Last Sunday, September 16th, Pastor Brandow explained that the story of book of Numbers is divided into two sections. The first chronicled the life and death of the first generation that came out of Egypt in the exodus. The second picks up the story of the second generation. The largest segment of time covered in the book is covered in only five chapters (38 + years, as contrasted by mere months in the chapters preceding and following). In that section the major story concerns the rebellion of Korah, where in an instant the earth swallowed up the tents of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram. This actually foreshadows the demise of the first generation, who although they did not perish in an instant, they were over time “swallowed up” (figuratively) over the next 38 years in the desert.
When we turn from God we become like a cut flower. We slowly die. It may not be apparent at first but over time our satisfaction diminishes and like soda that has been out too long we become flat. Gone is the zest, the joy, the peace that comes from a clean and pure life. In place of the sunshine, darkness creeps in. It doesn’t take much for our life to become a tangled mess of wrecked relationships, of real hurt, inner pain and loneliness. The death for us mentioned in the handout is not necessarily physical death. It can be the death of well-being, the death of friendships, and the death of any former intimacy with God.
Hebrews 6:11-12 is a word from God to this issue. It reads: “See to it, brothers, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you will be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.”