Rebellion against God has its consequences.
God promised Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Israel) a land flowing with milk and honey. He said He would drive out the inhabitants of the land.
God’s people were in bondage in Egypt. God brought them out. Then the people murmured, complained, and rebelled against God.
Then God spoke to Moses in Exodus 33:1-4. He explained that the consequence of their rebellion was that He, God, would not go up with them. He would send an angel.
“And the Lord said unto Moses, Depart, and go up hence, thou and the people which thou hast brought up out of the land of Egypt, unto the land which I sware unto Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, saying, Unto thy seed will I give it:2 And I will send an angel before thee; and I will drive out the Canaanite, the Amorite, and the Hittite, and the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite:3 Unto a land flowing with milk and honey: for I will not go up in the midst of thee; for thou art a stiffnecked people: lest I consume thee in the way.4 And when the people heard these evil tidings, they mourned: and no man did put on him his ornaments.”
Moses knew that this was unacceptable. He moved the tabernacle outside the camp, went to God, requested God to guide him, reminded God that these were His people, and asked for the presence of God to lead them.
“And Moses said unto the Lord, See, thou sayest unto me, Bring up this people: and thou hast not let me know whom thou wilt send with me. Yet thou hast said, I know thee by name, and thou hast also found grace in my sight.13 Now therefore, I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight, shew me now thy way, that I may know thee, that I may find grace in thy sight: and consider that this nation is thy people.14 And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.15 And he said unto him, If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence.16 For wherein shall it be known here that I and thy people have found grace in thy sight? is it not in that thou goest with us? so shall we be separated, I and thy people, from all the people that are upon the face of the earth.17 And the Lord said unto Moses, I will do this thing also that thou hast spoken: for thou hast found grace in my sight, and I know thee by name.” (Exodus 33:12-17)
Even though the people were rebellious, Moses requested God’s wisdom, grace, and presence. God heard Moses request and granted it.
God does lead the people. The children of Israel continue to rebel. God gives them the Promised Land.
Many lives are lost because of the rebellious nature of Israel.
Rebellion against God has consequences.
Believers also rebel against God. We have the Bible to give us God’s direction. When Jesus ascended to Heaven, He left believers the Holy Spirit of God to comfort and direct us.
What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
God’s presence lives within us. Are we in agreement with or in rebellion to God?
Tom Stearns, WASI Chaplain, 907 715-4001