“God… said, ‘Jacob, Jacob… I am God… Do not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for there I will make you into a great nation…’
“Then Jacob set out from Beersheba. The sons of Israel carried Jacob their father, their little ones, and their wives, in the wagons that Pharaoh had sent to carry him. They also took their livestock and their goods, which they had gained in the land of Canaan, and came into Egypt, Jacob and all his offspring with him, his sons, and his sons’ sons with him, his daughters, and his sons’ daughters. All his offspring he brought with him into Egypt… All the persons of the house of Jacob who came into Egypt were seventy.” Genesis 46:2-3,5-7,27
“The Lord spoke to Moses in the wilderness of Sinai, in the tent of meeting, on the first day of the second month, in the second year after they had come out of the land of Egypt, saying, ‘Take a census of all the congregation of the people of Israel, by clans, by fathers’ houses, according to the number of names, every male, head by head. From twenty years old and upward, all in Israel who are able to go to war, you and Aaron shall list them, company by company…
“The people of Reuben, Israel’s firstborn, their generations, by their clans, by their fathers’ houses, according to the number of names, head by head, every male from twenty years old and upward, all who were able to go to war: those listed of the tribe of Reuben were 46,500.
“Of the people of Simeon,.. 59,300.
“Of the people of Gad,.. 45,650.
“Of the people of Judah,.. 74,600.
“Of the people of Issachar,.. 54,400.
“Of the people of Zebulun,.. 57,400.
“Of the people of Joseph,.. 40,500.
“Of the people of Manasseh,.. 32,200.
“Of the people of Benjamin,.. 35,400.
“Of the people of Dan,.. 62,700.
“Of the people of Asher,.. 41,500.
“Of the people of Naphtali,.. 53,400…
“All those listed were 603,550.” Numbers 1:1-3,20-43,46
Removed to a foreign land with foreign gods, and the Lord kept them separate. Suffered under Pharaoh’s cruel slavery, and their numbers grew. When God has His plan in place and His eye on His own, multiplication happens. Israel endured isolation and hardship, and the Lord brought about increase that would advance His plans. Multiplied people, multiplied purpose, multiplied praise. (Genesis 37:28; 46:34; 47:5-6; 50:20; Exodus 1:1-7; 2:23-25)
The prospect of tribulation causes most to shrink and recoil. But when we know the sovereign God’s steady character and trust His will, we need not fear His ways. His marvelous multiplication of one family did indeed bring blessing to all nations of the earth. (Genesis 12:2-3)
And we carry the same privilege, also and often through hard experiences. Rubs with people open opportunities for patience and conciliation, hurts for forgiveness, consternation for truth-telling in love. The Lord intends that we multiply His graces and good gifts for the blessing of many, bringing life and light to a dark world. How am I, by His Spirit, propagating His goodness? What difference am I making for offspring and those in my sphere? Where and how am I multiplying His truth and love? (Ephesians 4:15; Philippians 2:15)
Father, divinely multiply my efforts unto others’ blessing and Your honor.