Scripture: “Now these things (what happened to the people of Israel) took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did.
Do not be idolaters as some them were; as it is written, “the people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play.”
We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and 23,000(!!) fell in a single day.
We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents; nor grumble as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer.
Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of ages has come.
Therefore, let anyone who think that he stands take heed (of the above) lest he falls. No temptation has overtaken you that is NOT common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape that you may endure it.” 1 Cor 10:6-13
Observation: What is the function of testing? What is the function of temptation? The answer is surprisingly reasonable if I think about it with a Gospel mindset.
Analysis: The folks in Moses’ time were surprisingly…. well, the word stupid comes to mind. Not willing to be overly critical, though, let me offer that they were “limited in their reasoning and self-discipline.”
The reference above recounts that the Israelites maybe got bored about something, so they sat down and started flipping through the magazine collection taken from Egypt. Getting hungry, some decided to have a block party of potluck. Others thought is was a BYOB potluck, so they brought libations. One thing led to another, lubricated by alcohol, and started playing with each other, maybe coed mud wrestling. This led to that, and that led to something else, and 23,000 died in a single day.
Others grumbled and complained. Their reward? A strong bite of the local rattlesnake or whatever the Destroyer was.
Point is, Israel is an example for us…in a lot of way what NOT to do. But not just not doing, but not having ungodly attitude along with the “not doing.”
Testing is not the function of God trying to see where I am or am not measuring up? God doesn’t need to “test” me for that. I intrinsically and categorically fail to meet his holiness standard and always deserve his justified Wrath. Temptation is in the same category.
No, testing is given to show ME where I don’t measure up. His test, so I can grade my own paper.
If I think that I am good, I am standing strong, then God is faithful…for what? To show me where I am weak.
I am DEPENDENT on God always. First time I think I can be strong independently from His Grace, trying to walk on water cures that thinking fast.
Prayer: Father, keep my head on straight. Independence is among the descriptions of the most heinous sins. I declare and humbly submit my dependent self to you, my Creator and Savior. AMEN.