And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. Exodus 16:2.
Many look back to the Israelites, and marvel at their unbelief and murmuring, feeling that they themselves would not have been so ungrateful; but when their faith is tested, even by little trials, they manifest no more faith or patience than did ancient Israel..
God had promised to be their God, to take them to Himself as a people, and to lead them to a large and good land; but they were ready to faint at every obstacle encountered in the way to that land…. They forgot their bitter service in Egypt. They forgot the goodness and power of God displayed in their behalf in their deliverance from bondage. They forgot how their children had been spared when the destroying angel slew all the first-born of Egypt. They forgot the grand exhibition of divine power at the Red Sea. They forgot that while they had crossed safely in the path that had been opened for them, the armies of their enemies, attempting to follow them, had been overwhelmed by the waters of the sea. They saw and felt only their present inconveniences and trials; and instead of saying, “God has done great things for us; whereas we were slaves, He is making of us a great nation,” they talked of the hardness of the way, and wondered when their weary pilgrimage would end.
The history of the wilderness life of Israel was chronicled for the benefit of the Israel of God to the close of time. The record of God’s dealing with the wanderers of the desert in all their marchings to and fro, in their exposure to hunger, thirst, and weariness, and in the striking manifestations of His power for their relief, is fraught with warning and instruction for His people in all ages. The varied experience of the Hebrews was a school of preparation for their promised home in Canaan. God would have His people in these days review with a humble heart and teachable spirit the trials through which ancient Israel passed, that they may be instructed in their preparation for the heavenly Canaan..
Conflict and Courage p.94
—– Garry is out of surgery for a brain bleed from hypertension and swelling and in a drug induced coma to keep him quiet so that the healing can begin. He is doing ok, had to remove part of cerebellum and stop bleeding but shouldn’t affect anything but balance and equilibrium gonna keep him for at least a week, then rehab for a few months…. This family’s garage burned to the ground over the weekend, so they are having to deal with that as well. Please keep him and the family in prayer. Eileen
—–Please pray for Breighton and his baby, Daniel, who were in a very serious car accident and had to be airlifted to the hospital. Pray that they heal quickly. Eileen.
This month our car tags are due. Because of a few reasons, I am going to have to go to the tag office to renew this year. It reminded me of the time I had to go to the tag office to get a license plate for the car we had just purchased. We had been having unusually cold weather, but I had to go anyway as the temporary tags were expiring. The windchill that morning was -16F because of the cold wind that was blowing. Several of us arrived about fifteen minutes early so we would not have to wait long once the office opened. A couple of women were standing outside. The rest of us stayed in our cars. Soon several of the men decided to stand in the line. About five minutes before the place opened, I joined them.
How thankful I was for the warm coat Ron had bought me a few months before. Despite the frigid temperature, I was comfortable. The man in front of me was not prepared for the cold. He was dressed in a thin jacket and was shivering uncontrollably: so was the teenager in front of him who had worn a sweatshirt. Later, on my way home from work, I saw a well-dressed man with no jacket at all walk into the bank. I wondered what he could possibly have been thinking. Perhaps he worked in a nearby office and saw no need to get bundled up against the elements.
The rest of the way home, I was thinking of a garment that we all must have. So many are without this garment even though it is freely offered by our Dear Saviour. Some think that can wear garments of their own making, but when the icy winds of trouble, that is coming upon the world as an overwhelming surprise, blow, it is too late. Now is the time to be prepared for that dreadful day.
The True Witness yearns to clothe us with the garment of His righteousness that we so much need. He pleads, “I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich, and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear, and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.” Rev 3:18-21
To Zechariah was given a vision of this Heavenly raiment that we can receive only at our Redeemer’s hand. “And he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. And the LORD said unto Satan, The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan, even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment. And I said, Let them set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments.” Zech 3:1-5
Without this Heavenly garment, we cannot enter the Kingdom of God. Jesus illustrated this point in the story of the man without a wedding garment. “The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them. But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bi! dden were not worthy. Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests. And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness, there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Matt 22:2-13 God’s Great Heart of Love longs to place upon us that wedding garment so that we will not suffer the same consequence.
May we make the needed preparation against the time of the blowing of the four winds by receiving from our Lord Jesus Christ the robe of His Righteousness that He so freely offers. May we allow Him to take our filthy garments completely from us for “No man also seweth a piece of new cloth on an old garment: else the new piece that filled it up taketh away from the old, and the rent is made worse.” Mark 2:21 May we live so close to Jesus here, that soon we will be bowing “before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands, [proclaiming] with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.” Rev 7:9,10