Take a deep breath and read God’s promise to Moses again.
There is so much going on in the context of this scripture (Exodus 33). It’s quite fascinating, really. I know I’ve read it and studied it a bazillion times, but as I studied it again this week, it was like I had never read it before.
Do you know why God promised to go with Moses?
Only a few verses before, God had told Moses and the Israelites that He would send a warrior angel to go before them to help them take the Promised Land, but He would not be going because He didn’t want to get mad at them on the way and kill them because they were a “stiff-necked” people.
Unthankful. Fearful. Always wanting to go back to Egypt, people.
But they mourned and took off all their “ornaments” and humbled themselves.
And God then told Moses He would go. (The scripture image above.)
What did He promise to give Moses?
It’s an interesting Hebrew word. Nuhal can mean “rest” but it also means “settle”. They were looking for a home, right? They had been camping for a long time since their escape from Egypt, and the Promised Land was near. They were so close to having a home, to being settled.
The rest of the story is that the Israelites blew it. Read Numbers 13 and 14. Only Joshua and Caleb believed God would help them take the land. The others spread fear and false rumors that cause the people to rebel (again), and not trust God or Moses, and stomp their feet demanding to go back to Egypt.
We look at their story and shake our heads. “Those silly Israelites!” we say. But there is so much to learn from this story. We are just like them, aren’t we? Everything in the Bible has been written for us to glean and apply.
- God always knows better than I do. (The Israelites would’ve been better letting God do plan A- big warring angel driving out the giants in the land.)
- I must trust Him even when fear makes me want to run back to the safety of where I’ve been. If He’s led me there, He’ll make the way.
- I must trust that He’s taking me to a good place even when it looks scary or it’s difficult.
- And if I don’t obey, trust, and go forward with His Presence, the calling, the dream, the Promised Land will take longer to get to.
“My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest” does not mean we get to go take a nap. This verse promises that He will walk us to the next place to settle–a new place to live.” Maybe that’s a literal place in this life, but definitely it is our heavenly Promised Land to come.
Work on keeping your neck loose, my friends! Do not fear! Trust! He’s leading us to good places.
Your turn: What does this story teach you?
Have a wonderful weekend! See you Monday with a new reading plan.
PS. If you’ve missed our morning fellowships you can replay the videos on my Facebook page. I’ve taught on each “bite” for the day.