Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

One Lord, One Baptism

Rev. Shinoi Joseph
Long Island, MTC, NY
23 The Lord said to Moses, “Is the Lord’s power limited? Now you shall see whether my word will come true for you or not.”

The book of Numbers presents an account of 38 years of Israel's wandering in the desert after the establishment of the covenant at Mt. Sinai.  The book is named as ‘Numbers” because Lord commanded Moses to take census of all Israelite community (Num 1:2-19). Chapter 11 speaks about three things, discontent of Israelite community (1-9), Moses’ plea before God for help (10ff) and God’s anger on them due to their lack of faith and discontentment (1-5, 10ff). Here Moses asks Lord for two things:

1. I am alone and fed up in leading this people. So provide me help
2. People are fed up with Manna and now they want meat.

God grants both of his requests. Lord says, choose among yourself 70 people whom I will pour the Spirit and they will help you in leading this people and secondly people will now have meat to eat for a month until they get fed up with that.

The passage that we are meditating today speaks about two persons Eldad and Medad who receives the Spirit of the Lord. This is the only portion where their names are recorded and nothing more is known of them beyond that they prophesized. When other chosen people went into the tent of God, Eldad and Medad remained in the camp. The reason for staying back in the camp is not given in the Bible. But the word of God says Eldad and Medad prophesied in the camp. This means that they both received the Spirit though they remained in the camp. Joshua wanted Moses to stop Eldad and Medad in prophesying in camp as they did not went into the tent of God and received the Spirit of God. But Moses says, I wish God would send his Spirit not to the few but to all God’s people. Moses wishes that everyone in Israelite community receive the Spirit of God so that people may know God and do the will of God. Moses here acknowledges God’s way of doing things and also he acknowledges Eldad’s and Medad’s prophetic charisma because they were prophesying God’s message.

So this Bible portion reminds us that God has His own way to act and he gives his spirit to those whom he is pleased. This portion also points to the fact that the Spirit of God is not confined to any particular place or to a particular group of people. The Spirit (ru’aah) of God like a wind blows wherever He wishes and resides in whom God is pleased with (John 3:8). Prophet Joel prophesied that in the day of the Lord, “…I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. Even on the male and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit (Joel 2:28-29)” So God’s Spirit is for those who seek and love God. The Spirit of the God is for everyone who calls on the name of the Lord. On the day of the Pentecost not only did the apostles but all who were assembled received the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2). The Holy Spirit is the free gift of God to those who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. In Christian Baptism, Child/adult accepts the Lordship of God. The child/adult at the time of sacrament of Confirmation is anointed with Holy Oil (Muron) and the celebrant says, “____ is anointed with holy oil as a sign of the gift of the Holy Spirit given to the true believers….” God out of his love towards his children pour His Spirit on them. St. Peter says, “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.


God help me to realize every moment in my life that I am yours and Your Spirit dwells in me. Amen

This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit - 1 John 4:13

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