How dumb were those Israelites! When I read through the Old Testament,, I can only shake my head in wonder. Then I put by Bible down, look in the mirror and ask, “How dumb am I?”
There is no question, that for reasons God only knows, He chose a people that were inherently stiff-necked and self-centered people. Even though grace and mercy were poured out over and over, they complained, grumbled at their leaders, lamented that they were not in control and that they preferred to be just like the rest of the nations.
Looking into myself, I can only say how easily I am infected with self-serving thoughts and perpetual discontentment. I have to preach to myself, much like the prophets Amos and Elijah, loud confrontations to my own soul:
“God is good. God is just. God is rich in mercy, slow to anger and abounding in loving-kindness.” What do I have to about? What do I demand of life that God has not filled with abundance already? As long as I continue to compare myself with those that garner the spotlight, I’ll never be happy.
When I apply the truth, however, saved by God’s grace when I deserved the full expression of His wrath, I can only respond one way: “Rejoice in the Lord always, and again, I say, rejoice! The Lord is near!”