Men from Thirty to Fifty

In Numbers 1:3, we read they counted the men 20 years old and older. These men were eligible for the army – but not for ministry.

Numbers 4:3, “Count all the men from thirty to fifty years of age who enter the ministry of work in the Tent of Meeting.” The Message

The same sentence was in 4:23, 30, 35, 39, 43, and 47.

“This age was specifically fixed on (see on ch. 8:24) as the full maturity of bodily energy to perform the laborious duties assigned them in the wilderness, as well as of mental activity to assist in the management of the sacred services. And hence it was the period of life at which [John] the Baptist and Christ entered on their respective ministries. The term prescribed for active duty was a period of 20 years, at the end of which they were exempted from the physical labours of the office, though still expected to attend in the tabernacle (ch. 8:26).” Critical and Explanatory Commentary, Vol. I

Only the Levites worked in the Tent of Meeting. They did not count them and register them in the army, (see Numbers 1:48). But, they did train for war. They were Israel’s “National Guard” or “Secret Service.”

Numbers 1:53, “…The Levites are responsible for the security of The Dwelling of The Testimony.” The


I stand corrected

From the ages of 20-30 20-25, the Levites guarded The Temple. They learned discipline and to follow orders. When they turned 30, their minds were also mature. Then they started the heavy lifting.

The Levites never retired. At the age of 50, they were excused from heavy physical labor but still performed all other duties.

Numbers 8:23-26, “God spoke to Moses: (24) ‘These are your instructions concerning the Levites: At the age of twenty-five they will join the workforce in the Tent of Meeting; (25) at the age of fifty they must retire from the work. (26) They can assist their brothers in the tasks in the Tent of Meeting, but they are not permitted to do the actual work themselves. These are the ground rules for the work of the Levites.’ ” The Message

Ministry looks fun and exciting. But it is discipline, patience, following orders, practice, and heavy lifting.

How do you minister in your church? Usher? Altar worker? Nursery Attendant? Teacher? Janitor? Prayer Partner?

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