Place these staffs in the Tabernacle in front of the Ark containing the tablets of the Covenant, where I meet with you. Buds will sprout on the staff belonging to the man I choose. Then I will finally put an end to the people’s murmuring and complaining against you.” (Numbers 17:4, 5 NLT)
When God chose a leader to lead, He relives the pressure off the leader to prove his/her authority.
Beware, God do allow a season for others to see the leader is not so perfect. But then, God will move with a mighty power for everyone to realize that it is indeed He who has chosen and appointed that leader to lead them.
For this to happen, the leader has to refrain from all arguments and quarrel; willfully come to a place of humility by submitting him/herself before the Word of God (tablets of the Covenant) and waiting in His presence (Ark, Tabernacle) until God brings the supernatural life and fruitfulness in the authority He gave.
No self promoters survive this sprout test. Let’s place ours under the Word’s check and soak it with His presence until it sprouts!
On that day the Lord exalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel, and they revered him throughout his life, as they had revered Moses. Joshua 4:14
A year after Israel’s departure from Egypt, the Lord spoke to Moses in the Tabernacle in the wilderness of Sinai. On the first day of the second month of that year he said, “From the whole community of Israel, record the names of all the warriors by their clans and families. List all the men… (Numbers 1:1, 2 NLT)
People of Israel were brought out from Egypt with greatest signs and wonders. In wilderness they were protected and provided miraculously. Yet, God told Moses to mobilize an army to defend themselves.
God didn’t led Israelites like cattle by not requiring them to do anything but simply to trust Him. But made them to become responsible, trained them equally as any nations army existed at that time and equipped them with all supplies needed for their families so they can be devoted to these duties.
Only on top of all these necessary duties He entrusted on them, He showed up in their battles, in their weakness, in their impossibilities and made them to conquer!
A God’s child is never exempt from training himself/herself in all that is needed to defend including his/her faith. When we do all that we are required to do diligently by His grace and wisdom – He will add His favor and strength to make us win!
Let’s prepare diligently as we are called not just to conquer but to become more than a conquer thru’ Christ Jesus!
No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:37, 39
But if the cloud did not rise, they remained where they were until it lifted. (Exodus 40:37 NLT)
One important thing as a child of God we need to understand that we never become stronger to live without God’s guidance.
Every time we do things of our own ignoring God’s will we become vulnerable – yet, thanks to His mercy that come and find us!
Nevertheless, when we are in wilderness it is our responsibility to wait on God to tell if we make a move or not irrespective of comforts or discomforts we have in that place.
The wilderness seasons are not an exception that we can’t do what we want to do, but it’s a training ground to perfect and practice the fear of the Lord – only to keep it for the rest of our life!
Joseph and Daniel were brought into a foreign land each in their time as mere slaves when they were young and able – but both chose not to rebel in their wilderness season and waited upon God.
God, Who knew how and when to make the right move – one day, made them to become second-in-command in that foreign nations because they learnt to fear God and resolved in their hearts never to leave Him!
This is God’s plan for everyone who dare to persevere to do His will in their toughest time.
So, if the cloud doesn’t move you don’t move; when it moves you move. It’s that simple!
I am only a foreigner in the land. Don’t hide your commands from me! I weep with sorrow; encourage me by your word. I have chosen to be faithful; I have determined to live by your regulations. Teach me your decrees, O Lord; I will keep them to the end. Psalm 119:19, 28, 30, 33
But listen carefully to everything I command you today. Then I will go ahead of you and drive out the Amorites, Canaanites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. (Exodus 34:11 NLT)
When God promise something and He start to move us strategically, one thing that we need to get ready is to face the unfamiliar enemies.
It is very tricky, how can you prepare when you don’t know anything about your enemies?
Every new place has a new battle for us to fight – which we never fought before!
The only way to prepare is to follow the order given by God by being diligent to listen, obey and trust in His leading.
It is very important on how we drive our first enemy! That will set the stage in how we handle the others.
When it comes to entering the promise land, we also have to realize that we are entering the enemies territory controlled by sin, shame, fear, guilt, deception and oppression.
These all has to be defeated beginning from sin, which we can do only by the blood of Jesus!
They conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they did not love their lives in the face of death. Revelation 12:11
“And the King (Jesus) will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’ (Matthew 25:40 NLT)
When God by His mercy kept us well, He do expect that we be mindful of people around us who are hurting, hungry and in need of supplies that are well in our power to bless them.
Even the greedy in one point of time will learn his lesson and set his records straight, but it is the stingy that will get punished and would lose the eternal life!
Are we ignoring or overlooking people that God has kept around us? These are the ones God has placed in our life, so we can become a blessing by releasing the mercy, compassion, acceptance, forgiveness along with food, water and money where needed.
Then he (Jesus) turned to his host. “When you put on a luncheon or a banquet,” he said, “don’t invite your friends, brothers, relatives, and rich neighbors. For they will invite you back, and that will be your only reward. Instead, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind. Then at the resurrection of the righteous, God will reward you for inviting those who could not repay you.” Luke 14:12-14
To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away. (Matthew 25:29 NLT)
Where your heart is, there your treasure is!
Unless we are willing to risk losing we can never invest. Unless we are willing to spend time without any reservation we never learn to get best return.
If our heart is sold out to God, then we will give Him all we have. Whether it’s money, time, energy or thoughts – we’ll give Him out of obedience .
As far God is concern, He is the most generous, He not only rewards us for our generosity but enable us with what all we need to get much more generous – so we can become just like Him – really generous!
It is God Who gives seed to the man to plant. He also gives the bread to eat. Then we know He will give you more seed to plant and make it grow so you will have more to give away. God will give you enough so you can always give to others. 2 Corinthians 9:10-11
Then Peter came to him and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?” (Matthew 18:21 NLT)
The day we give our hearts to Lord Jesus and start to follow Him we become a born again person. This doesn’t make us to forget our old self – which got used living in tooth for a tooth, eye for an eye attitude.
The life experiences constantly test and tempt our old nature to come alive and demand that we react the way we used to react in the past and it is our rights.
Peter was in that painful transition state battling his old self, so he asked Jesus a deliberate question (my paraphrase) “OK, I forgave him seven times! Can I go smack him now? Tell me, I can’t wait.”
This is how we often live born again new life. Outside we put these rules and restrictions, but inside it’s the same old emotions and self-will that hates the new me and wants a break!
Jesus response was, “not seven, but seventy time seven!”. In other words, “Nope, you never go back to your old nature – start crucifying your old self on my Cross, remember I forgave you once for all!”
Living a born again life must be realized as a freedom from the old me. The new birth gave us this new authority to crucify the old nature, and obeying God’s command are our new birth rights, not old school rules!
Christ has liberated us to be free. Stand firm then and don’t submit again to a yoke of slavery.
Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Galatians 5:1, 24
“The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure that a man discovered hidden in a field. In his excitement, he hid it again and sold everything he owned to get enough money to buy the field. (Matthew 13:44 NLT)
The eye opening moment to see that the Kingdom of Heaven is real, is not usually a glorious prayer time or trance but would be thru’ a traumatic/shocking painful time we go thru’ in this world realizing that all we see in this kingdom of the world will come an end!
When this realization of the real awaiting glorious eternity comes in us, there is an overwhelming willingness to lay down anything we’ve in order to get into the Kingdom of Heaven – the real place awaiting for all who accept the forgiveness of God in Christ Jesus.
The longingness is not to get to that Place but to get to the Person – Christ Jesus!
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is going to be revealed to us. Romans 8:18
The whole countryside is open to you. Take your choice of any section of the land you want, and we will separate. If you want the land to the left, then I’ll take the land on the right. If you prefer the land on the right, then I’ll go to the left.” (Genesis 13:9 NLT)
As soon as Lot has accumulated the wealth his need to depend on God’s leading (Abraham’s journey) had become pointless. He wants to settle down and have ‘life’.
As for as Abram is concerned, his life is his God and his eyes are on the Blesser not the blessings. Unless his God settles him, he don’t want to stop the exciting journey of God-dependence.
As soon as Abram proved his attitude, God spoke –
Go and walk through the land in every direction, for I am giving it to you.” (Genesis 13:17 NLT)
Lot has gone, time to go and walk thru’ the land; let’s go!
Teach me your ways, O Lord, that I may live according to your truth!
Grant me purity of heart, so that I may honor you. Psalm 86:11
Purity is being free from adulterated by anything that this corrupt world influence on us, and remaining the way God created us to be.
None of us were close to it, but the Pure from God – His Son Jesus Christ cleanses us from all adulteration and has the power to take our hearts to its utmost purity every time we allow His word to pierce our hearts!
Unlike we think a pure heart doesn’t look polished, rigid and vibrant but rather torn, broken and contrite by constant correction, self-denial and submission by the power of God’s Spoken Word.
Nothing honors God like these awful looking, amazing, pleasing hearts!
Now, let’s take a hard look on what type of teaching we inclined to – ear pleasing or heart pricking?