“Then the Lord sent venomous snakes among them; they bit the people and many Israelites died.” Numbers 21:6.
Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading: Numbers 21-23, and Mark 6-7.
So much for the impression of God sitting on a sofa in a cloud and smiling.
God knows what is going on. The idea that God made the world and then turned it over to us and departed, is nonsense.
God is active in His world. You see a bird and know that God knows about it. He knows about each of us.
He knows when we do what He wants. He knows when we choose instead to do what He doesn’t want us doing.
We are a complaining people. We assume that we are “entitled” to the best of everything. When it doesn’t fall into our laps, we complain. My wife. The boss. My bad luck. Again, more folly.
We live in a fallen world and so some of what happens is caused by things wearing out. Car accidents happen because someone is not a good driver. We make mistakes that cause us trouble.
Today’s verse is different. The people in the story were supposed to be “His” people. He chose them. He guided them. But it was not enough for them. Instead of trusting God they chose to distrust Him. They blamed Him for every inconvenience. And God was tired of it and so He sent punishment in the form of venomous snakes among them.
The point is that God can punish us for our misdeeds directly. He is not uninvolved or unconcerned. We dare not behave in a manner that angers Him.
“Lord, fill me with You so that I will please You in everything I do. I love You. I read of the Israelites and wonder how they could be actively complaining about You but then I recall that I often am annoyed by obstacles. I must remember that You are in charge and positively now what is best. I love You, Father.”
Consider ourselves warned that God can punish us directly as He did the Israelites.