The Israelites traveled on. They wanted to go back to Egypt. Sinai. It is the children of the generation that left Egypt who will take on the task of nation-building. We must remember that Scripture is never in error. EXODUS 16:2-3- 2. He told Moses he would not help them anymore. The Israelites followed Moses. But some of the spies were afraid of the people of Canaan. The harsh truth is that most Jews find it easier and more comfortable to live under foreign rule than to have to build their own self-governing society and nation. … They could not drink it. The Israelites in the Wilderness. However, almost immediately, the people of Israel, faced with the problems of the real world, turned sullen and rebellious. Suddenly, everything collapses. They eventually backed up their report with personal agendas, woeful predictions and demagogic pronouncements. Jesus forgave them. Israel was not wandering for 40 years in the desert. Moses’ final words to the Jewish people are words of love and blessing. Moses and the Israelites traveled for three days. God’s provisions included all the necessary sustenance (both food and water) Israel would need during their 40 year sojourn through the wilderness. With his defeat and elimination, the situation can return to a manageable normalcy. Another major incident in the desert was the attempt of a Moabite king Balak to hire a non-Jewish prophet, Balaam, to curse the Jewish people (Numbers 22-24). They were human. There are no more Jews in numbers sufficient to speak of in Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, The Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, etc. Moses lived in the wilderness for neither several days nor a couple of years, but for as long as 40 years. The Israelites came to the land of Canaan. This was the Jewish heartland for centuries. Moses, who is the supreme realist, nevertheless emphasizes that blessings overcome curses and that eventually goodness triumphs over evil. Its narrative is never restricted to dry facts alone, but comes to reveal the human factors and the psychological/spiritual import of events. Deuteronomy 32:49â52; 34:1â7; Alma 45:19. Balaam organizes boycotts, and speaks in the name of skewed justice and human rights. Numbers 11-21 contains seven narratives about Israel’s rebellion as they journey through the wilderness. (In Exodus 16:3 the Israelites complained that they did not have enough to eat.) Be encouraged and … Exodus 16:12-15 shows that God did this in the form of manna and quail. In the end, God turns Balaam’s curses into blessings. The exultation of Israel at seeing its hated oppressors destroyed at its feet knew no bounds. The people were big and strong. Korah — a leader of the tribe of Levi, one of the bearers of the Holy Ark, the wealthiest man in Israel, and a close relative of Moses and Aaron — aroused others to mutiny and appoint him leader. The failings of Israel in the wilderness were caused by their misconception of what they would find in the desert. They would die in the wilderness. 3. Balak threatens physical extermination, openly stating his aims and threats. King James Bible: In the third month, when the children of Israel were gone forth out of the land of Egypt, the same day came they into the wilderness of Sinai. The Israelites went back into the wilderness. 38 years and 17 campsites later, they returned to Kadesh. Were Israelites tired of the “evening meal of quail” or did God stop sending it? “Wilderness wandering” refers to the plight of the Israelites due to their disobedience and unbelief. It seems, however, that God had other plans for our ancestors. Nearly 3,500 years ago, the Lord delivered His people from Egyptian … Let’s look at the passages in question.Many commentators over the years have tried to explain these differences with various ideas. A mighty and unforeseen wind uproots them after centuries of living there and they move on to new shores. He is hired by Israel’s enemies to curse G… They were not happy. They were thirsty. He has already warned the people of his dark visions about their future and has advised them of the terrible costs that will be exacted from them in their long exile. Then the cloud went away from the tabernacle. When they grumbled that they were starving, it meant they merely didn’t want what the Lord had provided, but wanted something else, perhaps the delicacies and portions they once had in Egypt. Moses led the people in the wilderness for forty years. Additionally, how long did the Israelites travel from Egypt to Canaan? To the Israelites who were in their teens, they didn’t reach the Promised Land until they had turned 50 or 60 years old. The 40 years in the desert was both harsh and necessary for the Jewish people to become who they would be. And the children of Israel Deut 1:3 In the fortieth year, on the first day of the eleventh month, Moses spoke to the people of Israel according to all that the LORD had given him in commandment to them, They were angry at Moses. Moses saw the land of Canaan. Water came out of the rock. He’s the chief spokesperson for God to his people, and vice versa.Aaron—Moses’ brother, and the high priest of Israel.Eleazar—Aaron’s son, who takes his place when Aaron dies.Balaam—A diviner for hire from far away. Jesus sent them manna. Read 5 Lessons We Can Learn from the Israelites' Wandering Years - Your Daily Bible Verse - July 1 from today's daily devotional. They did not have faith in God. I find the thoughts expressed here true and meaningful. This means they didn’t lack food. Balak is brutal, direct and minces no words. The true reason for that is because Korah wished to convert Judaism to a man-made “democratic” faith, not its original and true source as a faith revealed to humans from on high, a faith and life system ordained in Heaven and revealed to humans. The Israelites were afraid. They wanted some meat. Moses, the most humble of all humans, reacted in an uncharacteristically harsh manner. And the children of Israel said unto them. God said they must live in the wilderness for forty years. The people got tired of eating manna. There is no mention that the “evening meal of meat” (quail) mentioned in Exodus 16:12 ever stopped. Moses asked God to forgive them. Very moving article as I am just re-reading the beginning of the Bible. In the first three months, the children of Israel left Egypt and went to Horeb in the wilderness of Sinai. Then God took Moses. After the ancient Israelites left Egypt and came out of slavery, God commanded Moses to have them set up their Wilderness Camp in a specific way. The time at Sinai was not idle. It was the promised land. Corresponding to the 40 days that the spies toured the land, God decreed that the Israelites would wander in the wilderness for 40 years as a result of their unwillingness to take the land. Israel was sentenced to 40 years in the Wilderness Journey at Kadesh/Rithmah. Therefore, it was not merely Moses and his leadership that were the core issues in this dispute, but the very definition of Judaism: Is it revealed and Godly or man-made and invented? With the most positive of intentions, Moses commissioned twelve leaders to spy out the land God had promised (Numbers 13:1-16). Although Korah couched his motivation in idealistic-ideological terms — that all of the people are holy and worthy and Moses had no right to rule over them in a single-handed fashion (Numbers 16:3) – his real motivation was personal vendetta against those who had failed to appoint him to the high office he thought he deserved. They remained camped in this area for two years. Exodus 15:22–23. Apparently there is no human force possessed by the Jewish people that can safely counteract Balaam’s venom. But he would not let them go into the promised land. Jesus Christ told Moses how to get water. The exile mentality of the Jewish people, formed already in Egyptian bondage over three millennia ago, remains part of Jewish DNA even today. That honor and opportunity would be given to the next generation. Amalek was defeated by Joshua and Moses, but the mere fact that such an attack occurred so soon after the events of the exodus had a disheartening effect upon the people. Both Balak and Balaam are recurring characters in the Jewish story throughout the ages and present in our current world. However, its lessons were absorbed and translated into Jewish individual and public life, and thus have proven to be of eternal value. Balaam, on the other hand, is suave, cunning, full of sweet words and blessings, but no less inimical to the existence of the Jewish people. Their children would grow up and go into the promised land. Though we don’t know how he made it through those years, there is no doubt that God had always led and helped him. The future is still within our grasp to improve and succeed. The Israelites followed the cloud into the wilderness. Then the cloud went away from the tabernacle. God Doesn’t Keep Us in the Desert Forever Forty years sounds like a long time. To many of those Israelites who came out of Egypt, the promise of deliverance had proven false. God was teaching Israel to rely on him. So we must let Scripture shed light on itself. The tree made the water taste good. Numbers 13–14 describes the punishment of the generation of the wilderness. Sinai in … The Torah nowhere describes the demise of Balak; it only deals with the death of Balaam. I find it true and a new revelation of Biblical truth. Food, water and shelter were all lacking. They brought many kinds of fruit. Exodus 16:2-3 Then the whole congregation of the children of Israel complained against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. Answer: “Wilderness wandering” refers to the plight of the Israelites due to their disobedience and unbelief. It is striking that many of the great men named at the beginning of Numbers are no longer there at the end of the book. was unable to convince his generation about the importance of the Land of Israel. He told Moses to take the Israelites back into the wilderness. The Torah is not intended as a history book. The Israelites experienced this wilderness as they journeyed from their bondage in Egypt to the promised land. They thought they could not capture the land of Canaan. Nehemiah 9:21 points out that when the Israelites wandered for 40 years, they lacked nothing. Whereas Balak seems to be safely ignored by heaven, not so Balaam. The Israelites lived at Mount Sinai for a year. The Scouts Story and the Wilderness Wandering. Soon they were complaining. The laws of geometry teach us that the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Why did Israel have to eat strange food called manna during … The Israelites spent the 12th month (Adar – Feb-Mar) of the 40th year grieving the death of Moses for 30 days, as was their custom. That is still a lot of travelling for 600,000 men plus women and children and animals. They told Moses they wanted water. But because we are plagued by minds that are broken due to living in a sin-cursed world, we can never perfectly understand everything. After Moses sends twelve spies to scout out the land and bring back pertinent information, they return with tales of the great power of the natives there, and the Israelites are scared and refuse to enter the land. Instead they returned with a report about the land and its inhabitants whose negative parts overwhelmed the positive statements they uttered (Numbers 13:27-29). Forty Years in the Wilderness The Israelites lived at Mount Sinai for a year. The Israelites listened to the spies. Food, water and shelter were all lacking. When Moses was 120 years old, God told him to go to a mountain. Why did the Israelites not eat meat from their vast herds of animals? The Reubenite Line – The infamous pair of Reubenites, Dothan and Abiram, who rebelled against Moses’ authority during the wilderness wanderings, were the grandsons of Palu (Num 26:8–9), who in turn is mentioned in Gen 46:9 as one of the 70 migrants to Egypt. He cursed them with forty years of wilderness wandering until the unbelieving generation died off, never stepping foot in the Promised Land. Victories and triumphs inevitably are followed by letdowns, frustrations and disappointments. And Moses was powerless to tell the people to reject the negative report. A mood of wild depression overwhelmed Israel and God informed them that they would not enter the Promised Land. They said the land was very good. During this time, God Almighty did draw close to them . Nearly 3,500 years ago, the Lord delivered His people from Egyptian bondage as described in Exodus, chapters 1–12. It was the land God had promised the Israelites. But now Jews have moved on again to other shores. The older Israelites did not have faith in God. If only the Jewish people hadnt skipped that class while enslaved in Egypt, perhaps it wouldnt have taken them 40 years to arrive at the Promised Land. However, it is Balaam who carries the key to the ultimate resolution of the situation. The end result of the rebellion was that the Earth miraculously opened and swallowed up Korah and his followers, dragging them down into bottomless pit of no return (as, historically, has been the fate of man-made “Judaisms” over the centuries). Think about the metrics of their dire situation: FOOD: God’s people had to be fed daily. The question arises why Moses, who was able to convince Israel to leave Egypt, march through the desert, accept the yoke of the Torah, reject the Golden Calf, build the Tabernacle, etc. There is no bread or water, and we detest this wretched food!” 6 So the LORD sent venomous snakes among the people, and many of the Israelites were bitten and died. Jesus told Moses to put a tree in the water. The Wilderness of Sinai was the last stop of the Exodus where Israel camped for 11 months and 5 days: a. Israel arrived at the final camp in front of Mt. Nevertheless, his populist slogan resonated amongst the Jews and hundreds of leading kinsmen joined him in his complaint against Moses’ rule. The paradigm of Jewish history in exile is that Jews arrive at a new destination, settle, help develop that country, begin to feel at home and attempt to assimilate into the majority culture and society. The wilderness through which Israel traveled on their way to the Promised Land was a hard place. The Book of Numbers concludes detailing all the places the Jews stayed from the time they left Egypt to the end of their 40 years in the desert. Pretty soon the people ran out of the food they‟d brought from Egypt and they began to worry again. The Bronze Serpent … 5 and spoke against God and against Moses: “Why have you led us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? They had never been slaves; had never known the taskmaster’s whip. Jesus said he would lead the Israelites to the promised land. The people drank the water. Every way station and desert oasis is recorded to serve as a reminder that the future of the Jewish people lies only in the Land of Israel. The 40-year wilderness wandering by Moses and the Israelites must be one of the biggest miracles in the Bible, yet we take it for granted. But it’s worth it. Then the first month (Nisan – Mar-Apr) of their 41st year is when they e ntered the Promised Land (Joshua 4:19.) The existence of the Jewish people itself is somehow seen as a lethal threat to him and Moab. Thus, the recording of all of the travels and way stations that the Jews experienced in their years in the Sinai desert is a small prophecy as to the future historical experiences of Jews over millennia of wandering. Their lack of belief in God’s word and promises brought forth the wrath of God. Jews are inveterate travelers. The time of Wandering in the Wilderness lasted 40 years. But behind that veneer of sincerity and good intentions lays the real villain of the story – the greedy, frustrated, amoral Jew-hater. However, almost immediately, the people of Israel, faced with the problems of the real world, turned sullen and rebellious. The Book of Deuteronomy, which consists of the final lectures of Moses during his last month on Earth, is the most human of all of the five books of the Torah. The spies came back. And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness: 3. They came to some water. They were subject to attack by those who … The Israelites were to wander in the wilderness for 40 years before they would be allowed to enter the Promised Land!!! It was the understanding and true meaning of Judaism. The lesson was learned and Moses’ leadership was never questioned again. Even when God performed miracles to take care of those needs their mood of foreboding and pessimism was not easily dispelled. The exultation of Israel at seeing its hated oppressors destroyed at its feet knew no bounds. Of the 300 days after arrival at Mount Sinai, the first 95 days Its wildest dreams of success and achievement had been fulfilled and realized. Like one domino falling after another, rebellion broke out in the camp directly following the failure of the spies. It is a book designed to address humanity’s achievements and foibles, grandeur and pettiness, and great capacity to do good and be evil. The Israelites complained for the same reasons we all do. And this mood was heightened by the sudden unprovoked attack of Amalek (Exodus 17:8). The fourth book of the Torah, The Book of Numbers, is devoted to the narrative of the experiences of the Jewish people during their 40-year sojourn in the wilderness of Sinai. He taught them the commandments of God. Copyright © JewishHistory.com & The Destiny Foundation. On that basic core issue of Judaism, Moses saw no room for compromise or tolerance. He undoubtedly had unquestioned trust in their piety and wisdom, and expected them to return with an enthusiastic assessment of the Land of Israel. God’s Provisions and Israel’s Failure. Positions of power take their toll on their holders. The desert was a harsh learning place for the Jewish people. They did not like the wilderness. The Second Complaint: no food! A case in point is the fact that the clothes and shoes of the Israelites did not wear out in the 40 years of desert wandering because God saw to it (Deuteronomy 8:4; Nehemiah 9:21). It is full of character sketches and descriptions of people who by their actions changed the course of Jewish history, not only in the desert of Sinai but for all times as well. In their long exile there is almost no place in the world they have not visited, settled and eventually moved from. Moses hit a rock two times with his rod. This is a struggle that many people face at least one time or another in life: a reluctance to try something new, to veer off into uncharted territory, to stray from our comfort zones, all at the risk of traveling a path tha… Moses sent twelve spies into the land of Canaan. The actual trip should have taken 11 days. The spiritual aspect expressed by Balaam vs. the phsical aspect expressed by Balak is a new thought for me. He is a prophet, soothsayer and “holy” man, possessed of great charisma and intelligence. For almost 38 years they were in Kadesh Barnea and for almost 1 year they were at Mount Sinai. He had them build a Tabernacle (temporary dwelling place) so that He could dwell among them. Unfortunately, this road trip goes south quickly. The priests carried the ark of the covenant in front of them. (Horeb is another name for Mount Sinai). 2. 1. THE DAILY NEEDS OF ISRAEL IN THE WILDERNESS. 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