Ministry Resources

OT Fire Starters – Day 63: Numbers 16-17

READ: Numbers 16-17

THINK: Do you ever think, ”That’s not the way I would do it”, or ”I’m not going along with this”, when it comes to the actions or decisions of people in leadership? We all have opinions and we often tend to think we know best about things that affect our lives. Still, God wants us to learn how to serve under authority without resentment or selfish pride. That’s one of the most significant tests of character, humility and faithfulness. Leaders aren’t always right or godly or sincere, but they are accountable to God for how they handle their responsibilities. You are accountable for how you respond, which often reveals your level of patience with people and trust in God. Unless leaders push you to defy God or to disobey His Word, the Lord will help you serve productively under their guidance. And if you ever have to resist their demands or remove yourself from their oversight, God can help you to do that with grace and integrity.

RESPOND: Why do you think that Korah and the other leaders opposed Moses? Who and what were these leaders really rejecting, and why? (See 16:3 and 16:10 notes.) What does this passage reveal about how God chooses leaders and the standard God’s people should use in appointing leadership? What indication does 16:22-23, 46-50 give of Moses’ humility and compassion for the people? How could the people be so brash as to complain against Moses after God had just destroyed the defiant leaders the day before (16:41)? (See 16:41-50 note.) What does this indicate about how easily people can be mistaken or deceived in their view of others’ spirituality? What did God do to show future generations of Israelites who He had chosen for the priesthood? (See 17:3 note.)

PRAY: Pray for your pastors and church leaders. Pray that the people in your group or congregation will be gracious, encouraging, supportive and faithful in their response to these leaders.

ACT: Have you been disrespectful of leadership-in public or private-at church, school, home or elsewhere? You may not always agree with your leaders-and your leaders won’t always be right-but God expects you to treat them with respect. Even when leaders aren’t in line with God-you can graciously remove yourself from a situation. Take the first step toward settling any issues by talking to your leaders and apologizing to anyone you’ve involved in your complaint.

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