After receiving the law and entering into a covenant with God, the Israelites traveled to Kadesh. Nearly forty years later, Moses recounted the tragic mistake of that generation - "'You have come to the mountains of the Amorites, which the LORD your God is giving us. Look, the LORD your God has set the land before you; go up and possess it, as the LORD God of your fathers has spoken to you; do not fear or be discouraged.' And every one of you came near to me and said, 'Let us send men before us, and let them search out the land for us, and bring back word to us of the way by which we should go up, and of the cities into which we shall come.' The plan pleased me well; so I took twelve of your men, one man from each tribe. And they departed and went up into the mountains, and came to the Valley of Eshcol, and spied it out. They also took some of the fruit of the land in their hands and brought it down to us; and they brought back word to us, saying, 'It is a good land which the LORD our God is giving us.' Nevertheless you would not go up, but rebelled against the command of the LORD your God; and you complained in your tents, and said, 'Because the LORD hates us, He has brought us out of the land of Egypt to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, to destroy us. Where can we go up? Our brethren have discouraged our hearts, saying, "The people are greater and taller than we; the cities are great and fortified up to heaven; moreover we have seen the sons of the Anakim there."' Then I said to you, 'Do not be terrified, or afraid of them. The LORD your God, who goes before you, He will fight for you, according to all He did for you in Egypt before your eyes, and in the wilderness where you saw how the LORD your God carried you, as a man carries his son, in all the way that you went until you came to this place.' Yet, for all that, you did not believe the LORD your God
, who went in the way before you to search out a place for you to pitch your tents, to show you the way you should go, in the fire by night and in the cloud by day" (Deut. 1:20-33).
This passage makes it clear that God took care of His children during the exodus and their journey through the wilderness. He manifested His power through the plagues He brought upon Egypt. He enabled them to cross the Red Sea on dry ground. He provided for their physical needs (food, drink, and clothing). He carried them, so to speak, as a loving father carries his child! But, in spite of it all, the Israelites had doubts. Although they should have developed an absolute trust in Him by that time, they were still weak in faith and they faltered.
Friends, God takes care of His people today too! Our past experiences and the experiences of others that we can read about in the Bible should give us the confidence that we can trust God absolutely! There is no need to doubt Him whatsoever! Not only has He given us life and sustained us physically, but also He has provided a means of salvation through His Son (John 3:16)! There is no reason not to trust God. As Paul noted - "He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?" (Rom. 8:32).
Truly, God rewards those who keep His covenant and disciplines those who defy it. As I Samuel 12:24,25 teaches - "Only fear the LORD, and serve Him in truth with all your heart; for consider what great things He has done for you. But if you still do wickedly, you shall be swept away..."
Those who love God will place their trust in Him; they will rely upon Him through the good and the bad. Dear listeners, it is clear whom you should trust, but I ask you now: In whom do you trust?