Q: #574. How many times did God give someone in the Bible a unique task that He gave to no one else?
A: During a recent sermon, I heard a pastor say, “In all of the Bible, God told ONLY Noah to build a boat.” This got me to thinking, “How many other times did God give someone in the Bible a unique task that he gave to no one else?” Immediately, a few examples came to mind. I wanted more, but I wasn’t sure if there even “were” many more, so off I went to study.
It turns out that there ARE many more! In fact, so many that I am setting four parameters for this study to keep the length down.
First, God Himself must have “directly” given the task to the person. This means that if an “angel” (including the “Angel of the Lord,” who I do believe was Jesus in most instances the OT), or prophet gave the task, I am not counting it.
Second, again, God must have not given the task to “anyone” else.
Third, I am not listing the numerous tasks that Jesus (who was fully God and fully man) gave to people while on earth in the Gospels.
Fourth, I am going to list only “one” unique task for each person, even though God gave several people more than one unique task. (I am listing the ones I find the “most” unique.)
So, here we go! God told ONLY __________:
Adam (Gen 2:16-17): “And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: (17) But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”
Noah (Gen 6:14): “Make thee an ark of gopher wood…”
Abimelech (Gen 20:7): “Now therefore restore the man (Abraham) his wife; for he is a prophet…”
Abraham (Gen 22:2): “Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.”
Isaac (Gen 26:2-3): “And the Lord appeared unto him, and said, Go not down into Egypt; dwell in the land which I shall tell thee of: (3) Sojourn in this land, and I will be with thee, and will bless thee; for unto thee, and unto thy seed….”
Laban (Gen 31:24): “And God came to Laban the Syrian in a dream by night, and said unto him, Take heed that thou speak not to Jacob either good or bad.”
Jacob / Israel (Gen 35:1): “And God said unto Jacob, Arise, go up to Bethel, and dwell there: and make there an altar unto God, that appeared unto thee when thou fleddest from the face of Esau thy brother.”
Aaron (Ex 4:27): “And the Lord said to Aaron, Go into the wilderness to meet Moses. And he went, and met him in the mount of God, and kissed him.”
Moses (Ex 17:6): “Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink…”
Balaam (Num 22:20): “And God came unto Balaam at night, and said unto him, If the men come to call thee, rise up, and go with them; but yet the word which I shall say unto thee, that shalt thou do.”
Joshua (Josh 5:2): “At that time the Lord said to Joshua, “Make flint knives for yourself, and circumcise the sons of Israel again the second time.””
Gideon (Judg 7:5): “So he brought down the people unto the water: and the Lord said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink.”
Samuel (1 Sam 8:7,22): “And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.”
Nathan (2 Sam 7:5): “Go and tell my servant David, Thus saith the Lord, Shalt thou build me an house for me to dwell in?”
Solomon (1 Kin 3:5): “At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, “Ask! What shall I give you?””
Abijah (1 Kin 14:5): “And the LORD said unto Ahijah, Behold, the wife of Jeroboam cometh to ask a thing of thee for her son; for he is sick: thus and thus shalt thou say unto her: for it shall be, when she cometh in, that she shall feign herself to be another woman.”
Elijah (1 Kin 21:17-19): “And the word of the Lord came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying, “And thou shalt speak unto him, saying,…. Thus saith the Lord, In the place where dogs licked the blood of Naboth shall dogs lick thy blood, even thine.”
David (1 Chr 14:14): “Therefore David enquired again of God; and God said unto him, Go not up after them; turn away from them, and come upon them over against the mulberry trees.”
Job (Job 40:7)(NKJV): “Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me:”
Isaiah (Isa 20:2)(NKJV): “the Lord spoke by (to) Isaiah the son of Amoz, saying, “Go, and remove the sackcloth from your body, and take your sandals off your feet.” And he did so, walking naked and barefoot.”
Jeremiah (Jer 16:2): “Thou shalt not take thee a wife, neither shalt thou have sons or daughters in this place.”
Ezekiel (Ezek 4:4-6): “Lie thou upon thy left side…. for three hundred and ninety days… And when thou hast accomplished (this), lie on thy right side…. forty days….”
Jonah (Jon 1:2): “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it….”
Hosea (Hos 1:2): “Go, take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms….”
Paul (Acts 9:6): “And he (Paul) trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.”
Ananias (Acts 9:11): “And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight, and enquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold, he prayeth.”
Peter (Acts 10:13): “And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat.”
John (Rev 1:11): “I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.”
I strongly suspect that this is not a complete list. The Bible is a big book, and I don’t have the time to look up every person. If you think of a good one that I missed, comment below, and I might add it to the above.