Grasshoppers and Giants


The feeling of being overwhelmed is directly related to our illusion of control and the idea that our success comes entirely from our own strength.  Caleb recognized the power and miracles of God as signs that God would give them the victory in the future.  That’s faith!

1 The Lord said to Moses, 2 “Send some men to explore the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the Israelites. From each ancestral tribe send one of its leaders.”

3 So at the Lord’s command Moses sent them out from the Desert of Paran. All of them were leaders of the Israelites.

18 “See what the land is like and whether the people who live there are strong or weak, few or many. 19 What kind of land do they live in? Is it good or bad? What kind of towns do they live in? Are they unwalled or fortified? 20 How is the soil? Is it fertile or poor? Are there trees in it or not? Do your best to bring back some of the fruit of the land.” (It was the season for the first ripe grapes.)

25 At the end of forty days they returned from exploring the land.

27 They gave Moses this account: “We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey! Here is its fruit. 28 But the people who live there are powerful, and the cities are fortified and very large. We even saw descendants of Anak there. 29 The Amalekites live in the Negev; the Hittites, Jebusites and Amorites live in the hill country; and the Canaanites live near the sea and along the Jordan.”

30 Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.”

31 But the men who had gone up with him said, “We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are.” 32 And they spread among the Israelites a bad report about the land they had explored. They said, “The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size. 33 We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.”
Numbers 13:1-3, 18-20, 25, 27-33

God sent a group of leaders from Israel to go and explore the land of Canaan, which was the promised land God would give to Israel.  These twelve men, who included Joshua and Caleb, were there for forty days.  When they returned with their report and some sample fruit from the land, their fear seemed to push out faith.

They affirmed that the land flowed with milk and honey, yet the people, they reported, were huge – some even descendent from the ‘giants’ (Nephilim).  The cities were large and fortified, they told Moses.  In other words, this is too much for us to handle.

Have you ever noticed that the feeling of being overwhelmed is directly related to our illusion of control and the idea that our success comes entirely from our own strength? 

When we come up against a storm or a mountain or a giant, our fear demonstrates confidence in self and not faith in God.

Caleb was the exception.  Caleb was ready to go and take possession of the land.  “We can certainly do it,” he told Moses.  What was different about Caleb?  Caleb recognized the power and miracles of God as signs that God would be able to give them the victory in the futureThat’s faith.  The rest were gripped with fear because they made themselves grasshoppers in the sight of these giants.

How do you see yourself?  Are you a grasshopper or a giant-slayer?

The key is to recognize that when God has given you a promise, he will be faithful to complete and fulfill his promise in you and through you.  That should give us confidence to go forward in his strength.

Amen.

Marc Kinna

 

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