Be Sure Your Sin Will Find You Out Num. 32:23 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
This verse appears in a passage where the tribes of Gad and Reuben try to convince Moses to let them stay out of Canaan and inherit in the land of Jazer and the land of Gilead on the other side of Jordan. These two tribes had lots of cattle and the land was very suitable for cattle [Num 32:1-5].
When they made their request, Moses was insistent against them because they were, in essence, refusing to go into Canaan to fight against the inhabitants to help their brethren secure their inheritance. Moses agreed that they could inherit the land upon the condition that their armed men would cross Jordan and fight with their brethren until the enemies in Canaan were subdued. Then they could return to Jazer and Gilead and possess the land.
If they refused to help their brethren they would be sinning against the Lord and Moses said, Be sure your sin will find you out. Their sin of refusing to fight in Canaan on behalf of their brethren would reveal that they were:
Selfists – Num 32:1-5 – it was all right for the rest of the tribes to help them against Og, Sihon and the Midianites but they weren’t going to lift a finger to help those tribes against their enemies – there are many Christians like this – they find a church where men have labored to get it to the point where it is and then they come occupy a comfortable seat and continue to let those guys keep working to grow the church while they sit and enjoy the benefits – you need to serve the Lord with them.
Cowards – Num 32:6 – they didn’t want anymore fighting – they were content to “sit here” – the devil has not let up in his fight against the gospel and neither has the world – but there are by far more Christians who are content to “sit here” than there are who are willing to fight to hold back the enemies – and the reason is that they are cowards – they are afraid to fast and pray – God might demand something of them – they are scared to witness – they are scared to stand against the world and be ridiculed for their faith in Jesus.
Killjoys – Num 32:7-9 – the spies brought back a good report of the land and an evil report of the inhabitants of the land – they discouraged the people from going in to possess the land – and so they didn’t – joy is what strengthens Christians and keeps us motivated – killjoys discourage that joy and stop the work – there are many Christians who have turned others away from the battle and encouraged them rather to turn back to Egypt, which represents modern, worldly Christianity.
Destroyers – Num 32:13-15 – when the people were convinced not to go into Canaan the first time, all of the people from 20 years old and upwards died in the wilderness – there are Christians, like these Reubenites and these Gadites, who have so criticized Biblical Christianity that they are literally destroying a generation of new so-called believers in the wilderness by turning their attention to everything temporary and worldly and by turning their hearts away from the eternal things of the Lord on the other side of Jordan – these “new Christians” will be bankrupt in heaven if they even get there since many of them are probably not even saved.
Conclusion: The sin of the Reubenites and the Gadites would find them out when it came time for them to receive their inheritance – they wouldn’t get the land of Jazer and Gilead – as it turns out, the tribes that inhabited this land ended up being the first ones of Israel to go into captivity – likewise, at the judgment seat of Christ, your sin will be painfully and permanently obvious – you blew your inheritance!