Warren Wiersbe has a great summary and review at the end of his commentary on Numbers. He titled this summary The Wilderness School. So, what can we learn from the Israelites? I wish I could share the entire summary but here are the highlights that stood out to me:
We learn about life: Life is like a battle, sometimes a race, but always it’s a school where we need to be awake and alert to what God is trying to teach us. To Moses and the people of Israel life was a journey, but a very special journey; from bondage to freedom. From childishness to maturity; selfishness to service; glorifying the past to anticipating the future; Above all else, in the journey of life, we must be sure to follow the Lord as He goes before us.
We learn about God: We learn about God from His Word, both in private meditation and public worship. We learn from personal experience, our own as well as that of others who share what God has done for them. We learn God loves His people, He cares for them, He is longsuffering and the God of new beginnings.
We learn about ourselves: We all have a fallen nature that’s prone to resist God. We don’t enjoy changes in life and the discomfort they bring. Complaining and criticizing are sins. It’s possible to grow old but not grow up.
We learn about faith: Everyone lives by faith…the difference is who or what is the object of that faith. Faith is obeying God in spite of what we see or hear, how we feel, or what might happen. Every trial is an opportunity to claim God’s promises and trust Him for the solution.
We learn the importance of one believer: Numbers is a book of counting. God wants all of His children to be the kind He can count on. We can go with the unbelieving majority and miss God’s very best, complaining our way through life, or we can stand in the minority and dare to believe God and follow His commands.
May this be our prayer today… That I may set my hope in God, And not forget the works of God, But keep His commandments; And may I not be like their fathers, A stubborn and rebellious generation, A generation that did not set its heart aright, And whose spirit was not faithful to God. (Based on Psalm 78:7-8)
Blessings, Kathy Withers
Kathy’s on staff at America’s KESWICK in the Development Department. Kathy has been married to her husband Dave for 28 years. They have two adult children. Kathy is active in her local Church and has taught Sunday School and Bible Studies for women. Her passion is to encourage women to deepen their walk with Jesus Christ by finding and living out the truths of God’s Word.