Israel’s reaction to the divine judgment is typical. “We have sinned,” they said. “We will go up to the place which the LORD has promised” (Num. 14:40, NKJV).
Half-hearted commitment is like a poorly administered vaccination ? it doesn’t work. Today, doctors recommend a Hepatitis B vaccination right after birth within the first 24 hours of life. That’s a good beginning. However, following that first shot, if there are not two or three booster vaccinations administered at the right time and in the right doses, then there is no protection against Hepatitis B whatsoever.
Israel’s rebellious turnaround, reported in the last verses of Numbers 14, results in death and disappointment as the Israelites now refuse to accept God’s new directions and stubbornly launch an attack without the ark of the covenant or Moses’ leadership.
Presumption is costly; presumption leads to death. Very often, presumption is powered by fear. Because we are afraid of something, we make decisions that we later regret.