The Great Sin Of Doing Nothing

Numbers 32:23 (KJV) But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out.

In the Old Testament Israel is a beautiful picture of the life of faith.

When Israel in faith followed God, she walked through the Red Sea as if on dry land. Her enemy – the Egypt that enslaved her – arrogant and sure of itself drowned in that same sea. I heard once of a teacher of History who sneered at the crossing of the Red Sea. In her words she said “everyone knows that the Red Sea was only inches deep at that time of the year, so it took no God to lead Israel across such a pitiful little puddle”. One Christian child – devoted to God as Lord and Savior – cried out “Praise the Lord!”. The teacher, atheistic, foolish, and arrogant, said to the Child of God “Didn’t you hear what I said? The Red Sea was only inches deep.” The Child replied, “Then My Mighty God and Father drowned the entire Egyptian Army in just a few inches of water!” The Bible says:

Exodus 14:28-29 (KJV) And the waters returned, and covered the chariots, and the horsemen, and all the host of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them; there remained not so much as one of them. 29 But the children of Israel walked upon dry land in the midst of the sea; and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.

God is in control!

In the Old Testament Israel is a beautiful picture of the life of faith.
Faith sows faith. Faith works. Faith follows God.

  • Israel crossed the Red Sea because Israel followed God. The Egyptian Armies died in the Red Sea because they followed false gods. Faith follows God.
  • Moses went up into Sinai to receive the Law of God. Israel had Aaron make a Golden Calf to follow. This is not faith, but sin. Faith follows God. When Moses came down the Mountain 3000 people died. The Wages of Sin is DEATH. The way to life is to follow God, for faith follows God.
  • The First Generation of Israel was told to cross the Jordan and take the Promised Land. God would go before them. Ten spies from Israel said “we saw giants in the land, and we were like grasshoppers in their sight” (Numbers 13:33). God said “Go”, the spies said “Stay”, and Israel listened to man rather than God. Faith follows God. Faith moves. Faith speaks. Faith does. Refusing to move, God told that generation:

Numbers 14:32-35 (KJV) But as for you, your carcases, they shall fall in this wilderness. 33 And your children shall wander in the wilderness forty years, and bear your whoredoms, until your carcases be wasted in the wilderness. 34 After the number of the days in which ye searched the land, even forty days, each day for a year, shall ye bear your iniquities, even forty years, and ye shall know my breach of promise. 35 I the LORD have said, I will surely do it unto all this evil congregation, that are gathered together against me: in this wilderness they shall be consumed, and there they shall die.

Faith follows God. Now in our text today Israel stands at the Jordan River once more. Forty years have passed. The first generation of Israel has died in the wilderness. Now Israel stands at the Jordan once more, ready to go in and possess the land. But two tribes – Gad and Reuben

Numbers 32:1 … had a very great multitude of cattle: and when they saw the land of Jazer, and the land of Gilead, that, behold, the place was a place for cattle;

Godf has told His Israel “cross the Jordan”. But Gad and Reuben come to Moses and Eleazar the Priest and to the Elders of Israel and say that they want to stay on this side of the Jordan. They said …

Numbers 32:4-5   Even the country which the LORD smote before the congregation of Israel, is a land for cattle, and thy servants have cattle:  [5]  Wherefore, said they, if we have found grace in thy sight, let this land be given unto thy servants for a possession, and bring us not over Jordan.

We’ll take THIS land. You and the other ten tribes can go over the Jordan, but THIS is a comfortable place. This meets our needs. We want to stay right here.

1 God Calls Every One Of His Children To Walk With Him, To Glorify Him. The biggest
problem the people of God always face
is the people of God.

There is nothing wrong with Reuben and Gad wanting to stay in a place that best suits them – yet God calls His people to work TOGETHER in conquering the land – to be unified in following the Lord.

Moses said to these tribes:

Numbers 32:6-9  And Moses said unto the children of Gad and to the children of Reuben, Shall your brethren go to war, and shall ye sit here?  [7]  And wherefore discourage ye the heart of the children of Israel from going over into the land which the LORD hath given them?  [8]  THUS DID YOUR FATHERS, when I sent them from Kadeshbarnea to see the land.  [9]  For when they went up unto the valley of Eshcol, and saw the land, they discouraged the heart of the children of Israel, that they should not go into the land which the LORD had given them.

The children of the first generation are trying to repeat the error of the first generation. Thus did your fathers. Those who died in the wilderness set a bad example, and had Israel looking at the size of the giants in the land rather than looking at the size of God. Faith follows God. Faith follows God and walks in step with other Children of Faith. Here’s some good quotes:

Those who walk with God, always reach their destination.” Automaker Henry Ford

If I walk with the world, I can’t walk with God.” Evangelist Dwight L. Moody

God’s mighty power comes when God’s people learn to walk with God.” Pastor Jack Hyles

When Jesus prayed for His Church just prior to His Crucifixion He prayed:

John 17:20-26 I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; 21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. 22 And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: 23 I IN THEM, AND YOU IN ME, that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me. 24 Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world. 25 O righteous Father! The world has not known You, but I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me. 26 And I have declared to them Your name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.

When God’s people focus on their Lord and Savior and determine that they will walk TOGETHER then and only then will the Power of God be released. God will not bless the “I” but He will bless the unified “We”. The Apostle Paul said:

Romans 12:4-6,9-10 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. … 9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Vs 10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another;

God’s People are to work together as they follow God. “Kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love”. Not like CAIN was to ABEL, but like CHRIST was to us. As we have been blessed, so do we bless. “In honor giving preference to one another”.

We live in a day of SELFIES and in a day of SIN. We who are His are to go into the land TOGETHER, doing as God has commanded we do.

2 Sins Of Omission Are As Great As Sins Of Commission. We read:

Numbers 32:10-12  And the LORD’S anger was kindled the same time, and he sware, saying,  [11]  Surely none of the men that came up out of Egypt, from twenty years old and upward, shall see the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob; because they have not wholly followed me:  [12]  Save Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite, and Joshua the son of Nun: for they have wholly followed the LORD.

“Kindling” is tiny pieces of trash that are placed under a log to get it burning brightly. What caused the “Lord’s anger to be kindled”? Did they commit one of the works of the flesh? Did they commit …

Galatians 5:19-21 …. Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,  [20]  Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,  [21]  Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings…..

Those who follow after these things “shall not inherit the kingdom of God”, the Scripture declares. We sin when we do what God tells us NOT to do. But we also sin when we DO NOT DO what God has given us to do. God’s anger was kindled “because they have not WHOLLY FOLLOWED ME – except for Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite and Joshua the Son of Nun”. Think about that phrase for a minute:

Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite and Joshua the son of Nun

Caleb was a Kenezite. I’ve read that phrase a dozen times and never noticed that Caleb was a Kenezite. Who were the Kenezites? The Holman Bible Dictionary tells us that:

Clan name of uncertain meaning. Clan God promised Abraham the Israelites would dispossess {in}(Genesis 15:19).

Genesis 15:18-19  In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates:  [19] …. the Kenizzites ….

The Kenizzites lived in the Negev, the southern desert region of Judah, before the conquest of the land by Joshua. The tribe of Judah absorbed some of the Kenizzites while Edom absorbed others. The Kenizzites were probably related to the Kenites from whom they would have learned the craft of metal-working (1 Chronicles 4:13-14 ). They probably derived their name from Kenaz—a descendant of Esau (Genesis 36:11, 36:15 )—who is listed among the Edomite chieftains (Genesis 36:42 ). Jephunneh the Kenizzite may have married a woman of the tribe of Judah. Their son was Caleb (Numbers 32:12; Joshua 14:6; 14:14;15:13).”

What are we being told here? The Kenizzites were part of the Canaanites, a people that the Children of Israel were supposed to dispossess from the land of Canaan.

The Kenizzites were supposed to be chased out of the land along with the Kenites, the Kadmonites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaims, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites, and the Jebusites. Caleb was a Kenizzite by birth, and was often referred to as Caleb the Kenizzite. And yet, Caleb was not being chased out of the land. Caleb was being GRANTED the land, GIVEN the land, because Caleb followed the Lord.

The Lord blesses those who follow Him. Do not believe you can do NOTHING and be blessed of God. To do nothing, to say nothing, is to be like the light bulb that will not light or the door that will not open. That which will do nothing for God will receive nothing of God. The Scripture says:

James 4:17  Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.

When God sets an open door before us and says “Go” we are to go. Canaan was an open door. God told His people to “go” into Canaan. Yet they would not go, and so God cursed them. Faith goes when God says go, and stays when God says stay. The first part of the Great Commission:

Matthew 28:19   GO ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

is the word GO. I have heard people debate about the word, arguing that it more appropriately ought to be translated as you are going. Ok, fine. As you are going. But nonetheless Jesus expected every disciple to GO AND TELL SOMEBODY His Gospel. It does not mean to sit on the couch eating potato chips and watching reruns of old televisions shows. GO MEANS GO. It is an action verb. Because we have not been telling and the devil has continued working the darkness is every growing. GO. TEACH. BAPTIZE. DO. Moses told

Numbers 32:14-15  And, behold, ye are risen up in your fathers’ stead, an increase of sinful men, to augment yet the fierce anger of the LORD toward Israel.  [15]  For if ye turn away from after him, he will yet again leave them in the wilderness; and ye shall destroy all this people.

YOU shall destroy ALL THIS PEOPLE

The sin of omission is a destructive sin for it – like rot – creeps through an entire organization. Jesus said in John 14:27   Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

A Christian says “I have not felt this peace of God in a long time. Why is God so unfaithful?” God is not unfaithful –

1 Corinthians 1:9  God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

But have YOU been faithful?

  • Are you faithfully confessing your sins to God as soon as they manifest – or are you yet unwashed? I must take a bath daily if I do not expect to be offensive to others. A Christian must bathe daily in the Blood of Christ through confession.

    1 John 1:8-9  If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.  [9]  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

The sin of Achan (Joshua 7) was to take something that God said do not take (sin of commission) then to hide that sin (sin of omission). This sin cost Achan his life, and the lives of his family. Root out the sins in your life. Confess them before God.

Cleanse yourselves daily before you stink up the camp!
A little sin unconfessed becomes a big sin unforgiven.

  • Are you walking in the Light of God in one accord with your Christian Family? Have you forgiven the trespasses of those who have trespassed against you? Or are you carrying a grudge?

When you carry a grudge, after a while that grudge will carry YOU.
If you expect forgiveness from God you must give forgiveness to others.

Corrie Ten Boom wrote in her devotional I Stand At The Door And Knock:

But now, to be at peace with my fellow human beings – that is often a problem for me. Usually people are so good and friendly towards me, but sometimes … and then having to forgive! To forgive just as we expect the Lord to forgive us. Jesus said that if we don’t do it, w won’t receive forgiveness ourselves, so we have to. If you don’t forgive, you break the bridge – the same bridge that you need as well.”

When I have seen congregations dying, they are usually dying because of disharmony amongst it’s members. Grudges and anger are like cancers in the body of Christ. They must be expunged – or the offenders must be cut off!

  • Are you feeding daily on the Word of God, prayerfully seeking His face? It is good to come to Church and hear the Word, but you must meditate on His Word daily. The Bible tells us that …

    2 Timothy 3:16-17  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:  [17]  That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

There are countries so poor and persecuted that Christians are not allowed to have Bibles. I have known Pastors who have been given the Bible who tore it up and distributed it among the saints. We in America have no such excuse. Most homes have more than one Bible – and most are on the shelf gathering dust.

We cannot be furnished to do the good work of God unless we read and meditate on the Great Word of God. His Word must be in our hearts daily. We must read and meditate on this precious Asset.

3 The Way To Blessing Is To DO What God Says. After Moses rebuke to Gad and Reuben the tribal representatives told him:

Numbers 32:16-18 … We will build sheepfolds here for our cattle, and cities for our little ones:  [17]  But we ourselves will go ready armed before the children of Israel, until we have brought them unto their place: and our little ones shall dwell in the fenced cities because of the inhabitants of the land.  [18]  We will not return unto our houses, until the children of Israel have inherited every man his inheritance.

We will work together with our brothers and sisters to do as God has called. What a beautiful spirit there is when God’s people work together for His glory! The Bible tells us to …

Galatians 6:9-10  And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.  [10]  As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

I close with this wonderful story that I heard the other day. John Stonestreet of the Colson Center wrote:

In 9th grade …. I didn’t really have much of a faith that I could call my own. That all began to change on the last day of classes before Christmas break in December of 1990. Now we all know what’s supposed to happen on the last day of classes before Christmas break: not much. Well, that day, my Bible teacher announced that our boys Bible class was being sent out two by two to visit the elderly “shut-ins” of our church. I suppose the intention was to bring Christmas cheer, but as you might imagine, that’s not what happened. The only thing we wanted to do less than school work on the last day of classes before Christmas break was visit old people we’d never met. My only consolation was that I was paired with my friend Brian. He shared my disdain for the assignment we’d been given. “What are we going to do?” I asked. “I don’t want to go see any old people.” “I’ve got an idea,” Brian replied. “We’ll go visit one person, but say that we couldn’t find the other person’s house. That way, we’ll be done fast and can go to the mall.” And that’s how I met Ms. Buckner. She lived down a windy, rural Virginia road in a small little apartment her grandson had built for her on the end of his farmhouse. She invited us inside, and there we were: an 11th grader, a ninth grader, and an 89-year-old widow. We didn’t have a lot in common. Just when we thought it couldn’t possibly get any more awkward, Ms. Buckner said, “Let’s sing Christmas carols together.” We stumbled our way through Silent Night, and then she decided one carol was enough. “Well, Ms. Buckner,” Brian said, “we’d best be on our way.” “Yes,” I lied, “we still have one more person to visit before heading back to school.” And then she asked, “Can we pray together before you go?” So I prayed, and Brian prayed—that took about 45 seconds. But then Ms. Buckner prayed. At that point, I’d been in the church my whole life. I’d heard thousands of prayers. But I had never heard anything like this. I remember looking up just make sure that Jesus wasn’t sitting next to her, because it sure sounded like He was. She spoke to God as if she knew Him, with a simultaneous confidence and humility that only comes when you’re certain you’re being heard. We left her house and headed to the mall, distracted by our plan to meet some girls. … Two years later, I woke up with the strangest feeling. Typically, I’d wake up thinking about basketball or my girlfriend, but I woke up this particular morning thinking of Ms. Buckner. And to this day, I have no idea why. But I ended up going back down that windy road to her house. “Ms. Buckner,” I said, “you probably don’t remember me, but two years ago I came here with my friend Brian. My name is John.” “John,” she smiled. “I prayed for you this morning.” From that point on, Ms. Buckner became a close personal friend. In fact, she prayed for me every day for the rest of her life. …

God answers prayers – but prayers must be prayed. God blessed faith, but faith must be lived. Rouse yourselves. Get up and follow Christ. Go. Tell. Read. Pray. Do. There is no blessing in doig nothing and grumbling. Do. Be a part, or be apart. It is your choice.

May God touch your hearts with His Word.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. I am looking for the Church. Most of what I see today is not the Church, but clubs, where members sit in padded pews and drink deeply of self. I am looking for a people willing to be righteous not self righteous, serving not served, In short, I am looking and praying for a people who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. I hope I find this people before it's too late.
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