March 25, 2013
In reading the story of the children of Israel we often see ourselves — especially when we see them doubt and disobey. We think: “those dummies, why don’t they ever learn?!” Then, we go about our lives and do very much the same as they did! Once such instance in Israel’s history is located in Numbers 32. The children of Israel are just completing their forty years of wandering because of disobedience at Kadesh Barnea, and they come to the edge of the long awaited Promised Land. God tells them to destroy the Midianites in battle and they do. But what happens next is that the two tribes of Reuben and Gad decide, that they should just be content with what they see now, and not go into the Promised Land on the other side of the Jordan River at all.
Moses can’t believe what he is hearing. He recalls how forty years ago their parents made the same decision, and for that reason there is no one among them old enough for a “pension” or tenure! They respond by giving an alternative to accompany the army and assist in the conquering of the land of Canaan. But Moses response is classic: “But if you fail to do this, you will be sinning against the Lord; and you may be sure that your sin will find you out” (32:23). THAT is a true statement. Our sin will always find us out! We need to remember that when we contemplate deceit or secret sin. God desires holiness and the knowledge that our sin will be revealed should drive us to live holy lives.
VERSE TO PONDER: If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. – 1 John 1:9
ACTION POINT: The best way to deal with nagging sin in our lives is to confess it to God and a close friend; ask forgiveness and deal with it aggressively and conscientiously rather than concealing it. “Be sure that your sin will find you out!”