A0399_We Are Well Able
Date: 7th September 2008 (Sunday AM) Ref: A0399
Place: Kambah P.S.
Title: We Are Well Able
Text: & Numbers 13:21-33
Illust: Flying to Melbourne flew south over Tuggeranong, thousands of homes, looking down thinking there is a lot of people down there surely God is working in the lives of some. God’s heart & desire is that they would be saved. No shortage of people. How can we have impact? – An election coming up, we live in a nation & a city that is increasingly anti-God in its philosophy & laws, sliding into unrighteousness. What can we do, what will it take to reverse this, to see righteousness in our society, schools, politicians laws. – People saved, living not for themselves but for God & His commandments. – Seems like an impossible task, like trying to hold back the tide. – But the Word of God makes it clear this is our task & indeed we are well able to perform it.
I. An Honest Appraisal
A. Diligent Spies
i. It is important that we understand that these men had travelled from the South to the North of the land, 40 days behind enemy lines. In constant danger, they had taken note of the landscape, the people groups, the fortifications & the agriculture of the land
Did what they were tasked to do:
Numbers 13:18-19 18 and see what the land is like: whether the people who dwell in it are strong or weak, few or many; 19 whether the land they dwell in is good or bad; whether the cities they inhabit are like camps or strongholds; (NKJV)
ii. This was a comprehensive spying mission and they come back & in our text answer all the questions they were asked.
iii. Another thing to note is that they gave an accurate report. There is no record that Moses, Caleb & Joshua or anyone for that matter ever questioned the accuracy of the report. The cities were fortified, the descendants of Anak were giants. Moses even said so, some 40 years later
Deuteronomy 9:2 a people great and tall, the descendants of the Anakim, whom you know, and of whom you heard it said, ‘Who can stand before the descendants of Anak?’ (NKJV)
B. Be Realistic
Both optimists and pessimists contribute to our society. The optimist invents the airplane and the pessimist the parachute. ~Gil Stern
i. The optimist always positive about any situation. – Not real. ~ We need to deal with the reality of the situation we are in. You have to be real.
ii. Look around at the world, our society, our city. Principle motive; ‘WIIFM’. Pursuing comfort, materialism, being ‘happy’. No right or wrong. No absolutes. Easily offended, barraged by a biased anti-God, anti righteousness, socialist media
iii. People by & large not interested in God, apathetic, unbelieving, patronising. Hard to get people saved, harder to get them to commit, in a generation not known for committing to anything.
II. The Sin
i. In our text the spies were realistic it was a factual report they brought back. The problem is that God had told them that He was giving that land to them, He had told them to go in, enter & conquer. It was His promise & Num 13:1-2
Exodus 3:8 So I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and large land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Amorites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites. (NKJV)
ii. God already knew who lived in the land, the giants, the walls – But He is promising to give it to the children of Israel / Abraham. ~ “They lacked faith”, you might say, but this was not simply a lack of faith, these are people who had seen the 10 plagues, walked between the walls of water across the Red Sea, stood at the base of the Mt of God & seen His power, eaten the manna, drunk the water from the rock. – They are saying ‘we don’t trust you God.’ – Rebellion ~ & Num 14:4
iii. Fear, is sin, because you are saying I don’t trust you God, despite all you have done for me in the past, I am not going to trust you with the future & so I am going to rebel & not do what you want me to do. – This was the problem with the poisonous words of the 10 spies
i. We need to be aware of this, need to understand how easily we can fall into the same mind set. – God has made it clear what He wants us to do. He has told us
Mark 16:15 And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. (NKJV)
Matthew 5:14, 16 14 “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. … 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. (NKJV)
ii. We are to be a light to this world that is in darkness & we are to preach the Gospel, we are to proclaim the Good News of salvation from the eternal penalty of sin to our friends, work colleagues, family members, people we meet in this city, this nation and into all the world.
iii. This means that “You must understand God that these people are hard, they have high walls of scepticism, hurt, & distractions around them. They are selfish with gigantic pride & arrogance. – We are irritants to them” – Doesn’t cut it with God. – He’s heard it all before. ~ Not just a realistic appraisal, it is unbelief, distrust of His word & a cover for rebellion. Not wanting to do what God has told you to do.
III. The Call
A. Joshua & Caleb
i. Joshua & Caleb had a different spirit. They saw the same things, the walls / giants etc but they didn’t lose sight of their God, they remembered the drowning Egyptian army, the hailstones, Passover night & understood that they were well able to overcome. & vs.30
ii. & Num 14:7-9 – Knew that God was far bigger than any giant & able to overcome any wall, as Joshua & Caleb would see spectacularly demonstrated some 40 years later. – God chooses in the 1st city to be conquered to show that He can flatten any wall.
iii. The Word of God is the record of God intervening in difficult & even impossible situations to bring victory to those who put their trust in Him, regardless of the strength or power of the opposition.
B. We are well able
i. This is why we have no excuse, we have the stories of the Egyptians, Jericho, Gideon Goliath, Assyrians camped around Jerusalem, Jairus daughter & a host of other examples.
Need to take your eyes off the obstacles & fix them firmly on God, on His power & ability to overcome any & all opposition.
The hardest heart, the most rabid opposition, the apathy of many Australians. –God is able to change to transform.
ii. We are well able to overcome , not because we are anything special, but because He has tasked us to go up. This city, this nation has been given to Jesus, to us if we but ask
Psalm 2:8 Ask of Me, and I will give You The nations for Your inheritance, And the ends of the earth for Your possession. (NKJV)