While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
Have you ever done something in anger you later regretted? When my son was wrestling with drug addiction, I said some harsh things in reaction to his choices. My anger only discouraged him more. But eventually he encountered believers who spoke life and hope to him, and in time he was set free.
Even someone as exemplary in faith as Moses did something he later regretted. When the people of Israel were in the desert and water was scarce, they complained bitterly. So God gave Moses and Aaron specific instructions: “Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water” (Numbers 20:8). But Moses reacted in anger, giving himself and Aaron credit for the miracle instead of God: “Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?” (v. 10). Then he disobeyed God directly and “raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff” (v. 11).
Even though water flowed, there were tragic consequences. Neither Moses nor Aaron was allowed to enter the land God promised His people. But He was still merciful, allowing Moses to see it from afar (27:12–13).
As with Moses, God still mercifully meets us in the desert of our disobedience to Him. Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, He kindly offers us forgiveness and hope. No matter where we’ve been or what we’ve done, if we turn to Him, He’ll lead us into life.
What undeserved kindnesses has God shown you? How can you share His kindness with someone today?
Thank You, loving Father, that despite difficult consequences, You give me eternal hope.
Numbers 20 begins with the death of Moses’ sister Miriam (v. 1) and ends with the death of his brother Aaron (vv. 28–29). In the intervening verses, the people lament their lack of water—again. Forty years earlier, the people had been poised to enter the land God promised to them. Their refusal to trust God then caused Him to declare that every adult aged “twenty years old or more” (14:29), except for Caleb and Joshua (v. 30), would die in the wilderness. Moses and Aaron were prohibited from entering the land because of their sin at Kadesh-Meribah (20:12-13; Deuteronomy 34:1–4).