Monday, October 08, 2007

Why Did God Not Teleport the Israelites? or "Beam me Up, Scotty"

So, if God could bring all the Israelites through the Red Sea on dry ground, could bring water out of rocks, bread out of the sky, frogs covering everything, could he not transport the Israelites directly from Egypt to Canaan? He seemed to have divinely transported Philip in Acts. Why not just skip the whole desert wanderings?

There is something about the journey that happened to the Israelites. Obviously they received the law from God on Mt. Sinai, but their identity was shaped by their moments in the desert. In Jeremiah 2, God compares the time in the desert to a honeymoon. Some honeymoon! But think about how God lavished his love on Israel, pouring forth miracle after miracle. Think about the dependence Israel showed to Him.

There is a strange desire within us to "just get through this" as if what lies on the other side will bring us our greatest contentment (think the weekend, release of a new movie, finishing of a large project). But what if "this" is exactly where God wants us? What if "this" is where God wants to lavish himself on us?

3 comments:

Sam said...

I concur about the here and now. We must rid ourselves of worry, and of pushing through things just to get to the end. But if we're living in a place where we see dimly, shouldn't we want to see face to face?

I think there's some amount of tension/paradox here. My $0.02

Timothy Miller said...

"Some honeymoon!"

Seriously. I generally am concerned with my happiness, while He seems annoyingly concerned with my holiness.

Josh said...

Sam, let's move with the paradox idea. We do want to see face to face, to know completely, to be without the plague of sin, yet God is calling us to grow in contentment while we're waiting.

Tim, holiness...mine or his?