April 26, Reading 1 – Numbers 6

Reading

Audio, Visual

SAA Notes

The Nazirite vow brought certain obligations and responsibilities. John the Baptist lived as a Nazirite. Paul was most probably paying for the offerings of a number of Jewish Christians who had taken the Nazirite vow, when he was arrested in the temple. The Aaronic blessing is still sung at baptisms.

SJA Notes

The Nazarite vow was a pretty serious thing. So serious that even the death of your mum or dad was not to break it. And even if out of your control someone dies beside you, that breaks the vow and you have to start over (v12).

The vow was to be separate to the Lord.

There’s two people who were living as Nazarites (for a time) that are pretty well known.

The first is Samson. A man’s man. A man’s man’s man. A broken man of towering physical strength (albeit completely via God’s providence and grace) and utter moral ineptitude. He lived as a Nazarite, and the rules didn’t make him a better person (because that’s not the point).

He didn’t live separate to the Lord, but amongst the world and of the world, consuming what it had to offer.

The other person is John the Baptist, a man from the desert with gnats in his head. The cousin of Jesus, who leaped in the womb in the presence of his King.

Here was a man who lived separate to the Lord! He took seriously the vows of a Nazarite.

But then we think of Jesus. He drank wine. His power of life was such that death could not and did not defile Him and His living separate to the Lord.

So it seems that this is another entry in the law that through Jesus we see a deeper picture of what it means to be separate, singular, for the Lord. One God. One King. One Father.

Amen.

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