One Thing You Still Lack
CONT., page 3
We will begin our consideration of this question by reading from Exodus 30:11-16 and Numbers 3:44-51. Let us first look at Exodus 30 where we find the following law of Yahweh regarding the numbering of the sons of Israel. We find here that any time the people took a census or numbered themselves, a sum of money had to be paid to Yahweh by anyone who was numbered. Let us read from verses twelve through sixteen.
"When you take a census of the sons of Israel to number them, then each one of them shall give a ransom for himself to Yahweh, when you number them, that there may be no plague among them when you number them. This is what everyone who is numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a contribution to Yahweh. ... And you shall take the atonement money from the sons of Israel, and shall give it for the service of the tent of meeting, that it may be a memorial for the sons of Israel before Yahweh, to make atonement (or, covering) for yourselves."
In summary, any time the sons of Israel were numbered, each person counted had to be covered or atoned for by paying the sum of half a shekel. This "atonement money" was then used for building and providing care for the tabernacle or temple. Let us briefly look at a remarkable example of the power of this "atonement money."
On the occasions when Moses had numbered the people, we find that the required atonement money was paid in each case - Exodus 38:26, Numbers 3:47, 31:48-54. As an example of this, let us read the account in Numbers 31. Here the men of war were counted after fighting the Midianites, and reported back to Moses the following:
"Your servants have taken a census of men of war who are in our charge, and no man of us is missing. So we have brought as an offering to Yahweh what each man found, articles of gold, armlets and bracelets, signet rings, earrings and necklaces, to make atonement for ourselves before Yahweh."
Thus in each case in which the sons of Israel were numbered, they were placed under their legal covering of the "atonement money," escaping judgment that comes when numbering. But in 1 Chronicles 21:1 we read -"Satan stood up against Israel and moved David to number Israel." Now we know, of course, there was nothing wrong with David numbering the people, as long as the atonement money was paid. But in this case, according to the account and considering the details that followed, David did not require atonement money from the people, subjecting them to Yahweh's judgment. Let us now consider a most interesting aspect of this census and its unique and, as we will see, most revealing consequences.
Joab, David's commander, did not like the idea of numbering the people, and counted everyone BUT Levi and Benjamin. (Joab was a Benjamite.) As a result of the census and the absence of the required atonement money, a pestilence broke out as promised in the law of Yahweh in Exodus 30:11-16. The pestilence was so great that by the time it had reached the borders of Benjamin, it had killed 70,000 men of Israel! But you will note in the account that specifically at the tribe of Benjamin, Yahweh declared to the destroying angel -"It is enough; now relax your hand." Thus, the plague ceased at Benjamin. Why? It is quite obvious why. Benjamin and Levi (in Jerusalem) were not counted in the census and thus were still under the legal covering of the atonement money paid upon Moses' last count. Thus, Benjamin and Levi escaped the judgment solely because they were covered by the previous atonement money. The destroying angel stopped at the place of the covering!
And once again, for what reason is it that the woman is to cover her head, but for the sake of the angels? Here again, as we clearly saw with Lot, we see the dramatic and consistent testimony that angels are MOST sensitive to Yahweh's coverings. The destroying angel killed 70,000 men, but was stopped at the covering of the atonement money.
In conclusion, note here that the atonement money is a very real, substantial, effectual, legal remedy of Yahweh to escape judgment by covering the people when they are numbered. This is very important in this analysis of the covering of the last-days Remnant, when they too will be numbered with the company of the first Remnant.
Let us now consider a second example of how money served as an atonement before Yahweh, or in this case more specifically a ransom. We read in Numbers 3:44-51 that after coming out of Egypt where the first-born males were slain in the final plague, Yahweh took the Levites instead of all the first-born among the sons of Israel whom He claimed. In that even exchange, there were 273 more first-born than there were Levites. How did Yahweh have them to legally recompense the difference? They were redeemed by paying a ransom sum.
"And for the ransom of the 273 of the first-born of the sons of Israel who are in excess beyond the Levites, you shall take five shekels apiece, per head; you shall take them in terms of the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), and give the money, the ransom of those who are in excess among them, to Aaron and to his sons."
The "ransom money" for the redemption of the first born was given to the head Levites. Thus we see once again that Yahweh was satisfied with the payment of a sum of money, this time in the redemption of the first born.
Now for a third and most important example in which money was an atonement or covering, possessing redemptive qualities. In Numbers 10:11 and following, we find an account setting forth the order in which the sons of Israel were to move out in their journeys through the wilderness. When the cloud moved, there was a specific order in which the various tribes and those carrying the disassembled temple were to travel. We will restrict ourselves here to simply note that the priests, when disassembling and moving the tabernacle, moved out in two companies separated by Reuben. Ruben was the first-born son who laid with his father's concubine and lost his birthright. We thus find here a most familiar pattern.
Following the standard of Judah and the tribes that traveled with them, came the first company of priests that bore the tabernacle. Then followed the standard of Reuben, who lost his birthright because of his adultery. Next were the priests who carried the holy objects in the tabernacle. Thus we see the two groups of priests bearing the tabernacle and all that was in it, separated by the standard of the one who lost his birthright for the cause of adultery. Is it not obvious by now that we are seeing Yahweh's pattern of the two temple-bearing Remnants, separated by Christianity?
However, before we continue, let us back up to chapter four of Numbers and see what first had to take place in order to prepare for this move. Remember and note here that the law of coverings was very much in practice in this entire activity. The cloud over the tabernacle was, very importantly, a spiritual covering that averted judgment. (See Coverings.) When the covering cloud moved off the tabernacle, the tabernacle was uncovered and judgment was in store! To avoid judgment and prepare for the move, the priests began putting substitutionary coverings over all the fixtures and holy things - blue cloths and one scarlet cloth (Numbers 4). Every item had to have a substitutionary covering over it since the cloud no longer covered them. The cloth coverings thus satisfied Yahweh and His angels and nobody died.
However, there was one group still needing covering - the Levites who served in the transport of the tabernacle. How were they covered? By the law of Moses in Exodus 30:11-16 regarding the atonement money. In Numbers 4:2, 22, and 29 we see commanded in addition to the cloths, that the Levites were to be numbered or counted. Under the law, they would then be required to pay their atonement money, which would be the covering for these Levites in their special service.
So we see that while all the items in the tabernacle were covered by substitutionary coverings of cloth, the priests who were responsible for relocating these items were covered specifically by the atonement money required when they were numbered. Thus, all the items of the tabernacle, as well as the priests who transported these items, were legally covered; the priests, once again, by atonement money.
This example alone gives great evidence and affirmation that selling all could indeed be the covering of the two-part Remnant. As we saw here in the specific order of the relocation of the tabernacle and the children of Israel, the pattern is the same as that which we have seen before - the priestly first Remnant, followed by Reuben Christianity, followed by the second group of the priestly second Remnant. And what was it that specifically covered these Remnant-representing priests? Atonement money for the census, the numbering of the Levites in their service in the relocation of the tabernacle. Here we have one more bold evidence that selling all is the "atonement money," the legal covering over the bride of Yahshua.
As the second Remnant enters into the promised land after the wilderness wanderings, keep in mind that the priests bearing the ark of the covenant who obediently placed their feet in the river before the waters piled up, were the numbered priests, those in the latter group. These were the priests who were covered before Yahweh because they were numbered and paid their atonement money.
Thus we see from these three accounts that not only can money be a legal covering before Yahweh, but even more so there is a specific pattern revealing that "atonement money" is precisely the covering for the numbering of the two Remnant.
Continue to page 4 of One Thing ... for ANANIAS AND SAPPHIRA VERSUS BARNABAS
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