81. Stand up again

The Israelites were moaning again, this time it was due to a lack of water. They rebelled against Moses and Aaron and they in turn turned to God and asked Him for help. God did help them and told Moses to get his staff, to assemble the community and to command the rock to pour out water and it will. Moses was obedient, like he had been for the past 40 years. He picked up his staff and he assembled the community in front of the rock. But then he deviated a little bit from what God told him to do:

"Listen you rebels!" he shouted. "Must we bring you water from this rock?" Then Moses raised his hand and struck the rock twice with the staff, and water gushed out.' Numbers 20:10, 11

Moses has had enough! After almost forty years of leading these people, Moses couldn't take it anymore. They had been moaning and grumbling from the beginning and they were disobedient to the Lord and to Moses on a number of occasions. This was the last straw! Moses didn't follow God's instructions, instead of speaking to the rock, he hit the rock twice and instead of giving glory to God, Moses claimed that he and Aaron gave them the water. And God was not pleased.

"Because you didn't trust Me enough to demonstrate My holiness to the people of Israel, you will not lead them into the land I am giving them!" Numbers 20:12

When I read this I couldn't help but feel sorry for Moses. The poor man hasn't had it easy for the past 40 years. In fact he has had it rough. The Israelites were moaning the whole time, they were in an unpleasant desert due to their disobedience, they wanted to appoint other leaders a number of times instead of Moses and so I can go on. And in this forty years he acted admirably and he obeyed God down to the letter. Only this once he didn't obey Him 100%. And now due to this, he was denied access to the Promised Land. Poor Moses.

His punishment feels a bit harsh to me, but as I discussed in a previous devotion, the further advanced you are in your spiritual life, the more God expects of you. Moses was God's leader, but more than that he was called God's friend and he had the privilege of talking face to face with God, a privilege unheard of in those days. And therefore much more was expected of him. He was also God's role model to the people. They didn't have any other example to follow and therefore his disobedience had to be punished. Plus he also claimed that the miracle came from himself, which was seen as blasphemy in those days. Unfortunately he had to be punished.

How Moses reacted was not recorded in the Bible. I am sure he must have been devastated. The Promised Land was what he had been looking forward to for forty years and now he had been denied access. He must have been down in the dumps! But he certainly didn't stay there. The next we read is how he started to lead the Israelites forward towards their entrance point into Canaan. He didn't remain depressed, but continued with the task ahead.

Sometimes we can also have severe setbacks. Sometimes the setbacks are due to our own fault, or due to someone else's, but we cannot let it keep us down. We need to move forward like Moses did. We need to keep on going, God's plan for us hasn't ended and His guidance is not now a thing of the past. He will help you to get up again and to stand tall again. Trust Him and ask Him for His help, He won't let you down.

Father, please forgive us if we have sinned against You and others. Please help us to get on our feet again. We would like to move forward with You and experience Your glory and power again. Thank you that we can know that You are there to help and to guide us. Amen



1 comment for “81. Stand up again”

  1. Gravatar of KarlienKarlien
    Posted Wednesday, 26 March 2014 at 5:36:07 PM

    How encouraging Ilze, thank you for this very inspiring message, and all the others received from you. It is only in God's strength that we CAN stand up and stand tall again! May God bless you abundantly xx

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