A humbled and open heart is fertile soil for God’s seeds of wisdom. Establishing deeper roots requires analyzing God’s word to discover truths, values, and lessons for application to our lives. Periodically, a scripture or passage calls for further exploration, like Exodus 33:1-6
The Lord spoke to Moses: “Go up from here, you and the people you brought up from the land of Egypt, to the land I promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, saying: I will give it to your offspring. I will send an angel ahead of you and will drive out the Canaanites, Amorites, Hethites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. Go up to a land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go up with you because you are a stiff-necked people; otherwise, I might destroy you on the way.” When the people heard this bad news, they mourned and didn’t put on their jewelry. For the Lord said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites: You are a stiff-necked people. If I went up with you for a single moment, I would destroy you. Now take off your jewelry, and I will decide what to do with you.” So the Israelites remained stripped of their jewelry from Mount Horeb onward.Exodus 33:1-6 CSB
The book of Exodus is the second book of the Pentateuch (the first five books of the bible). Exodus comes from a Greek word for “going out”; a fitting title for the book of how the Hebrew people exited Egypt.
Chapter 33 picks up after the creation of the golden calf and the subsequent plagues sent as punishment. In this passage, God is speaking directly to Moses to inform him that God will not be going with them into the promised land due to their stubbornness. At this, the people are saddened. The gold and silver jewelry that was plundered on their way out of Eygpt was symbolic. The Israelites disobedience made them just like the Egyptians; and now, they had been stripped of their ornaments as well.
Despite the people’s mourning, God is still displaying his merciful nature. The promise of going into the land of milk and honey remains. The Lord even says that He will send an angel before them to clear out the land’s inhabitants. In the coming chapters, we see the justness of God’s wisdom.
The Lord still cares and wants to do good things for us, even if it takes a bit longer than we think it should. God loves us, even when we’re stubborn. God forgives even when others won’t. He is merciful and just.
Have you ever felt like you’re unworthy of forgiveness? Let me tell you that nothing you do can take the love of God away from you. All God requires is repentance, acknowledging our sins and laying them down. When we release our stubborn mindsets, stagnant emotions, and physical limitations to God, he empowers us with His Spirit to do great works.
Are you willing to release the stubborn places in your life for God to do a good work in you?