The Lesson Of Mount Nebo
Tract #2 of “Godly Ascent -- The Monumental Mountains of God” series
written by Roddy Kenneth Street, Jr.
Copyright 2005 by Roddy Kenneth Street, Jr.
All publication rights and reproduction rights are reserved to the author.
God has taught the human race a great many lessons over the centuries, and many times His instruction has come to human beings who stood atop a mountain which God found appropriate for His purposes. There are a number of mountains which are noteworthy as markers and monuments in the developmental history of the relationship between God and humanity.
Moses climbed up Mount Nebo to die, and he was only able to see from a distance the Promised Land of Canaan that he would never be allowed to enter. He died on that mountain, without ever setting a foot in the Holy Land.
There’s a lot of knowledge that we can draw from the historical account of God’s dealings with Moses on Mount Nebo. Mount Nebo is one of those very significant mountains that we need to examine in some depth... as it too must be considered a Monumental Mountain of God.
One of the most important occurrences on Mount Nebo is the Prophecy of Moses, a prophecy which he pronounced there before his death. In Deut. 31:24-29, we find that he does not expect the Jews to fare well under the laws of God. "For I know that after my death ye will utterly corrupt yourselves, and turn aside from the way which I have commanded you: and evil will befall you in the latter days; because ye will do that which is evil in the sight of Jehovah, to provoke him to anger through the work of your hands."
Moses died, and Joshua had to take over. He knows the people he has to lead will not be easy to work with! Joshua had already spent 40 years in the desert with them, being forced to join them in that aimless wandering in the desert wilderness outside the Promised Land, because they were so unbelieving and so fearful, so unconvinced by all the miracles of God.
Forty years have passed, and the elder generation has died off. The strength of God's power had already been seen in His many mighty miracles, in wondrous displays and events which had been performed right before their eyes, yet they had been fearful and unbelieving when God brought them to the very doorstep of the Promised Land. They were afraid to go in and take over the land, because of the powerful pagans who already lived there! God got angry with them for their voicing of such a wrong spirit, and He thus forced them to wander in the desert, for forty long and exhausting years. God declares that NO ONE will be allowed to enter the Promised Land till 40 years have passed and all of the older generation has died off. Of these, only Joshua and Caleb would be allowed to enter Canaan... because only they had displayed a right spirit.
Next Joshua leads the younger folk (a more courageous lot) into the Promised Land of Canaan, and they think their days of Wandering are finally over. They think they will no longer have to bear that punishment which they had gotten for doubting the strength of God's miraculous provision.
They all are inclined to think that their people will be staying in Canaan for an infinitely long time, now that God is using His power to help them conquer the territory of the Promised Land. They expect to remain there for an infinitely long time, thinking that they will endlessly experience the blessings of God because they are His “Chosen People.” They are quite certain that they will never again have to live outside the Land of Promise. But what actually happens to the Jews in the centuries which are yet to come?
When another prophet comes to them working even mightier miracles in the name of the Lord, miracles even greater than those they saw under the leadership of Moses, they again doubt God's power.
They doubt even the miraculous strength which they are seeing in Jesus of Nazareth, and God becomes angered with them once again. So they are again banished from the Holy Land and once more forced to wander in foreign lands!
Forty years of wandering in the wilderness had not taught them much, it seems, because they repeat the same faithlessness when they are confronted with the power of God's Own Son. So they ended up being banished from the Holy Land for almost 1900 years more! In 1948, they finally returned to Israel, still not believing in God's miraculous power, still not recognizing His face which He had shown them through His Son Jesus Christ. They remain in Israel today and there they still await their Messiah! God will reveal that Messiah to them (as His Son Jesus) at the time of Israel's Last Battle, the Battle of Armageddon.
Someday the blind Jews of these intervening centuries will have to say to God, in the frightful day of Judgement, "Lord, forgive us! Forgive us for not recognizing the Holy One of Israel when He was right there in our midst! We misconceived, and foolishly imagined that some imposter was claiming for himself the Holiness of God. And so we judged your prophet (yes, our Messiah... yes, Your Son) to be guilty of a horrible blasphemy and demon-possession.”
Yet Jesus has said that the one Unforgivable Sin is to claim that the works of the Holy Spirit are actually deeds of Satan! So the prospects do not look too bright for those Jews who have claimed that Jesus was demon-possessed. Or even for those who have rejected Him as a prophet... for they have stoned, executed, and ignored far too many of the prophets that God sent to them.
Today, we see in our world a great variety of people— including atheists, humanists, evolutionists, Marxists, fascists, murderers, rapists, fornicators, and homosexuals— who are just as blind. They too are rejecting all of God's earlier prophets and even refuse to acknowledge the miracles of God's Greatest Prophet. God's Greatest Prophet is a Holy Man, His Only-Begotten Son Jesus Christ... born of the Virgin Mary.
As they refused to believe the miracles performed in the days of Moses, so it continues in our modern times. In the same way, the mockers refuse to believe in the miracles of Jesus Christ.
Their inability to see the Holiness of Jesus Christ is a testimony against them, and clearly displays their disloyalty to the Holy One of Israel. They have an aversion to the Truth, and dislike seeing the face of God in the face of His Son. God Almighty, the LORD of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob... is a God of Utter Righteousness and Utter Holiness. He is the Father of many children on Planet Earth, but He has claimed only One Person as His Holy Son. This Son is One who greatly resembles His Father.
Jesus Christ is God’s Only-Begotten Son, a child begot of the Virgin Mary after the Holy Spirit worked a miraculous transformation in an untouched womb. This child was born in utter Holiness and utter propriety, in accordance with the ancient prophecies.
Jesus Christ offers humanity the opportunity to have salvation— an escape from the due punishment of our sins. He has already paid the penalty for our sins, paying for our ransom from Hell with the blood He shed for us on a rough wooden cross. He even went through Hell so that "His friends" wouldn't have to do that. He gave up His life for His friends, gave us His last breath... dying a torturous death of suffocation on the cross. Satan was pleased that his people had engineered the death of God's Own Son and put Him in a tomb, but even that obstacle could not put a stop to the far-reaching Plan of Almighty God!
Everyone on Earth is born with an inclination to sin; that is the natural tendency of humankind. When the years of early childhood pass by, we reach an "age of accountability," after which time God holds us fully responsible for all of our sins. You then choose to become either “a child of God” or “a child of Satan.” If your Father is Satan, then you will join your kin in an everlasting fire that God has prepared for the Devil and all of his demons.
If your Father is God, then you will be able to see the Holiness of your Father, and you will know that only One Person on Earth has ever displayed the Holiness and Righteousness of God Almighty. Only God the Son, while incarnated in the human form of Jesus Christ, was able to live His life on Earth as a Holy Man. In all the long history of humanity on this planet Earth, only Jesus Christ has ever displayed the Holiness and Righteousness of God.
To become a child of God, you need to have the same Father as Jesus Christ. You have got to be able to see the face of God the Father in the face of His Son Jesus Christ. Jesus is the perfect image of God, the only true representation of the Holiness of God. But Jesus is even more than that. Before His human incarnation, the Christ was already part of a Triune (Three-In-One) God. He had existed at the Beginning of our Universe as God The Son, and all things in our Universe were made through Him. When you imagine Jesus as a little babe lying in the straw of a manger, you need to know where He came from... and just how much He had been humbled by His initial entry into the life of planet Earth.
You also need to know about another Monumental Mountain of God: It’s the Mount of Skulls, also called Golgotha. Over the centuries, it’s also become known as Mount Calvary. This is the place where the Romans erected the cross upon which Jesus would be crucified. It was a rather small mountain, at least in its physical size, but it was a mountain with a great significance: This is the mountain upon which God’s Son brought salvation to the world of humanity, bringing rescue to all the lost persons of our planet. Our lives were hijacked by the Dark Forces of the Evil One, and we were all victims of the Devil, prisoners who had been kidnaped by Satan. But Jesus paid the ransom that was required and got us free from the grip of the Evil One.
You can meet God atop Mount Calvary and gain His great blessing upon your life, just as Moses met Him atop Mount Sinai. You can gain God’s protection and His guidance too, just as it was given to Moses so long ago. You can begin to see miracles in your own life, just as Moses and the people of ancient Israel saw them in the early centuries of that nation. Just as our Founding Fathers in America saw the Hand of God in the miracles by which He blessed the United States— starting from the time when the country was first formed, 'way back in the 1600's and 1700's.
It all begins when you climb up Mount Calvary and find the treasure at its top, when you accept the salvation that God offers you through the selfless and “patriotic” sacrifice of His Son Jesus Christ. This was surely the greatest “humanitarian” act in all of the Earth’s long history. Jesus was willing to lay down His life for His friends, in accordance with the will of His Father, in the immense battle against demons and the forces of Darkness. In so doing, He assured the ultimate victory of the Sons of Light over the Sons of Darkness.
You can share the Light of Jesus Christ, can reflect His Holy Light in a Cruel World, and thus become a point of illumination in the darkness of this world.
God’s Light can become a Lamp unto your feet and a Light unto your path, if you choose to accept rescue and salvation that is available in Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God Almighty.
You can even live to see the Light of God flowing through you and reaching out to other people in our world...!
It’s time your mind was illuminated by Jesus Christ, the Holy One Who is the Light of the World!
You can share this wonderful light by placing Jesus Christ, Who in the Trinity of God created our Universe, upon a throne at the center of your heart! He deserves that position and that kind of respect. He was first God The Son, but when born in human flesh He became the only sinless and righteous person who ever lived. Yet He sacrificed Himself on a cross for your sake, taking all guilt and sins upon Himself, in order that you and I— that all people— that whoever wishes for salvation might be rescued from the due punishment of sins.
If you will do this, you will gain a new contentment and peace as you accept God's organizational plan for the Universe . . . because you'll be letting God be the Ruler of All Things in this world . . . and in your own life.
All it really takes is a simple but sincere little prayer— one that you should make up in your own words. The prayer for deliverance and for God's leadership should come from your own heart!
Some important elements that you might include are:
1) your desire to turn away from the wrongness or evil of your
past life, and your remorse over the sins of your previous life,
2) your desire for God's forgiveness and mercy through the act
of sacrifice of His Only Begotten Son (Jesus Christ),
3) your desire to know God's leadership in your life,
4) your desire to learn more of God's truth through Bible study,
5) your desire to find fellowship with genuine believers.
Jesus said of the people of God that "The kingdom of heaven is like a net that God has cast into the sea, and it gathers of every kind: When it is full, it will be pulled up on the shore, where they will sit down to sort the catch, and they will collect the good fish in baskets, but the bad things will be thrown away. This is the way it will be at the end of the world: The angels shall come forth, and they will separate the unrighteous persons from among those justified by God . . ."
Excerpt from the Book of Matthew, who was a constant
companion of Jesus and his devoted disciple [13:47-50].
Jesus spoke of the people of God as being like a seed that is growing secretly, saying, “As for the kingdom of God, it is as if a person should cast seed into the ground; and then he sleeps, and he rises up night and day to see that the seed is springing forth and always growing up, although he knows not exactly how. The Earth is bringing forth fruit from itself; first the blade, then the ears of corn, and after that the fullness of the ears of corn. And when all the fruit of the Earth has come forth, immediately God will use the sickle to reap the fields, because the harvest-time has come."
Excerpt from the book of Mark [4:26-29].
It's also important for all of us to remember this:
1) WE SPEAK TO GOD by our prayers.
2) GOD SPEAKS TO US by the words of Holy Scripture.
So we must try to read His words and His Book
just as often as we possibly can!!
God wants to bless you for all your long efforts to understand this very confusing and difficult Universe in which we live— so let Him reward your search with the grace of His forgiveness and enlightenment!
THIS GUIDE WAS WRITTEN FOR YOU BY. . .
Ken Street, a baptized follower of the Way.
first draft was written on
December 30, 2002