Twelve Spies | Devotion 1: Be Obedient
For as long as I can remember, I have always loved spies. The concept of hiding in plain sight or behind enemy lines in order to gain information has always fascinated me. As a kid, I loved watching G.I. Joe; seeing the secret missions that went on and watching the spies carry out whatever task was put before them, I was hooked! That being said, in Numbers chapter 13, we have one of my favorite stories in the Bible. You probably guessed by now; it involves spies; twelve of them to be exact. At this point in Moses’ life, he has successfully led the people of Israel out of the land of Egypt, and they are in the wilderness, approaching the Promised Land that God said was theirs. So, as any good leader would do before entering the unknown and possibly hostile territory, Moses selected twelve men to scout the new land out, however, this was all done at the advisement of the Lord.
In Numbers 13:1-2, it reads, “The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, ‘Send men to spy out the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the people of Israel.’” Here, we see two things: obedience and a guarantee. First, we see Moses’ obedience to God as he followed out what the Lord ordered him to do; send out twelve. In Numbers 13:3 we see Moses’ reaction to God, “So Moses sent them from the wilderness of Paran, according to the command of the Lord, all of them men who were heads of the people of Israel.” Obedience is one of the absolute crucial attributes in which a true leader carries with them. Yet, in the second half of verse two, we see a guarantee from the Lord. God told Moses to send the men to spy on the land of Canaan, “which I am giving to the people of Israel.” Here, we have the Lord’s guarantee to Moses – the land is yours; you will have it!
Being a leader is not always easy. It is a position and a role, which Moses was truly called to do and be. Yet, he was not left alone. We see throughout all his life that the Lord continually guided and encouraged him in the ways he needed to go. In this passage, Moses again shows his strong leadership character as he obediently listens to the Lord’s guidance in his life. As you continue on in your week, I want to challenge you to listen. However, as you listen, be obedient. Be obedient and remember the promise of victory we have in Christ, just as the Israelites were guaranteed the Promised Land.