Don’t Stone the Messenger

Joshua and Caleb stood before the children of Israel in Numbers 14 ready to give their report of what they saw in the Promised Land. Verses 7 through 9 is their impassioned plea to the people to trust the Lord’s leading.

And they spake unto all the company of the children of Israel, saying, The land, which we passed through to search it, is an exceeding good land. If the LORD delight in us, then he will bring us into this land, and give it us; a land which floweth with milk and honey. Only rebel not ye against the LORD, neither fear ye the people of the land; for they are bread for us: their defence is departed from them, and the LORD is with us: fear them not.

Their report was that the land was “exceeding good.” The land flowed with milk and honey. The Israelites shouldn’t fear the Canaanites, though they were giants, because God was on their side. It was time to trust God and receive their promised inheritance.

But the reaction of the people isn’t what we would expect. Numbers 14:10 says:

But all the congregation bade stone them with stones.

Their reaction was to pick up stones and kill the two men who brought the report that God was with them and God would do the work needed to overtake the land. The people could not bring themselves to trust the promises of God. The result is that they wandered in a wilderness for 40 years and all the adults, save the 2 they wanted to stone, died before entering the Promised Land 40 years later.

What is it today that you have trouble trusting God about? Would you rather obey God, or silence the ones who bring the message of victory just because you don’t want to hear it?

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