Don't Test Your Limits!

Here we have a stark word. Here we see the Lord testing Israel: "He gave you manna to eat in the wilderness, something your ancestors had never known, to humble and test you so that in the end it might go well with you." [Deuteronomy 8:16]. Yet Paul says that they put Him to the test. A great irony occurs when God is testing us, and we despise His discipline, thereby testing Him.

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Keep Your Eyes Fixed!

The Apostle Paul continues his warning to the Corinthians against idolatry by referring to Israel's celebration/worship of the golden calf. Aaron's proclamation, "These are your gods (plural) O Israel" could be one of the earliest declarations mixing the worship of the true and living God, YHVH, with idols. This is called "syncretism". Dictionary.com defines it: " the attempted reconciliation or union of different or opposing principles, practices, or parties, as in philosophy or religion."

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Learn Contentment!

The Apostle Paul's admonition in 1 Corinthians 10:6 against desiring evil as they did, would seem to point to the obvious sins – lying, stealing, adultery, fornication, etc. – and following their deliverance from slavery, many of the children of Israel were certainly guilty of some of these. But this passage in Numbers describes a type of sin we don't normally consider: it was simply their desire for the foods they ate in Egypt.

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You're at war!

As the threat of war looms on the horizon in Israel, I'm all the more reminded that we in the Body of Messiah are already at war spiritually. Constantly contending in our minds, we battle over thoughts and emotions which flow through them. The enemy often attacks by bringing up issues from our past. Failures, regrets, wounds, and traumas all have the potential to drag us down into doubt, darkness and despair.

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Understand the Obligation of Love!

Here's another interesting Hebrew word parallel. The Hebrew word for "love" or "affection", "chiba", is formed by the same root letters as the word, "chova", "obligation", "debt", or "duty". In Hebrew, the only difference between these two words is a few vowel points. But you say, "Isn't love the very opposite of obligation !?" Well, yes and no. The Hebrew language has a wonderful way of relating concepts which seem incompatible.

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