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I hope everyone is well. We had another great week and weekend here in Bellingham. I was blessed to speak at Alife yesterday. God’s presence in worship, the hunger of the people, and the feeling of family were all hallmarks in yesterday’s community connection. I am preparing now to go to the Netherlands and Bulgaria for an appointment with what God is going to do there.
God’s plan has always been that He would manifest His presence among men. He desires to tabernacle with all men. Let’s look at a Scripture in the book of Numbers that will help explain God’s heart in wanting to see His presence made known among all men.
Numbers 11:16 So the LORD said to Moses: “Gather to Me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom you know to be the elders of the people and officers over them; bring them to the tabernacle of meeting, that they may stand there with you. 17 Then I will come down and talk with you there. I will take of the Spirit that is upon you and will put the same upon them; and they shall bear the burden of the people with you, that you may not bear it yourself alone.”
Here we see that Moses was to appoint seventy men among the people to stand before them. These men were elders of the people and officers over them. They were ‘doorkeepers’ among the people. I believe the number 70 is significant of all of the tribes and tongues upon the earth. In Genesis chapter ten we find an account of the descendants of the sons of Noah. If you do a study of this chapter, you will find that the descendants of the sons of Noah were represented in seventy different peoples. The sons of Japheth were fourteen, the sons of Ham were thirty, and the sons of Shem were twenty-six, for a total of seventy. I believe these seventy elders represented God’s intention for all of the tongues, peoples, tribes, and nations of the earth.
There is significance in the prophetic content of this number 70. Throughout Scripture this number 70 carries with it the passion of God the Father’s heart for the scattered sons of Noah. It represents the Father’s heart for all people. We find that all through the record of God’s relationship with His covenant people, the number 70 comes up again and again. When we see this number 70, it is God’s heart for the sons of Noah. It is God’s heart for the tribes, tongues, peoples, and nations of the earth. By gathering the seventy around the tabernacle, God was declaring the need for all men to tabernacle in His presence. God was about to demonstrate the means by which He would make Himself known to all of mankind.
Numbers 11:25 Then the LORD came down in the cloud, and spoke to him, and took of the Spirit that was upon him, and placed the same upon the seventy elders; and it happened, when the Spirit rested upon them, that they prophesied, although they never did so again. 26 But two men had remained in the camp: the name of one was Eldad, and the name of the other Medad. And the Spirit rested upon them. Now they were among those listed, but who had not gone out to the tabernacle; yet they prophesied in the camp.
What did these men prophesy? Perhaps they prophesied that one day God would pour His Spirit upon all flesh and that He would make a way whereby He could tabernacle with all men. They may have said that the cry of all flesh would be fulfilled when men would come to know God intimately and He Himself would make His home among men. They may have prophesied of God’s desire to meet with all men upon His Mountain, Zion. We don’t know what these men prophesied, but we do know that two of these men were in the camp when they prophesied.
These were Eldad and Medad. The name “Eldad” means, “God has loved”; and “Medad” means, “The affection of God”. These men were not following the rule and order of an Old Covenant. They were prophesying in the camp and proving that God’s love and affection would one day be made known to all men. Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ assistant, became very concerned that they were prophesying in the camp. He wanted Moses to put a stop to their actions.
Numbers 11:27 And a young man ran and told Moses, and said, “Eldad and Medad are prophesying in the camp.” 28 So Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ assistant, one of his choice men, answered and said, “Moses my lord, forbid them!”
The response that Moses made has of a great prophetic significance. He spoke of God’s heart concerning His desire to make Himself known among all men.
Numbers 11:29 Then Moses said to him, “Are you zealous for my sake? Oh, that all the Lord’s people were prophets and that the LORD would put His Spirit upon them!” 30 And Moses returned to the camp, both he and the elders of Israel.
Moses was prophesying of the day when God would pour His Spirit out upon all flesh. This act would be the guarantee of the inheritance of God to all men. He would give men the power to tabernacle with Him. In the New Testament account of the fulfillment of Pentecost, we find this prophetic statement of Moses made complete.
Ted J. Hanson
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