Two years after the children of Israel left Egypt, they came to the place God had assigned for them to enter into the Promised Land. During those two years the LORD gave the Law to Moses, as well as the instructions for the building of the Tabernacle. Now that the time had finally come for them to enter in, the LORD said to them – “Here is your Promised Land. Go in and possess it.” (see Deut 1:21)
But the children of Israel refused to do as God said. The negative report of the ten spies frightened them and instead of possessing their land of promises, they said- “Would to God that we had died, either in Egypt or somewhere out in the desert.” According to Numbers 14:22, this was the tenth time they had openly murmured against God, and it angered Him greatly. According to scripture, except for the intercession of Moses, the LORD would have wiped the Jewish people from off the face of the earth and started all over again. But instead of destroying them all at once, He caused them die, one by one, as they wandered about in the wilderness for the next thirty-eight years.
It was with this story in mind that the writer of the book of Hebrews addressed certain Jewish Christians sometime during the early days of the church.
Hebrews 3:12 Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. 13 But exhort one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. 14 For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;
Some believe that the promise to be a ‘partaker of Christ’ is not a reference to our salvation, but rather being in the place where we can enjoy the fullness of God’s blessings. Regardless of how you choose to interpret this passage, it is a stern warning to all concerning the sinfulness of failing to believe and trust in God. How can we as Christians protect ourselves from the sin of unbelief?
1) We Must Be Always Be Aware That it is a Present Danger
Hebrews 3:12 Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
Just because we have victory today; that does not automatically guarantee us that we will have victory tomorrow. More than one committed Christian has lost their vision along the way and fallen by the wayside.
2) We Must Always Be Encouraging Each Other to Walk With Christ
Hebrews 3:13 But exhort one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. Someone has said: “Sow a thought and you reap an action; sow an act and you reap a habit; sow a habit and you reap a character; sow a character and you reap a destiny.” (Ralph Waldo Emerson)