In the New Testament, our experience as Christians is directly compared to that of Israel in the Old Testament. We are warned that the same lessons apply to us. Hebrews 4:1-2 reads:
“Therefore, since the promise of entering His rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. For we also have had the gospel [the Good News] preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard it did not combine it with faith.” (NIV)
The same promise that God gave to Israel still stands for us – a promise of entering into the rest of God – but we must be careful that we do not fall short of it in the same way that they did in the Old Testament. Their problem was they heard the message, a promise from God, but they added that one fatal word "nevertheless." Instead of focusing on the promise of God and boldly confessing their faith in God’s promise and power, they focused on the negative. They looked at the giants and the walled cities and said, "We are not able." Thank God for two men who had the faith and the courage to say, "We are well able."
When you face God’s promise concerning a certain situation, what are you going to do with your tongue? Are you going to give assent to the promise of God? Are you going to identify yourself with the promise of God and say, "God said: 'I’m able'"? Or are you going to be one of those who say, "Nevertheless, look at all the problems. God said it, but somehow I don’t feel able." Remember, just as those spies settled their destinies with their tongues by the words that they spoke, so the same lesson applies to whoever has heard the gospel. We likewise settle our destinies by the words that we speak.
Ten of the twelve spies focused on the problems, not on the promises. Two of those twelve spies, Joshua and Caleb, focused on the promises, not on the problems. Joshua and Caleb said, "We are well able." The other spies said, "We are not able." Each got exactly what they said. They all settled their own destinies by the way they used their tongues.
Dear Lord, thank You for Your wonderful promises. And thank You that You tell me that 'I’m able'. Not in my own strength, but in the power of Your Holy Spirit in me. Please help me to rely upon You, and You alone, always and continually. Please help me not to be focused on the problems, but on Your promises. In Jesus' Name, Amen.