Summary: Don’t pay attention or listen to the evil report because it will bring nothing but trouble in your life.
Numbers 13:1-3, 17-20, 25-33: 14:2
Topic- Do not believe in the evil report
In these passage of scriptures, we read about how Moses had sent 12 men to search out the land of Caanan. God had promised to give the land of Caanan to the children of Israel, and God had commanded Moses to send 12 men to check out and to investigate the land of Caanan, to see what it looks like. The scripture says that after 40 days of checking and searching out the land of Caanan, the 12 men came back with a report on what they saw. In Numbers 13:27-28, the men said, “We went to the land where you sent us. And yes, it truly flows with milk and honey, and we brought some of the land’s fruits back with us to see and, taste. But the people who live in the land of Caanan are strong, their cities are fortified, and very large, and we saw the descendants of Anak there.” Now according to biblical history, the descendants of Anak were known to be some tall, big, and strong people who look like giants. To get a vivid picture of what I am trying to describe of what the descendants look like, think of thousands of men looking like Shaq O’Neal standing around in one place. Get the picture?
And when the children of Israel were told that the descendants of Anak were there living in the land of Caanan, they became afraid. But Caleb, who was one of the 12 men that searched out the land of Caanan, tried to calm the fears of the children of Israel in Numbers 13:30 by saying, “Let us go up at once, and take possession of the land, for we are well able to overcome it.” Another person who tried to calm the fears of the children of Israel was Joshua. Joshua said this in Numbers 14:7-9 by saying, “The land we passed through to search out is an exceedingly good land. If the Lord delights in us, then he will bring us unto this land, and give it to us, a land which flows with milk and honey. Only do not rebel against the Lord, nor fear he people of the land; for they are our bread; their protection has departed from them, and the Lord is with us. Do not hear them.”
Now, what Caleb and Joshua was trying to tell the children of Israel was that, “Yes, there are some giants living in the land of Caanan, but God is bigger and stronger than any giant in the land. And if we would just trust in God and obey his word, God will help us to defeat the giants in the land, and help us to possess the land of Caanan.”
And even today, God is able to help you defeat the giants that you have in your life today. Your giant may be some obstacle, some stumbling block, some setback, some personal problem, some health issue, some financial issue, or some bad habit. Your giant could be some man, some woman, boy, or girl. But you don’t have to let the giant in your life to keep you fearful and afraid because God is bigger and stronger than any giant, and He will give you the power to be victorious over the giants that you are facing in this life.
But notice this. Even though Caleb and Joshua tried to encourage the children of Israel that they can take the possession of the land of Caanan, the other men said this in Number 13:31-33, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we. And they gave the children of Israel an evil report of the land which they had spied(search) out saying, “The land through which we have gone as spies, is a land that eats up its inhabitants, and all the people whom we saw in it are men of great stature. There we saw the giants, the descendants of Anak, and we were like grasshoppers in our own sight, and we were in their sight.”
And because the other men gave the children of Israel and “evil report” on the land of Caanan in Numbers 14:1-4, it says that “all he congregation lifted up their voices and cried and the people wept all that night. And all the children of Israel complained against Moses and Aaron, and the whole congregation said to them, “If only we had died in the land of Egypt! Or if only we had died in this wilderness! Why has the Lord brought us to this land to fall by the sword, that our wives and children should victims? Would it not be better for us to return to Egypt? So they said to one another, “Let us select a leader and return to Egypt.”