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  • William T. Howe Ph.D.

February 18, 2024

Read to Read …Again


Daily Reading:  Numbers 16-17


Numbers 16:35

And there came out a fire from the LORD, and consumed the two hundred and fifty men that offered incense.


Be careful who you follow. These two hundred and fifty men followed the wrong person. They followed Korah and that crowd instead of Moses and Aaron. Every person has God appointed leaders and every person has self-appointed leaders. Both lead, both have influence, both have power, both will cause results. God’s leaders bring about good results in a life, those self-appointed leaders bring about sin and ultimately destruction.


One of our cherished freedoms is the power of choice, especially about whom we follow. The Bible gives us some well thought out and time proven ideas about choosing leaders. Hebrews 13:7 states: Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation. As a student of the Word of God and as a pastor, I can say without any fear of contradiction that God has appointed a pastor for every believer. Many that have trusted Christ reject them, but they are there. Preaching, helping, teaching, leading, praying, and pleading, but followed? A few yes, many no. There are other leaders God gives His children, but none can fill the role of a pastor.


Today you read about Korah and his crowd. They took it upon themselves to overthrow Moses. They had great pomp and probably very dramatic orations, they had a goal, they were persuasive and probably were very motivational. This rebellion did not happen overnight, they planned, recruited and began to carry out a strategically sound coup de ta. But God stopped it cold! He opened the ground and swallowed them up; down to the pit they went. Korah, his co-conspirators, their tents, and families.


Later, the two hundred and fifty men who offered incense up before these malefactors were consumed by fire that fell from heaven. They followed the wrong leader and paid for this mistake with their lives. It would be a shame to live a life following a charismatic leader, one that oozed confidence and good feelings, then die, stand before the Lord and learn that all the while you were following the wrong leader. What an awful waste of a life that would be.


So, how does one guard against following the wrong leader. The Bible. Yes, the Bible teaches any and all how to spot fakes, phonies, and charlatans. For example, consider I Corinthians 11:19. For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.  This singular verse answers the question “Why does God allow so many false teachings and teachers?”  There must be falsehoods so that those who are approved of God (God appointed) may be manifested.


The Bible, coupled with the leadership of the Holy Spirit, combined with prayer will allow anyone to choose the right leaders in life. It has been about 3,500 years or so since these two hundred and fifty perished. One wonders how many times have they wished that they had never followed Korah and his crowd. Make no mistake the spirit of Korah is still at work in the world today.


William T. Howe Ph.D.

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