Possessing the Land – part 1: Who will get There?

And the little ones that you said would be taken captive, your children who do not
yet know good from bad – they will enter the land. I will give it to them and they
will take possession of it. (Deut 1:39)

And indeed they entered the land – those who were still children and youth when the
nation of Israel was liberated and freed from the bondage of Egypt. The Bible records
a census that was conducted just before they entered the land, and shows that none
of those who 20 years and above who left Egypt reached the other side except Joshua
and Caleb. Those older folk who did not make it suffered the great judgment of God
against whom they rebelled; ten of the twelve spies came back with a discouraging
report and caused almost everyone to turn back to Egypt! And God punished by
lengthening their journey until they were all dead, and a new generation brought
forth.

Joshua was leading this new generation when God told him, ‘I will give you every
place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses.’ (Josh 1:3) Joshua was greatly
encouraged and his strength renewed, and what follows is a series of victories and
conquests. And indeed they entered the land. So, the question of ‘who will get there’
that some could have asked at the beginning of the journey from Egypt is now
answered – the children, the youth and the new generation. Yet the question still
lingers for us today who are in a greater Exodus and looking forward to ultimate
deliverance and freedom from the ‘Egypt’ of this corrupt world to enter the Promised
Land of heaven. It is clear that the journey of the children of Israel from Egypt to
Canaan represents in good part our life today – our journey from earth to heaven.
Who will get There?

Children and youth were the channels of God’s forgiving grace for the nation of
Israel; He would have wiped them away as he told Moses, but after the prophet’s
intercession, God looked at children and youth as worthy recipients of His gracious
forgiveness and channels of extending the same to a nation that would now survive
extinction. Thinking about the rebellion again God in our days – expressed in the
rampant moral decadence as well as the worship of material possessions and power,
which is idolatry; well, there surely is a remnant of believers who are still strong and
holding onto God’s gracious promises and shunning all evil, but it could be that we
have many lessons to learn from our little children – that they are potential channels
of God’s Greater Grace. In the next part, we’ll explore Jesus’ related assertions, like
‘… unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.’
God bless you

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