Numbers 13-14

Review & Remarks: The LORD instructs Moses to spy the land of Canaan, one from each of the 12 tribes (vv. 13:1-16) … They are to report on its terrain, its cities, its land and its peoples (vv. 13:17-20) … They did said spying for 40 days bringing back grapes, pomegranates, and figs as examples of the lands bounty (vv. 13:21-25) … The land is summarized as good, but those living on it – the Amalekites, Hittites, Jebusites, Amorites, and Canaanites as strong, their cities are big and well defended (vv. 13:26-29) … Caleb advises Moses to attack Canaan immediately and have faith that whatever obstacles they encounter, they will overcome (v. 13:30) … Other spies cite difficulties too great for them to overcome – their strength, their size, even “Amak giants” (vv. 13:31-33) … Upon their hearing the children of Israel express their fears to Moses and Aaron, wanting to retreat to comfort and safety of Egypt (vv. 14:1-5) … Spies Joshua & Caleb express their optimism regarding Canaan, citing the goodness of its land. Its peoples and their resources can be overcome with the LORD’s backing (vv. 14:6-9) … For their sayings, the rest of Israel begin stoning them. Coincidentally, a theophany of the LORD appears to all of them (v. 14:10) … YHWH expresses anger towards 10 instances of Israel’s lack of faith. Their punishment for these is those over 20 years old will die in the wilderness with the exception of Caleb and Joshua (vv. 14:11-30) … Their wandering is a 40 year death sentence, one year for each day spied in Canaan (vv. 14:31-38) … Moses reports, Israel morns and all are attacked driven back to Horeb by the Amalekites and Canaanites (vv. 14:39-45) … Doing nothing in a situation, or even retreating from it, still entails an element of risk, even of loss of life … A timely example is this with COVID-19 upon us … God’s plan was for Israel to suffer some casualties in its conquest of Canaan … With Israel’s cowardly rejection of God’s plan, they all perished, except Caleb an Joshua, walking in circles, accomplishing nothing outside of Canaan … Moderns don’t like to admit it but human progress, the way we currently live, is mostly the result of the sacrifices of previous generations … So that their children and their children might live better … In these sacrifices, YHWH approves.