In the first chapter of this week’s Torah Portion (Parashah Sh’lach), Moses sends out spies to reconnoiter the Land of Canaan, commanding that they take notice of the people residing there and to confirm …
Are they strong?
Are they weak?
Are they small in number or many?
Are they good or bad and what is the condition of their cities?
Off their cities, are they open with free access or are they well-fortified!
In conclusion, of the land itself, is it fertile or unproductive for use?
For Moses, the commissioning of the spies was not an act of fear, anxiety, or uncertainty - but instead a confirmation that the People of Isra’el would return to their land and would prosper in the fulfillment of God’s promises.
This is confirmed in Exodus 3:17 (ESV) where Adonai proclaims, “... I PROMISE that I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt to the land of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, a land flowing with milk and honey.”
Moses knew the PROMISES of God and did not waiver, but of the spies, many did not walk in that same level of trust, but instead allowed their hearts and fears to overwhelm them declaring,
“The land we passed through in order to it out is a land that devours its inhabitants. All the people we saw there are giant! We saw the N’filim, the descendants of “Anak, who was from the N’filim; to ourselves we looked like grasshoppers by comparison, we looked that way to them too.” (Numbers 13:32b-33)
Counter to this negative report, Joshua and Caleb responded in light of God’s Promises declaring,
“The land we passed through in order to spy it out is an outstandingly good land! If Adonai is pleased with us, then he will bring us into this land and give it to us - a land flowing with milk and honey.” (Numbers 14:7b-8, CJB) …
There it is again! Do you see it? … The promises which God had imparted to Moses is here, echoed in the lives (and words) of Joshua and Caleb, who themselves received that same impartation from Moses by the power of the Holy Spirit. In this moment, it is as if Joshua and Caleb are saying, “We are not going to die, but God in fulfillment of His promise has brought us here, that we might lay hold of and receive this great land, … This Promised Land - This land, flowing with Milk and Honey!”
For us today as believers in Yeshua, we too can learn much from this legacy set by Joshua and Caleb. Although the Adversary will always come in with words of doubt and fear, for the purpose of drowning out the Promises of God from our lives. Even for us, a choice must be made as to whether we are going to believe God’s True Report of faith, life, and blessing. - or will we embrace the lie that we dare not move forward in faith and action, because there might be giants in the land who will overtake us. If we believe the devil’s report, we will be crippled with fear and in the end, we will accomplish nothing for the sake of God’s Kingdom.
But dear friends if we not only choose to believe the Promises of God over our lives, but also walk them out, then we will experience blessing, peace, and a security that only God can provide. In the end beloved, let me ask again, … Whose report are you going to believe?
~ Rabbi Mark Rantz
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