“They despised the pleasant land, they believed not his word: But murmured in their tents, and hearkened not unto the voice of the Lord” (Psalms 106:24, 25).
“Notwithstanding ye would not go up, but rebelled against the commandment of the Lord your God: And ye murmured in your tents…” (Deuteronomy 1:26, 27).
When I was young I lived in a Pastor’s home. At times there were problems in the church and at times the ‘saints’ did not treat my father with respect. I remember at times my mother would mention something about these problem at the table only to be cut off by my father, “Helen, the kids!” I usually was the last person to know about these issues, thus I grew up hearing nothing negative about the church or about God’s people. That is probably why I am in the church today.
You and I may not live in tents any more, but there is far too much murmuring in our homes – in front of our young people. The sin of murmuring is as current as today’s newspaper.
Discontent with the workings of God and/or God’s people is very serious in the eyes of God. When discontent is voiced at home, you may think that no one hears – but your children hear. You may as well be living in a tent. Adolescents have big ears. If you want to assure that your young person will leave the church and go to hell, just make a habit of murmuring in your tent.
The children of Israel murmured when the water was bitter (Exodus 15:24). They murmured again when the water was lacking (Exodus 17:3). They forgot so quickly the miracles just performed. They murmured for want of bread and because they had left their fleshpots in Egypt (Exodus 16:2).
When God promised them a land flowing with milk and honey, and all they had to do was to go in and claim it, ten of their men brought back an evil and discouraging report. “And the men which Moses sent to search the land, who returned, and made all the congregation to murmur against him, by bringing up a slander upon the land, even those men that did bring up the evil report upon the land, died by the plague before the Lord” (Numbers14:3-6).
The saddest incident of all, however, was when Korah, Dathan and Abriram rose up against Moses and Aaron, saying, “Ye take too much upon you, seeing all of the congregation are holy–every one of them.”
Moses invited them to come up before the Lord. They refused and stood “with their wives, and their sons, and their little children” in the door of their tents.
“And Moses said, Hereby ye shall know that the Lord hath sent me to do all these works; for I have not done them of mine own mind. If these men die the common death of all men, or if they be visited after the visitation of all men; then the Lord hath not sent me. But if the Lord make a new thing, and the earth open her mouth, and swallow them up, with all that appertain unto them, and they go down quick into the pit; then ye shall understand that these men have provoked the Lord.
And it came to pass, as he had made an end of speaking all these words, that the ground clave asunder that was under them: And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that appertained unto Korah, and all their goods. They, and all that appertained to them, went down alive into the pit, and the earth closed upon them” (Numbers 16:27-33).
Murmuring in their tents led to rebellion against God’s chosen leaders. This is not a light thing to God. God’s judgement fell not only on the parents but also the children and the little babies. Innocent children are always hurt by the rebellion of parents. If you want to destroy your children–then complain against the ministry and the people of God.
Even after God judged Korah and his friends the people again murmured, questioning the justice of the judgement of God. When will we ever learn! Murmuring destroys the faith of our children in God, the ministry and God’s people. Discontent brings about murmuring and murmuring leads to rebellion
God, give us a spirit of contentment! Let our children only hear words of thanksgiving and praise for the goodness of God. If we cannot say words that build faith in the hearts of our children, let us not say anything.
God help us to say only words that build and not words that destroy. Let us not murmur in our homes; for if we do, like Israel, we will die spiritually and our children will wander in a spiritual wilderness.
“Godliness with contentment is great gain” (I Timothy 6:6).
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