The theme throughout these chapters is one with which I am intimately familiar: complaints.
My husband jokes that I like it whatever temperature it’s not. I like my food to be burning hot, my water to be ice cold, and my socks to be fuzzy and warm.
But God’s word clearly shows that He is not fond of those who complain against His blessings. The Israelites whined for meat instead of manna, so He sent them more quail than they knew how to use…along with a devastating, quick-acting plague that killed many who had complained about the food.
When Miriam and Aaron complained because Moses was getting all the attention from the Lord, God sat them down and read them the riot act. He minced no words with them to set them straight: the Lord trusted Moses above all others, period. Then Miriam was infected with a skin disease and was isolated outside the camp for seven days. She wanted attention: she got it, though not the sort she had in mind.
The scouts sent out to survey the Promised Land came back with glowing reports of the land itself but also with unbelief in their hearts that the Lord would indeed do what He said He would do: give that land over to them. Instead of seeing His victory, they saw the giants standing in their way.
How often do I do that? Complain about the giants in my way? Too often for comfort. It all comes down to trust. The Lord will remove the giants from my path, but I have to actually walk a few steps before He’ll move them. The Israelites did not believe He could their giants. Do you believe He can remove yours?