“They left the mountains of Abarim and camped on the plains of Moab by the Jordan across from Jericho.” (Numbers 33:48)
I’ve always loved maps. Put a map in my hand, and I’ll be busy for an hour, I love to explore. Numbers 33 is like a map. It traces the 40-year wilderness journey of Israel from Egypt to the plains of Moab.
What can we learn from a chapter like this? It reminds us that Israel never settled during the 40 years. They were always on the move. They went from one place to another. They lived in tents that could be set up and taken down. Only one place was home: Canaan, the land God had promised them.
In some ways this is what life is to be like for God’s people today. This world, as it is now, is not our home. As Christians, we know that when we die, our souls will live with the Lord in heaven — and then, when he returns, we will live with him in the new heaven and earth. So while we care for the earth God has given us to live on, we do not hold tightly to the things of this world. We don’t have to look far to see that this world and its ways are broken. Many good things remain, but this is not our permanent home. That can only be with God, the Lord of our lives.
Have you become comfortable with this world’s pleasures, pursuits, and passions? Are you living as if life here is permanent? Remember, a home with the Lord is prepared for us (Hebrews 11:16). Jesus is there. So let’s keep our eyes fixed on him.
Lord Jesus, may the joys of life in your presence be our joy. Help us to share our hope with others around us. Amen.