NASHVILLE (BP) — This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, LifeWay publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.
This week’s Bible study is adapted from The Gospel Project curriculum.
Bible Passages: Numbers 13:1-2, 30-33; Numbers 14:1-4, 30-35
— How can we glorify God and make His glory known through our lives?
— What should it look like to share the Gospel with urgency?
— How have you grieved over sin recently? Have you focused on the sin itself or on the consequences of sin?
Food for Thought:
Read Numbers 14:26-45. God’s glory is paramount to Him and by extension, it should be for us as well. That’s why He created us — to glorify Him (Isaiah 43:7). That is why He formed a nation through Abraham and his descendants, so that He might be glorified through His great and glorious acts of redemption.
The wondrous beauty of it all is that the salvation of people is one of the greatest ways God makes His glory known. The Israelites missed this and suffered the consequences.
In Numbers 14:30-35 we see the chilling reality of the consequences of sin. The Israelites had disobeyed God time and time again, and time and time again, God had been patient with them (v. 11). But now their rebellion had earned their eventual death in the wilderness because “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). God had been patient with these people, but God’s patience does not mean He will spare sinners from the consequences of their sin forever.
After God pronounced judgment on the Israelites for their disobedience, the people responded by grieving. However, there is a difference between grieving sin and grieving the consequences of sin.
When we grieve the consequences of sin, we are distraught by being disciplined or because we missed out on something that we wanted. The focus is on us. But when we grieve sin itself, we are distraught because our fellowship with God has been disrupted and we are failing to glorify God as He deserves. The focus is on God.
The Israelites’ willingness to go into the promised land without the presence of God shows that they hadn’t repented of their sin. They didn’t want God’s presence; they wanted God’s presents. The worst place for us to be is in sin because it disrupts our fellowship with God. Having anything without God is far worse than having nothing with God. We need to remember this, let God drive it into our hearts, and be quick to grieve over our sin, not just its consequences.
The Gospel Project
The Gospel Project is a chronological, Christ-centered study for kids, students and adults. The Bible is not a collection of stories. It is one story of God’s plan to rescue His people from sin and death. It is the story of redemption, the gospel message of Jesus Christ. More information can be found at LifeWay.com/gospelproject .