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Meandering in the Land

Meandering in the Land

Words of Faith 6-17-2020

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2020

Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL

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Numbers 13

    [17] When Moses sent them to explore Canaan, he said, "Go up through the Negev and on into the hill country. [18] See what the land is like and whether the people who live there are strong or weak, few or many. [19] What kind of land do they live in? Is it good or bad? What kind of towns do they live in? Are they unwalled or fortified? [20] How is the soil? Is it fertile or poor? Are there trees on it or not? Do your best to bring back some of the fruit of the land." (It was the season for the first ripe grapes.)

    [21] So they went up and explored the land from the Desert of Zin as far as Rehob, toward Lebo Hamath. [22] They went up through the Negev and came to Hebron, where Ahiman, Sheshai and Talmai, the descendants of Anak, lived. (Hebron had been built seven years before Zoan in Egypt.) [23] When they reached the Valley of Eshcol, they cut off a branch bearing a single cluster of grapes. Two of them carried it on a pole between them, along with some pomegranates and figs. [24] That place was called the Valley of Eshcol because of the cluster of grapes the Israelites cut off there. [25] At the end of forty days they returned from exploring the land.


        This was a very interesting trip.  It was actually the command of the Lord that 12 spies should take a look around in the land of Canaan (13:1-3).  The Hebrew word means to “meander about” for the cause of trade or reconnoitering. 

        In military terms, they were to gather preliminary information about the land and potential enemies.  What is the terrain like?  What are their fortifications?  But also, what is the land like?  Will it be fertile and productive? 

        But why?

        We are not told the purpose of this meandering.  It appears to have been something of a test.  The Lord could have easily reported to Moses the conditions in Canaan.  The enemy's size and strength were irrelevant because any invasion would involve the Lord fighting the battle. 

        Apparently, the Lord wanted Israel to understand both the blessings and the difficulties that were ahead.  The Lord would fight the battle, but they needed to know what that battle was about.  Surely the Lord knew that the Israelites were not up to the task.  Their faith was not yet strong enough to trust the Lord with this battle.  Despite all the victories and provision that the Lord had won, there were many more years in the wilderness ahead.

        Does the Lord call us to reconnoiter the terrain and the blessing that is ahead?  If He does, it is not so that we can strategize. It is so that we can know just how strong and powerful the Lord is!  It is always a test of our faith when we see both the wonder of His blessing and strength of the Lord’s enemies.  The Lord is able to deliver wondrous blessing.  He is also able to overcome the greatest obstacle.  No adversary is equal to our Lord.

         Have you been struggling with the way things look in the future?  Does the blessing of God seem out of reach?  Do the obstacles seem too great?  The Lord is able to deliver His promises to you.  The Lord can overcome any obstacle.  The Lord can defeat any enemy.  He is the Lord.


         Father, teach me simple trust in You.  Reveal to me what You need me to know about the road that is ahead.  Give me faith to trust You for the blessings that You have planned and for the victories that are needed to get there.  In Jesus’ name. Amen.


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© Jeffrey D. Hoy 2004, 2020

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy - Faith Fellowship Church (EFCA)       

2820 Business Center Blvd.

Melbourne, Florida 32940 (321)-259-7200

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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2010 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.