Now, when the Israelites came close to the Promised Land, The Lord told Moses to send some men to explore the land. This is their account, found in Numbers 13:
We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey! Here is its fruit. But the people who live there are powerful and the cities are fortified and very large. We even saw descendants of Anak there (these are giants). (v. 27-28)
Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we certainly can do it.” (v. 30)
The other men who had gone into the land with Caleb and Joshua said, “The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size.” (v. 32)
All the Israelites grumbled and Numbers 14:10 says that they talked about stoning Caleb and Joshua!
These are the same people to whom God has promised time and time again that He will give them possession of the Promised Land! The same people whom God rescued from the Egyptians by parting the Red Sea so they could walk across on DRY ground! The same people that saw God in the form of a pillar of fire by night and a cloud by day! And this is the same God that performed these miracles again and again right in front of them! And they still did not believe!
God, who is slow to anger and abounding in love (Numbers 14:17), was fed up with these rebellious people! He forgives His people but He declares, “Not one of you will enter the land I swore with uplifted hand to make your home, except Caleb. . . and Joshua. . . As for your children. . . I will bring them in to enjoy the land you have rejected. But your bodies will fall in this desert. Numbers 14:30-33
They were left to wander in the desert for 40 years! How possible it is for us as believers today to wander in a symbolic desert and not live the life God intended for us!
The place he has for us is filled with milk and honey! It is a place of blessing and rest! It is a place where we will bear much fruit! It is not easy to conquer – there are giants living in the land! But, He will fight for us!
The Israelites were unable to enter the Promised Land because of their unbelief! Unbelief is the absence of faith! We must believe God for our Promised Land!
If you are struggling with unbelief – here is some scripture that I hope may help you.
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Hebrews 11:1
I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief. Mark 9:24b
“I have spoken to you of earthy things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things?” John 3:12
But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. James 1:6
Beth Moore says in her book, Believing God, “If you are not presently occupying your promised land, rest assured the devil is.” We must drive out the inhabitants of our rightful place of blessing and rest! Even if they seem like giants!
Little by little I will drive them out before you, until you have increased enough to take possession of the land. Ex. 23:30