The LORD your God, who is going before you, will fight for you, as he did for you in Egypt,
before your very eyes, and in the wilderness.
There you saw how the LORD your God carried you, as a father carries his son,
all the way you went until you reached this place.
In spite of this, you did not trust in the LORD your God,
As we know, that generation failed the test, and were refused entry into their destiny, because of their unbelief. The words translated unbelief or rebellion [Numbers 14, Psalm 95], refer to an unwillingness to be persuaded, a hardened heart, or stubborn disobedience. This tells us that belief is to do with choice—not a warm fuzzy glow. It’s the choice to trust in God for our future, based on our revelation of Him in the past. He expects our previous experience of His faithfulness, to inform our view of the future.
One of the ways this unbelief manifested in the Israelites was through grumbling [Exodus 16:1-8; Numbers 14:27]. It was a serious offense as far as the Lord was concerned, as He viewed every grumble as a statement of unbelief, a lack of trust in His goodness and provision. (And no grumble escapes His notice.)
This should pull us up short—grumbling can be a national past-time! For Christians and non-Christians alike, grumbling about the weather, the traffic, next door neighbours, family members, the price of food, and the state of our country is often a normal part of conversation.
The root of much grumbling is fear, the fear that God is not good; the fear that good is being withheld from us (which was essentially Eve’s sin); the fear that our needs will not be met; the fear that we are somehow losing out. And fear produces unbelief.
And the point of all this? Our pursuit of rest is affected by our grumbling…
LIVING A LIFE WORTHY OF OUR CALLING
As a prisoner for the Lord, then,
I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received.
Over the next few weeks we will look at the antidote for this malaise.
But right now, maybe we need to do a self-audit? It is so easy to fill ourselves with good stuff, and then move on to the next thing, without ever actually doing anything about it. That is why these posts end with a 'Grace Rhythm'. Let's be doers of the word, not merely hearers! [James 1:22]
NEXT WEEK: 'ROWING' INTO THE FUTURE
The importance of keeping the past in view, while moving forward.
[Photo credits: Ospan Ali (girl); Aaron Burden (man praying); Merakist (social media); @ Unsplash, with thanks]
Da Kraplak (type writer);
Merakist (social media)
@ Unsplash, with thanks]
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