God's Desire--Or Ours?

". . . He gave them their own desire" Psalm 78:29.

This account of God dealing with His people has much to say to the twenty-first century church, and is found in both Numbers 11:4-34 and Psalm 78:28-41. Although I have quoted only a small portion, I commend it all to you—it's rich!

The Subject: LUST. In context, yearning for something other than the Lord's provision.
The Setting: Israel in the desert—miraculously freed from Egyptian bondage.
The Scene: Complaining.
The Source: Ungratefulness for God's provision. Manna had become monotonous. They wanted meat to eat—and they wanted it now!
The Summation: Fulfilled desire and death.

Let's take a look at Numbers 11:31,33,34:

Verse 31 "And there went forth a wind from the Lord, and brought quails from the sea, and let them fall by the camp, as it were a day's journey on this side, and as it were a day's journey on the other side, round about the camp, and as it were two cubits high upon the face of the earth."

God's people gathered quail for 36 hours without stopping. The least aggressive collected 110 bushels.

Verse 33 "And while the flesh was yet between their teeth, ere it was chewed, the wrath of the Lord was kindled against the people, and the Lord smote the people with a very great plague."
Verse 34 "And He called the name of that place Kibrothhattaavah: because there they buried the people that lusted."

Have you ever felt that we are being buried in "things"? That the need to have—for example, more clothes or a newer car, or a better house—is becoming our preoccupation, even in the church? We often blame Madison Avenue for this condition. Could it be, instead, that God is giving us our own desire—that He is cursing us through abundance?

Complaining that warrants this type of judgment does not have to take the form of open rebellion. We can express our dissatisfaction with what God has provided by trying to obtain "more" through:

  • working too many hours
  • having multiple family members entering the work force
  • simply using our credit card (frequently the predecessor of the others).

Each of us must constantly be on guard lest we, too, become ungrateful for that which we have, and desire more.

Solution: Matthew 6:33: "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."

Taking our spending to the Lord before making a purchase is one way of seeking Him first.

Cite this article: Manning, T. 2001. God's Desire—or Ours? Acts & Facts. 30 (3).

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