Let’s give a brief overview of what we saw this today and then try to add some significance to it. We begin with the giving of the quail to the people of Israel because they were complaining that they were not eating meat. Yeah, I probably would have been complaining in that crowd with the non-meat diet. God provided, but notice that he wasn’t exactly pleased with the people of Israel in His provision. Why do they complain so much? Moses’ statement in 11:29 where he wishes that God would put his Spirit on all people comes to fruition on the day of Pentecost.
Chapter 12 is a fun story of Moses’ siblings being jealous about him and the punishment of Miriam because of that. We then move into the spies who look at the land and see it flowing with milk and honey but 10 out of twelve are afraid and say that we should not enter the land because it is filled with scary people. This next chapter is crucial because it is the first time that we see that the people lose their promised entry into the, well, promised land. Because they were afraid and refused to go into the land God tells them that they will wander in the wilderness for 40 years. We them move into the traditional sacrifices and what they are good for.
Moses continues to remain faithful to the Lord and yet the people remain unfaithful. Moses’ patience is tested as he cries out to God and asks God am I the one who birthed all of these people, and since I did not, why am I responsible for their action and why do I have to hold them by the hand and lead them to righteousness. It is a fair question.
When we get to I Corinthians we see right from the beginning that the Apostle Paul is upset with them because there were divisions within the community. Paul is not a fan of divisions because he says that they are caused by factions who want to take the credit for people’s experience with God. It is God who should take all the credit. We will see more from Corinthians.