10:3827 Your offering will be reckonedLev 7:18 to you as grain from the threshing floorGe 50:10; Dt 15:14; Jdg 6:37; Ru 3:3, 6, 14; 1Sa 23:1 or juice from the winepress.ver 12, 3028 In this way you also will present an offering to the Lord from all the tithesMal 3:8 you receive from the Israelites. From these tithes you must give the Lord’s portion to Aaron the priest.29 You must present as the Lord’s portion the best and holiest part of everything given to you.’

30 “Say to the Levites: ‘When you present the best part, it will be reckoned to you as the product of the threshing floor or the winepress.S ver 2731 You and your households may eat the rest of it anywhere, for it is your wages for your work at the tent of meeting.ver 2332 By presenting the best partLev 22:15 of it you will not be guilty in this matter;ver 29 then you will not defile the holy offeringsS Lev 19:8 of the Israelites, and you will not die.’”

41 But the very next morning the whole community of Israel began muttering again against Moses and Aaron, saying, “You have killed the Lord’s people!”42 As the community gathered to protest against Moses and Aaron, they turned toward the Tabernacle and saw that the cloud had covered it, and the glorious presence of the Lord appeared.

43 Moses and Aaron came and stood in front of the Tabernacle,44 and the Lord said to Moses,45 “Get away from all these people so that I can instantly destroy them!” But Moses and Aaron fell face down on the ground.

46 And Moses said to Aaron, “Quick, take an incense burner and place burning coals on it from the altar. Lay incense on it, and carry it out among the people to purify them and make them right with the Lord.Or to make atonement for them. The Lord’s anger is blazing against them—the plague has already begun.”

47 Aaron did as Moses told him and ran out among the people. The plague had already begun to strike down the people, but Aaron burned the incense and purifiedOr and made atonement for. the people.48 He stood between the dead and the living, and the plague stopped.49 But 14,700 people died in that plague, in addition to those who had died in the affair involving Korah.50 Then because the plague had stopped, Aaron returned to Moses at the entrance of the Tabernacle.

The Budding of Aaron’s Staff

17 Verses 17:1-13 are numbered 17:16-28 in Hebrew text.Then the Lord said to Moses,“Tell the people of Israel to bring you twelve wooden staffs, one from each leader of Israel’s ancestral tribes, and inscribe each leader’s name on his staff.Inscribe Aaron’s name on the staff of the tribe of Levi, for there must be one staff for the leader of each ancestral tribe.Place these staffs in the Tabernacle in front of the Ark containing the tablets of the Covenant,Hebrew in the Tent of Meeting before the Testimony. The Hebrew word for “testimony” refers to the terms of the Lord’s covenant with Israel as written on stone tablets, which were kept in the Ark, and also to the covenant itself. where I meet with you.Buds will sprout on the staff belonging to the man I choose. Then I will finally put an end to the people’s murmuring and complaining against you.”

So Moses gave the instructions to the people of Israel, and each of the twelve tribal leaders, including Aaron, brought Moses a staff.Moses placed the staffs in the Lord’s presence in the Tabernacle of the Covenant.Or Tabernacle of the Testimony; also in 17:8.When he went into the Tabernacle of the Covenant the next day, he found that Aaron’s staff, representing the tribe of Levi, had sprouted, budded, blossomed, and produced ripe almonds!

When Moses brought all the staffs out from the Lord’s presence, he showed them to the people. Each man claimed his own staff.10 And the Lord said to Moses: “Place Aaron’s staff permanently before the Ark of the CovenantHebrew before the Testimony; see note on 17:4. to serve as a warning to rebels. This should put an end to their complaints against me and prevent any further deaths.”11 So Moses did as the Lord commanded him.

12 Then the people of Israel said to Moses, “Look, we are doomed! We are dead! We are ruined!13 Everyone who even comes close to the Tabernacle of the Lord dies. Are we all doomed to die?”

Duties of Priests and Levites

18 Then the Lord said to Aaron: “You, your sons, and your relatives from the tribe of Levi will be held responsible for any offenses related to the sanctuary. But you and your sons alone will be held responsible for violations connected with the priesthood.

“Bring your relatives of the tribe of Levi—your ancestral tribe—to assist you and your sons as you perform the sacred duties in front of the Tabernacle of the Covenant.Or Tabernacle of the Testimony.But as the Levites go about all their assigned duties at the Tabernacle, they must be careful not to go near any of the sacred objects or the altar. If they do, both you and they will die.The Levites must join you in fulfilling their responsibilities for the care and maintenance of the Tabernacle,Hebrew the Tent of Meeting; also in 18:6, 21, 22, 23, 31. but no unauthorized person may assist you.

“You yourselves must perform the sacred duties inside the sanctuary and at the altar. If you follow these instructions, the Lord’s anger will never again blaze against the people of Israel.I myself have chosen your fellow Levites from among the Israelites to be your special assistants. They are a gift to you, dedicated to the Lord for service in the Tabernacle.But you and your sons, the priests, must personally handle all the priestly rituals associated with the altar and with everything behind the inner curtain. I am giving you the priesthood as your special privilege of service. Any unauthorized person who comes too near the sanctuary will be put to death.”

Support for the Priests and Levites

The Lord gave these further instructions to Aaron: “I myself have put you in charge of all the holy offerings that are brought to me by the people of Israel. I have given all these consecrated offerings to you and your sons as your permanent share.You are allotted the portion of the most holy offerings that is not burned on the fire. This portion of all the most holy offerings—including the grain offerings, sin offerings, and guilt offerings—will be most holy, and it belongs to you and your sons.10 You must eat it as a most holy offering. All the males may eat of it, and you must treat it as most holy.

11 “All the sacred offerings and special offerings presented to me when the Israelites lift them up before the altar also belong to you. I have given them to you and to your sons and daughters as your permanent share. Any member of your family who is ceremonially clean may eat of these offerings.

12 “I also give you the harvest gifts brought by the people as offerings to the Lord—the best of the olive oil, new wine, and grain.13 All the first crops of their land that the people present to the Lord belong to you. Any member of your family who is ceremonially clean may eat this food.

14 “Everything in Israel that is specially set apart for the LordThe Hebrew term used here refers to the complete consecration of things or people to the Lord, either by destroying them or by giving them as an offering. also belongs to you.

15 “The firstborn of every mother, whether human or animal, that is offered to the Lord will be yours. But you must always redeem your firstborn sons and the firstborn of ceremonially unclean animals.16 Redeem them when they are one month old. The redemption price is five pieces of silverHebrew 5 shekels [2 ounces or 57 grams] of silver. (as measured by the weight of the sanctuary shekel, which equals twenty gerahs).

17 “However, you may not redeem the firstborn of cattle, sheep, or goats. They are holy and have been set apart for the Lord. Sprinkle their blood on the altar, and burn their fat as a special gift, a pleasing aroma to the Lord.18 The meat of these animals will be yours, just like the breast and right thigh that are presented by lifting them up as a special offering before the altar.19 Yes, I am giving you all these holy offerings that the people of Israel bring to the Lord. They are for you and your sons and daughters, to be eaten as your permanent share. This is an eternal and unbreakable covenantHebrew a covenant of salt. between the Lord and you, and it also applies to your descendants.”

20 And the Lord said to Aaron, “You priests will receive no allotment of land or share of property among the people of Israel. I am your share and your allotment.21 As for the tribe of Levi, your relatives, I will compensate them for their service in the Tabernacle. Instead of an allotment of land, I will give them the tithes from the entire land of Israel.

22 “From now on, no Israelites except priests or Levites may approach the Tabernacle. If they come too near, they will be judged guilty and will die.23 Only the Levites may serve at the Tabernacle, and they will be held responsible for any offenses against it. This is a permanent law for you, to be observed from generation to generation. The Levites will receive no allotment of land among the Israelites,24 because I have given them the Israelites’ tithes, which have been presented as sacred offerings to the Lord. This will be the Levites’ share. That is why I said they would receive no allotment of land among the Israelites.”

25 The Lord also told Moses,26 “Give these instructions to the Levites: When you receive from the people of Israel the tithes I have assigned as your allotment, give a tenth of the tithes you receive—a tithe of the tithe—to the Lord as a sacred offering.27 The Lord will consider this offering to be your harvest offering, as though it were the first grain from your own threshing floor or wine from your own winepress.28 You must present one-tenth of the tithe received from the Israelites as a sacred offering to the Lord. This is the Lord’s sacred portion, and you must present it to Aaron the priest.29 Be sure to give to the Lord the best portions of the gifts given to you.

30 “Also, give these instructions to the Levites: When you present the best part as your offering, it will be considered as though it came from your own threshing floor or winepress.31 You Levites and your families may eat this food anywhere you wish, for it is your compensation for serving in the Tabernacle.32 You will not be considered guilty for accepting the Lord’s tithes if you give the best portion to the priests. But be careful not to treat the holy gifts of the people of Israel as though they were common. If you do, you will die.”

41 But on the morrow all the congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron, saying, Ye have killed the people of the Lord.

42 And it came to pass, when the congregation was gathered against Moses and against Aaron, that they looked toward the tabernacle of the congregation: and, behold, the cloud covered it, and the glory of the Lord appeared.

43 And Moses and Aaron came before the tabernacle of the congregation.

44 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,

45 Get you up from among this congregation, that I may consume them as in a moment. And they fell upon their faces.

46 And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a censer, and put fire therein from off the altar, and put on incense, and go quickly unto the congregation, and make an atonement for them: for there is wrath gone out from the Lord; the plague is begun.

47 And Aaron took as Moses commanded, and ran into the midst of the congregation; and, behold, the plague was begun among the people: and he put on incense, and made an atonement for the people.

48 And he stood between the dead and the living; and the plague was stayed.

49 Now they that died in the plague were fourteen thousand and seven hundred, beside them that died about the matter of Korah.

50 And Aaron returned unto Moses unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation: and the plague was stayed.

17 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,

Speak unto the children of Israel, and take of every one of them a rod according to the house of their fathers, of all their princes according to the house of their fathers twelve rods: write thou every man's name upon his rod.

And thou shalt write Aaron's name upon the rod of Levi: for one rod shall be for the head of the house of their fathers.

And thou shalt lay them up in the tabernacle of the congregation before the testimony, where I will meet with you.

And it shall come to pass, that the man's rod, whom I shall choose, shall blossom: and I will make to cease from me the murmurings of the children of Israel, whereby they murmur against you.

And Moses spake unto the children of Israel, and every one of their princes gave him a rod apiece, for each prince one, according to their fathers' houses, even twelve rods: and the rod of Aaron was among their rods.

And Moses laid up the rods before the Lord in the tabernacle of witness.

And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the tabernacle of witness; and, behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds.

And Moses brought out all the rods from before the Lord unto all the children of Israel: and they looked, and took every man his rod.

10 And the Lord said unto Moses, Bring Aaron's rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the rebels; and thou shalt quite take away their murmurings from me, that they die not.

11 And Moses did so: as the Lord commanded him, so did he.

12 And the children of Israel spake unto Moses, saying, Behold, we die, we perish, we all perish.

13 Whosoever cometh any thing near unto the tabernacle of the Lord shall die: shall we be consumed with dying?

18 And the Lord said unto Aaron, Thou and thy sons and thy father's house with thee shall bear the iniquity of the sanctuary: and thou and thy sons with thee shall bear the iniquity of your priesthood.

And thy brethren also of the tribe of Levi, the tribe of thy father, bring thou with thee, that they may be joined unto thee, and minister unto thee: but thou and thy sons with thee shall minister before the tabernacle of witness.

And they shall keep thy charge, and the charge of all the tabernacle: only they shall not come nigh the vessels of the sanctuary and the altar, that neither they, nor ye also, die.

And they shall be joined unto thee, and keep the charge of the tabernacle of the congregation, for all the service of the tabernacle: and a stranger shall not come nigh unto you.

And ye shall keep the charge of the sanctuary, and the charge of the altar: that there be no wrath any more upon the children of Israel.

And I, behold, I have taken your brethren the Levites from among the children of Israel: to you they are given as a gift for the Lord, to do the service of the tabernacle of the congregation.

Therefore thou and thy sons with thee shall keep your priest's office for everything of the altar, and within the vail; and ye shall serve: I have given your priest's office unto you as a service of gift: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.

And the Lord spake unto Aaron, Behold, I also have given thee the charge of mine heave offerings of all the hallowed things of the children of Israel; unto thee have I given them by reason of the anointing, and to thy sons, by an ordinance for ever.

This shall be thine of the most holy things, reserved from the fire: every oblation of their's, every meat offering of their's, and every sin offering of their's, and every trespass offering of their's which they shall render unto me, shall be most holy for thee and for thy sons.

10 In the most holy place shalt thou eat it; every male shall eat it: it shall be holy unto thee.

11 And this is thine; the heave offering of their gift, with all the wave offerings of the children of Israel: I have given them unto thee, and to thy sons and to thy daughters with thee, by a statute for ever: every one that is clean in thy house shall eat of it.

12 All the best of the oil, and all the best of the wine, and of the wheat, the firstfruits of them which they shall offer unto the Lord, them have I given thee.

13 And whatsoever is first ripe in the land, which they shall bring unto the Lord, shall be thine; every one that is clean in thine house shall eat of it.

14 Every thing devoted in Israel shall be thine.

15 Every thing that openeth the matrix in all flesh, which they bring unto the Lord, whether it be of men or beasts, shall be thine: nevertheless the firstborn of man shalt thou surely redeem, and the firstling of unclean beasts shalt thou redeem.

16 And those that are to be redeemed from a month old shalt thou redeem, according to thine estimation, for the money of five shekels, after the shekel of the sanctuary, which is twenty gerahs.

17 But the firstling of a cow, or the firstling of a sheep, or the firstling of a goat, thou shalt not redeem; they are holy: thou shalt sprinkle their blood upon the altar, and shalt burn their fat for an offering made by fire, for a sweet savour unto the Lord.

18 And the flesh of them shall be thine, as the wave breast and as the right shoulder are thine.

19 All the heave offerings of the holy things, which the children of Israel offer unto the Lord, have I given thee, and thy sons and thy daughters with thee, by a statute for ever: it is a covenant of salt for ever before the Lord unto thee and to thy seed with thee.

20 And the Lord spake unto Aaron, Thou shalt have no inheritance in their land, neither shalt thou have any part among them: I am thy part and thine inheritance among the children of Israel.

21 And, behold, I have given the children of Levi all the tenth in Israel for an inheritance, for their service which they serve, even the service of the tabernacle of the congregation.

22 Neither must the children of Israel henceforth come nigh the tabernacle of the congregation, lest they bear sin, and die.

23 But the Levites shall do the service of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they shall bear their iniquity: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations, that among the children of Israel they have no inheritance.

24 But the tithes of the children of Israel, which they offer as an heave offering unto the Lord, I have given to the Levites to inherit: therefore I have said unto them, Among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance.

25 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,

26 Thus speak unto the Levites, and say unto them, When ye take of the children of Israel the tithes which I have given you from them for your inheritance, then ye shall offer up an heave offering of it for the Lord, even a tenth part of the tithe.

27 And this your heave offering shall be reckoned unto you, as though it were the corn of the threshingfloor, and as the fulness of the winepress.

28 Thus ye also shall offer an heave offering unto the Lord of all your tithes, which ye receive of the children of Israel; and ye shall give thereof the Lord'S heave offering to Aaron the priest.

29 Out of all your gifts ye shall offer every heave offering of the Lord, of all the best thereof, even the hallowed part thereof out of it.

30 Therefore thou shalt say unto them, When ye have heaved the best thereof from it, then it shall be counted unto the Levites as the increase of the threshingfloor, and as the increase of the winepress.

31 And ye shall eat it in every place, ye and your households: for it is your reward for your service in the tabernacle of the congregation.

32 And ye shall bear no sin by reason of it, when ye have heaved from it the best of it: neither shall ye pollute the holy things of the children of Israel, lest ye die.

Mark 16:1-20

Jesus Has Risen16:1-8pp — Mt 28:1-8; Lk 24:1-10

16 When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spicesLk 23:56; Jn 19:39, 40 so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body.Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomband they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?”Mk 15:46

But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away.As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robeS Jn 20:12 sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

“Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene,S Mk 1:24 who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him.But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him,Jn 21:1-23 just as he told you.’”Mk 14:28

Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.Some manuscripts have the following ending between verses 8 and 9, and one manuscript has it after verse 8 (omitting verses 9-20): Then they quickly reported all these instructions to those around Peter. After this, Jesus himself also sent out through them from east to west the sacred and imperishable proclamation of eternal salvation. Amen.


[The earliest manuscripts and some other ancient witnesses do not have verses 9–20.]

When Jesus rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene,Mk 15:47; Jn 20:11-18 out of whom he had driven seven demons.10 She went and told those who had been with him and who were mourning and weeping.11 When they heard that Jesus was alive and that she had seen him, they did not believe it.ver 13, 14; Lk 24:11

12 Afterward Jesus appeared in a different form to two of them while they were walking in the country.Lk 24:13-3213 These returned and reported it to the rest; but they did not believe them either.

14 Later Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen.Lk 24:36-43

15 He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.Mt 28:18-20; Lk 24:47, 48; Ac 1:816 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.Jn 3:16, 18, 36; Ac 16:3117 And these signsS Jn 4:48 will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons;Mk 9:38; Lk 10:17; Ac 5:16; 8:7; 16:18; 19:13-16 they will speak in new tongues;Ac 2:4; 10:46; 19:6; 1Co 12:10, 28, 30; 13:1; 14:2-3918 they will pick up snakesLk 10:19; Ac 28:3-5 with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands onS Ac 6:6 sick people, and they will get well.”

19 After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heavenLk 24:50, 51; Jn 6:62; Ac 1:9-11; 1Ti 3:16 and he sat at the right hand of God.Ps 110:1; Mt 26:64; Ac 2:33; 5:31; Ro 8:34; Col 3:1; Heb 1:3; 12:220 Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signsS Jn 4:48 that accompanied it.

The Resurrection

16 Saturday evening, when the Sabbath ended, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome went out and purchased burial spices so they could anoint Jesus’ body.Very early on Sunday morning,Greek on the first day of the week; also in 16:9. just at sunrise, they went to the tomb.On the way they were asking each other, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?”But as they arrived, they looked up and saw that the stone, which was very large, had already been rolled aside.

When they entered the tomb, they saw a young man clothed in a white robe sitting on the right side. The women were shocked,but the angel said, “Don’t be alarmed. You are looking for Jesus of Nazareth,Or Jesus the Nazarene. who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Look, this is where they laid his body.Now go and tell his disciples, including Peter, that Jesus is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you before he died.”

The women fled from the tomb, trembling and bewildered, and they said nothing to anyone because they were too frightened.The most reliable early manuscripts of the Gospel of Mark end at verse 8. Other manuscripts include various endings to the Gospel. A few include both the “shorter ending” and the “longer ending.” The majority of manuscripts include the “longer ending” immediately after verse 8.


[The most ancient manuscripts of Mark conclude with verse 16:8. Later manuscripts add one or both of the following endings.]

[Shorter Ending of Mark]

Then they briefly reported all this to Peter and his companions. Afterward Jesus himself sent them out from east to west with the sacred and unfailing message of salvation that gives eternal life. Amen.

[Longer Ending of Mark]

After Jesus rose from the dead early on Sunday morning, the first person who saw him was Mary Magdalene, the woman from whom he had cast out seven demons.10 She went to the disciples, who were grieving and weeping, and told them what had happened.11 But when she told them that Jesus was alive and she had seen him, they didn’t believe her.

12 Afterward he appeared in a different form to two of his followers who were walking from Jerusalem into the country.13 They rushed back to tell the others, but no one believed them.

14 Still later he appeared to the eleven disciples as they were eating together. He rebuked them for their stubborn unbelief because they refused to believe those who had seen him after he had been raised from the dead.Some early manuscripts add: And they excused themselves, saying, “This age of lawlessness and unbelief is under Satan, who does not permit God’s truth and power to conquer the evil [unclean] spirits. Therefore, reveal your justice now.” This is what they said to Christ. And Christ replied to them, “The period of years of Satan’s power has been fulfilled, but other dreadful things will happen soon. And I was handed over to death for those who have sinned, so that they may return to the truth and sin no more, and so they may inherit the spiritual, incorruptible, and righteous glory in heaven.”

15 And then he told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.16 Anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved. But anyone who refuses to believe will be condemned.17 These miraculous signs will accompany those who believe: They will cast out demons in my name, and they will speak in new languages.Or new tongues; some manuscripts do not include new.18 They will be able to handle snakes with safety, and if they drink anything poisonous, it won’t hurt them. They will be able to place their hands on the sick, and they will be healed.”

19 When the Lord Jesus had finished talking with them, he was taken up into heaven and sat down in the place of honor at God’s right hand.20 And the disciples went everywhere and preached, and the Lord worked through them, confirming what they said by many miraculous signs.

16 And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him.

And very early in the morning the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun.

And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre?

And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away: for it was very great.

And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were affrighted.

And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted: Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: he is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him.

But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see him, as he said unto you.

And they went out quickly, and fled from the sepulchre; for they trembled and were amazed: neither said they any thing to any man; for they were afraid.

Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils.

10 And she went and told them that had been with him, as they mourned and wept.

11 And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not.

12 After that he appeared in another form unto two of them, as they walked, and went into the country.

13 And they went and told it unto the residue: neither believed they them.

14 Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.

15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

19 So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.

20 And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.

Psalm 55:1-23

Psalm 55In Hebrew texts 55:1-23 is numbered 55:2-24.

For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A maskilTitle: Probably a literary or musical term of David.

Listen to my prayer, O God,

do not ignore my plea;Ps 27:9; La 3:56

hear me and answer me.Ps 4:1

My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught1Sa 1:15-16; Ps 77:3; 86:6-7; 142:2

because of what my enemy is saying,

because of the threats of the wicked;

for they bring down suffering on meS 2Sa 16:6-8; Ps 17:9; 143:3

and assailS Ps 44:16 me in their anger.Ps 71:11

My heart is in anguishS Ps 6:3 within me;

the terrorsS Job 18:11 of death have fallen on me.

Fear and tremblingS Job 4:14; S 2Co 7:15 have beset me;

horrorDt 28:67; Isa 21:4; Jer 46:5; 49:5; Eze 7:18 has overwhelmed me.

I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove!

I would fly away and be at rest.

I would flee far away

and stay in the desert;The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here and in the middle of verse 19.1Sa 23:14

I would hurry to my place of shelter,Ps 31:20

far from the tempest and storm.Ps 77:18; Isa 4:6; 25:4; 28:2; 29:6; 32:2

Lord, confuse the wicked, confound their words,Ge 11:9; Ac 2:4

for I see violence and strifePs 11:5; Isa 59:6; Jer 6:7; Eze 7:11; Hab 1:3 in the city.Ge 4:17

10 Day and night they prowl1Pe 5:8 about on its walls;

malice and abuse are within it.

11 Destructive forcesPs 5:9 are at work in the city;

threats and liesPs 10:7 never leave its streets.

12 If an enemy were insulting me,

I could endure it;

if a foe were rising against me,

I could hide.

13 But it is you, a man like myself,

my companion, my close friend,S 2Sa 15:12

14 with whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowshipAc 1:16-17

at the house of God,Ps 42:4

as we walked about

among the worshipers.

15 Let death take my enemies by surprise;Ps 64:7; Pr 6:15; Isa 29:5; 47:9, 11; 1Th 5:3

let them go down alive to the realm of the dead,S Ps 49:14

for evil finds lodging among them.

16 As for me, I call to God,

and the Lord saves me.

17 Evening,Ps 141:2; Ac 3:1; 10:3, 30 morningPs 5:3; 88:13; 92:2 and noonAc 10:9

I cry out in distress,

and he hears my voice.

18 He rescues me unharmed

from the battle waged against me,

even though many oppose me.

19 God, who is enthroned from of old,S Ex 15:18; Dt 33:27; Ps 29:10

who does not change—

he will hearPs 78:59 them and humble them,

because they have no fear of God.Ps 36:1; 64:4

20 My companion attacks his friends;Ps 7:4

he violates his covenant.S Ps 41:9

21 His talk is smooth as butter,Ps 12:2

yet war is in his heart;

his words are more soothing than oil,Pr 5:3; 6:24

yet they are drawn swords.Ps 57:4; 59:7; 64:3; Pr 12:18; Rev 1:16

22 Cast your cares on the Lord

and he will sustain you;S Ps 18:35; Mt 6:25-34; 1Pe 5:7

he will never let

the righteous be shaken.Ps 15:5; 21:7; 37:24; 112:6

23 But you, God, will bring down the wicked

into the pitPs 9:15; S 30:3; 73:18; 94:13; Isa 14:15; Eze 28:8; S Lk 8:31 of decay;

the bloodthirsty and deceitfulPs 5:6

will not live out half their days.S Job 15:32

But as for me, I trust in you.Ps 11:1; 25:2; 56:3

Psalm 55

For the choir director: A psalmHebrew maskil. This may be a literary or musical term. of David, to be accompanied by stringed instruments.

Listen to my prayer, O God.

Do not ignore my cry for help!

Please listen and answer me,

for I am overwhelmed by my troubles.

My enemies shout at me,

making loud and wicked threats.

They bring trouble on me

and angrily hunt me down.

My heart pounds in my chest.

The terror of death assaults me.

Fear and trembling overwhelm me,

and I can’t stop shaking.

Oh, that I had wings like a dove;

then I would fly away and rest!

I would fly far away

to the quiet of the wilderness. Interlude

How quickly I would escape—

far from this wild storm of hatred.

Confuse them, Lord, and frustrate their plans,

for I see violence and conflict in the city.

10 Its walls are patrolled day and night against invaders,

but the real danger is wickedness within the city.

11 Everything is falling apart;

threats and cheating are rampant in the streets.

12 It is not an enemy who taunts me—

I could bear that.

It is not my foes who so arrogantly insult me—

I could have hidden from them.

13 Instead, it is you—my equal,

my companion and close friend.

14 What good fellowship we once enjoyed

as we walked together to the house of God.

15 Let death stalk my enemies;

let the graveHebrew let Sheol. swallow them alive,

for evil makes its home within them.

16 But I will call on God,

and the Lord will rescue me.

17 Morning, noon, and night

I cry out in my distress,

and the Lord hears my voice.

18 He ransoms me and keeps me safe

from the battle waged against me,

though many still oppose me.

19 God, who has ruled forever,

will hear me and humble them. Interlude

For my enemies refuse to change their ways;

they do not fear God.

20 As for my companion, he betrayed his friends;

he broke his promises.

21 His words are as smooth as butter,

but in his heart is war.

His words are as soothing as lotion,

but underneath are daggers!

22 Give your burdens to the Lord,

and he will take care of you.

He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.

23 But you, O God, will send the wicked

down to the pit of destruction.

Murderers and liars will die young,

but I am trusting you to save me.

55 Give ear to my prayer, O God; and hide not thyself from my supplication.

Attend unto me, and hear me: I mourn in my complaint, and make a noise;

Because of the voice of the enemy, because of the oppression of the wicked: for they cast iniquity upon me, and in wrath they hate me.

My heart is sore pained within me: and the terrors of death are fallen upon me.

Fearfulness and trembling are come upon me, and horror hath overwhelmed me.

And I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest.

Lo, then would I wander far off, and remain in the wilderness. Selah.

I would hasten my escape from the windy storm and tempest.

Destroy, O Lord, and divide their tongues: for I have seen violence and strife in the city.

10 Day and night they go about it upon the walls thereof: mischief also and sorrow are in the midst of it.

11 Wickedness is in the midst thereof: deceit and guile depart not from her streets.

12 For it was not an enemy that reproached me; then I could have borne it: neither was it he that hated me that did magnify himself against me; then I would have hid myself from him:

13 But it was thou, a man mine equal, my guide, and mine acquaintance.

14 We took sweet counsel together, and walked unto the house of God in company.

15 Let death seize upon them, and let them go down quick into hell: for wickedness is in their dwellings, and among them.

16 As for me, I will call upon God; and the Lord shall save me.

17 Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice.

18 He hath delivered my soul in peace from the battle that was against me: for there were many with me.

19 God shall hear, and afflict them, even he that abideth of old. Selah. Because they have no changes, therefore they fear not God.

20 He hath put forth his hands against such as be at peace with him: he hath broken his covenant.

21 The words of his mouth were smoother than butter, but war was in his heart: his words were softer than oil, yet were they drawn swords.

22 Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.

23 But thou, O God, shalt bring them down into the pit of destruction: bloody and deceitful men shall not live out half their days; but I will trust in thee.

Proverbs 11:7

Hopes placed in mortals die with them;S Job 8:13

all the promise ofTwo Hebrew manuscripts; most Hebrew manuscripts, Vulgate, Syriac and Targum When the wicked die, their hope perishes; / all they expected from their power comes to nothing.S Pr 10:28

When the wicked die, their hopes die with them,

for they rely on their own feeble strength.

When a wicked man dieth, his expectation shall perish: and the hope of unjust men perisheth.

Mar 11 Mar 13
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