If the LORD is pleased with us, he will lead us into that land, a land flowing with milk and honey, and will give it to us. Only do not rebel against the LORD. And do not be afraid of the people of the land, because we will devour them. Their protection is gone, but the LORD is with us. Do not be afraid of them.” Numbers 14:8–9
There are times when fear can paralyze the bravest of hearts. When we perceive threat to our well-being or an obstacle standing between us and our goals, we often fear that the overall plan for our lives is in serious jeopardy.
In those times we need to remember the promises of God.
When the Israelite spies set out on a reconnaissance mission to assess the land of Canaan, they had no idea what they would encounter. It was a great honor to be chosen by Moses for such an assignment, and Moses selected the top leader from each of the twelve tribes for the job.
Yet all their training and leadership experience did not prepare them for something so overwhelming. Who had ever heard of a grape cluster so huge that it had to be carried on a pole lifted by two men (Numbers 13:23)? Who could possibly be prepared for Canaanite warriors so massive they dwarfed the best of Israel’s army (Numbers 13:33)? It is no wonder these spies felt a whirling mix of emotions as they headed back to their commander-in-chief to give a full report.
You can imagine the scene. Moses and Aaron (Moses’ brother) gathered the people to hear the news. The spies confirmed that the Promised Land was indeed everything God said it was — but they focused on what they saw as the obstacles to their taking the land, namely the giants who lived there. They gave an accurate report, but they failed to give the whole story. Only Joshua and Caleb spoke the truth.
These two faithful men recounted what they had seen and then reiterated, in their own words, the promises of God that had brought them to this point: “If the LORD is pleased with us, he will lead us into that land, a land flowing with milk and honey, and will give it to us. Only do not rebel against the LORD. And do not be afraid of the people of the land, because we will devour them. Their protection is gone, but the LORD is with us. Do not be afraid of them” (Numbers 14:8 – 9). Joshua and Caleb lived to see the Promised Land, but only because they focused on the goal God had laid out for them and not on the obstacles standing in the way (Numbers 14:30; 26:64 – 65; 32:11 – 12).
The blessings God has in store for you are just as rich! Never allow shortsighted vision — especially one focused on obstacles — to block the far-reaching plan of the Lord.
During his many years of ministry, Dr. Charles Stanley has faithfully highlighted the 30 Life Principles that have guided him and helped him to grow in his knowledge, service, and love of God. This study Bible features thousands of verse notes and study features to help you explore each of these principles in depth and learn how to make them a part of your everyday life. Learn More