What to Do About Your Doubt (Numbers 14:1-3)
Numbers 14:1-3, And all the congregation lifted up their voice, and cried; and the people wept that night. And all the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron: and the whole congregation said unto them, Would God that we had died in the land of Egypt! or would God we had died in this wilderness! And wherefore hath the LORD brought us unto this land, to fall by the sword, that our wives and our children should be a prey? were it not better for us to return into Egypt?
“We’re claiming the entire land, it’s ours!” This should have prompted singing, shouting, and rejoicing. We’re going to take the land God has promised us. Remember the plagues, the Red Sea, Mt. Sinai, the manna, and much more. He has never failed us before. According to Numbers 14:1-3, they weren’t. Why? They were surrounded by complainers and doubter. This was not just a few people, but the entire congregation.
We see in Numbers 14:3-4, they even entertained the idea of selecting another leader to take them back to Egypt. They are planning a mutiny against Moses. In effect, they were saying, “We’re going back to Egypt. We are better off as slaves in Egypt. God will not give us the victory here.” This type of thinking is totally contrary to their amazing experiences with God. Why were they thinking this way? They had forgotten about God’s provisions. The pillar of cloud by day, the pillar of fire by night, the dividing and crossing of the Red Sea, manna every day, etc.
God had miraculously brought the Children of Israel out of Canaan and promised them a fruitful land. Yet when the Israelites saw some obstacles, they wished they were back in slavery in Egypt. This sounds absurd to us, but do we ever have a similar response? Don’t desire to go back to your former ways; have faith to move on to the more abundant blessings the Lord has for you. I have never trusted God and regretted it. Yes, at times, the challenges have been huge. I can remember times when I have chosen doubt and missed the incredible opportunities to prove the faithfulness of God. I remember how disappointed I felt afterwards.
When a believer is backslidden, they tend to run from God’s purpose for them. When a Christian is carnal, they tend to not think wisely. Despite the promises of God and in spite of His miraculous deliverance and provisions, Israel claimed they would rather have died in slavery in Egypt. They went so far as to accuse God of bringing them there to die. They were willing to return to the bondage from which God had graciously delivered them. When times were tough, Israel failed to look to their God.
Never doubt in the dark what God has already revealed in the light. When we are in doubt, God will never fail to give light when we have no other plan than to please Him and to act in love for Him. Doubt is a lack of confidence or assurance that God will keep His promises. The more you pay attention to doubt, the less you can see of God. Doubt can’t diminish God, but it can limit your view of the One who has promised to be for you. Doubt undermines wisdom. Faith is an active confidence that God’s promises are always true. It is a glimpse of the majesty and awesomeness of God that obliterates the nagging unbelief of doubt. Your faith may not be huge, but it affirms your tiny, mustard-seed confidence that God is more than enough to meet the challenges in your life. Wise living is living by faith.
Doubt is a very common, human, natural struggle. One of the hard things about struggling with doubt is overcoming the feeling of your struggle with those feelings of doubt. To overcome doubt, one must confront doubt with truth. People who have trusted the Lord when faced with doubt have an impeccable track record. Take God’s Word and trust Him in it. Be fully prepared to fight, but fight honestly with your struggle. Arm yourself to acknowledge it, face it, name it, and then overcome it with truth. God never intends for His people to wander wearily through life, headed nowhere. God has for you a land of milk and honey, a life of victory, if you’re willing to follow him in obedience. Rather than forfeiting to your fears and being defeated by doubts; follow your faith in the Lord.
PRAYER: Lord, I truly want to defeat the doubt I struggle with in life. Arm me with Scripture that I may defeat the devil with the power of Your Word. In Jesus name, Amen.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship.