Numbers chapter 3 describes the Levites being chosen to serve God in the Sanctuary. And it is easy to liken this process to the calling of pastors today… or even deacons.
But that would be to miss the point.
God says here in Numbers 3 that when the Israelites left Egypt that he had struck down all the first borns of that land, and that when he had done that, he had also set apart all the first born of Israel as his. For his work, and his own agenda.
It seems for practical reasons, God decided to change that up a little - calling the Levites to work his Temple. This would leave all the sons from the other tribes free to farm, fight, work the towns and provide for their families and countrymen - including a portion which was to be brought for the Levites who would not be participating in these sorts of activities, but working directly for God.
There were 22,000 Levite males aged one month and over. These were to be registered as people working for God, redeeming the children of Israel, in the and around the Tabernacle - Gods dwelling place.
When they counted the first born of all the other tribes there were 22,273 - leaving a shortfall of Levites of 273. These extra 273 could be redeemed by bringing money to Tabernacle. Moses collected 1,365 pieces of silver on behalf of the extra firstborn sons of Israel - the rest being redeemed by the 22,000 levites now working for God and his tabernacle.
The Blessing Part:
It’s easy to think of the Levites here doing the work - maintain the furnishings, performing the sacred duties etc. Much like we think of pastors, and elders, and deacons and Sabbath school teachers joining together to create a working effective church community today.
But the point of all this Levite activity was to redeem the people. To connect them to God. To bring the people into Gods presence in an appropriate, Godly way.
But we don’t need to do that today. Jesus has died, and redeemed us. Through the Holy Spirit, God now lives in his followers. We have been saved. Brought back to him through Jesus.
So your pastor is not your priest. Jesus is your priest. And we are all workers for him in our roles as Gods very own. We are all connected to God.
But before Jesus, God still loved his people, and made a way to dwell with them in their camp. And to make it work, he redeemed his people every day through the work of the Levites.
But now Jesus has done that for you. So in my mind, you (and I) are definitely blessed.