Friday, September 20, 2013

Deuteronomy Ch. 1-3 Lesson 2 September 12

In our hurry, hurry, fast food, drive thru banking world, God timetable is not like ours.  When God told Abram in Genesis 12 that He would make from him a great nation, I am sure Abram did not expect to wait until he was 100 years old to have a son. Like us, Sarah thought she could help God out.
·        How many of you have tried to help God fix something: your husband, your children, the next door neighbors?
·        How many churches start a new ministry and then ask God to bless it?

Last year when I was told we must have 60 registrations by May to maintain our class. Immediately, I sought different ways to build our class. At the TD conference I took note of the
·        Agape Ministry for individuals with special needs
·        Ethnos for a foreign language class
·        Engaging God’s Word new book from CBS available to small groups
·        My pastor even offered us our building to have our Bible Study

My Regional Director, Clokie reminded me that it was not up to me to drum up business. It was up to God.  I made an appeal to you ladies and we surpassed our goal. God was not surprised. After all it is His CBS.

 Depending on your resource; it took 500-700 years for God’s covenant with Abraham’s offspring to be fulfilled. But God had been working His plan in His timing. Now many generations after the death of the Patriarchs, innumerable descendants are finally going to see the fulfillment of that promise.

We need to remember God’s faithfulness to ISRAEL so we can trust God and triumph over our problems.

·        Faithlessness at Kadesh-barnea (1:1-46)
·        Discipline in the desert (2:1-15)
·        Conquest of East Jordan (2:16-3:29)

Faithlessness at Kadesh-barnea (1:1-46)
Totaling the days spent along the way Larry Tate author of The Journey estimated a total of 49 days to reach Mt. Sinai from Egypt. You know me I went back and researched every place they stopped. In fact, God had them circle back and wait for Pharaoh to trap them at the Red Sea. Why? For a supernatural event so amazing the no one could take the credit but God.
49 days did not seem that long to reach Horeb. Knowing this make is easier for me to understand the sense of abandonment the people felt when Moses stayed on the mountain for 40 days.
The Israelites stayed at Sinai for almost a year. The LORD was teaching them total dependence on Him. God supplied food and water for over 2 million people and their animals. The people seemed settled and quite content to stay at Sinai.  During this time the Tabernacle was constructed and the priests and Levites were sanctified for the LORD’s service. However the LORD God told them to it was time to move. 

From the book Numbers 10:11 In the second year, in the second month, on the twentieth day of the month, the cloud lifted from over the tabernacle of the testimony, 12 and the people of Israel set out by stages from the wilderness of Sinai.

  Numbers 11 tells us an incident we need to remember. This might be a good story for our children. Three days, ladies, three days into the journey and the people were complaining about their hardship. God sent fire down on the camp and burned the outskirts of the camp. Moses prayed to God and he relented. The place is called
Tab e rah. Now don’t you think they would be careful about complaining.
Nevertheless the rabble among them, non-Jewish who followed from Egypt, began to cry and wail for meat to eat. They wanted to run back to Egypt.
Moses had had it with these people and complained to the LORD, “Did I birth all these people, must I carry them as infants by myself. Kill me now! Paraphrase by Ann.  
This is when Jethro advised Moses  to appoint tribal leaders to settle small matters.
The Lord is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion. Numbers 14:18  A wind drove quail in from the sea for them to eat.
From reading Deuteronomy, it appear that most of the messages delivered by Moses were “east of Jordan” in the upper land of Moab, overlooking the city of palm trees. Now they could at last see Jericho, the first city conquered beyond the Jordan River.

Moses states in Deuteronomy 1:2 It is eleven days' journey from Horeb by the way of Mount Seir to Kadesh-barnea. Imagine if the Israelites had been obedient they could have been at the entrance to the Promised Land, a land flowing with milk and honey.  12 times this promise mentioned in OT.
·        The first problem was sending the twelve spies. Deuteronomy leads us to believe they brought the idea to Moses. Did they not trust God?
·         Could we not just listen to the LORD God Jehovah? Ladies what do we do in our churches when we want to change something in the church form a committee?
·        Deuteronomy 1:28 Ten spies reported back “The people are greater and taller than we. The cities are great and fortified up to heaven. And besides, we have seen the sons of the Anakim there.”’  Giants
v.31( Remember) how the Lord your God carried you, as a man carries his son, all the way that you went until you came to this place.’
·        After a severe tongue lashing v. 41 says “We have sinned we will now go up and fight.” But they went up heedlessly to the ridge of the hill country; neither the ark of the covenant of the LORD nor Moses left the camp. The Amorites who had lived in the hills “chased them down like a swarm of bees.”
Learn from Israel mistakes; trust God and triumph over our problems.
Discipline in the desert (2:1-15)
Thomas a Kampis “Instant obedience is the only kind of obedience there is; delayed obedience is disobedience. Whoever strives to withdraw from obedience, withdraws from Grace”
(Num 14:33-34 NIV) Your children will be shepherds here for forty years, suffering for your unfaithfulness, until the last of your bodies lies in the desert. For forty years--one year for each of the forty days you explored the land-you will suffer for your sins and know what it is like to have me against you.
The number 40 holds particular significance in the Bible and refers to a precise number, not just a long period of time. There are many instances of 40, whether days, months, or years is ALWAYS a period of testing, trial, probation, or chastisement (but not judgment) and ends with a period of restoration, revival or renewal.
Have you ever “wandered through the desert” for a long period of time while trying to figure out whether to obey God and do His will. Delayed obedience is not obedience. It is disobedience.
Whether it is pulling oneself out of the bed on Sunday morning, or following God’s prompting to move us out of our comfort zone. Selfishly we want to stay where we are, comfortable, safe. But being in God’s will is the only safe place to be, under the shadow of His wings. Putting off obedience means missing a blessing God had planned for us.
 Dr. B.J. Miller once said, "It is a great deal easier to do that which God gives us to do, no matter how hard it is, than to face the responsibilities of not doing it." Just ask Jonah.

Trust God to when he gives us a task to do.
On Day Four of our study questions in Chapter 2 we breezed through 38 years in the desert. However it is important to take note: God gave his care and provision to those he has promised to protect; descendents of LOT and ESAU.
God ordered Moses to “cut through the land belonging to your relatives, the People of Esau who settled in Seir. Don’t try and start a fight. I’ve already given all the hill country of Seir to Esau—he owns it all. Pay them up front for any food or water you get from them.” The Message   “Then the Lord warned us, ‘Don’t attack the Moabites or the Ammonites, for I will not give you any of their land; I have given it to the descendants of Lot.’ TLB

Conquest of East Jordan-Deuteronomy 2:24-Ch.3
The same offer of peace given to their relatives was given to Sihon the Amorite King.
 Let us pass; we will go only by the road; we will pay food and water. Only let us pass through on foot,
Deuteronomy 2:30 But the king would not let Israel pass by, for the Lord God hardened his spirit and made his heart obstinate, that he might give him into your hand. They began to take possession and occupy his the land.’
Remember how God hardened the heart of Pharaoh in Egypt. Exodus 14:1-4 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Tell the people of Israel to turn back and encamp …. facing by the sea. And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and he will pursue them, and I will get glory over Pharaoh and all his host, and the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord.”
The Lord God also gave into their hands Og, the king of Bashan, and all his people, they took sixty cities, the whole region.
3:21-22 And I commanded Joshua at that time, ‘Your eyes have seen all that the Lord your God has done to these two kings. So will the Lord do to all the kingdoms into which you are crossing. 22 You shall not fear them, for it is the Lord your God who fights for you.’
Why the history lesson? Because history is such a great teacher. Essentially, Moses says, Learn from your successes and your failures—and from those who went before you.
It doesn’t take my grandson Brayden long to figure out the strategy of a board game. He watches me and observes my actions as we play. It takes him the longest time to decide what tiles to put on the board. Why is he so good at Rummy-O while I have been playing it for years? He learns from my successes and failures.
The Past is behind us, learn from it.
            The Future is what is ahead, prepare for it.
            The Present is now, live it wisely and to the Glory of God.

Learn from the past; trust God to fight for us.
While we don’t have to fight the Anikim and Amorites, we do have a spiritual battle everyday “against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.”
The Word of God is your anchor in this troublesome and self-seeking society. The Word of God is your refuge of safety and permanence. The Word of God lives, abides, and endures forever.
Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. Mark 13:31
Psalm 44:1-2 says, “We have heard it with our ears, O God; our ancestors have told us what You did in their days, in days long ago. With Your hand You drove out the nations and planted our ancestors; You crushed the peoples and made our ancestors flourish.”