Today we examine a passage that, in my mind, is one of the most moving stories in all of Scripture. Not only does it show the dark side of unbelief, but it also illuminates the glorious result of faith.
Begin by reading Numbers 13:1-16.
Who is the one that sent the spies (verses 1-2)?
Now here’s an interesting part to this command. What do you learn from Deuteronomy 1:21-22?
Why would they do this? They had God’s promise that He would deliver them into the Promised Land and they witnessed unbelievable miracles along the way. So, why wouldn’t they just trust God? Well, here’s what I think. It’s easier to walk by sight than by faith. In any case, this is surely the beginning of their downfall. They may have fared better had they just trusted God instead of asking to go scope out the land.
How are we supposed to live, according to 2 Corinthians 5:7?
If you would like to examine your faith further and to learn to walk by faith, then you should consider working through our Fearless Faith Bible study. It may change your life.
Look back at Numbers 13:1-3. Who were the men chosen to explore the land?
As we move on, take in mind that these men were leaders, respected members of the Israelites. This is important to note as we’ll soon see their influence among the people.
Read Numbers 13:17-20. On their journey to spy out the land, what were they to do? Write down specifics.
Now, summarize Numbers 13:21-25.
Compare Exodus 3:8 with the previous passage. Would you say that the land was as God had promised? Explain.
It’s important we look at the spies in this next passage. Remember, there were twelve explorers. As you read Numbers 13:26 – 14:10, write down what you learn about the ten spies versus Joshua and Caleb.
Joshua and Caleb:
Now, before we shake our heads at this scenario and wonder how ten of the spies could come back with such a bleak picture, I’m thinking that we might have sided with them as well. In fact, I see this as a big problem in the church today. It is easier to walk by sight than it is to walk by faith. If we can’t see what’s ahead, or we don’t know the outcome, then we just don’t want any part of it. If it seems like a daunting task and we don’t believe we are qualified, then we often choose the easier road. But here’s the thing: when God is in it and it’s His plan for our life, then it usually goes way beyond our comfort zone. He rarely gives us all the details and never sheds light on the outcome. All He asks is that we trust Him and walk with Him.
The Israelites had all the miracles to look back on. We have the completed Scriptures at our disposal. The Israelites had God’s promise. We, too, have God’s promises. So in my estimation, walking by faith is a no-brainer. Walking by faith shows God that we trust Him and we believe He will get us through. I heard it said that “the WILL OF GOD will never take you to a place that the GRACE OF GOD won’t bring you through.” Oh, how true this is.
Is God asking you to do something and you’ve been hesitating? What will you do?
We would love to hear from you! Please share your insights, thoughts, and/or comments about today’s lesson in the comment section.