September 16, 2016
Believing the Evidence
We came unto the land whither thou sentest us, and surely it floweth with milk and honey; and this is the fruit of it. Nevertheless... – Numbers 13:27-28
In 1954, I worked for a company that was hired to prepare a thirty-five-foot launch for conducting research on Crater Lake. The launch was located on Wizard Island, which is in the middle of the lake, and the research would determine if the lake could support fish life.
During my stay at a lodge near the island, several of the young men working there would go fishing on the lake in the evenings and bring back nice strings of kokanee trout. On a couple of occasions, a gentleman came over to where we were working and went fishing on the back side of Wizard Island. He caught two rainbow trout that were over twenty inches long! As I worked, I found it amusing that we were constructing a boat that would determine if the lake could support fish life, when all around me I saw evidence that there were already plenty of fish in the lake.
Those apparently skeptical researchers remind me of the Children of Israel when they entered—or rather, failed to enter—the Land of Canaan. While the Israelites were still slaves in Egypt, God had promised to bring them to “a land flowing with milk and honey” (Exodus 3:17). Then, when the time came to possess the land, the Lord sent spies in first so they could see with their own eyes that the promise was true. Yet, despite their miraculous deliverance from Egypt and actually seeing the bounty of the land, they did not believe what God had said. They doubted and feared because of giants and high-walled cities.
At times, being skeptical can be wise, but at other times, skepticism becomes foolish. When we have sufficient evidence that something is true, we do not need to doubt it anymore. As Christians, we have already seen God’s power demonstrated when He saved us. That should be enough for us to believe the promises in His Word, but He gives even more evidence through the testimonies of victorious Christian lives being lived around us. If we have seen God’s promises prevail in our own lives and in the lives of others, what more evidence could we need to believe Him? We still have to mix faith with His promises, but He has given us plenty of reasons to trust Him.
We must be careful to take God at His Word. If He has promised us something, there is no reason to doubt Him—not even if we see giants and high-walled cities. Today, we can decide to trust God and possess the promises He has given!
Father in Heaven, Help me to take You at Your Word. Let my faith be mixed with what I see and hear, and help me not to question whether You will keep Your promises to me. Amen.