Chewing with Chandanam

(Jeremiah 15:16) 23/2021

The devil is in the detail

Numbers 13  – About two weeks after the Exodus from Egypt, the Israelites arrive at the southern border (Kadesh) of the country of Canaan, the land flowing with milk and honey. Moses sends out 12 spies to scout the land. The spies confirm that the land was fertile and prosperous as God had told them (Exodus 3:8) and brought back a large cluster of grapes carried by two men with some pomegranates, and figs (v.24). God’s promises are true and irrevocable (2 Corinthians 1:20)

But instead of focusing on the promise, ten of the twelve spies said, “...the people who live there are powerful, and the cities are fortified and very large… We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.” (13:28-31).  “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people,” (Ephesians 1:18). 

If we look at the big picture, God will sort out the details. We have a propensity to look at the details and doubt which only blinds us to the power of God to help (Isaiah 30:21) and his promise to guide (Psalm 32:8). Remember the saying – ‘the devil is in the detail’ – he is indeed. Therefore, leave the details to God (Deuteronomy 31:8). Otherwise, you could be left wandering in the wilderness of life, like the Israelites for a whole generation (Numbers 32:13). But Caleb said, “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.” (v.30). This is the faith we should have in God’s promises (Hebrews 11:1Psalm 73:26) because “we are more than conquerors through Christ” (Romans 8:37). 

Similarly, Jesus promises us abundant life (John 10:10) – a big picture promise. With God’s great promises, come giant-sized challenges. Be strong and courageous (Joshua 1:5-8) and continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12), knowing that “an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade” is awaiting you and “being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6). Amen!