A new start. It might be at the beginning of a new year or simply the day after your birthday. It might be a new job or a new school. It might be the result of a decision that you made at camp, at church, or simply on a walk with a friend. Or it might be a deep conviction that God has placed in your heart and mind that will alter your behavior or change your perspective from that time forward.
The Israelites were getting ready for a new start as they anticipated crossing the Jordan River. The years of wandering in the wilderness would only be a memory. The daily manna would no longer be needed. They were headed to the land where the enemy would be defeated and the land would belong to them. Each tribe would have its own territory and the land would be “flowing with milk and honey”.
Some things would remain the same. That is always true with a new start, isn’t it? What they needed to realize was that the temptation to look at the size of the enemy and depend on their own strength would still be very real. The possibility of forgetting what God had done for them when he rescued them from the bondage of Egypt and provided for them throughout the years in spite of their rebellion and independent spirit was still there. And most serious of all, was the concern that they would turn to the gods of other nations or make for themselves (or of themselves) gods that would turn their allegiance away from the one true God – Jehovah.
God was giving them a wonderful opportunity to have a new start. If only they would remember to acknowledge the God who loved them so deeply, they could move forward with His blessing and begin to realize that what God had promised was now theirs to claim.
As I study this book I realize the impact the lack of faith of one generation has on the next. Interesting that most of the spies had the same reactions that the elders had. Thank God for 2 faithful men, not afraid to stand in the truth.
Thanks Marilyn, I’m loving the study.
I was pondering your mention of the beginning of a new year. The Jewish calendar started a new year at sundown on September 28. It is year 5772.
It always feels like a new year to me about this time with the change in seasons. The Gregorian calendar, also known as the Western calendar, or Christian calendar, is the internationally accepted civil calendar. It was introduced by Pope Gregory XIII, after whom the calendar was named, by a decree signed on 1582.