I find it interesting that the last two chapters of Numbers deal with cities of refuge, and what to do with the five daughters of Zelophehad concerning their inheritance. Both subjects have to do with protection. One, the protection of a person who accidentally kills another, from the dead man’s avenger. The other, the protection of the land.
In the first instance, a person was protected from the avenger as long as he stayed inside the city of refuge. One step outside those gates, and the avenger was free to kill the manslayer.
Satan is like that avenger, eager to destroy me if I step away from my Savior’s protection. And every time I neglect time in God’s Word and prayer, when I sin and refuse to repent, when I don’t obey Him by worshiping and serving with a fellowship of believers, when I try to live with one foot in the world, I expose myself to Satan’s arrows.
The second is about protecting the land, the inheritance given by God. I can see that as my own, personal Promised Land of fellowship with God. It seems that relatives of the daughters of Zelophehad were a bit jealous of the possibility that, should the girls marry men from outside of Joseph’s family, another tribe of Israel would get the rights to the land God had given them. They wanted to make sure what was their’s stayed with them.
Makes me wonder how jealous I am that something or someone could take what God has given me: love, peace, joy, fellowship with Him, holiness. The same things that make me vulnerable to my manslayer, Satan, can steal the blessings that are mine as God’s child.
So God is asking me today to protect what is mine through the blood of His precious Son. I need to control my thoughts, I need to resist temptation, I need to read and meditate on His Word, to pray, to worship Him and praise Him and love Him like He deserves. I need to walk with Him in an intentional way, and to cling to Him as my Protector, my City of Refuge.