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Sunday, February 21, 2010

Numbers 13:30

And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it.

For further study - Numbers 13:17-33

As we come to our devotions for today I am going to go back over some of what we discussed last time. In Numbers there is a passage of scripture that has an interesting connection to the fate of the Jewish people of today. We’ll look at that in a moment.

Our selected reading for today is the story of Moses dispatching the twelve spies, one from each of the tribes of Israel, to enter the Promised Land to determine if all of the Israelites could enter the land at that time. I’m sure from our study last time that you already know the results of the mission by these twelve leaders of the tribes of Israel.

Ten came back and said the land was filled with giants who would destroy the invading Jewish nation. In fact, in the eyes of these ten spies, they perceive themselves to be "grasshoppers" as compared to the inhabitants of the land that God has promised the Jewish people.

However, there were two of the spies, Joshua and Caleb, who came back with a great report. Moses had told all the spies to scout out the lay of the land and be sure to bring some fruit back from their mission, verse 20. At least two of the spies, Caleb and Joshua, had gone over to Hebron, the oldest Jewish community in the history of the world - a Jewish town established by Abraham when he was promised all of the land, some 4,000 years ago.

There, near a brook, the brook of Eshcol, they cut down a bunch of grapes that took two men together to bear the grapes out of the land and bring them back to Moses. This is evidence of how God would provide for His people and that the land was indeed as the two spies reported, a “land of milk and honey”, verse 27.

The other ten spies reported that the enemy would kill the Jewish people if they went into the land. The Israelites believed the ten spies and as a result wandered in the wilderness for the next 39 years.

Remember, Hebron, was the burial place for the patriarchs of Israel, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and the second most sacred piece of real estate for the Jewish people. Today it is a very controversial location - a place of violence between the Jews and the Palestinians.

This entire event speaks volumes about the lack of belief among the Jewish people. As the Lord gave them the land 3,500 years ago, and at that time they failed to take it, so today His promise of returning the people to the land is not truly believed by many of the Jewish people.

God's promises to the Jewish people are true and forever. However, these promises must be accepted by faith. One day, seemingly some day soon, God will fulfill His promises to the Jewish people including giving them all of the land He has promised them.

However, what is so amazing to me is that there have been over five million Jews that have believed God and have made their way into the “promised land” in at least a partial fulfillment of Bible Prophecy.

The greatest “sign” that the Lord is in the process of fulfilling all of His promises to the Jews, and in fact to all of us, is the presence of Jews in the land of Israel today. As was the case in the first “return” to the land by the Jewish people, Numbers 11 and other passages, the “final” return is in operation today.

The only thing that must happen before all of these prophecies are fulfilled is the Rapture of the Church, born-again, Bible-believing Christians will be called up into the heavens to be with Jesus forever. That could happen today.

PRAYER THOT: Help me, dear Lord, to believe Your promises for me as I move towards Your return to gather me to be with you, forever.