This morning I awoke and I had a really stiff neck. I tried to rise off my pillow, but it really hurt. For about a half hour all I could do was stare ahead because my neck would not allow me to see any further. Being stiff-necked was very limiting. Well, I slowly eased out of bed and as I moved around a bit, I was finally able to move with ease only feeling some pain as I moved to an extreme position quickly. I got the dogs collars on them and we went to the trail to run.
This morning the Bible reading at breakfast was from Numbers 16:1-40. Korah, Dathan and Abiram gathered 250 other prominent leaders of Israel when they were in the wilderness to rebel against Moses and Aaron. They wanted to be priests and enter the Holy of Holies. They didn’t want to follow the Lord’s instructions as set down by God through Moses. They went to Moses and Aaron and said, “You have gone to far! Everyone in Israel has been set apart by the Lord, and He is with all of us. What right do you have to act as though you are greater than anyone else among all these people of the Lord?”
I knew they were in trouble when Moses threw himself face forward to the ground, “Tomorrow morning the Lord will show us who belongs to Him and who is holy. The Lord will allow those who are chosen to enter His holy presence…You Levites are the ones who have gone to far!” They certainly were a stiff-necked people. They had seen miracle after miracle. How did they forget? How did they not know who was in charge? Indeed the pillar of fire was with them through the night and the pillar of smoke through the day, every day. They had seen the glory of the Lord before as they stood at the base of Sinai. It filled them with such fear that they told Moses to talk with God alone and get the message for them. (Exodus 20:18-20) Now they were begging to go into His presence.
My stiff neck this morning did not allow me to look to the left or to the right. I couldn’t do anything until I slowly got released from its grip. Thankfully, I was able to do so. The 250 rebellious leaders got released from their stiff necks, also, through an earthquake and fire. The rest of the people watched the destruction of those in rebellion and still mustered up a larger protest in the community the very next morning. 14,700 people had to die in a plague before the Lord got their attention. Once He had their attention He was able to speak through Moses through the miracle of the almond-sprouted staff of Aaron found in Numbers 17.
This morning’s stiff neck hurt me physically, but it’s the spiritual stiff neck that can really do me and those around me damage. Today I’m asking God if there is anything that He is/has been trying to get across to me that I just won’t see? Is there an attitude or error in perspective or rebellion that is keeping me from looking to the left? from looking to the right? Today I can go right into the Holy of Holies. Jesus did that for me through His death on the cross. I can talk right to God without fear. I will.
At the throne of grace,