In this week’s reading, taking a census of the sons of Yisrael is considered a sin according to the
Torah that leads to a plague that would break out amongst the people.
Shemot / Exodus 30:12 ‘When you take a census of the sons of Israel to number them, then each one
of them shall give a ransom for himself to the Lord, when you number them, so that there will be no plague
among them when you number them. (NASB) As we study these scriptures here and elsewhere
(i.e. see David’s sin in 2 Samuel 24 and
1 Chronicles 21) it seems that the taking of the census was
the sin. King David overruled Joab’s wise counsel (
1 Chronicles 21:3-4) and brought guilt upon Yisrael for numbering the people. As a
result, the Lord killed 70,000 people. Why would there be a plague for numbering the people and why
would each man be required to give money to make atonement for sin? Can money make atonement for sin?
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