Then all of you came near me and said, ‘Let us send men before us, that they may explore the land for us and bring us word again of the way by which we must go up and the cities into which we shall come.’ Deuteronomy 1:22 (ESV)
As we read through Deuteronomy we will see Moses telling the new generation of Israel the story of the covenant and relationship between God and his people since leaving Egypt. In this account Moses mentions that the idea to send spies into the land did not come from God or himself but the people.
In light of Moses earlier commands and encouragements from the Lord, this apparent pragmatism of the people expose a subtle mentality of lacking faith and doubt. We must not seek to figure out everything when God has made a promise, we need to just respond in faith and trust God because we walk by faith not by sight 2 Corinthians 5:7
Yet in spite of this word you did not believe the LORD your God, Deuteronomy 1:32 (ESV)
The problem here was faith in God. If we do not have faith in God we will not see God for who he is or remember / recognise what he has already done for us and therefore will not take him at his word regardless of how many times we hear his word. We must mix what we hear with faith, we must believe. See Hebrews 4:2
except Caleb the son of Jephunneh. He shall see it, and to him and to his children I will give the land on which he has trodden, because he has wholly followed the LORD!’ Deuteronomy 1:36 (ESV)
We should learn from Caleb and follow after God with our whole heart, we should not hold back in reservation or doubt but wholly cast ourselves upon God and his promises in faith. We should approach God with singleness of mind and heart James 1:7-8
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 2 Corinthians 1:3 (ESV)
Paul gives us some great insight through his own experience and knowledge of the truth of Gods character and attributes as the Father of all mercies and the God of all comfort, notice he is not called for example the God of all wrath or the father of judgement.
In other letters Paul shines light on other attributes of God including the following (with gratitude to D, E Garland for this list) the God of love and peace (2 Cor 13:11), the God of endurance and comfort (Rom 15:5), the God of hope (Rom 15:13), the God of peace (Rom 16:20; 1 Thess 5:23; 2 Thess 3:16), the God who gives endurance and encouragement (Rom 15:5).
Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort. 2 Corinthians 1:7 (ESV)
Despite the western reluctance to accept it, suffering is a guaranteed part of life and the Christian life in particular It is when we stand up for God and his kingdom and do the work of the kingdom in the face of mockery, resistance and persecution that we truly experience the comfort and grace that can only come from God in our suffering. We are called to share in the sufferings of Christ and in his comfort. See Romans 8:17 and 2 Timothy 2:12
For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself. 2 Corinthians 1:8 (ESV)
We must stay aware of what is happening in the church around the world, especially where the church is undergoing sever persecution, this is why we should be so grateful for ministries like Open Doors. Be informed.
You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many. 2 Corinthians 1:11 (ESV)
We must pray for our leaders, for the spread of the gospel and God kingdom and for Christians undergoing persecution for taking a stand. Our prayers are not just an exercise in faith or a tradition, they actually do something when we pray in faith to God, he hears our prayers and answers (in this case Paul said that many blessings would be granted through the parers). See also Romans 15:30 and Philippians 1:19
Into your hand I commit my spirit; you have redeemed me, O LORD, faithful God. Psalm 31:5 (ESV)
Jesus said this from the cross as recorded in Luke 23:46
I hate those who pay regard to worthless idols, but I trust in the LORD. Psalm 31:6 (ESV)
We should hate sin, sinning personally and even sinners or those who commit sin in the sense that we should not rejoice in their sin but call them to repent Romans 1:32
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