March 10

Numbers 14:44-45 44Nevertheless, in their presumption they went up toward the high hill country, though neither Moses nor the ark of the Lord's covenant moved from the camp. 45Then the Amalekites and Canaanites who lived in that hill country came down and attacked them and beat them down all the way to Hormah.

The Israelites had come right up to the border of the Promised Land but refused to go in because of fear. When they heard the alternative, they changed their mind. "If it was God's will before, won't God bless us if we do it now?" They wanted to save themselves from the consequences of sin by finally obeying, but it was too late. They had already complained, whined, and refused to obey.

The cloud did not lead them even though they were now willing. They decided to go anyway without Moses and the Ark of the Covenant, without God. They were soundly defeated.

Timing and circumstance affect the will of God. It was God's will for them to enter in when they first heard the report. After their reaction to the report, it was no longer God's will. They had to reap the consequences of their decisions. You can't go back in time and make corrections. You must face the music. If at any time you decide to go back to escape the consequences, God will not be with you. Deal with the consequences of sin asking for God's help. If you are repentant, God will be with you as you face them. Since the Jews had failed to obey, the next best thing was to obey God in the days to come, not go back and try to change things. Obey instantly when the first instruction comes. It is a tough lesson with heavy penalties. Learn to obey the first time. Realize that God's instructions are the best route for you.

Prayer: Lord, sensitize my heart to realize that your leading is best. Help me to obey your voice and not to give in to fear.