At the Lord’s command Moses recorded the stages in their journey. Numbers 33:2
I have made two big moves to date. Once as a child and once with children of my own. I know those in the military that have moved mega amounts of times and have friends all around the world. They are move experts however it only takes one move to realize its not easy. The last move I made was in 115 degree heat. My husband was about ready to leave everything to melt right were it was instead of load it into the moving van! I wonder if the Israelites ever felt the same in their FORTY moves through the desert!!?!
The number 40 is mentioned 146 times in the bible and generally represents a time of testing, trial or probation. For example…
-Moses lived 40 years in the desert before God showed up to him in the burning bush.
-Moses spent 40 days on the mountain receiving the ten commandments.
-Spies investigated the promised land for 40 days.
-Jonah warned Nineveh for 40 days.
-Ezekiel laid on his side 40 days to symbolize Judah’s sin.
-Jesus was tempted in the desert for 40 days.
-Jesus appeared to others for 40 days after His resurrection.
So the number of times the Israelites had to move before entering the promised land is by no coincidence the number 40. God knows moving is hard. By asking Moses to record the stages of their moves I believe God was wanting to focus their attention on something or rather Someone.
Let’s say you have never moved so I’ll ask you to record your last 5 birthdays, or if you are a parent, the births of your children. As you recall and write them down undoubtedly memories, details, you may have long forgotten will come flooding back. I believe God was having Moses record the stages of their journey in order to get them to see with 20/20 hindsight vision, His faithfulness. He always showed up in each and every one of their 40 moves!! Thus strengthening their faith in Him to always be with them in the future, no matter what.
Jesus, help me to be diligent about recording the stages of my journey with You. Never let me miss or forget how You have always been faithful in the big, the small, the messy and the beautiful of life.
Independent Read: Hebrews 12:2, Matthew 28:20, Joshua 1:9, Zechariah 4:6, Isaiah 30:21