Read: Psalm 106:1 – 12; Exodus 14:11 – 12; Luke 9:62; 12:32
This psalm begins by praising God for His goodness and requesting to be treated with the same favor and saved with the same salvation that God favored and saved His people with in times past. What characterized those people, and what makes God’s salvation and favor so remarkable, was the sinfulness of the people, which Psalm 106 examines in detail. The first aspect of sinfulness was fear and unbelief at the time of the crossing of the Red Sea.
Think About It: What sin besets God’s people today that is comparable to the doubt and fear that assailed the Israelites at the Red Sea? Do I trust in God’s power to deliver me from evil? How am I tempted to “look back to Egypt”?
Prayer: Thank God for His trustworthiness.
Read: Psalm 103:13; Deuteronomy 4:9; Matthew 16:9; Galatians 3:1
God’s people sinned by forgetting God’s works of deliverance. The first generation to wander in the wilderness was eyewitness to the Ten Plagues by which God had provided deliverance from Egypt. They lived in the shadow of the cloud and the glow of the pillar of fire. They ate the manna that fell from heaven and drank from the water that flowed from the rock. Yet in spite of all of this they lacked faith in God’s ability to save them.
Think About It: The disciples committed a similar sin to that of Israel in the wilderness when they failed to remember the miracle of the loaves (Matthew 16:9). How does Galatians 3:1 relate to this sin of forgetfulness? What miracle of deliverance has God done for me?
Prayer: Lord, help me remember Your faithfulness and Your salvation.
Read: Psalm 106:13; Numbers 14:6 – 7; Hebrews 12:25; 2 Timothy 4:3
God’s people sinned by not waiting for God’s counsel. About this Matthew Henry wrote, “They minded not what God had said to them nor would they depend upon it. . . They believed not His word, His promise that He would make them masters of Canaan . . .They hearkened not to the voice of the Lord.”
Think About It: What do Hebrews 12:25 and 2 Timothy 4:3 suggest are similar sins for believers today? Do I listen to God’s voice? How do I do this? What is meant by teaching that “tickles the ears”?
Pray: For ears to hear and a heart to obey God’s word.
Read: Psalm 106:14; Numbers 11:4; 1 Corinthians 10:6; Philippians 4:11 – 13; 1 Timothy 6:6 – 8
God’s people sinned by craving evil things. Specifically, they grew weary of God’s provision of manna and craved meat to eat. God granted their desire, but it came as more of a curse than a blessing.
Think About It: “Craving evil things” presents the same temptation today as always. What is the scriptural antidote for this craving according to Philippians 4:11 – 13 and 1 Timothy 6:6 – 8? Have I learned to be content? (See Psalm 131).
Pray: For contentment.
Read: Psalm 106:16; Numbers 16; 26:8 – 9; Romans 12:3, 13:1 – 2
God’s people sinned by envying Moses, charging him with taking too much upon himself, desiring his authority and status for themselves.
Think About It: For believers today, what sin is comparable to this sin of envying Moses (see Romans 12:3, 13:1 – 2)? What is my attitude towards authority? Do I have a sober estimate of my own abilities?
Pray: For a submissive spirit and an accurate self-concept.
Read: Psalm 106:19; Exodus 32; Deuteronomy 7:5, 16, 25 – 26; Psalm 106:37 – 38
God’s people sinned by committing idolatry in the incident of the golden calf. Later they compounded that sin when they entered the Promised Land by failing to demolish the Canaanite idols and instead worshiping them and even sacrificing their children to them.
Think About It: How is idolatry typically practiced today (see Colossians 3:5)? In what sense might someone “sacrifice” their child to an idol today? Are there any idols in my life?
Pray: To cast down every idol and worship only the Lord.
Read: Psalm 106:24; Numbers 13:21 – 14:2; Matthew 10:28; Isaiah 8:12 – 13
God’s people sinned by despising the “pleasant land,” refusing to enter into the Promised Land out of fear of the giants that lived there.
Think About It: What are some “giants” that believers today mistakenly fear? What is the one and only appropriate fear? What makes me feel afraid? What are the specific sins named in Psalm 106:25 and 106:34 – 36? How do I know that God loves me? Do I believe that God is always just?
Pray: “What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee” (Psalm 56:3).