Only do not rebel against the LORD, neither fear the people of the land; for they are bread for us: their defense is departed from them, and the LORD is with us: fear them not. Numbers 14:9
Can there be something — or Someone — bigger than an army of giants? Scarier than fear?
After spending two and a half years traveling the Sinai Wilderness, the sun must have gone to the heads of the Israelites. First-hand, they witnessed the judgment, deliverance, presence, glory, and goodness of God. But standing on the threshold of their new homeland, rather than being filled with confidence in God, the wandering Israelites strongly suspected they had been swindled.
“Giants! The Promised Land is overrun with them!” the Israelites moaned. “Oh, sure, Canaan is our land. It’s flowing with milk and honey. But giants also populate it. Next to them, we look like humiliatingly like gnats! Better we go back to Egypt than try to take this land.”
Modern translation: We know what the Bible promises, but it’s too risky to trust God literally. We will look like fool if we do. Of course God would be pleased if we reclaimed our _______ (fill in the blank: country, home, state, city, church, family, marriage, child, etc.) in His Name, but since Satan is in control now, we might as well give up!
“Never mind that we’ll be slaves again and forced to throw our infant sons into the Nile.”
Modern translation: Better stick with the old ways although we know they are wrong. We don’t like change. If we conform to the world’s standards, our futures are predictably secure although our actions may sentence our children to hell.
Too bad. The giants were scared witless. God made the giants as “bread” — or an economy-sized food source — for the Israelites. But Israel had been defeated so long that they were afraid of victory. So frightened of success, they wouldn’t take it when it was handed to them.
And they should have been frightened, but not of giants. They saw what happened to the land of Egypt, the pharaoh, and his army. They should have been afraid to disobey God. But they were far more afraid of challenge and change.
Regrets. “We should have…” They had the next forty years to contemplate them while wandering in the wilderness. “I should have…” What giant has you quaking? What do you fear more than God?
Face it. Challenge it. Only do not rebel against God. If you can’t obey Him out of love and respect, be too afraid of Him to disobey. He’s much bigger than any giant you face. If you don’t know that now, you’ll have the wilderness of regrets to learn it.
Rebekah Montgomery is the editor of Right to the Heart of Women e-zine, a publisher at Jubilant Press, and the author of numerous books on spiritual growth. She can be contacted for comments, reprint requests or speaking engagements at rebekahmontgomery.com. © Rebekah Montgomery 2007.
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