And he stood between the dead and the living, and the plague was stopped. (Num 16:48 ESV)
This chapter is filled with rebellion. First, 3 Levites challenge the appointment of Aaron and his line as priests. The Lord threatens to wipe out all the people for tolerating such rebellion and going along with it but Moses and Aaron fall on their faces and plead with the Lord to spare the people for the sin of a few. Instead, the ground opens up and swallows the three men and their families and worldly goods. Still, the people are angry at Moses and Aaron and again the Lord threatens to consume them all. A plague upon the people begins but Moses and Aaron race to make atonement for the people. This is what leads to verse 48 quoted above.
It is a great picture of Christ, who stands in the gap for us in order to make atonement, and also for the church, who is called to be a “Kingdom of priests” and act as Moses and Aaron did, standing in the gap between the living and the dead through the preaching of the gospel. Thus, a bridge from death to life is revealed as the gospel points to Jesus.
How do you stand in the gap?
Chronological Reading Plan plus Psalms: Num 17-18, Ps 61