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Nature of God’s Call and Promises

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The Bible records several instances of God calling people to different tasks. For example, God called Moses to deliver Israelites to the promised land; he called Nehemiah to rebuild broken walls and lives in the postexhilic Israel. In the New Testament, Jesus called his disciples to be with him and to empower them for ministry.

In Genesis 12 God initiates a new thing for humanity after the self-exalting episode of humanity in Genesis 11. He calls Abraham to be an agent of blessing to the nations.

In verse 1-3 two imperatives are given by God to Abraham, each with a promise:

  • Leave your country… go to the land…
  • Be a blessing, (you will be a blessing), v2.

God promises Abraham three things if he would respond by obedience:

  • A great nation
  • Blessing – a channel of blessing to the families of the earth.
  • Great name

These three would enable him to be a blessing.

Verse 4-9 records Abraham’s obedience. How did he obey?

  • He left (v4)- Any leaving is not easy. Abraham had to leave his country, his people, and his father’s household but he was told nothing about the land in which he must go. This required faith.
  • He was a blessing (v5-9)- This isn’t easy because naturally we are selfish. Abraham’s call was unique, it was a call: beyond oneself, one’s horizons, one’s people’s and nation to be a blessing to other nations. Undoubtedly, to be a blessing demands a change of heart.

In accomplishing His agenda in our world today, God puts different callings, passions, and visions in us. He calls us so that he can prepare us for what he wants us to accomplish with Him in bringing blessings to many. And so he takes us on a journey that every step/experience counts.  He takes us into a process of becoming….

When God call us to a difficult assignments three things are needed (for the going to happen):

  • Faith God calls us to walk by faith and not by sight. Walking by faith involves walking through unfamiliar paths with confidence on the One who has called us. There is no promise that things will be easy after a call; but God promises his sustenance and presence. In the journey God will teach you to take faith steps. In such cases, be open for God to guide you and renovate your heart. God wants us to ultimately trust him. Also, faith is necessary to be able to believe in God’s promises. Later in Hebrews 11, Abraham is reckoned as a hero of faith.
  • Obedience– God requires that we fully obey him no matter what. At some point in life you have to choose which voice to yield to: either God’s voice or voices of men. Abraham obeyed.
  • Patience– Fulfillment of God’s promises may take time, we need to patiently wait. God does not promise a miracle in every obstacle you face on your way; but he promises his grace is sufficient. He does not promise that people will not discourage you or that Satan will not tempt you to despair and quit; but he promises to strengthen you as you hope in him. Therefore be patient in every circumstance and keep focus on God who is able accomplish what he has started in you.                  Who knows perhaps through your faith, obedience, and patience many people/families of the earth will be blessed!
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The Role of Holy Spirit in the Spiritual Formation of a believer-  

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Spiritual formation is, “the ongoing process of the triune God transforming the believers and character toward the life and character of Jesus Christ- accomplished by the ministry of the Spirit in the context of biblical community” (Pettit, Foundations of Spiritual Formation, 24).

Spiritual formation process is a synergy of the divine initiative and our human response (Phil 2:12-13; 1 Thess. 5:23). It involves developing right relationship of love with God (vertical relationship) and with fellow men (horizontal relationship).

God is actively involved in bringing a sinner to Christ and consequently in the spiritual formation (sanctification process) of the infant Christian as s/he progresses to maturity in Christ.

The role of the third Person of the Trinity (Holy Spirit) in the spiritual growth of a believer is paramount.

Here are ways in which the Holy Spirit is involved in the Spiritual formation in the life of a believer:  

  1. He convicts the world of sin, righteousness and judgment. He brings sinners to salvation. So he is involved in the conversion/turning to God experience.
  2. He indwells believers to bring an inward-out change.
  3. He illuminates God’s truth/mysteries (Jn. 14:26) for understanding.
  4. He is the power that enables believers to bear witness (Jn. 15:26; Acts 1:8; Rom 8:26).
  5. He intercedes for believers (high priest role) in accordance with God’s will (Rom. 8:26-27).
  6. He distributes gifts to believers as he wills for the edification of the church (1 Cor. 12:11). The church is not only the people of God, and the body of Christ, but also the temple of the Holy Spirit.
  7. He is deeply grieved by sin in the lives of Christians (Eph. 4:30).
  8. The Spirit applies redemption to us (Jn. 14:26; 16:7).
  9. The Holy Spirit gives us regeneration or new spiritual life (Jn. 3:5-8). He is the “giver of life”; all living creatures are recipients of the life-giving principle of the Spirit of God.
  10. He sanctifies us (Rom. 8:13; 15:16; 1 Pet. 1:2). He is the source of holiness.
  11. He empowers believers for service (Acts 1:8; 1 Cor. 12:7-11).
  12. He produces in us the fruit of Holy Spirit (Gal 5:22-23); that are signs of sanctification.
  13. He provides spiritual guidance to believers in the ways they should go (Acts 15:28).

Read here for other ways God guides believers.

Also, Hindrances to hearing God’s guidance.

Questions to ponder:

  • Spiritual formation process is a synergy of the divine initiative and our human response (Phil 2:12-13). What are some of the steps we can deliberately take to achieve spiritual maturity. What is the believer’s role in spiritual formation?
  • Do believers in Christ make deliberate efforts to grow spiritually?
  • Formation is the primary task of the church. Do you think the church is faithfully discharging this mandate?

TRINITY- THE NATURE OF GOD AS REVEALED IN THE SCRIPTURE

In the Bible, God is revealed and described with such attributes as: eternal, omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient, perfect, and the like.

Also, the doctrine of Trinity is taught in the Bible; that is, God eternally existing as three co-equal Persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), yet as one God.

Although the term trinity is not found in the Bible, it certainly represents a biblical theme and revelation that runs throughout the Bible. The term summarizes the teaching of Scripture that God is three Persons yet one God.

The concept of triune God is not foreign in the Old Testament Scriptures. There several passages that highlight this doctrine; the following represent few examples.

“Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” Gen. 1:26 (Mark the plural pronouns).

“The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil….” (Gen. 3:22)

“Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.” (Gen. 11:7)

“Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?’” (Isa. 6:8).

Further, there are OT passages where one person is called “God” or “Lord” and is distinguished from another person who is also said to be God (Ps. 45:6-7; 110:1. cf. Matt. 22:41-46; Prov. 8:22-31; Isa. 48:16; 63:10. Mal. 3:1-2). It shows that the Bible authors seemed to be much aware of the plurality of Persons in one God.

In the New Testament, we see a complete revelation of the Trinity. The incarnation of Jesus (the Son) was for the purpose of revelation of the Father. In several passages the three Persons of the Trinity are named together (Matt. 3:16-17; 28:19; 2 Cor. 13:14; 1 Pet. 1:2; Jude 20-21; 1 Jn. 5:7).

Summary of Biblical Teaching on the doctrine of Trinity

  1. God is three persons– They are distinct persons and work together without confusion (Jn. 1:1-2; 14:26; 16:7).
  2. Each person is fully God– They are co-equal and eternal.
  3. There is one God-There is one and only one God. The three Persons are one not just in functions, but also one in essence. There are no three Gods. There is only one God. Deuteronomy 6:4-5 reads, “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” This is a clear affirmation and declaration of the oneness of God. The following verses also attest the same truth: Exodus 15:11; 1 Kings 8:60; Isa. 45:21-22; 44:6-8; Rom. 3:30; 8:27-29; 1 Cor. 8:6; Eph. 4:3-6; 1 Tim 2:5. Jas 2:19.

There is a perfect functioning relationship within the Godhead and no conflict at all in respect to how they work: The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him (Jn. 8:29). The Father sends the Son yet remains with him. The Son represents the Father and obeys him willingly. The Holy Spirit brings to completion the work that has been planned by God the Father and carried out through the incarnation of God the Son.

A Disciple Submits to the Lordship of Christ

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In a context where many people easily identify themselves as Christians; it is essential to recapture what it really means to be a disciple of Jesus.

FYI, the Bible uses the word “disciple” 282 times, “believers” 26 times, and “Christians” only 3 times. The numerous repetitions of the word should cause us to dig deeper into its meaning.

Read here on the disciple of Jesus as a learner. 

It is worth noting here that in the first century, it was common phenomenon for spiritual leaders to have disciples. John the Baptist had disciples (Matt. 9:14); and also Pharisees had disciples (Matt. 22:16). Jesus himself had many disciples other than the renown twelve (Matt. 10:1; (Lk. 22:11). To be a true disciple of Jesus is to submit to his authority and lordship.

A Disciples of Jesus Submits to his Lordship –

In the first century Roman world, the emperor was regarded as kurios (lord). Kingdoms, new lands, and peoples were conquered and subjugated to the lordship of the Roman emperor. As a matter of fact sacrifices were offered in honor of the emperor, the embodiment of the Graeco-Roman gods.

But Jesus taught his disciples concerning a new kingdom, the kingdom of God. In that kingdom he is the Kurios (the Lord over all things). Following him involves acknowledging his lordship over the lordship of Emperor Caesar. Unconfusedly, this was not supposed to bring a threat to the state. Their submission to the authority of Christ was a superior allegiance because it was a loyalty to the Lord of Lords, the Lord and Creator of the universe.

Briefly, what does submission mean?

  1. Submission to Christ means hearing and responding to the call of God– It involves answering the call and invitation to salvation that is by grace through faith. It means acceptance of God’s gift of salvation in order to receive eternal life in Christ Jesus.
  2. Submission means constantly yielding to the authority of Christ– Coming to Christ in repentance and faith is a step to a Christian life. But that is not all; we need to have a daily walk with God whereby we yield to his leading. This process involves putting to death the old self and putting on a new self. It involves a process of total transformation of our minds, emotions, affections, and hearts.
  3. Submission means subjecting our will to his will– It involves praying “your kingdom come and your will be done.” It means subjecting our will to his will; and realigning our plans/vision/mission to God’s agenda. Jesus modeled submission by doing the will of God the Father who had sent him.
  4. Submission means obeying the words of Christ– Jesus instructed, “if you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free” (Jn. 8:31-32).
  5. Submission means letting the word of God transform us-The man who says “I know him” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God’s love is truly made complete in him (1Jn. 2:4-5).

Disciples of Jesus always live a life of submission to the lordship of Christ.

Read here on Attitude of rebellion Vs Attitude of Submission. 

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A Disciple is a Learner

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FYI, the Bible uses the word “disciple” 282 times, “believers” 26 times and “Christians” only 3 times. The numerous repetitions of the word should cause us to dig deeper into its meaning.

It is worth noting that in the first century, it was common phenomenon for a spiritual leader to have disciples. John the Baptist had disciples (Matt. 9:14); and Pharisees had disciples (Matt. 22:16). Jesus himself had many disciples other than the renown twelve (Matt. 10:1; (Lk. 22:11).

In the Great commission (Matt. 28:19-20), Jesus charges his followers to go into all the world and make disciples.

So what does it mean to be a disciple?

A disciple is a learner-

The word “disciple” is from the Greek word “mathetes” meaning a “learner,” or “student.”

Jesus called his disciples to a new and different life. The new life called for a paradigm shift in their thinking, affections, actions, reactions, worldview and perspectives.

Disciples were taught life principles that were upside down from the conventional wisdom of the day. They were taught humility in a world that esteemed pride; in order to be first they were taught to be last. To be filled they must first empty themselves of human sufficiency; to live they must first die to self; to find they must be willing to lose; and in order to gain they must first let it go. Certainly, this needed quite some learning.

The disciples of Jesus were fishermen by profession, but they were called to be fishers of men. Their calling was more than a transfer of fishing skills; it needed learning.

Therefore a true disciple of Jesus needs to embrace learning as a lifelong activity.

Disciples of Jesus never arrive; instead they are in constant process of learning and becoming.

Disciples of Jesus learn to love unconditionally, they learn to forgive without taking inventory, they learn to discern the will of God; they are students of the word of God. They learn how to live out their newfound life in Christ. They learn how they can please their Master.

Disciples also learn from valley of life and mountaintop experiences of life. They learn from successes and failures. They will say, ‘when I went through that circumstance…. God taught me this and that…” Also, they learn from both young and old.

Learners have a teachable spirit, they have inquisitive minds and have a receptive heart for God’s word. It is because of learning attitude that the disciples implored on their Master, “Lord, teach us to pray” Lk 11:1. Learners are always growing and transforming.

Jesus extends an invitation to every person to come and learn from him, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light, Matt 11:28-30.

The problem with the know-it-all believers is that they have no room for learning or a teachable heart. Such people do not listen, even when warned of an impending danger. They can’t stand to be corrected. The book of proverbs calls them fools. I

Therefore disciples of Jesus are in a constant process of learning and growing. If you are not growing in learning then you are not a true disciple of Jesus. Learn from his word, from life experiences he takes you through, and from young and old.

Remember, if you have stopped learning you have stopped marveling God’s greatness.

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BUT GOD…

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Ephesians 2:1-3 describes the status of man before an experience with Christ as Savior and Lord. Believers in Christ are reminded that formerly they were death in their transgressions and sins. Yes, dead. BUT GOD did something radical.

Boldly, verse 4 is introduced by the contrastive particle “but”- But God… (ὁ δὲ θεὸς).

But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which he loved us,” (Eph. 2:4).

In addressing the former hopeless condition of man, God brought about a real transformation that totally changed the identity and position of believers in relation to Christ. To be able to understand the magnitude of what God did, we need to compare what believers in Christ were formerly as opposed to what they have become by God’s salfivic activity.

What we were and what we have become because of what God has done in Christ:

  1. We were dead in our transgressions and sins; BUT GOD in his great love and richness in mercy, made us alive with Christ. He is the voice that the dead hear and obey; He told Martha, the sister to Lazarus, “I am the resurrection and the life” (Jn. 11:25). Thankfully, the life of God now flows through us!
  2. We were held hostage/captive/enslaved to the patterns of the world and its ruler and the desires of sin nature; BUT GOD out of his rich mercy and great love, raised us with Christ and made us seat with him in the heavenly places. In our present status and union with Christ, we are united with Him in his death, resurrection and ascension. In this we experience power, strength, and victory to lead victorious Christian lives.
  • We deserved God’s wrath and to be in hell; BUT GOD in his abounding mercy and great love, chose to show the incomparable riches of his grace in Christ. We did not deserve love but God’s wrath. That is what mercy means, it is being denied what you deserve for your own good!

We were far away from God, BUT GOD in his grace, love and mercy brought us near. God did what only God would have done. He saved us. He saved you! Not because of what you had done but because of his grace. He saved us through faith- a gift from God.

God changed us and made us new! He did what we could not have done on our own. He did not begin by changing our destinies, he changed us so that our destinies change!

Remember these words today as you go about your daily business, “BUT GOD…” and fill in the blanks…

  • Perhaps you did not deserve to live, BUT GOD made it possible that you are alive.
  • Perhaps you did not amount to anything by human standards, BUT GOD elevated you and gave you favor and a name.
  • Perhaps you do not have required human connections for that breakthrough, BUT GOD your Father is able to place you wherever and whenever he wants.

This idea runs throughout the Bible.

  • In Genesis 3 mankind fell into sin, BUT GOD right in the garden of Eden promised a seed of a woman that will crush the head of the serpent. 
  • Many may have laughed at Hannah’s barrenness, BUT GOD was on his way to remember her richly!
  • Rahab may have been treated as an outcast, BUT GOD rewrote he story.
  • Peter may have seemed a failure when he denied Jesus three times, BUT GOD later gave him a new heart so as to be the rock of the church.
  • Many despised the message of the cross as foolish, BUT GOD used it as power to save all men.
  • Many may have looked at Jesus disciples as ordinary and unschooled, BUT GOD used their witness to bring the gospel to the whole world.

People may write you off, BUT GOD is able to accomplish the impossible for you!

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FORMERLY, YOU WERE DEAD IN YOUR TRANSGRESSIONS AND SINS

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In a hospital doctors are charged with the confirmation and certification of the death of a patient. Their declaration of patient’s status is normally considered authoritative and final.

In Ephesians 2:1-3 Paul reminds believers about God’s perception of their former condition- when they were separated from Christ. God’s definition of a sinner’s spiritual status is final because he sees beyond the physical.

As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins…” (Eph. 2:1)

This description also befits or is true of any other person who has not yet come to salvation or received Jesus as Savior and Lord. It is bad news to be called or labeled- dead/lifeless/senseless. It is a serious state, but true. It is a spiritually hopeless condition that needs more than a rescue strategy. It needs someone who is greater and able to breathe life into our dead bodies.

But how were they dead?

They were spiritually dead when they:

  1. Followed the ways of this world- They were spiritually death when they followed worldly patterns that ultimately lead to death instead of following God’s ways that lead to life. They were dead because they followed the empty, hollow, self-defeating, and deceptive philosophies of men that seek to oppose God. Instead of worshipping the only one and true God who has revealed himself in his Word, they worshiped idols. They heeded the ways of the folly instead of the ways of wisdom. In summary, these patterns made them dead, lost, and without hope.
  2. They followed Satan– They followed the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit that is now at work in those who are disobedient. By not following God, they were definitely choosing to follow the deceiver of nations. They followed the ruler of the kingdom of darkness; getting blinded every step from what God has done in Christ.
  • Sought was to gratify the desires of the flesh– In their lifeless state they did not follow God’s will but sought to gratify their sin nature. And the acts of sin nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and the like (Gal. 5: 19-21).

In this, they rightly deserved God’s wrath; that is, God’s burning anger. They deserved to be punished as their sins deserve.

The message to the church in Laodicea is relevant here. God sees beyond the outward; “You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so that you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so that you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so that you can see” (Rev. 3:17-18).

Irrespective of what people say about us, without God, we are dead, blind, wretched, pitiful, poor and naked.  We therefore need a Savior to make us alive, see, clothe and embrace us, and make us rich in God’s terms.

Read Here to find God’s remedy to this hopeless condition.

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THE LEADER AS SERVANT

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There is voluminous literature out there on leadership. Some of the leadership principles and values propagated in these books are Bible-based while others are research based. It is also worth noting that some of these values and principles on each side of the divide have points of convergence and points of divergence (this is for another day).

But the Bible provides rich metaphors that depict the nature of spiritual leadership that is to be exercised in and by the church. Believers in Christ are to embody these biblical values as foundational values for their actions, reactions, and convictions. In this short write-up let’s focus on one leadership motif presented in the Bible: servant.

Leader as Servant

A leader is a servant.

The servant motif traces way back to the OT whereby priests, prophets and kings were seen as servants of God. Like the nation of Israel, they were God’s vessels in which he accomplished his divine purposes on earth.

In the New Testament Jesus referred himself as God’s servant. He came to serve, and to save the lost. He exemplified service by washing the feet of his disciples; performing a typical work of a slave (Lk. 22:27; Jn. 13:4-11). He served the poor, the sick, the despised, and embraced the social outcasts of the society.

A leader who is a servant goes right to where people are. It models leadership from below. Jesus exemplified humility, obedience, and servanthood through his incarnation “but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness “-the kenosis concept (Phil. 2:7-8).

Servanthood is an attitude of the heart. It takes humility, a selfless spirit and a transformed heart for a leader to be a servant. This attitude was in Christ. Therefore, Jesus becomes our example. He redefines what greatness is (Mk. 9:35).

Those who lead should lead by serving. They should not by serving their own interest but the interests of the people they oversee. Those who fail to meet this threshold should never be considered leaders.

Read here for an example of servant leadership.

Read here for another Bible metaphor on leadership.

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THE LEADER AS SHEPHERD

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There is voluminous literature out there on leadership. Some of the leadership principles and values propagated in these books are Bible-based while others are research based. It is also worth noting that some of these values and principles on each side of the divide have points of convergence and points of divergence (this is for another day).

But the Bible provides rich metaphors that depict the nature of spiritual leadership that is to be exercised in and by the church. Believers in Christ are to embody these biblical values as foundational values for their actions, reactions, and convictions. In this short write-up let’s focus on the shepherd leadership motif as presented in the Bible.

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Leader as Shepherd

A leader is a shepherd. And as a shepherd, he has a flock under his care.

But more importantly, it should be noted that this is a communicable attribute from the divine. The shepherd motif presented in the Bible is derived from the character of God.

In the Bible God is revealed as the good Shepherd who leads, feeds, disciplines, and protects his flock (Ps. 23; 100:3; Isa. 10:1-11). Specifically, the sheep in Psalms 23 admits that his Shepherd: satisfies him-makes him lie down in green pastures and quiet waters, restores his soul, guides him, protects, comforts and disciplines him.

Jesus referred himself as the good shepherd (Jn. 10:11,14). He showed through his incarnate life that a good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. A good shepherd does not abandon the sheep and run away when he sees a wolf coming. Instead, he protects. He does not allow the flock to be scattered. He gathers and embraces. A good shepherd knows his sheep and his sheep knows him. He always leads from the front. He has good interest of the sheep/followers at heart.

By implication, those who serve on behalf of God, at any leadership position, are also referred to as shepherds (Jer. 23:1-4; Ezek. 34:2-10). They are supposed to shepherd after God; to shepherd in the likeness of God. Shepherds should not be preoccupied with taking care of their own (self) interests but the interests of the flock. Good shepherds strengthen the weak, heal the sick, bind the broken, bring back the straying sheep, seek the lost, and rule gently.

Leadership is a noble thing. Jesus commissioned Peter, and by extension the other disciples and believers today, to feed his flock (Jn. 21:15-19); with an ultimate promise of a reward. Apostle Peter later wrote that when the Chief Shepherd appears he shall reward, with unfading crown of glory, all those who have taken good care of his flock  (1 Pet. 5:2-4).  A good shepherd like Jesus leads, directs, nurtures, heals, and guards even sacrificing his life if need be for the sheep.

And so any leadership position should be seen as an opportunity to shepherd God’s people; “not greedy for money, but eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock (1 Pet. 5:3).

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Attitude of Doubt Vs Attitude of Faith

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The wilderness experience in the book of Numbers was a profound learning experience to the Israelites. God taught them, formed them, and worked on them for forty years with a purpose of transforming them into a nation that is distinct and set apart for his holy purposes.

But their formation process was not without struggles. One area that they struggled with was the area of attitude transformation. They needed to put off old attitudes that naturally leads to failure and slavery and put on new attitudes that lead to success and freedom.

Their experiences remain relevant for us today in our spiritual walk with God.

Christian life is a life that should lead to holistic transformation. All our human faculties should be transformed by God’s word: mind, heart, affections, will, and emotions.

Biblically, our minds and the framework of our thinking should experience Christ’s transformation just like our hearts. Briefly, Romans 12:2 exhorts us: “but be transformed by the renewing of your mind”; and Philippians 2:6 “your attitude should be the same as that of Christ.”

Attitude of Doubt Vs Attitude of Faith 

In Numbers 13:26-33; 14:6-9, Moses had sent twelve spies to get some report on the Promised Land.

The entire group of spies came and confirmed, with a bunch of grapes, that the land was indeed “a land flowing with milk and honey” (Num. 13:26-27).

However, for the ten spies, there was a problem (Num. 13:28-29, 31-33): the people there were powerful, of great size, their cities large and fortified. The mighty descendants of Anak lived there and the land was also surrounded by Israel’s enemies.

In summary, they said something to the effect that the Canaanites were stronger; and so they can’t attack them. The following statement best summarizes not only their self-assessment but their attitude: “we seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them” (Num. 13:33b). In their minds, the battle was already lost before they entered the battlefield. No Canaanite called them a grasshopper. It was their self-view. This is a very awful attitude to possess. It didn’t stop with them. Negative attitude is very contagious. They infected the entire community with the same attitude (Num. 14:1-4). They doubted God and God’s promise that had been made earlier to the patriarchs that the land rightfully belongs to them.

On the other hand, only two spies (Caleb and Joshua) gave a positive report. After calming the people, they gave people hope and confidence. They said, “we should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it” (Num. 13:30; 14:6-9).

Are there times you’ve been tempted to see how big the mountain is than how big God is? The truth is, Satan always tempts us to doubt God and his promises.

How can we deal with doubt? 

Develop an attitude of faith. An attitude that has confidence in what we hope for and assurance in what we do not see. Face reality with this posture of heart. Respond to some impossible circumstances not with despair, fear, or doubt but with trust in God. Allow circumstance of life not to shrink but stretch your faith. Face the future not with doubts but with the conviction that “the Lord is with me/us”. Doubt sees the obstacles, while faith sees the opportunities.

Choose faith… for we have been called to live by faith and not by sight.