Is Numbering the people a sin?


#1

Is there a sin in numbering the people? That is counting, or census of people in some way. King David is said to have sinned in this manner. Chapter 21 of I Paralipomenon tells the story of David numbering (census) of the people of Israel. The Lord spoke to David through Gad the seer. Punishing Israel for this sin of David. And giving him two choices, three years of famine, and an angel destroying in all the coasts; or fleeing from his enemies.


#2

You have to remember that our culture is different than their culture.

God doesn’t work based on subjective cultures, he works based on fundamental principles of equal happiness of the mind, soul and body.


#3

[quote="Gaerteuth, post:2, topic:322667"]
You have to remember that our culture is different than their culture.

God doesn't work based on subjective cultures, he works based on fundamental principles of equal happiness of the mind, soul and body.

[/quote]

How do you know that is how God works?


#4

[quote="CaptBell800, post:3, topic:322667"]
How do you know that is how God works?

[/quote]

Because any god that worked differently (conforming specifically to human culture) is a false god.


#5

That was not what I meant. I meant the second half. How do you know that God operates only towards a happiness of those three factors?


#6

[quote="CaptBell800, post:5, topic:322667"]
That was not what I meant. I meant the second half. How do you know that God operates only towards a happiness of those three factors?

[/quote]

Because countless revelations by people in a multitude of centuries have all expressed that God wants the soul, mind, heart and body to be equal. It doesn't necessarily have to be 3 things, he just wants equality of your human conditions.

Moderation of those conditions, if you will.


#7

[quote="The_Serpent, post:1, topic:322667"]
Is there a sin in numbering the people? That is counting, or census of people in some way. King David is said to have sinned in this manner. Chapter 21 of I Paralipomenon tells the story of David numbering (census) of the people of Israel. The Lord spoke to David through Gad the seer. Punishing Israel for this sin of David. And giving him two choices, three years of famine, and an angel destroying in all the coasts; or fleeing from his enemies.

[/quote]

I don't see how numbering people in and of itself was bad, I think it was more of what you do with the information, how you use the info. I see nothing wrong with a census, it made sense to me, that's why I think it may have had more to do with what his intent was or how he was intending to use the information. :shrug: Remember God sees our heart.


#8

[quote="Skye_Ariel, post:7, topic:322667"]
I don't see how numbering people in and of itself was bad, I think it was more of what you do with the information, how you use the info. I see nothing wrong with a census, it made sense to me, that's why I think it may have had more to do with what his intent was or how he was intending to use the information. :shrug: Remember God sees our heart.

[/quote]

Spot on:thumbsup:


#9

I don't think so. After all, Moses "numbered" the people of Israel in a census. (Thus the name of the book of Numbers.)


#10

David numbered his fighting men instead of putting his trust in God. An example would be Gideon in Judges. God used a small amount of men and God won the battle. David's trust was in the number, not God. The motive for the counting determines the right or wrong.


#11

[quote="TarkanAttila, post:9, topic:322667"]
I don't think so. After all, Moses "numbered" the people of Israel in a census. (Thus the name of the book of Numbers.)

[/quote]

Your right that Moses 'numbered" Israel in "Numbers." But, it also says this in Exodus 30:12 - "When thou shalt take the sum of the children of Israel according to their number, every one of them shall give a price for their souls to the Lord, and there shall be no scourge among them, when they shall be reckoned."

This seems to indicate that Israel was free, and a census was a sin of some kind; for which they had to offer a price.

So again I have to ask, Is numbering the people a sin? And what sin is it; or was it in these two circumstances? :D


#12

I don't know; if Moses was the one giving the census, wouldn't you think he would be the one receiving the penalty rather than the people?

Wasn't he the one who received the penalty when he struck the rock?

Weren't the ones who complained for having no meat the ones who had meat between their teeth - and were struck dead?

Wasn't Miriam the one who complained and was struck with white leprosy for seven days?

If census was a sin in itself, it would stand to reason Moses, not the people, would be punished.


#13

[quote="TarkanAttila, post:12, topic:322667"]
I don't know; if Moses was the one giving the census, wouldn't you think he would be the one receiving the penalty rather than the people?

Wasn't he the one who received the penalty when he struck the rock?

Weren't the ones who complained for having no meat the ones who had meat between their teeth - and were struck dead?

Wasn't Miriam the one who complained and was struck with white leprosy for seven days?

If census was a sin in itself, it would stand to reason Moses, not the people, would be punished.

[/quote]

The reason is found in the guidelines given in Exodus 30:12 - 16; they gave a donation of a half sicle for each head counted. The money was given to be used for the Tabernacle. So Moses and the rest of Israel were not punished because they followed God's instructions. But, it still looks like it's a sin of some sort! :cool:


#14

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