Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | April 12, 2023

“the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment”

Today’s devotion comes from Numbers 15:16-31.  Here is a link to this Scripture –

I quote only the following verses.

“The priest shall take the grain offering of jealousy from the woman’s hand, and he shall wave the grain offering before the LORD and bring it to the altar;  and the priest shall take a handful of the grain offering as its memorial offering and offer it up in smoke on the altar, and afterward he shall make the woman drink the water.  When he has made her drink the water, then it shall come about, if she has defiled herself and has been unfaithful to her husband, that the water which brings a curse will go into her and cause bitterness, and her abdomen will swell and her thigh will waste away, and the woman will become a curse among her people.  But if the woman has not defiled herself and is clean, she will then be free and conceive children.

‘This is the law of jealousy:  when a wife, being under the authority of her husband, goes astray and defiles herself, or when a spirit of jealousy comes over a man and he is jealous of his wife, he shall then make the woman stand before the LORD, and the priest shall apply all this law to her.  Moreover, the man will be free from guilt, but that woman shall bear her guilt.’”  Numbers 15:25-31. 


We remember the prior Scripture, covered by yesterday’s devotion, that if a spirit of jealousy comes over a husband and he is jealous of his wife when she has defiled herself, or if a spirit of jealousy comes over him and he is jealous of his wife when she has not defiled herself, the man shall then bring his wife and an offering to the priest.  In today’s Scripture, we cover the adultery test that the priest shall perform.   

We may not understand how this adultery test works.  That is, we may not understand how the the grain offering of jealousy can detect whether or not the woman is guilty and how it causes the symptoms.  But, we can still appreciate both the relief and the accountability that this adultery test produces.  

If the woman is not guilty, then this adultery test a/k/a “the law of jealousy” establishes her innocence in the eyes of her husband and everyone else, and the husband is relieved of the burden of the spirit of jealousy.  But, if the woman is guilty, then the test holds her accountable. 

More generally, we may not understand how the LORD does a lot of things in Scripture.  But, we can meditate generally on what Scriptures state the LORD accomplishes by the law.  I give five examples.

“Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, so that every mouth may be closed and all the world may become accountable to God;  because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight;  for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.”  Romans 3:19-20.

“Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith.  But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.”  Galatians 3:24-25. 

“The scribes and the Pharisees *brought a woman caught in adultery, and having set her in the center of the court, they *said to Him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in adultery, in the very act.  Now in the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women;  what then do You say?”  They were saying this, testing Him, so that they might have grounds for accusing Him.  But Jesus stooped down and with His finger wrote on the ground.  But when they persisted in asking Him, He straightened up, and said to them, “He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.”  Again He stooped down and wrote on the ground.  When they heard it, they began to go out one by one, beginning with the older ones, and He was left alone, and the woman, where she was, in the center of the court.  Straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they?  Did no one condemn you?”  She said, “No one, Lord.”  And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either.  Go.  From now on sin no more.”]”  John 8:3-11.

“But we know that the Law is good, if one uses it lawfully, realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers and immoral men and homosexuals and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching, according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, with which I have been entrusted.”  1 Timothy 1:8-11.   

“then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment, and especially those who indulge the flesh in its corrupt desires and despise authority.  …”  2 Peter 2:9-10. 


%d bloggers like this: