By Ken Ellis, Chaplain, LSU & Southern University Football
The Lord now said to Moses, Send out men to explore the land of Canaan, the land I am giving to the Israelites. “Send one leader from each of the twelve ancestral tribes.” So Moses did as the Lord commanded him. He sent out twelve men, all tribal leaders of Israel, from their camp in the wilderness of Paran.
All twelve had the same external experiences, but the internal conclusions of ten differed markedly from the other two.
1. All twelve spies were leaders in their tribes.
2. All twelve received the same promise.
3. All twelve received the same opportunities.
1. Ten said “no.”
2. Misunderstood their mission.
3. Saw God in light of their circumstances.
1. Two said “go.”
2. Understood their mission.
3. Saw circumstances in light of their God.
The Major Difference: Attitude!
A. The majority.
• Disobeyed God.
• Believed the land had no future.
• Displayed cowardice based on fear.
• Ignored God in their report.
• Suffered from a grasshopper complex.
Through a negative majority report two million people were deprived of their inheritance in Canaan. The Israelites were driven back into the wilderness to die, and God delayed in fulfilling His purpose for His chosen people for 40 frustrating years.
B. The minority.
• Obeyed God.
• Insisted they should enter and possess the land.
• Displayed courage rooted in faith.
• Felt calm assurance.
• Saw themselves in relationship to God.
Caleb and Joshua stayed alive for a new era, while the other ten spies died in the wilderness along with the rest of the adults of that unbelieving generation.
Attitude makes the differences:
1. Our attitude determines our approach to life.
2. Our attitude determines our relationships with people.
3. Our attitude is often the only difference between success and failure.
4. Our attitude at the beginning of a task will affect its outcome more than anything else.
5. Our attitude can turn problems into blessings.
6. Our attitude can give us an uncommonly positive perspective.
7. Our attitude is not automatically good just because we belong to God.
The side effects of fear:
1. Fear produces anxiety which creates chaos in our lives and even affects those around us.
2. Fear stifles our thinking and actions which creates indecisiveness that results in stagnation.
3. Fear hinders us from becoming the people God wants us to be, when we are dominated by negative emotions we cannot achieve the goals He has in mind for us.
4. Fear can drive people to destructive habits.
5. Fear steals peace and contentment.
6. Fear creates doubt, God promises us an abundant life but if we surrender instead to the chains of fear our prayers won’t be worth very much.