Israelites Left in the Desert

The experience of Israel in the desert was long and difficult; all of those people from twenty years of age and up died in the desert, with the exception of Joshua and Caleb. In this, we see the prophetic relationship between the Jewish nation and the gentile nations, in the fact that Caleb was from the tribe of Judah and Joshua from the tribe of Ephraim, son of Joseph, whose mother was an Egyptian woman. God said, Forty years long was I grieved and disgusted with that generation, and I said, It is a people that do err in their hearts, and they do not approve, acknowledge, or regard My ways. Wherefore I swore in My wrath that they would not enter My rest [the land of promise] (Psalm 95:11). As the writer to Hebrews said, when the message given is not mixed with faith, it will be of no benefit to the hearer; and that was the case with the nation of Israel, on their journey of forty years to the Promised Land, which the Lord swore to give to them. For that reason, it was their uncircumcised children whom God raised up in their stead that entered the Promised Land.

Israel’s experience in the desert is a picture of the Church of Christ today. She is wandering through the desert “forty years”, symbolized by tests, trials and probation, without a relationship with God and His Written Word.  In the length of their spiritual journey, they lost focus of the direction and have embraced the world and its things instead, as in the things of Egypt.  And as it happened to the Israelites, who were left in the desert for their unbelief, so will be for the believers who walk the way of the flesh even after they have passed through the “Red Sea” in their acceptance of Christ and baptism. The letter to the Hebrews describes their situation well, For if we go on deliberately and willingly sinning after once acquiring the knowledge of the Truth, there is no longer any sacrifice left to atone for sins, but a kind of awful and fearful prospect and expectation of divine judgment and the fury of burning wrath and indignation which will consume those who put themselves in opposition (Heb. 10:26-27).

YAHSHUA is the believers’ manna from heaven. He is the Bread of life that gave us life eternal. With His blood He washed us clean through forgiveness; His Word and the ministry of the Holy Spirit keeps us clean. But the Church of Christ, like Israel has left the way; she is in the state where Israel was when they were left behind in the desert. The root of apostasy has entered the churches and have deviated many from the Truth- YASHSHUA to follow the teachings of Baal.  The invitation to faithfulness given many years ago remains for us today: “Let us therefore be zealous and exert ourselves and strive diligently to enter that rest, that no one may fall or perish by the same kind of unbelief and disobedience [into which those in the wilderness fell] (Hebrews 4:11). YAHSHUA said, My sheep listen to My  voice and heed to it; they are called by their own name; I walk before them, and they follow Me because they know My voice; they will never follow a stranger, but will run away from him because they do not know the voice of strangers or recognize their call; He said, I am the Good Shepherd; and I know and recognize My own, and My own know and recognize Me (John 10:3,5,14). Only YAHSHUA’S true sheep will enter the rest of God. Eternal salvation is for those who persevere following Him to the end!  We have only today; consider returning to Him, if you have left the way, “For it is a fearful thing to incur the divine penalties and be cast into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:13)!

Asleep in the comfortable pews of the Church, many are being rocked to spiritual sleep with words that bring good feelings and the tickle of the ears. However, God is calling His remnant out of the Babylon churches to Himself. The desert was given only to us for sanctification and preparation to enter the Promised Land, not for us to stay and die in it, unless we are found unfaithful to God. “Today, if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts, as in the rebellion [of Israel] and their provocation and embitterment [of Me] in the day of testing in the wilderness (Hebrews 3:7-8).

Today is a definite day; a day for the opportunity to listen; we have only today! Turn around, my friend.


Author: Jacinta da Cruz Rodgers

I have been committed to teaching the truth of the Word of God beginning with Trans World Radio on Bonaire, N.A and Swaziland, Africa (1969-1980), then through churches in the United States in both English and Portuguese and then through ministry in Israel (2005-2006). This ministry continues through local Bible studies and outreach to the world via the internet. I have written a book about my life from that of an orphan in Brazil to missionary in 5 countries. You can find out more on the "Book" page of our blog site.

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