Summary: The nation was about to enter the Promised Land when they decided to not trust their GPS (God Positioned Satellite). That cost them a 40 year detour!
• CAT HERDING VIDEO
• SLIDE #1
• How many of you remember those road trips when you were a child, or do you remember taking your children on a road trip?
• For me it was the five hour trips to Arma, KS to visit my grandparents and my cousins and my aunt and uncle.
• This was before entertainment systems, iPads, and even eight tracks were available.
• Five hours in a car sitting next to my younger brother was terrible, and to top it off my dad at the time smoked and he would keep the windows rolled up so we could get an early start on our lung cancer.
• AND he would not stop so we could go to the bathroom until he needed to go.
• The whole trip was full of, HE TOUCHED MY SIDE OF THE SEAT, to death threats from my dad because my brother and I would not shut up.
• We would asked the famous question, HOW MANY MORE TOWNS? FOLLOWED BY HOW MUCH FURTHER AND CAN WE STOP TO RIDE THE GO CARTS!
• I am surprised my brother and I were given the opportunity to live to adulthood.
• Well, leading Israel was like herding cats. Many scholars estimate that Moses had over 3 million people he was leading on this road trip who was complaining, whining, and griping continually asking, “ARE WE THERE YET?”
• Road trips with kids were trying because of all the fussing, fighting, and endless questioning.
• Another difficult part of a road trip was taking a wrong turn and getting off track. Back in the day there was no GPS, only a map and a spouse trying to not get car sick while barking out directions.
• Thank God that we have GPS’s today (Global Positioning Satellite) to help us as we travel. When you get off track they can gently re-route you.
• In The Story we have come to the wanderings of Israel as Moses leads them toward the Promised Land flowing with milk and honey with all of Israel in his back seat.
• What would a road trip with a bunch of children be without some good old fashion complaining!
• SLIDE #2
I. Israel’s three complaints during the road trip.
• This is going to be a long trip! In the book of Numbers 10:11-13 tells us they are getting ready to move after about 11 months at Mount Sinai.
• SLIDE #3
• Numbers 10:11–13 (NIV) On the twentieth day of the second month of the second year, the cloud lifted from above the tabernacle of the covenant law. Then the Israelites set out from the Desert of Sinai and traveled from place to place until the cloud came to rest in the Desert of (PAY RAN) Paran. They set out, this first time, at the LORD’s command through Moses.
• Now I remember when we were planning to go to grandma’s house, there were no thoughts of the five hours in the smoke filled car, it was exciting to go on the road to see grandma and grandpa!
• There was an excitement in the air and I have to think for the nation of Israel they had to be getting a little stir crazy hanging out at the foot of the mountain for over 11 months.
• Well I remember on our five hour trips, that about an hour into it, the fireworks would begin. Seems like with the nation of Israel it did not take long for the complaints from the back seat to begin.
• SLIDE #4
A. The general hardships associated with the trip.
• SLIDE #5
• Numbers 11:1 (NIV) Now the people complained about their hardships in the hearing of the LORD, and when he heard them his anger was aroused. Then fire from the LORD burned among them and consumed some of the outskirts of the camp.
• Now on our trips when the whining started the death threats and the swinging back hand from dad would start. We were told to be quiet and enjoy the smoke filled car!
• God in response to the complaining made a consuming fire happen outside of the camp basically telling the folks to cut it out, stop the complaining!
• In fairness this was not like riding in a nice car, bus, train, or airplane. They were basically walking!
• SLIDE #6
• You can see on the map about where they were going, Numbers 10:33 set out from the mountain on a three day journey with the Ark of the Covenant before them!
• The complaints were rolling in and when God figuratively gave them a backhand, they cried out to Moses and the fire stopped.