I am listening through the bible on an ongoing basis. A few months ago I started in Genesis 1:1 and have been listening and reading along. A few weeks ago I was going through the Book of Joshua when I was convicted by something I encountered. In 5:6-7.
Three thoughts have been on my mind since I read those verses. For 40 years after being freed from Egypt, the descendants of Abraham walked in circles in the desert. They spent 40 years carrying a promise of God in themselves to receive a home land of great abundance. They had even seen and tasted the land. From the Valley of Eshcol ("cluster") the spies cut a great cluster of grapes so heavy that two men had to carry it suspended from a pole between them. Numbers 13:23 They knew God’s promise and even tasted the promise. Yet they did not know the Lord well enough to believe His promise and to claim their home. God’s promise and sample were lost to them.
The second thought is that God took away that promise from that generation. In Numbers 14:26-34 God proclaims His judgment. Because they had 40 days to taste the land promised, he gave them 40 years to wander in the desert. This was enough time for all the adults to die off (except Caleb & Joshua). Our unbelief carries a direct cost.
Lastly, before God could use the children of the unbelieving generation Joshua had to circumcise them. Joshua 5:7 Circumcision was a covenant between the Lord and Israel to be set aside to Him. Their parents had failed to obey this command given to Abraham. Genesis 17
Their failure to believe God and maintain covenant with Him led them into unbelief and broken relationship. This broken relationship cost them their promised home. This cost left them to die off in a desert in unmarked graves. Let us learn from their cost of unbelief & disobedience.
God may have to jump our generation & jump to the next to fulfill His promises; but have no doubt that He will fulfill His promises on the earth. I want to be part of the generation that is ‘set aside’ and obeys.