The Message of Numbers

The Message of Numbers

Journey to the Promised Land

The Bible Speaks Today Series

by Raymond Brown

The Message of Numbers
  • Length: 310 pages
  • Published: June 11, 2002
  •  In stock
  • ISBN: 978-0-8308-2428-1
  • Item Code: 2428
  • Case Quantity: 32

Numbers is one of the "lost" books of the Bible—lost because it is neglected by many Christians.

Named for its two "numberings," or censuses, of Israel—the generation that left Egypt and the generation that entered the land of promise—Numbers frames a fascinating account of the pilgrim people Israel learning to trust God.

Readers are frequently puzzled by the dazzling variety of literature that makes up this book and wonder how to make sense of the whole. But in this thorough exposition of Numbers, Raymond Brown discloses the careful design and message of Numbers. He shows how God provides for the basic needs of the ideal life: to be loved, to be free, to be certain. Further, Brown highlights the rich theological themes of Numbers, untangles its meaning for today's readers and shows its enduring relevance for God's people.


General Preface

Author's Preface

Chief Abbreviations

Select Bibliography


Part 1: Getting Ready (1:1-10:10)
1. God's People Prepare (1:1-2:34)
2. Community Servants (3:1-4:49)
3. Keeping the Camp Clean (5:1-31)
4. Short-Term Voluntary Service (6:1-21)
5. Inherited Riches (6:22-27)
6. Giving and Receiving the Best (7:1-89)
7. Israel's Role Models (8:1-26)
8. Three-Dimensional Grace (9:1-10:10)

Part 2: Setting Out (10:11-12:16)
9. Sharing Good Things (10:11-36)
10. Leadership Issues (11:1-35)
11. Disloyal Colleagues (12:1-16)

Part 3: Drawing Back (13:1-14:45)
12. Giants or Grapes? (13:1-33)
13. Israel's Sleepless Night (14:1-45)

Part 4: Marking Time (15:1-25:18)
14. When God Speaks Again (15:1-41)
15. More Leadership Tensions (16:1-50)
16. Kept as a Sign (17:1-18:32)
17. The Perils of Pollution (19:1-22)
18. Coping with Crisis (20:1-21:3)
19. Life for a Look (21:4-9)
20. The March to Moab (21:10-35)
21. Seeing with the Seer (2:1-24:25)
22. A Tragic Sequel (25:1-18)

Part 5: Pressing On (26:1-36:13)
23. Facing a Different Future (26:1-65)
24. Human Rights and Divine Commands (27:1-11)
25. Leadership Lifestyles (27:12-23)
26. Variations on a Majestic Theme (28:1-29:40)
27. Keeping Promises and Identifying Dangers (30:1-31:54)
28. Alternative Destinies (32:1-42)
29. Recollections and Resolutions (33:1-56)
30. Generous Provision (34:1-36:13)


Raymond Brown was formerly principal of Spurgeon's College in London, England, and he has also served in several pastorates. He is the author of Philosophy of Religion, Why Believe?, and several volumes in IVP's Bible Speaks Today series.