Stop circling the mountain

“Go and possess the land.” Moses spoke these words to the people of Israel.

Forty years earlier, the Lord God had instructed the Hebrew people to go into the Promised Land. At Kadesh Barnea, poised to enter the “land flowing with milk and honey,” the people balked. After all, they could not actually see this land of promise, and they believed the negative reports of their spies instead of the promise of God.

For their disobedience, the people of Israel wandered in the wilderness until the faithless adults had died.

Forty years later – a journey that would have taken eleven days for an obedient people – the Hebrew children were again poised to enter the Promised Land.

Please understand, God’s mind is never changed nor is His will ever thwarted. He may allow you to wander for awhile; He will even cause some blessings to overtake you in your wandering – but the Lord will always bring you back to the very place from which you wandered and say, “Now, let’s try this again.”

Why would He do such a thing? Doesn’t God want us to be ourselves? Is He trying to prevent our self-actualization – the reaching of our full potential?

Three things to remember: (1) God is God – you’re not. (2) He loves you – your love for yourself and others is mere selfishness apart from the context of His love. (3) He wants the absolute for you. We cannot possibly know what the best is because our vision is limited, blurred by sin. His vision, however, is perfect and His foreknowledge is complete.

At the end of an eleven day journey that took forty years to complete, God the Father said to His chosen people: “’You have stayed long enough at this mountain…go in and possess the land…” (Deuteronomy 1.6,8)

This is the word of God today for our church.

It’s time to stop circling the familiar mountain. Activity in God’s name does not equal service in God’s will. The Father does not want us to be bogged down with doing good, He wants us to get up and be engulfed in the best.

The Father desires that we go and possess the “land.” The Promised Land for the Christian is to go deeper in Jesus Christ – to walk in the power of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5.16,25) and in the power of His will (Psalm 143.10) and in the power of His word (Romans 1.16, Hebrews 4.12).

There are too many people who need to hear the gospel, who need our prayers, our encouragement, our help, for us to keep circling the mountain, concerned with maintaining the status quo, refusing to change, refusing to listen to God’s call.

I realize that, in this writing, I am being short on specifics – please, try to apply this word to your life and to the church’s life and ministry.

You can’t possess the land until you leave the mountain.

Furthermore, you can’t take the mountain with you. It’s never about the mountain, it never has been about the mountain, it’s all about God.

We have an inheritance from God, a glorious calling, found in Ephesians 1.

In fact, allow me to pray Ephesians 1.17-21 over us: I pray “that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come.”

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