Tag Archives: Moses

Can we reason with God?

“So he said he would destroy them – had not Moses, his chosen one, stood in the breach before him to keep his wrath from destroying them.”  Psalm 106:23.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading: 1 Chronicles 16, Psalm 106, and Matthew 19.

God can be reasoned with.

Do you doubt it?  Here we read of Moses doing it.  Earlier, Abraham did it when he wanted to save the city Lot lived in.  There is precedence.

We see things heading in a bad direction and we wonder what we can do: reason with God.

The six-year-old I’ve referenced before, who has Stage 4 cancer, comes to mind when I think of what Moses did.  I am reasoning with God that He will bypass physicians and heal her.  It is the merciful thing to do, in my opinion, and God is capable of the action.  Bottom line, however, is that God knows best and will do what is best.

God wants to interact with us.  We are His children.  He wants to hear our, “Give me a bike,” conversations.  We may not get that bike but we are addressing Him as Someone who could make it happen, as God, if you will.

“Lord, thank You for Your Word.  Thank You for loving me so much that You took care of my sin burden.  You set me free of its consequences and gave me a new, clean life.  What a great God, You are!  Thank You, for caring for me.  I love you, Lord.”

We can reason with God.  Plead your case.  Ask for His consideration.  Moses and Abraham did.

St. Lucia

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Are you wearing a veil?

“Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts.  But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.  Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.  And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”  2 Corinthians 3:15-18.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Judges 17-18, Psalm 89, and 2 Corinthians 3.

Folks feared looking at Moses when he came back from Mount Sinai.  He had this “glow” about him that scared them off.

Believers can be like Moses: We can glow.

The reactions we get from our “glowing” will surely vary.   Some people are going to want to avoid us or they’ll insist that we became less obvious in our beliefs.  Other people will find our “glowing” to be attractive.  They may be equally “glowing” so that there is a camaraderie or they may want to increase their “glow.”

If I am filled with God, there will be an overflow.  It will spill out of me as I live: I’ll say things, I’ll do things that will give it away.  I can’t help myself.

If I am restrained in my “glowing” then I am not filled with Him.  I do not have enough of Him to naturally share with others.

The “veil” referred to in these verses had to be worn by Moses because of the Israelites’ sinfulness.  They weren’t ready to be exposed to God and they knew it.

I have no reason to limit my attempts to reflect God’s glory.  I love God and I want to glow of Him.  My restraints in this effort are of my own doing.  They reflect my sinfulness.

“Lord, forgive me for not reflecting You in my midst.  I have You within me.  I open every part of my being to Your control.  Take me over, now.  Run my life.  I want there to be a natural overflow of You from within me.  I trust You to help me do this.  I love You, Lord.”

We should have no restraints in “glowing” of God.

St. Lucia

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Why things are as they are

“Therefore, you will see the land only from a distance…” Deuteronomy 32:52.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading: Deuteronomy 32-34, and 1 Corinthians 2.

What we do effects what will be.

Today’s verse relates to Moses.  The “therefore” references his anger at having to provide water for the whining Israelites.

God was displeased with what happened and it cost Moses an entry into the Promised Land.

We learn in Chapter 34 that when Moses died he was in perfect health.  He died because the Israelites were about to enter the Promised Land and Moses wasn’t going to be allowed entrance.

I must live my life as close to God as I can.  I do not want to jeopardize my future because of an ungodly action.

My life is filled with sin.  How will I keep from doing something like Moses did?  I am so needy.  I must stay in tight fellowship with Him.

I must not let my circumstances effect my behavior.  I am currently in the loveliest of settings (St. Lucia) with an unmatched collection of amenities.  Yet even here, detachment from God, comes too easily.  There must be no detachments!

“Lord, You know me yet You love me.  It makes no sense.  Thank You for Your Word.  I must be aware that my actions have consequences.  I love You.  Help me to live it out in every setting.  You are my God.”

God is in charge.  We must strive to do what He wants in every circumstance.

 

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I’ve got you covered…….in prayer

“I lay prostrate before the Lord those forty days and forty nights because the Lord had said he would destroy you.  I prayed to the Lord and said, ‘Sovereign Lord, do not destroy your people, your own inheritance that you redeemed by your great power and brought out of Egypt with a mighty hand.’” Deuteronomy 9:25-26.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading: Deuteronomy 7-9, and Mark 15.

God was angry with the Israelites and told Moses that He was going to destroy them.

Moses had plenty of reasons to be angry with the Israelites as well and it might have been expected that he would go along with God on this one.  But he didn’t.

Moses pleaded with God while stretched out for a long time before Him.

And God agreed with the request of Moses and the Israelites were spared.

Think of what the Israelites were doing that angered God: They were worshiping a calf made of gold.

God is angered by competition.  There are no other gods but Him.  The Israelites, however, rejected God and went for a god of their own creating.  Isn’t that often what we do.  “Things” become more important to us than God.  “I am Yours, Lord but I have to have, or do, this.”  Our relationship to Him is lessened by our relationship to other things.

Moses stepped in on behalf of a people distracted by other gods.  We must, first, be sure that other gods have no place in our lives.  Secondly, we must intercede for the wayward in our midst that God would spare them.

Moses gives us a wonderful example of intercessory prayer.  God hears our prayers.  Will we follow the lead of Moses and intercede for others?

“Lord, forgive me for letting other gods invade my way of life.  Nothing is more important that my relationship to You.  Forgive me for slacking off about interceding for others.  There are so many needs BUT none of them are beyond Your Reach.  Help me to pray with that in mind. You are simply amazing, Father.”

Are you covering anyone in prayer?  Moses sets a wonderful example of how it is done.

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“Moses, the answer is still, ‘No'”

“At that time I (Moses) pleaded with the Lord: ‘Sovereign Lord, you have begun to show to your servant your greatness and your strong hand.  For what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do the deeds and mighty works you do?  Let me go over and see the good land beyond the Jordan – that fine hill country and Lebanon.’  But because of you the Lord was angry with me and would not listen to me.  ‘That is enough,’ the Lord said. ‘Do not speak to me anymore about this matter.  Go up to the top of Pisgah and look west and north and south and east.  Look at the land with your own eyes, since you are not going to cross this Jordan.’”  Deuteronomy 3:23-27.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Deuteronomy 3-4, Psalm 36, and Mark 13.

In yesterday’s entry from Deuteronomy chapter one, I described Moses as unrepentant and resigned to his fate of not crossing the Jordan River to enter the Promised Land.

Today’s lengthy entry still finds Moses unrepentant (“because of you”) but I did find Moses asking God to change His mind.

God doesn’t change His mind but does give Moses a look at the Promised Land from the top of Mount Pisgah.

God works in His own ways.  We can’t assume anything.

Think of Moses; he was told by God that He was going to destroy the Israelites and start a new “chosen people” through him.  Moses resisted this and God changed His mind.  Then Moses wanted to cross a river to see God’s promised place and is turned down.

Think of Paul; one time he’s in a jail cell with Silas and God gets him out that night.  Another time he’s in jail and he is kept there two years.

There is no pattern that we earthlings can count on other than the important fact that God is calling the shots.  He will do what is ultimately best for His people.  We must see that Big Picture or our trust in Him may change in the midst of our circumstances.  He is in charge no matter what happens.

“Lord, You know best.  Forgive me for letting my circumstances influence my trust level in You.  You have always been loving and just.  You know what I need and what I don’t need.  Manage my life.  I give you full charge.  I love You, Father.”

God will get it right.  Play along with Him.

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It’s still your fault

“Because of you the Lord became angry with me (Moses) also and said, ‘You shall not enter it, either.’” Deuteronomy 1:37.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading: Deuteronomy 1-2, and Mark 12.

I have looked at several commentaries and I can’t spin it the way they do.

They (the commentary writers) claim that Moses was talking about the consequences of disobedience.  Respectfully, it doesn’t read that way to me.

This sounds, to me, as if Moses has chosen to still blame the Israelites for his not being able to enter the Promised Land.

No question that the Israelites WERE a big problem and often so.  Moses was told to do something, get water from a rock, and because of his anger with the Israelites went about doing God’s will in an ungodly way.

God told Moses after it happened that his behavior would cost him.  I have read nowhere that Moses repented and nowhere that he tried to bargain with God.

Moses had bargained with God before.  At one point, God wanted to destroy the Israelites but Moses pleaded with Him not to and God changed course.

This verse tells me that Moses was still carrying a grudge against the people he was leading.  God couldn’t have liked that.

I must be on the God-side of situations.  I must do what He wants me to do in them.  If I am being Godly and things go badly, I must assume that His Will is in it.  This may not be easy.

Likewise, if I am being ungodly, I must know that there will be consequences.  Moses’ consequence was severe by our thinking but we have no certainty as to what happens after death.

We also know from the New Testament that Moses was on a high mountain with Elijah when the transfiguration took place.  He was surely in the Promised Land then!

“Lord, I must do Your Will in every situation.  Forgive me for making my choices apart from You.  Help me to move on from things in the past that are troubling.  I want to be up-to-date with You.  Guide me, O thou great Jehovah.”

We must take ownership of our OWN sinfulness.

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Moses lost his cool and paid the price

“He and Aaron gathered the assembly together in front of the rock and Moses said to them, ‘Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?’  Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff.  Water gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank.” Numbers 20:10-11.

“But the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, ‘Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me as holy in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this community into the land I give them.’”  Numbers 20:12.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Numbers 19-20, Psalm 28, and Mark 5.

God told Moses to do something.  Moses did it but with an outspoken disrespectful attitude.

The job of Moses was to transfer God’s commands to the Israelites.  Moses was not to be deciding if God’s commands were a good idea or not.  In today’s case, Moses was not happy to strike a rock and give the whining Israelites the water they needed and he let it be known.

I find it interesting that God includes such a story.  Moses was a hero.  One of the all-time greats.  BUT he is just like us.  He makes mistakes.  He behaves regrettably.  Inclusion of this story gives hope for all of us.  We will never be perfect.  We must not let go of our connection to God.  He loves sinful us.

“Lord, You are an all-inclusive God.  You took sinners, like us, and loved us enough to take care of our sin problem.  You unburdened us of our sins and gave us new life.  Thank You, Father.  I love You, Lord.”

If you’ve ever lost your cool, you have something in common with Moses.

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“as you asked.”

“’In accordance with your great love, forgive the sin of these people, just as you have pardoned them from the time they left Egypt until now.’  The Lord replied, ‘I have forgiven them, as you asked.’” Numbers 14:19-20.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Numbers 14-16, and Mark 3.

Simply remarkable.

God is prepared to destroy the rebellious Israelites but Moses asked that He not do that.  Incredibly, God does just what Moses asked.

All sin is ultimately against God.  He can choose to forgive or not to forgive.

Note in the verses that follow today’s verse, God also states that the Israelites over twenty will not be entering the Promised Land.  Their sins were forgiven but their future was itemized by the way they had behaved.

When Jesus died, and came back from the dead, He took our sins past/present/future away forever and gave us new life.  We have no burdens from sin unless we choose to carry those burdens.

The beauty, to me, of today’s Scripture was God saying, “I have forgiven them, AS YOU ASKED.”

God hears us.  God responds to us.  “If we abide in Him, and His Words abide in us, we will ask what we desire, and it shall be done for us.”  God is ready to help us BUT we must be abiders in Him to get what we desire.  Moses was an abider.  He got what he asked.

“Lord, thank You for Your Word.  Thank You for the example in today’s Word that You listen to those who love You and give them what they desire.  Fill me with You.  Take me over.  I love You.  I belong to You.”

Abiders get what they desire.

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We are small!

“We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.”  Numbers 13:33.

Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading: Numbers 12-13, Psalm 90, and Mark 2.

Those folks were scary big!

How do we see things?  Through our eyes or God’s eyes?

Those who scouted the “Promised Land,” came back with conflicting reports.  Most of them saw the largeness of the inhabitants.  Caleb didn’t even mention the size of the inhabitants.

Was Caleb aware of the size of the inhabitants?  No doubt he was.  However, he was sure that the Israelites could move in and take over.

Where did Caleb’s confidence come from?  I think it came from his paying attention to what God had told the Israelites.  The land was going to be theirs’.  Caleb had seen enough of God in action to believe that if God said it then it would happen.

How do we see the enemy?  Do we trust our government to protect us from them?

How do we see the difficulties in our lives?  Do we feel like “grasshoppers” facing them?

God is a great God.  He is not overwhelmed by any enemy whether long range or immediate.  Our trust must be in Him for any security we experience.  He knows what is best for us.  He cares for His own.

“Lord, we indeed are grasshoppers.  We are small but we are connected to large You.  We must face our problems through Your Eyes.  You are in charge.  Help me to navigate through today rightly representing You each step of the way.  I love You, Lord.”

Believers are small.  Their God is big.

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Aaron uses the “Adam excuse”

“He (Moses) said to Aaron, ‘What did these people do to you, that you led them into such great sin?’  ‘Do not be angry, my lord,’ Aaron answered. ‘You know how prone these people are to evil.’”  Exodus 32:21-22.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Exodus 30-32, and Acts 8.

“I would have never done that if they (someone else) hadn’t made me do it.”  Pitiful excuse.

Aaron is left in charge.  He knows where his brother had gone and he knows what Moses is doing.

The length of time away is an issue but Aaron completely caves in to permitting the Israelites to do something wrong.

Adam yielded to Eve’s request.  When confronted, he blamed the woman.  Where was his ownership?  Same with Aaron.  If he had at least said that he was opposed to what they wanted to do it would be one thing but Aaron facilitated what went on!  It was his idea to make the golden calf.

How Aaron survived after Moses returned is a mystery to me.

I must take ownership of the things I do that are sin.  The essence of sin happens when I reject God in my life.  I cannot blame others when I sin, nor can you.

A life filled with the Holy Spirit has the tools to resist sin.  That we so often give in to it does not open the door to blaming others instead it opens the door to examining our relationship with God.

“Lord, forgive me for blaming others for my sins.  I am the guilty one.  I want my life to be clean in Your omnipresent sight.  Prick my conscience where I need to get things cleaned.  I love You, Lord.”

Are we blaming others for our sinfulness?

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