Read: Numbers 27:12-23
The Lord said to Moses, “Take Joshua son of Nun, a man in whom is the spirit of leadership, and lay your hand on him. Have him stand before Eleazar the priest and the entire assembly and commission him in their presence. Give him some of your authority so the whole Israelite community will obey him. Moses did as the Lord commanded him. He took Joshua and had him stand before Eleazar the priest and the whole assembly. Then he laid his hands on him and commissioned him, as the Lord instructed through Moses.
Numbers 27:18-20, 22-23
God Provided a Spiritual Leader for His People
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Who leads your family? If right now you’re pointing at someone, is it a parent or another family member? Who leads the United States? It’s the president. In the same way, a boss leads at work. A teacher leads the classroom. Each of these leaders has been set up to direct the family, the country, the job, and the classroom.
Leaders have been set up by God to direct what we do and to reflect what God wants us to do. All leaders have been given their position from the Lord. God’s Word even outlines their responsibilities. Today we see another leader and how the Lord set him apart for his people. The Lord gave his people a spiritual leader. Moses was his name. The Lord set him apart to lead God’s people out of Egypt and to lead them spiritually. God used Moses to give his people the Ten Commandments and to rebuke them when they would sin against the Lord.
In today’s Bible reading, it is time for Moses to be “gathered to his people.” That’s another way of saying Moses was going to die. Moses did not want the people to be without a leader. He asked the Lord for a new leader for his people. The Lord had Joshua set as the next leader. Joshua was presented before the people. In a very special ceremony, God left no doubt that Joshua was the new leader for his people. God said to Moses, “Give him some of your authority so the whole Israelite community will obey him.” God made clear that Joshua would now have the authority and it was given to him by God.
The Lord blesses us with spiritual leaders. We call them pastors, elders, or church leaders. We, too, have special ceremonies that set these men apart as leaders from the Lord. These men are responsible to strengthen the faith of the church and support the spiritual and physical lives of God’s people. Their power and authority come from God and his Word.
Thank God for providing spiritual leaders as a blessing for our lives!
Dear Heavenly Father, you are a God of order. Thank you for setting up leaders so that we might have an orderly life to praise you! Grant us the peace that order brings to our lives. Amen.
The questions below are to help families discuss this devotion. The questions are divided by age group as suggestions, but anyone could reflect on any of the questions as they desire.
Questions for Younger Children
- Who led the people of Israel out of Egypt?
- With whom did God replace him?
Questions for Elementary Age Children
- Name at least two spiritual leaders in your congregation. List one thing they do that makes you thankful for them.
- Name at least one important thing God expects a spiritual leader to do.
Questions for Middle School and Above
- What are two ways you might serve as a leader for the Lord (or to assist a leader) as you get older?
- Even as a child, discuss how you might serve as a leader now.
Hymn: CW 367:1-3 – Christ Be My Leader
Christ be my leader by night as by day,
Safe through the darkness, for he is the way.
Gladly I follow, my future his care;
Darkness is daylight when Jesus is there.
Christ be my teacher in age as in youth,
Drifting or doubting, for he is the truth.
Grant me to trust him, though shifting as sand.
Doubt cannot daunt me—in Jesus I stand!
Christ be my Savior in calm as in strife;
Death cannot hold me, for he is the life.
Nor darkness nor doubting nor sin and its stain
Can touch my salvation—with Jesus I reign!