March 8

Numbers 14:18-19 18'The LORD is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation.' 19In 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 was ready to exterminate these whining people when Moses interceded for them. Because God knows the future, I think He was not as desirous to destroy them as much as He was to bring out the heart of intercession in Moses. Moses interceded with God according to the character of God that had been revealed to him. He's saying, "Wait a minute. You told me You were abounding in love and forgiveness. You are just, but then there is that wonderful side of You that is so great in love. Exercise that love now, and forgive these people."

When we plead with God according to His wonderful attributes, we are standing on a sure footing. We can make a case that is legitimate. The people would be punished, but at the same time, God would exercise His great love. God answered Moses' prayer because He was pleading according to the attributes of God. That is how we should pray too.

Do you know God is abounding in love? You can count on that. Just as He forgave them all the way from Egypt to the entrance of the Promised Land (a picture of our journey from the world to heaven), so will He forgive you when you look to His wonderful attributes. He forgives us not because of what we do but because of what Jesus as done for us. Yet there is a warning here. We may not arrive at all because of our insistence on sin. That sin will affect generations that follow. Learn from these rebels who are so like us, and cast yourself upon the LORD.

Meditation: How can I follow Moses' example of intercession?