Shelach (Send thou)

Torah: Numbers 13:1-15:41 Haftarah: Joshua 2:1-24 Brit Chadasha: Luke 10:1-20

The Strongman

This week’s portion is the famous story of the twelve spies sent out into the land.  I would like to draw your attention to something that I have pointed out in the Yachad (In One Accord) series.  We all know the story of the giants in the land and how fearful the Israelites were of these guys.  There are several issues here and a big one of those issues was lack of faith in the God of Avraham, Yitzhak, and Yaakov.  That is a given because Yahweh had already told the children of Yisrael several times that he was going to give them the land.

[i] We must not condemn the Yisralites too harshly because you and I have been in the same situations in our lives at some point and time where when the going gets tough we seem to forget about the promises of Yahweh and what He has for us.       This is going to be one of the main tests that we will find ourselves in during the tribulation.  Do we trust Yahweh?  We have not seen anything yet folks so now is the time that we need to draw near to the Father and know that He is the Creator of the Universe and has it all under control.

There are some interesting names in the thirteenth chapter of Numbers in verse twenty-two: Ahiman, Sheshai, Tamai, and Anaq.  What I find very interesting is that these guys were dwelling in Hebron.  The word Hebron means association or we could even say place of communion because if we remember Avraham made an altar to Yahweh in Hebron after separating himself from Lot.[ii] So there are giants dwelling in the place of Hebron.  Keep that in mind.

Let’s look at these names now.  First we see that Anaq was the papa of these guys.  What can we find out about his name when we look at the Hebrew and ancient Hebrew?  Well, his name means necklace or adorn with a necklace.  Many times in Scripture when we see references to necks it’s not in a good sense because it is usually associated with pride, self will, stubborn, or stiff necked.  Second we have Ahiman which means self protection: as in cutting off someone or excluding ourselves from what we don’t like to hear.  Next is Sheshai and this giant is a big one because his name means whitish in color i.e. self righteous.  Lastly we have Talmai which means to accumulate as in personal effort.

I’ve never seen this before until this week but could it be possible that one of the reasons why Yahweh allowed them to go spy out the land was to reveal to them what was in their hearts.  I guess what I am trying to say is that Hebron was the place of association and these giants were ‘prideful, stubborn, stiff necked, self protecting (looking out for me, myself, and I) in that when something isn’t to our liking we disregard it or the person saying it, self righteous, and personal effort.  So what I see Yahweh doing is bringing the Yisraelites to the place of association i.e. what was really in their hearts and wanting them to deal with these ‘giants’ if you will before they go into the Promised Land.

I see the same for you and me today.  We as westerners want to jump all the way from A to Z and skip the whole A, B, C, D, E, F, etc. process.  I was brought up in the Constatinian religion and was basically taught about salvation and that was about it.  It was almost as if now you are saved and everything is fine and you can walk into the Promised Land now because of your salvation but yet I was still carnal in my actions and thinking and struggled with many things.  It never made sense to me.  So I see a great lesson here for you and I today that before we can fully walk into the place where Yahweh has ordained/promised us to walk we have to deal with ‘our giants’.  Why do I say this?  Well look at Yehoshua and Kalev.[iii] Scripture said that Kalev had a different spirit in him and we know that it was these two that tore their garments[iv] and began to try and persuade the children of Yisrael not to rebel against Yahweh.  I believe because these two had hearts that were open to the things of Yahweh and because they listened and obeyed Yahweh and humbled themselves under the hand and direction of Yahweh; this enabled them to walk into the place that Yahweh had promised.

Today you and I have a great work to do not only in the world but honestly within ourselves.  How are we faring with our ‘giants’?  Have we fully disassociated ourselves from these rascals?  Remember we are called to be witnesses for Yahweh.  Where?  In Yerushalyim first, Judea next, Samaria, and the uttermost parts of the world; notice it starts at home first then moves into your community and is followed by your region and then the rest of the world.[v] So we need to do some house cleaning at home first and it should be looking at the things that we hold dear to us or the things we associate ourselves with.  You know the little pet sins or secret sins that we like to hide from the rest of the world.  Those sins that we like to stroke and caress and hold near to us because our flesh just likes them and enjoys them.  I don’t want to come down to the end and get ready to go into the land but have the Father tell me no because of my giants.  What a terrible thing to have to bear knowing that time and time again the Father gave me chance after chance to clean up my act and deal with my giants and I rebelled and put it off for another time or another day.  It was life and death for the children of Yisrael and so will it be for you and me!

What is getting ready to come upon the earth will not be something that can be taken lightly, and I believe that all the finger pointing that is done today with everyone wanting to point out everyone else’s sin will soon be brought to an abrupt halt due to a few Ananias and Sapharia situations that deal with the hypocrisy that is running rampant in the House.  We have reached a point to where the time to pay the piper has arrived.  Sure Yahweh is patient, merciful, forgiving and gracious but He also doesn’t permit things to go unchecked or paid for.[vi] So you and I have a choice to make.  Bow the knee to Yahweh and allow Him to do spiritual surgery on us cutting away all the junk that is not from Him or continue petting and holding onto our ‘giants’ that we have come to love being associated with.  What will we do?

Thought of the Week

As an old sage once said, “Difficulties soon discover the untrustful heart.”


[i] Genesis 12:7, Genesis 17:8[ii] Genesis 13:12-18[iii] Numbers 14:30[iv] Numbers 14:6[v] Acts 1:8[vi] Numbers 14:17, Exodus 34:7, Galatians 6:7