Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go up to this mountain of Abarim, and see the land which I have given to the sons of Israel. 13 When you have seen it, you too will be gathered to your people, as Aaron your brother was; (Numbers 27:12-13 NASB).
The Consequences of Disobedience
Moses was instructed by the Lord to go up to the mountain to view the Promised Land. His disobedience at the waters of Meribah in the wilderness of Zin will disallow his entrance into Canaan with Israel. As he looked out across the land that God had promised to Israel, he must have been tempted to muse on thoughts of the past. He may have remembered the grumbling of God’s people and how he had to plead with the Lord not to destroy them. He could have reminisced on how Aaron and Miriam resisted his leadership and God’s authority and how he had forgiven them and prayed for their restoration. So many times, he had put others first to the detriment of himself, yet now, he will not be permitted to cross the Jordan with them. How would you and I have responded to God’s discipline? Probably not like Moses did.
The Servant Leader
Then Moses spoke to the Lord, saying, 16 “May the Lord, the God of the spirits of all flesh, appoint a man over the congregation, who will go out and come in before them, and who will ead them out and bring them in, so that the congregation of the Lord will not be like sheep which have no shepherd.” (Numbers 27:15-17 NASB)
In the midst of what should have been the disappointment of being excluded from the triumphal entry, we see Moses still focused on God’s purposes and the good of his people. He was actively seeking to see the promise fulfilled even though it will be not be consummated through him but through his understudy, Joshua. It was not about him but about God’s designs and plans.
From that mountaintop, Moses may have seen Joshua doing great exploits for God as he gazed out over this good land in the eye of faith. Based on his response in verses 16 and 17, Moses must have said in his heart, thank you, Lord, because it is not about me, but You. This is the expression that must reverberate in the hearts of all servant leaders.
Ken Barnes, the author of “The Chicken Farm and Other Sacred Places” YWAM Publishing