6O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the LORD our maker.
7For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. To day if ye will hear his voice,
8Harden not your heart, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness:
9When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my work.
10Forty years long was I grieved with this generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their heart, and they have not known my ways:
11Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest.
What Went Wrong?
Right on the heels of the psalmist's glorious call to worship in verses 6 and 7, comes a bold, stern warning,
Harden not your heart, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness.
What went wrong?
Here was this mighty throng of people who had marched stolidly out of Egypt, had watched as God destroyed their enemies right before their eyes, and saw manna rain down from heaven. How could such a people ever doubt this wondrous God who manifested Himself in a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night?
Sadly, God recounts,
Forty years long was I grieved with this generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their heart, and they have not known my ways.
The people of God took their eyes off God and succumbed to the delights and temptations of this world. If such a people as this could not remain faithful to God who had showed Himself to them in such miraculous ways, is there no hope for us?
We have one thing that this nation did not have. We have the completed Word of God. God is revealed to us throughout the pages of His Word, as He moved among His people. As we study His Word, we see their failures, and we see their successes,
We see the prophesied Messiah coming to save His people. Born in a humble manger, raised by a poor carpenter, He astounded the learned when He was only twelve with His great understanding of God's Word. We see as He revealed Himself to His disciples, and while He walked among the throngs proclaiming His Father. We see the agony He suffered as He died on a cruel cross, but then rose victorious three days later.
Now we are at a crossroads. With the pages of God's Word loudly proclaiming our Savior, what will we do? Is it enough to accept Him as our Savior, and then go on living our lives as though nothing has changed? No! That is what went wrong with the people of God. They let their hearts wander to the captivating things of this world.
He who "accepts" Christ as His Savior, but then shows no change of heart must question the validity of his salvation. To truly receive Christ as our Savior, means that we also receive Him as our Lord and King. With new hearts filled with love for God, our desires quickly change.
Does that mean that the world no longer tempts us? No! Unfortunately we will spend the rest of our days on this earth warring against our own sin nature. Let us pray that God will graciously work in our hearts and keep us from succumbing to the pleasures of this world, that last for only a moment.
In Christ we find a joy and peace that will take us through the evils of this world, and bring us safely into His kingdom where we will live with Him forever! Let us, then, turn our eyes upon the Lord Jesus, and pray for His help to turn away from the glittering temptations of this world.
Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His Glory and Grace.
God Bless You,