Numbers 10-14

Summary:  Israel depart from Sinai in obedience to Moses and the LORD (10:11-13)…..Foreigners were also on this wilderness march (10:29-32)…..Grumbling brings a fiery response (11:1-3)…..They tire of God provided manna, instead hunger for good, old Egyptian cuisine (11:10-15)…..Moses is overwhelmed by complaints and solicits committee help (11:16-25)…..Miriam and Aaron have their doubts about Moses (12:1-2), Miriam is punished for her trouble (12:10-15)…..Spies are sent to explore Canaan (13:1-20)…..They report – strong people, walled cities, and giants (13:26-33)…..Israel no longer complains against the LORD, now they complain against it’s leaders (14:1-4)…..God interprets the rejections of His leads as a rejection of Himself and threatens judgement (14:11-12)…..Moses wins a pardon for Israel at the cost of 40 years of wandering (14:20-38) and foreign militia attacks (14:39-45).

Commentary: As is typical with human enterprises, our story starts well ordered and ends in bedlam once again confirming the validity of Entropy > 0…..It seems, based on my living experiences, that more complaints are registered “on the road” compared to  the home front…..There’s something exciting but also unsettling about the road…..Their appetite for the onions, garlic, etc. of the earth rather than divinely provided fare is a reflection of Israel’s spiritual condition…..Even the provided quail BBQ (11:31-32) did little to satisfy Israel…..This whole episode is explained by Israel’s lack of faith which seems incredible given what they had physically experienced with God to get them to this point (read: Exodus!)…..Israel’s unbelief appears as an example elsewhere in our Bible (14:22-38, cp. Deut. 1:19-40, 1 Cor. 10:1-5, Heb. 3:12-19)…..Apparently seeing and experiencing is not believing…..Believing is believing…..Are we any different?

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