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God In The Center (Numbers 1-4)

The Septuagint called this book Numbers because there is a numbering of the people at the beginning and at the end of the book. But in the Hebrew Scriptures the book is called, bamidbar which means “In The Wilderness.” This title comes from the first line of the book which says, “The Lord spoke to Moses in the wilderness of Sinai” (Numbers 1:1). “In The Wilderness” is a more appropriate title because this book will describe Israel’s travel in the wilderness from Mount Sinai to the edge of the Promised Land. Numbers is the sequel to Exodus, which we can see by reading the first verse that we are picking up where we left off. The dating tells us that it has been one year since the exodus. They have been at Mount Sinai for 11 months. During those 11 months God has been teaching the people his laws, as revealed in the second half of the book of Exodus and all of the book of Leviticus.

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