Numbers Chapter 25  PDF  MSWord

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Go to Bible: Numbers 25
Num 25:1

“began to prostitute themselves with the daughters of Moab.” This would involve both physical sex and also being pulled into the worship of pagan gods. Much of the worship of pagan gods involved ritual prostitution.

Num 25:2

“they invited the people of Israel to the sacrifices of their gods.” The worship of the pagan gods involved ritual sex, as we see from Numbers 25:1. That was a major reason it was so attractive to the Israelite men. The verb “they invited” (more literally, “they called”) is a feminine plural verb, so it was the women who invited the men of Israel to the sex and sacrifice.

“and the people ate.” That is, they ate of the sacrifices that were offered to the pagan gods, thereby participating in the worship of those pagan gods, and they bowed down to them, that is gave them the reverence that should have been Yahweh’s alone.

Num 25:3

“yoked.” A very unusual word occurring only here and Psalm 106:28. The word likely has a specific cultic meaning in this context, but that meaning is lost in history. The major sin involved in the worship of Baal-peor, the “Baal” that was worshipped at Peor, was sexual, as the Bible makes clear. Philip Budd (The Word Biblical Commentary) writes: “Clearly some formal recognition by the Israelites of the Baal localized at Peor is implied. Baal was widely recognized in Canaan as the fertility god.”

“Baal-peor.” The text could be translated, “Baal of Peor.” Baal was the god and Peor was the place. The worship, rituals, and beliefs about the gods could differ from place to place even if the name of the god, and much about him, were generally the same. The specific beliefs and rituals about Baal of Peor are not known. However, the fact that the god was related to Baal shows the kinds of evil acts were likely involved, such as human sacrifice and ritual sex.

Num 25:4

“head-men.” The Hebrew is simply “heads,” referring to the top men, but saying “heads of all the people” would be confusing in English.

Num 25:5(top)
Num 25:6(top)
Num 25:7(top)
Num 25:8(top)
Num 25:9(top)
Num 25:10(top)
Num 25:11(top)
Num 25:12(top)
Num 25:13(top)
Num 25:14(top)
Num 25:15(top)
Num 25:16(top)
Num 25:17(top)
Num 25:18(top)

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