The journey of God’s people continued into the wilderness. Their departure from Mt. Sinai had begun, and now was the time to experience the blessings of God’s promise to Abraham–entrance into the land of Canaan, or not? The spies were sent to the land to assess its inhabitants and environment, 40 days had passed, and their report was now being heard…
“…Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “We should by all means go up and take possession of it, for we will surely overcome it.” But the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are too strong for us.” So they gave out to the sons of Israel a bad report of the land which they had spied out, saying, “The land through which we have gone, in spying it out, is a land that devours its inhabitants; and all the people whom we saw in it are men of great size. There also we saw the Nephilim (the sons of Anak are part of the Nephilim); and we became like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight.”
They had the promise from God that this land was theirs, they had His protection, and He was in their midst. However, their faith faltered. They chose to trust what they could see instead of what God had promised. And so, the painting scene on the biblical storyline canvas once again goes black and white. The color all but disappears. The people of God trust what they can see instead of the promise they have received from God. And this is yet another reason why Christ had to live, and then die…He never doubted, He never faltered, He never wavered in His earth-journey…
How does this apply to us today?
Is it possible to recall how God has worked in your life up to this point, but live in doubt that He still has His best in mind for you despite your current circumstances? Is it then possible to rely only upon what you can see (or are currently experiencing in your life), and miss the great journey of faith and dependence upon God for Him to work out the outcome for good?
In the case of the generation who spied out the land promised to God’s people, they all were set aside and unable to enter the land except those who had trusted God.
Is it possible for God to set us aside in our faith journey when we live in doubt and trust ourselves, our plans, our wisdom, our strength, our ability to control the outcome of our life? Of course it is. How effective is a person in God’s kingdom work who doesn’t depend upon God? Does that mean that we don’t plan and prepare? Of course it doesn’t…A man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps. Proverbs 16:9. We plan, we prepare, but we trust God, we present our requests to Him in prayer, we stand on His promises, and we wait for Him to move.
What is one promise that we can stand on in a season of difficulty–even when we have seasons of doubt?
That God will use all things together for your good and His glory. The circumstance(s) you’re in may not seem good–it may even be self-inflicted–but as you trust Him (seeking Him in prayer and His Word), you will see that He will ultimately work it for good. You may need to swallow your pride, confess, and trust in the outcome…but you do that, you trust–no matter what. What did Joseph say to his brothers who traded him in to slavery, who told their father that he was dead, and who lived a lie all their lives?
“…Joseph said to them, “Do not be afraid, for am I in God’s place? As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive.”
And so, we need One to live the life we couldn’t live, to die the death we wouldn’t die, and then to rise from the grave in order to conquer the one thing that separates us from an eternal relationship with God–death. Christ conquered death by His death and subsequent resurrection so that we would have the promise of the life now, the life to come, and the hope to endure this faith journey until we all pass from life to life. Glory to our God!— August 10, 2017