Moses. Old. Experienced. He had heard God’s voice on numerous occasions…but he also heard – more often than he wanted to – the complaints, the murmuring, the grumbling of the rebellious, stiff-necked people he was chosen to lead. Moses had seen God’s glory! He knew the Lord face to face (Deut. 34:10)…but he also saw the spiritual corruption in the people’s hearts when he saw them worshiping the golden calf. Moses was a godly leader…but first he learned to follow his God who said “I will send you.” (Ex. 3:10). Moses was an encourager….but only because he trusted in the words of his faithful God: “I will certainly be with you” (Ex. 3:12). As a young man, Moses was overly enthusiastic and took justice into his own hands…as an older, experienced leader, we see a mellowed Moses, who learned to wait and trust God’s plan; but it took years.
However, in one foolish act of impulsive disobedience, Moses was denied entrance into the Promised Land. After striking the rock to get water when God instructed him to speak to it, Moses heard God’s sentence: “Because you did not believe Me, to hallow Me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land which I have given them.” (Numbers 20:12) Moses was told that instead of entering the Promised Land, he would die on Mount Nebo.
Moses. Old. Experienced. He knew he messed up; he didn’t blame anyone. He didn’t pout, whine or wallow in self-pity. Moses understood that he would view the Promised Land from afar, but not enjoy it. Before he went up Mount Nebo, where God, in His mercy, allowed Moses to see the land of Canaan from afar off, he called one last assembly of God’s people. There he shared with them a song he had in his heart; a song of praise to God, who was faithful every step of the way. His song, in part, went like this:
“…for I proclaim the name of the Lord; ascribe greatness to our God. He is the Rock, His work is perfect; for all His ways are justice, a God of truth and without injustice; righteous and upright is He.” (Deut.32:3,4)
Moses. Old Experienced. He couldn’t enter the Promised Land, yet his last words were words of praise. Then he went up Mount Nebo.