The Israelites had seen God work miracles since leaving Egypt. They had seen God’s power displayed for them at the Red Sea. Necessary food had been supernaturally supplied on a daily basis. They were now camped in the southernmost region of the Promised Land, having reached the goal of their journey and the fulfilment of God’s promise.
When the spies were sent out to view the land, God again reminded them of His promise, ‘Send some men to explore the land of Canaan which I am giving to the Israelites’ (Numbers 13:2). It took forty days for the exploration of the land and then the report was given. Sadly, ten of the twelve spies seemed to have lost sight of the promise and nature of God so their view of reality was distorted. In consequence, the obstacles seemed too great and they were overwhelmed with fear.
Firstly, they saw fortified cities, powerful people and giants. Secondly, they saw themselves as grasshoppers and were convinced that the people of Canaan also saw them in that way. A battle between giants and grasshoppers would be a losing battle. They hadn’t learned to see themselves through God’s eyes. They were His people, dearly loved and chosen out of the nations as His special possession to fulfil His special purpose. Faith in Him would bring victory. They could go and take the land, but they were crippled with fear and ended up the grasshoppers they feared they were, wandering in the desert for 40 years.
Caleb had a different spirit (Numbers 14:24) and he spoke words of truth to the fearful Israelites. ‘We should go up and take possession of the land for we can certainly do it’ (Numbers 13:30). To him the giants appeared as grasshoppers because he saw them through God’s eyes. He wasn’t crippled with fear because his trust was in the unfailing promises of the unfailing God. Grasshopper or giant - how do you see yourself?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I’m Your child, dearly loved and chosen. I bring my fears to You today and I put my trust in your unfailing love. In my own strength I can do nothing, but in Your strength I can do everything you ask me to. Thank you that Your strength is made perfect in my weakness. Amen.
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