What if Christians embraced the warnings of God as enthusiastically as the promises of God? As I was reading 1 Corinthians 10 this morning, I noticed how all God’s people who came up from Egypt were given the same blessings and opportunities…but only a few made it to the Promised Land. “They all ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ. Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them; their bodies were scattered in the wilderness” (verses 3-5). Instead of entering into the land of promise and conquest, they endured defeat and humiliation in the desert. Now, I don’t believe we are reading here that all of the people lost out on eternity with God. Only God knows how many were true believers and how many were imposters. But what we are reading is a serious warning to reverence the Lord in the way we live. In the wilderness, God called His people into a holy covenant relationship with himself and gave them the supreme honor of entering into the land prepared for them. However, most of them carelessly tossed it aside. What was their problem? Verses 7-10 reveal the reasons why God denied them entrance into the victory He provided. These warnings are as relevant today as in the days of Moses: “Do not be idolaters, as some of them were…. We should not commit sexual immorality…. We should not test Christ…. And do not grumble….” God loves us and gives us amazing promises for both now and eternity. God also hates sin and expects us to battle and overcome the fleshly nature within us. He provides us with the power, by His grace, to defeat every temptation we face (see verse 13). Serving the Lord is a process of choosing every day what is godly over our desires. By God’s grace we can grow and become like Jesus! However, we must be willing to take the warnings of the Word seriously. There is a promised land to enter and a wilderness to avoid. God’s ways are worth the battle!
Pastor Mark Boucher