Explore The Bible Study: God Requires

2:59 PM

If you turn on the tv, follow social media, or read the news you will notice that we are a society built off of complaints. If someone doesn't like something or someone, they tend to launch a barrage of uncontrolled complaints. If you are the recipient of the complaint, you might become very frustrated and attempt to take control of the situation instead of seeking guidance from God and following His instructions. The Explore the Bible Study: God Requires, will focus on this subject.

Much of Numbers repeatedly describes the Israelites' complaints against God, as-well-as the resulting consequences. The Israelites’ complaining reached a climax when they refused to believe that the Lord would give them the promised land in Numbers 15. The consequences resulted in 40 years of wandering as the doubting generation died off. Only Joshua and Caleb, of that generation, would be permitted to enter Canaan.

As they wandered in the wilderness, God continued to work despite their complaining and rebellious nature. He continued to help them become the people that He had declared as His chosen people.
  • Numbers 17 records how God vindicated Aaron and chose Him to represent the tribe of Levi. The true priestly line would lie only in Aaron and his family (Numbers 17:1-13). 
  • In Numbers 18, God outlined the priestly duties, the guidelines for approaching the sacred altar, and how a portion of the sacrificial offerings given would support the Levites because they were not allowed to own land. They were to serve God exclusively, and the Israelites were to tithe their produce and livestock to support the Levites. 
  • In Numbers 19, Moses recorded the Lord’s requirements for a purification ritual involving a red cow or heifer in order to purify the Israelites from ceremonial defilement. 
Then, in Numbers 20:1-13 the complaints of the people are recorded again. Imagine you are striving to do all you can to help people follow God. You have seen God work in amazing ways, yet everyone continues to complain. How would you respond? Would your response be justified? Moses had some choices to make; we can learn from his experiences, how to respond to others who might complain about us or our God.

The following video could be used to introduce the way people respond when others are complaining.

Numbers 20 emphasizes the Lord’s requirement that His people trust Him as they faced tough times. At Kadesh, the Israelites characteristically complained because they lacked water. Moses uncharacteristically disobeyed the Lord by striking the rock twice instead of speaking to it as the Lord commanded. As a result, the Lord denied Moses and Aaron entrance into the promised land.

Challenge your group to consider the way they lead others at home, at church, at work, or in other situations. Lead them to answer the following questions:
  • Are you passionate about helping people move forward with God?
  • When people don’t respond to you as they should, perhaps complaining or rebelling: How do you respond to them? Do you lose your cool? Do you get alone with God to seek His instructions? Do you follow His instructions when they become clear?

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