The Ashes of the Red Heifer

“…bring you an unblemished red heifer in which is no defect and on which a yoke has never been placed. ‘You shall give it to Eleazar the priest, and it shall be brought outside the camp and be slaughtered in his presence…” (Numbers 19:2b-3, NASB)

There is probably no more obscure subject in Scripture to most people than the chapter on “the ashes of the Red Heifer.” Yet, the most obscure passages can give us the richest truths! In Numbers 19, the Lord gave Israel directions to sacrifice a Red Heifer (a red cow) outside the camp, and later outside Jerusalem, upon the Mount of Olives. This Red Heifer had to be completely redwithout blemish, and never having worn a yoke. This special sacrificial animal was killed in view of the tabernacle, and later after settling in Jerusalem, upon the Mt. of Olives facing the Eastern Gate of the Temple. The blood of the Red Heifer was sprinkled by the priest who made the offering toward the Tabernacle, and later, toward the Temple. Then the Red Heifer was placed upon the altar to be completely burned along with the wood. All of this was to be completely burned to ashes. Then, these ashes were to be mixed with water that came from a running stream. The gallons of mixture which resulted was to be stored and used for future sprinkling upon the people, priests, and objects which became defiled so they could be holy and usable in God’s service.

As Christians, this teaches us the high regard our Holy God has for our holiness as His people!! Israel would become defiled from the battles they had to fight, from coming in contact with dead bodies and animals. Defilement also came from committing acts of disobedience to God, such as sexual sins, stealing, and rebellion in attitudes and actions, etc. Much in our lives can defile us today in our daily walk! The blood of Jesus justifies and cleanses to save us and to enable us to serve Him as a holy people. Interestingly, sacrifices, continued in Israel to POINT BACK to Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, until 70 AD when the Temple was destroyed by the Romans (Heb. 9:13-14). We see, then, that it is God’s desire for us to be cleansed outwardly AND inwardly by faith in Jesus Christ! So, we should be living sacrifices to God daily! (Rom. 12:1-2)

God provided this and other sacrifices for Israel to offer continually to point the people to their need for holiness in thought and action to serve a Holy God. However, these sacrifices could not cleanse the conscience. (Hebrews 9) So, Jesus Christ, Who died in our place on the cross, as God’s complete sacrifice for our sins, justifies us before God, by forgiving our sins and sanctifying, or purifying us daily to serve Him. Interestingly, Orthodox Jews today plan to re-institute the sacrifice of the Red Heifer. This would enable them to purify the Temple Mount, to prepare the people to rebuild the Temple and purify the priests to restart the Temple sacrifices and service. Bible prophecy shows us that the Temple will be rebuilt!! The hunt for a qualified Red Heifer in Israel is ongoing, as well as searching for the ashes that may still exist in or around Jerusalem. These are prophetic indicators to us of the approach of the last days, and soon coming of the Lord to rapture the church. Now we know more about the “ashes of the Red Heifer” and their importance to teach us of our need for HOLINESS and PURITY to serve God!! As you watch for Jesus’ coming, Are you ready?

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1 Response to The Ashes of the Red Heifer

  1. Some notes on current trends:
    ***From the standpoint of Bible prophecy, things are unfolding just as predicted in the Word of God. ***Probably not one person in a thousand among born again Christians are aware of what the Bible says about the demonic attack on believers, the church and marriage that will happen in the last days.
    Many see these realities, but they do not connect them to Scripture nor think of attributing them to the demonic activity that Satan is bringing about. Much of Satan’s ability is much enhanced through the willful ignorance of born again believers. ***Few preachers are teaching along these lines so that their listeners are not instructed as to how we may “be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might,” (Ephesians 10:13) against much demonic attack that is coming against them. Nor are many teaching who we are in Christ so that we may walk in newness of life according to our new natures in Christ and through the power of the Holy Spirit.

    ***Christians are led to believe that sin is a part of the normal Christian life. But, the Bible says different.(Romans 6) ***An example of the direction that demonic assailing will take in the last days, is a plain and overt attack against marriage. The Amplified Bible says at 1 Timothy 4:1-3, “But the [Holy] Spirit distinctly and expressly declares that in latter times some will turn away from the faith, giving attention to deluding and seducing spirits and doctrines that demons teach; through the hypocrisy and pretensions of liars whose consciences are seared (cauterized); who forbid people to marry and [teach them] to abstain from [certain kinds of] foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and have [an increasingly clear] knowledge of the truth.” ***Biblical prophecy, at this passage and in many others set forth authoritatively what will be the prevailing attitude toward all relationships in the last days. This is true especially in marriage, as the this is the ultimate human relationship. Marriage is established exclusively for male and female, but which, from this truth, we may also establish proper and edifying relationships in all other areas of human society, church, family and nationhood. When the marriage relation is destroyed, so are all other relationships both personally and nationally, then also extending to global relationships, and, of course to our relationship with God Himself.

    ***Bible prophecy tells us as born again believers that we can look forward to experiencing in heaven, after the rapture, the “Marriage Supper of the Lamb.” (Revelation 19:9)***The teaching in the Bible that the church is the Bride of Christ is especially hated by the devil and the demons. Their ultimate effort in redefining marriage today, and thus to downgrade its importance, is to mock the wonderful eternal relationship that Jesus has and will have with his church. This sacred relationship was made possible by Jesus, the Son of God, coming to earth to die for our sins and to rise from the dead. Thus, Satan seeks to slam the atonement of Christ, His rising from the dead, and His giving new and eternal life to all who trust in Him. The devil, knows he cannot cancel what Jesus has done for sinners, but he can lie to us about His relationship with us as our soon coming Bridegroom. This is why demons, through willing apostate spiritual leaders, will teach against the truth that man, in God’s image, has been created in two genders: male and female. Human marriage is patterned after the eternal relationship that Jesus has with His Bride, the church. (Ephesians 5:21-33) Just any old gender or “marriage” arrangement will not qualify for what the living God has intended for us. But, men and women have jumped on the Sodom and Gomorrah bandwagon nonetheless, to flout every imaginable human perversion, calling it “pride.” They have even twisted God’s covenant sign of the rainbow for their purpose. “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.” (Prov. 16:18)

    ***As spiritual forces come in upon the world with special viciousness and which will, in these latter days, so deceive the masses that they, the demonic, will not be as covert and subtle as they have been in the past. We see that this outbreak of the demonic in Israel was out in the open for all to see, back in A.D. 30. This was because, Jesus’ miraculous activity, Divine authority and life changing teaching presented a major problem for them. Thus, they acted often and overtly. Even unbelievers could see their activity and the bondage which they brought upon their poor victims. ***In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus had to deal with a demonized man as soon as he entered a synagogue in Capernaum. (Mark 1:21-26) Demons fear biblical truth. They would prefer us to find “truth” somewhere else than the Bible. The Bible is the source of spiritual Truth (and all the kinds of historical, geographical, etc., truth which it relates with equal authority and accuracy), and Jesus Christ is the Author of the Bible. ***The “unclean spirits” that would manifest when Jesus was present greatly feared Him. They were less fearful of exposure because Jesus made them panic. Thus they seemed to subdue as many people as possible through deception or through outright possession. In our present time, since the biblical doctrine of the coming of the Lord for His church has been made especially clear over the last 200 years, we can trace the rise of occultism, Marxism, spiritism, cults and theological liberalism over that period of time. Thus, demonic activity, rebellion, wars, abortion, Socialism, homosexuality, adultery, murders, violence, riots, etc. of our days mark the rapid rise of demonic activity, and thus they signal for the immanent return of Christ.

    Dr. Scott Downing

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