The Berean Expositor
Volume 41 - Page 195 of 246
Index | Zoom
and only reviews the past, in order to prepare the children of Israel for the tests of faith
and endurance that now awaited them.
"The LORD our God spake unto us in Horeb, saying `Ye have dwelt long enough in
this mount'." (Deut. 1: 6).
This command came on the twentieth day of the second month of the second year after
Israel's exodus from Egypt, as Numb. 10: 11 records and with standards held aloft and
with the camp in marching order, the move was made that might have ended in a speedy
entry into the land of promise. Weakness, failure, rebellion, murmuring however are
soon revealed to their undoing. These signs of weakness are as follows:
(1) Moses.
"I am not able to bear you alone" (Deut. 1: 9).
(2) Israel.
"Ye came near unto me, every one of you, and said `We will send men
before us'." (Deut. 1: 22).
(3) Israel.
"Ye murmured in your tents."
"Ye did not believe the Lord your God" (Deut. 1: 27, 32).
(4) Moses.
"Thou shalt no go in thither" (Deut. 1: 37).
(5) Israel.
"Went presumptuously up into the hill" (Deut. 1: 43).
It will be seen that there is a blend of human frailty and human perversity in this
record. Moses refers to his own inability to cope with the duties that belonged to his
office, and this must be read together with the record given in Exod. 18:  There we
discover that it was at the suggestion of Jethro, Moses' father-in-law, that arrangements
were made to spread some of the ardous work of administration.
"And when Moses' father in law saw all that he did to the people, he said, . . . . . Thou
wilt surely wear away" (Exod. 18: 14-18).
Whether the advice of Jethro was prompted by Divine or worldly wisdom we cannot
tell; the main fact stands out clearly, that, strong and wise and endowed as Moses must
have been, he was after all human and consequently frail. Moses moreover represented
"the law" and not till Moses was dead could Joshua, the type of Christ, rise up and go
over Jordan. Great and glorious as was Moses, type and foreshadowing as he was of the
Prophet that should be raised up "like unto" himself, the fact that he places this
acknowledgment "I am not able to bear you myself alone" and records that he spoke
these words "at that time" is suggestive.
The sending of the spies, and the murmuring of the people were symptoms of a deadly
unbelief which brought about their fall:
"Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing
from the living God . . . . . Let us therefore fear, lest a promise being left us of entering
into His rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the gospel
preached, as well as unto them, but the word preached did not profit them, not being
mixed with faith in them that heard it" (Heb. 3: 12; 4: 1, 2).
The R.V. reads in verse 2 "because they were not united by faith with them that
heard". "Them that heard" the word and believed, were men like Caleb and Joshua, those
who sided with the ten spies and their evil report were those who were not united by faith