Summary: The truth is God wants to offer all of us the promise land!
Deut. 1:19-28-“So we departed from Horeb, and went through all that great and terrible wilderness which you saw on the way to the mountains of the Amorites, as the Lord our God had commanded us. Then we came to Kadesh Barnea.
And I said to you, ‘You have come to the mountains of the Amorites, which the Lord our God is giving us.
Look, the Lord your God has set the land before you; go up and possess it, as the Lord God of your fathers has spoken to you; do not fear or be discouraged.’
“And every one of you came near to me and said, ‘Let us send men before us, and let them search out the land for us, and bring back word to us of the way by which we should go up, and of the cities into which we shall come.’
“The plan pleased me well; so I took twelve of your men, one man from each tribe.
And they departed and went up into the mountains, and came to the Valley of Eshcol, and spied it out.
They also took some of the fruit of the land in their hands and brought it down to us; and they brought back word to us, saying, ‘It is a good land which the Lord our God is giving us.’
“Nevertheless you would not go up, but rebelled against the command of the Lord your God;
and you complained in your tents, and said, ‘Because the Lord hates us, He has brought us out of the land of Egypt to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, to destroy us.
Where can we go up? Our brethren have discouraged our hearts, saying, “The people are greater and taller than we; the cities are great and fortified up to heaven; moreover we have seen the sons of the Anakim there.”’
Verse 22-“And every one of you came near to me and said, ‘Let us send men before us, and let them search out the land for us, and bring back word to us of the way by which we should go up, and of the cities into which we shall come.’
Numbers 13:1-2-And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Send men to spy out the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the children of Israel; from each tribe of their fathers you shall send a man, every one a leader among them.”
Now, whether it was God’s idea to send spies out because of the complaining of the Israelites, or God had said, He would send spies out to the promise land, and then Israelites jump on the band wagon (Like people do when a team is winning) and somehow, made Moses believe it was their idea to send spies out in the first place.
One thing is clear, in this verse, is look at their intent…. bring back word to us of the way by which we should go up.
A lot of times we will tell others and even go as far as tell God, what we think they want to hear!!
But in the back of our mind, we have no intention of doing what we said, we would do!!
They did not believe God, They did not believe it was good land, they did not believe God would protect them, help them, and deliver them to the promise land!
Great Illustration…Of Unbelief, Doubt, and Faith:
When Peter saw by faith he actually could walk on water, he made a commitment with both of his feet to step over the rim.
Unbelief keeps both feet inside the boat.
Doubt takes one step out of the boat and keeps one foot in.
But faith steps completely out of the boat.
I think they were comfortable in the wilderness, we sometimes get the picture they wander around aimless in the wilderness, but I was counting in the book of Numbers Chapter 33, Moses recorded that they camped 40 times after they left Egypt. (If I counted right).
I think sometimes we are so against change, that even if our circumstances are bad, we won’t change our circumstance, because we are more afraid of the unknown!
We get use to things, even bad things, we get compliance!
They were ready just to sit in the wilderness and deal with it, rather than enter the promise land!
What is the promise land, Yes it was a actually place, but in reality, it was where they could be close to God, could be intimate with God, without distractions!
Distractions like foreign gods, idols, slavery!
The wilderness was also a place where they could be close to God, could learn about God, could be intimate with God!
But the wilderness became just a wilderness, a place of dryness, a place of wandering, a place of loneliness, a place of desperation!