ThereHave you ever felt like you were on your own journey of wilderness wondering?
Few people had seen the miracles witnessed by the Isrealites. They had been delivered from death on the night of that first Passover. They had been delivered from slavery when they passed through the Red Sea on dry ground. Even as they wandered in the wilderness because of their rebellion, they were being led by a miraculous cloud by day and a stunning pillar of fire by night. And , as if that was not enough, God was feeding His children each day with bread that fell from heaven.
But we all have a way of forgetting yesterday's blessings, especially when we become immersed in today's burdens. So Moses records that "the people became very discouraged" Number 21:14 and they took it on Moses and even on God himself, asking "Why, why have you brought us up out of Egypt"- then their frustration burst forth"Just to die here in theis God forsaken wilderness"
There is a reason for discouragement:
It is easy to forget where we have been and also where we are going. When this happens- when we only have eyes for the "now"- discouragement comes easily. The the accumulated complexities swirling around us seem to have their own way of demanding our immediate focus and feeling our discouragement. The Isrealites were discouraged about two things; the way they were being led and the way they were being fed.
The chosen people of God complained, first, about the way they wer ebeing led. They murmured against Moses, but the real object of their complaint was God Himself. After all, Moses was only following God's lead and relaying God's instructions to the people. But they didn't like Mosess leadership.
Their other subject of comaplaint was the way they were being fed. "Our soul loathes this wilderness bread" The manna the people hated, however, was God's gracious gift of sustenance to the multiplied thousands of people who were without a food supply. The manna fell fresh each morning- a picture that we later learn, of the sustaining life we can have in Jesus Christ. The Bread of Life.
There is a result of discouragement:
Discouragement left to fester can have devastating results, ask anyone of those Jews in the wilderness. They learned that when they openly rebel against God's leadership and provision in our lives, He often disciplines us for own benefit. "The Lord sent fiery serpants among the people, and they bit the people; and many of the people of Isreal died Number 21:6 These consequences may seem overly harsh. But there is a deeper lesson here for all of us. In the Bible the serpant is a picture of Satan and sin and the serpant still comes slithering up to us exactly as it did in the garden.
In the Numbers 21 incident, the serpants bites were terrible and in alot of cases terminal. They bite was like every nerve in their body was on fire . the pain was undoubtedly excruciating and the same can be all so true about sin. Proverbs 13:5 tells us that "The way of the unfaithful is hard" Death is the ultimate end of all sin and rebellion
There is a remedy for discouragement:
The people of Isreal learned their lesson and changed their hearts and minds, in a hurry. they ran to Moses and told him that they had sinned and spoken against God and Moses and to please pray to God to take away the fiery serpants. Moses was to make a brass serpant and place it high upon a pole and when the people would look upon the serpant, they would live.
Now this strange sounding remedy, was a sure remedy, because it was God's remedy, it was a sustaining remedy, it never failed.
So, it is with Jesus Christ today..For he is was placed high upon the cross of calvary. Jesus explained in John 3: 14-15 "AS Moses lifted up the serpant in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life" and so He was. And to this very day everyone who looks to him for healing from their sin- for alvation--lives and lives eternally
How much clearer could the remedy be? The remedy that God has provided for death due to our sin is sure. Christ is not a way, He is the WAY. the remedy is sufficient, know matter how much we have sinned or how little. He is sufficient to provide forgivesness and to save.
Are you discouraged today? Remember from whence you have come and where you are going and look to Jesus. He has brought you out of your own Egypt to take you into His promise land, Look to Him and...Live..