Summary: When our attitude toward God turns sour, everyone ends up disappointed.

When God Gets Aggravated, It’s Not A Pretty Picture

(Numbers 11:18-20, 25-35)

1. Last week we learned a number of lessons from Numbers 11. While I was preparing last week’s sermon, I could see we had too much material to handle in one week.

2. Today, I would like to continue on with this "complaint chapter." The children of Israel were whining for meat., acting like a bunch of spoiled brats. Our eating habits can betray how spoiled or appreciative we are.

3. A recent Reuter’s article broke this week: SYDNEY (Reuters Life!) – An Australian restaurateur fed up with the waste left by diners has ordered her customers to eat everything on their plates for their sake of the earth or pay a penalty and not return.

Chef Yukako Ichikawa has introduced a 30 percent discount for diners who eat all the food they have ordered at Wafu, her 30-seat restaurant in the Sydney suburb of Surry Hills, that describes itself as "guilty free Japanese cuisine."

4. We should worship God for the gifts he gives us to sustain life, like food, water, oxygen. As we have celebrated the Lord’s Supper, the physical elements reminded us of the greatest gift of all, the gift of God’s one and only Son who came to offer his life a sacrifice for us.

5. Consider this: Millions of people will take bread to remember his body today, but before they get home from church, they will use his name in vain.

Main Idea: When our attitude toward God turns sour, everyone ends up disappointed. Every mortal except for Jesus Christ is a sinner and fails. In today’s text, even Moses and Joshua mess up and God appears (but is not) passive-aggressive.. But that does not mean we all fail in the same way at the same time. Let’s look at some of the problems the Hebrews had while heading toward Canaan.

I. The Heart Problem: The People Had REJECTED God (18-20) an unappreciative attitude

A. Manna was indicative of God’s PROVISION

B. They did not RESPECTFULLY ask for variety, but MOCKED the manna

C. JESUS is represented by the manna

• This event is a good picture as to what the unbeliever thinks of Jesus…

John 6:31-36, "Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ’He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’" Jesus then said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world." They said to him, "Sir, give us this bread always."

Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. 36But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe.

• Do you ever consider the digs people take at Jesus?

When our attitude toward God turns sour, everyone ends up disappointed.

II. The Rigid MIND Problem: Demand for Uniformity (25-30) attitude toward God working outside the box

A. The Elders Are Now SPIRIT Filled (25)

B. Eldad and Medad Were APART from the Group (26-27)

• Probably ritually unclean (physical condition) /Spirit is not limited

C. JOSHUA is narrow in his thinking (28)

• Not everyone is capable of thinking outside the box -- Joshua was not

D. Moses BROADENS Joshua’s mind (29-30)

1. This is a good training opportunity

2. God’s Kingdom is not about withholding or controlling or uniformity

3. Moses provides fodder for Paul’s midrash in I Corinthians 14:1-5

"…I would rather have you prophesy. He who prophesies is greater than one who speaks in tongues, unless he interprets, so that the church may be edified."

E. Narrow-mindedness HURTS your walk (miss a lot)

When our attitude toward God turns sour, everyone ends up disappointed.

III. The FAITH Problem: Moses’ Lapse (21-23)

A. Moses’ doubt makes no SENSE

• Think of all that Moses had seen happen…why would he doubt something this simple?

• God had brought in quail before, when he first sent manna.

• John the Baptist had doubt in Matt. 11

• Doubt is part of the Christian life

B. The issue: How LONG is God’s arm?

C. Even John the Baptist DOUBTED (Matthew 11:2ff)

When our attitude toward God turns sour, everyone ends up disappointed.

IV. The Foolishness Issue: Demanding OUR Will Above God’s (31-35)


-- Believe it or not, this is not an unusual occurrence in that part of the world

B. Each person gathered over 60 BUSHELS

C. The Lord struck SOME with plague

1. Is God here "passive aggressive?"

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