Faith Vs. Fear

OPENING PRAYER

Lord, You are the light of my heart and of my life. You are my righteousness and my life.

 

Read: DEUTERONOMY 1:19-40

[19] Then, as the LORD our God commanded us, we set out from Horeb and went toward the hill country of the Amorites through all that vast and dreadful wilderness that you have seen, and so we reached Kadesh Barnea. [20]Then I said to you, “You have reached the hill country of the Amorites, which the LORD our God is giving us. [21] See, the LORD your God has given you the land. Go up and take possession of it as the LORD, the God of your ancestors, told you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” [22] Then all of you came to me and said, “Let us send men ahead to spy out the land for us and bring back a report about the route we are to take and the towns we will come to.”[23] The idea seemed good to me; so I selected twelve of you, one man from each tribe. [24] They left and went up into the hill country, and came to the Valley of Eshkol and explored it. [25] Taking with them some of the fruit of the land, they brought it down to us and reported, “It is a good land that the LORD our God is giving us.” [26] But you were unwilling to go up; you rebelled against the command of the LORD your God. [27] You grumbled in your tents and said, “The LORD hates us; so he brought us out of Egypt to deliver us into the hands of the Amorites to destroy us. [28] Where can we go? Our brothers have made our hearts melt in fear. They say, ‘The people are stronger and taller than we are; the cities are large, with walls up to the sky. We even saw the Anakites there.'” [29] Then I said to you, “Do not be terrified; do not be afraid of them. [30] The LORD your God, who is going before you, will fight for you, as he did for you in Egypt, before your very eyes, [31] and in the wilderness. There you saw how the LORD your God carried you, as a father carries his son, all the way you went until you reached this place.” [32] In spite of this, you did not trust in the LORD your God, [33] who went ahead of you on your journey, in fire by night and in a cloud by day, to search out places for you to camp and to show you the way you should go. [34] When the LORD heard what you said, he was angry and solemnly swore: [35] “No one from this evil generation shall see the good land I swore to give your ancestors, [36] except Caleb son of Jephunneh. He will see it, and I will give him and his descendants the land he set his feet on, because he followed the LORD wholeheartedly.” [37] Because of you the LORD became angry with me also and said, “You shall not enter it, either. [38] But your assistant, Joshua son of Nun, will enter it. Encourage him, because he will lead Israel to inherit it. [39] And the little ones that you said would be taken captive, your children who do not yet know good from bad-they will enter the land. I will give it to them and they will take possession of it. [40] But as for you, turn around and set out toward the desert along the route to the Red Sea.”

 

Reflect: WHAT WAS THE CONSEQUENCE OF THE PEOPLE'S RESPONSE?

She stood at the prison gate; her term served, she was about to be set free, to be in control of her life again. But she had been in prison for years… She was afraid of the world outside those walls that had kept her locked up, but safe, for so long.Moses announces, “Now is the time for you to take possession of the land! Don’t be afraid!” (21). But the people “rebelled” (26) and “grumbled” (27), refusing to believe that God–who had brought them this far–would finish what he had started. Their hearts melted in fear (28) instead of being filled with faith. Spot the similarities? The Israelites have seen armies defeated, the miraculous provision of food, and pillars of fire and cloud… and yet still they don’t believe. So Moses tries to reassure the Israelites with three pictures of God: as a strong soldier (30), as a loving Father (31) and as a faithful guide (33). Fear paralyzes and fixes us to the spot. Being faithful means stepping out in obedience, following God’s command, and trusting him to fight for us, carry us, and lead us forward.

 

APPLY

If God is calling you to something, pray for courage, then get up and go in obedience and faith, trusting that God goes with you.

 

CLOSING PRAYER

Lord, help me to always remember that You go with me wherever You call me.

 

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