It is likely that you are familiar with this story, but let’s summarize it briefly. The Lord has prepared the promised land, a land flowing with milk and honey, for His people that He has just delivered from Egypt. As they approach, they send in twelve spies to scope out the land and give a report to the people. The challenge is to deliver a report that agrees with the report the Lord had already given, that the land was theirs and He would hand it over to them! Instead, ten of the spies return with a report that opposes the report of the Lord. Only Joshua and Caleb stand with the Lord and confidently prepare to enter the land that was promised to them.
Numbers 13:30 And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it.
But the ten said this:
Numbers 13:31-33 Then the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we are.” So they brought to the people of Israel a bad report of the land that they had spied out, saying, “The land, through which we have gone to spy it out, is a land that devours its inhabitants, and all the people that we saw in it are of great height. And there we saw the Nephilim (the sons of Anak, who come from the Nephilim), and we seemed to ourselves like grasshoppers, and so we seemed to them.”
They are completely unwilling to trust in the Lord’s promise, and choose to believe their own report.
Still Joshua and Caleb plead with the people in Numbers 14:6-9
And Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had spied out the land, tore their clothes and said to all the congregation of the people of Israel, “The land, which we passed through to spy it out, is an exceedingly good land. If the Lord delights in us, he will bring us into this land and give it to us, a land that flows with milk and honey. Only do not rebel against the Lord. And do not fear the people of the land, for they are bread for us. Their protection is removed from them, and the Lord is with us; do not fear them.”
But the people choose to disregard the report of the Lord, and choose instead to heed the report of the ten. And it will cost them greatly...it will be forty years and every one of the people except for Joshua and Caleb will die before their descendants will possess the promise. Ouch.
Don’t we do this, though? We hear the report of the Lord - we’ve been studying it for months now! We know that by His stripes we are healed, that His Word was sent to heal us, that He is our salvation, our fortress, our strength, our song! But then the doctor walks in the room and gives us a report that contradicts what the Lord has said. And we despair. And we weep. And we give up.
We used to sing a song regularly in our church that was written by Ron Kenoly called Whose Report?
Whose report will you believe?
We shall believe the report of the Lord!
His report says I am healed!
His report says I am filled!
His report says I am free!
His report says victory!
The Lord regularly challenges me with this question. Whose report do you believe, Amy? Do you believe the report of the doctors, scientists, and researchers? Or do you believe what I have said is true?
And now I am asking you...whose report do you believe?
Lord, I choose to believe Your report. I choose to believe that You will do what You have said You would do, and that I can do what you say I am able to do! In faith I stand with Joshua and Caleb and declare that I can go in a possess the promise that You have given me.