Sensitive Observers

Inspiration MinistriesBy Inspiration Ministries2 Minutes

What did it mean to be a “spy”? The Hebrew word suggests people who walked.

This was the assignment Joshua gave to two men: To walk throughout the Promised Land. They also were to be observers. To study what they saw and report back what they had seen. They were to make recommendations and help develop strategy.

In a similar way, 40 years earlier, Moses sent out 12 men to explore the same land. Their assignment? To “see what the land is like.” To evaluate the people. To learn what they could about their cities and the natural resources.

They reported that the land was fruitful and filled with abundance, but “the people living there are powerful, and their towns are large and fortified.” Defeat seemed inevitable. Based on this report, the Israelites did not enter the land. Because of their lack of faith, they would spend 40 years wandering in the wilderness.

The spies sent by Joshua had a similar responsibility but reached different conclusions. What made the difference? They had a different perspective and a different attitude.

One key change was gathering better firsthand insights. They didn’t just walk the land. They actually spent time in Jericho itself. They learned that its people were terrified of the Israelites and felt that the Israelites inevitably would win.

These men were better spies. Not because they made positive recommendations, but because they conducted better research. They had better insights about the land and people. They were in a better position to recommend strategies needed for victory. And they had faith in God.

How do we approach the assignments we have been given? How easily we can be filled with negative thoughts. Be overwhelmed and feel discouraged. In these situations, think about the experience of these two spies: Seek to be good observers, always trusting God for insights and wisdom. Full of faith!