Wednesday, March 4, 2009


What a scary thought, and yet how true, that my sins will and often do find me out! In the time of Moses, as the people were beginning to settle the Promised Land, some of the Hebrews struck a deal to claim a certain parcel of land. Moses agreed, but knew he would not be live long enough to see that they kept their end of the bargain. Moses' words sent a chill down my spine, as he warned of their accountability to God in case the agreement fell through:

“ . . . be sure your sin will find you out.” - from Numbers 32:23

Nowadays, it seems that if one person - or even a whole group or corporate entity - does something amiss, it is like a drop in the bucket or a needle in a haystack, with all that's going on in our society and economy. Misdeeds seem to be swept under the rug, yet Moses assured the people under his leadership that the record of their wrongs would by no means fall through the cracks.

It is the same for God's people today, or at least it holds true in my case. I can't get by with anything! It seems God has his watchful eye on me, and holds me to a very personal standard of conduct. That's why it is especially chilling to see what God said of the specific ramifications if the people of Israel failed to do what they had agreed to:

“ . . . But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then those of them whom you let remain shall be as barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they shall trouble you in the land where you dwell. And I will do to you as I thought to do to them.” (Numbers 33:55-56)

That's creepy, especially since I can really relate! Just as in the case of the Israelites under the direction of Moses, I have agreed to follow through with a few things, and only God can know for certain whether I comply. I'm referring to my personal obedience to Christ, things God has asked me to do for my own benefit (such as read and study the word). These little details of life I have willingly agreed to, yet they become a daily challenge.

I'm accountable to God in a personal way, and day-to-day obedience is what is called for. Jesus' words in the New Testament provide help for my daily challenge; an attitude of simple trust toward the Lord and his promises is all I really need. Jesus said:

“Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” (Mark 10:15)

If you're like me, that's a challenge, in and of itself! It's hard to think like a child, and yet it is imperative. The Bible describes a very good man who went away from the Lord dejected because although he did everything right, he just couldn't trust Jesus. He was sure that he had way too much to lose. The disciples watched this model citizen walk away, and asked Jesus, “Then who can be saved?” (Mark 10:26)

I am eternally thankful for the reply:

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” - Mark 10:27

There is no way I can unravel all the doubt which has entangled me over the years against simple faith and obedience. Yet God can, by his grace, free me to trust him like a child. My prayer for me - and for you - is that day by day we will take one baby step at a time into transforming trust:

. . . be not conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God. - Romans 12:2 (DARBY, paraphrase)

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