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Choose This, Not That

Choose This, Not That – Who will you believe? (Numbers 13:30-32)

Today’s Reading: Numbers 12-13

Today’s Reflection: Numbers 13:30-32

30) But Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “Let us go up at once and occupy it, for we are well able to overcome it.” 31) Then the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we are.” 32) So they brought to the people of Israel a bad report of the land that they had spied out, saying, “The land, through which we have gone to spy it out, is a land that devours its inhabitants, and all the people that we saw in it are of great height.

This was it.  This was the moment Israel had been waiting for.  God had brought the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to the border of the Promised Land.  In Numbers 13, spies from each of the 12 tribes are sent into Canaan to gather information and report back to Israel.  Two, Caleb from the tribe of Judah and Joshua the son of Nun, gave a favorable report.  The other ten did not.

Both groups saw the same things: a fertile and abundant land occupied by strong people, heavily armed and barricaded in fortified cities.  The difference between their opinions came down to what each group thought of God.  Caleb and Joseph trusted Him completely.  They knew that if this was where God had brought them, He would give them victory over the people of the land.  The other spies didn’t trust God to see them through a long and challenging conquest.  They were looking for something safe, easy and risk free instead.

The same dynamic is at work in our world today.  You can look at it and see a beautiful planet marred by sin and a long-standing cosmic conflict between good and evil, who’s central figure is a loving and gracious saviour at work saving all of those who will accept Him and follow in His way.  Or you can look at the world and see a place abandoned by God, or perhaps a place where He never existed in the first place, where you might as well just do what makes you feel good and satisfy your desires, no matter who it hurts, because what does life matter anyway?  Or if you think you’re wise enough to determine what is right or wrong on your own, what need is there for God?

The way you see the world will be shaped by your trust in God, and the question before you today is: who will you believe?  Which report will you accept?  Who’s version of events will become your reality?  Those who trust in their own human wisdom and insight and chase after temporal things?  Or those who place their trust in the Lord and firmly grasp the promise of eternity?

John 6:27 – “Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.”

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