Like the Israelites, Christians must live by faith as we follow Christ through a spiritual wilderness. Faith is the vital component carries us through.
We are in various stages of our wilderness journey, not knowing where our journey will take us. The turns give us opportunities to strengthen our faith.
God did not take ancient Israel by a direct route, and our lives likewise may seem to wander. We must trust God in spite of the detours, following His lead.
The spiritual journey of God's people is more difficult than the physical one of the ancient Israelites, requiring as it does more resources to navigate.
Israel's trek was not only a physical journey, but a mental wandering caused by rejecting God's leadership. The potential to sin is a test of resolve.
Not only did Israel cross the Red Sea on the Last Day of Unleavened Bread, but it was also when Jericho's walls fell and when Jesus healed the lame man.
God has allowed carnal nature to remain in His people so He can determine whether they seriously want to defeat the downward pulls of the flesh.
John Ritenbaugh reminds us that if we do not know who we are and where we are going, we are destined to undergo continuous stress. If we yield to God's manipulation of our lives, we will handle stress constructively, developing a relationship with Him, bea. . .
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the analogy or metaphor of wilderness wanderings, focuses on the role of suffering or persecution (pressure) in perfecting the saints. God the Father perfected Jesus Christ (our Elder Brother, High Priest, and Mediator) throu. . .
Ryan McClure, drawing parallels between the Exodus of Israel and our spiritual conversion, points out that God shows transparency of His intentions to test us in order to see what is in our hearts (Deuteronomy 8:1-5). The Lord revealed to Moses His intenti. . .
Ryan McClure, cautioning us to regard neither the trials of ancient Israel nor our present trials as an oddity, reminds us that God uses trials to test and humble us, but He never impedes our ability to move forward toward His goal of creating us as a fami. . .
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the "blessings of the Lord" descriptor in Deuteronomy 16:16, reminds us that though many of us are not well off materially, nor are we counted among the great of the world, we have nevertheless been given a priceles. . .
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting upon the admonition of Christ that we must take the straight gate or the narrow way (symbols of grave difficulty), indicates that our experience in overcoming and developing character will be fraught with difficulties. Neverthel. . .
The spies returned on the 8th of Av, and as the 9th of Av began, the people murmured, beginning a long list of calamities to befall Israel on this date.
With all the military metaphors in the Bible, there can be no doubt that God likens the Christian life to a war against the evils and temptations we face.
Anxious care and foreboding are debilitating and faith-destroying. Meditating on what God has already done strengthens our faith and trust in God.
John Ritenbaugh, cuing in on the recipients of I Peter 2:9 and focusing on the concept of identity (physical or spiritual), claims that with a sense of identity, the study of biblical history and prophecy is effervescent, sparkling, and scintillating. Jose. . .
John Ritenbaugh, focusing on Hebrews 4:1-2 (describing the utter failure and demise of the ancient Israelites, who did not regard God's commandments as a delight), continues elaborating on the qualities (holiness and goodness) necessary for attaining the p. . .
Jesus explains that the truth is the only thing that will set us free. A major player in our lives or spiritual journey is the truth and how we use it.
Kim Myers, tracing ancient Israel's abject bondage to the Egyptians and their subsequent redemption and journey to their great gift (that is, the Promised Land), draws a parallel to the Israel of God. We have been in bondage to sin, enslaved to alcoholism,. . .
God knows the end from the beginning, but He does not give us all the details at once, except as they are necessary for us for His purpose to be worked out.
One aspect of sovereignty that causes some confusion is predestination. God's sovereignty does not remove a person's free moral agency — we must still choose.
God never says the Christian life would be easy or that life would always be fair. Difficulties and tests are given to test our hearts and promote humility.
John Ritenbaugh asserts that the difference between a pilgrim and a wanderer is that the pilgrim knows his destination. God wants our pilgrimage to be a direct route with very few excursions or side-trips to the world. The book of Numbers- a record of God'. . .
Richard Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the life of Ryan Leif, an athlete who had all the advantages, suggested that his stupidity ended up mitigating his advantages and achievements. As he started his rookie year, he fumbled and made many errors, destroying his. . .
The Bible abounds in metaphors of warfare, indicating that the Christian's walk will be characterized by stress, sacrifice, and deprivation in building faith.
Unless we acknowledge God's sovereign authority in our lives, following through with the things we learn from scripture, we, like atheists, will not see God.
Ted Bowling, reminding us that we are to personally count for ourselves the 50 days to Pentecost, cautions that we need to be thinking continually of the lessons these days teach us about our spiritual journey, culminating in the permanent installation of . . .
As God found it necessary to test our forbears, He allows us to go through grueling experiences (trials, tests, and temptations) for maximum growth.
God forced Israel either to trust Him completely for deliverance or to return to their slavery. One of the greatest miracles in history has a lesson for us.
John Ritenbaugh, reiterating that the times we are about to go through will be unparalleled history, suggests that we need to keep our vision before us. We have the obligation to be loyal to Jesus Christ. We cannot, as our forebears did on the Sinai, harde. . .
John Ritenbaugh contends that those who believe in the "once saved always saved" doctrine foolishly fail to see that God has a more extensive and creative plan for mankind than merely saving them. One can fail to bring forth fruits of repentance . . .
John Ritenbaugh contends that history is not confined to the past. We are actively participating in it just as surely as the prominent figures of the Bible. As citizens of Jerusalem above, we need to have our minds singly focused on the heavenly homeland w. . .
Deuteronomy, which is to be reviewed every seven years, provides us with vision and instruction for living in our spiritual Promised Land.
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