Ellen G. White Writings

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Christ Triumphant, Page 119

Be Careful of Giving a False Report, April 22

We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we. Numbers 13:31.

Young people are needed in the work—those who will undertake the work interestedly and will carry it forward zealously and strongly. But the Lord is, and ever will be, with the old, steadfast leaders who have held fast to the truth in times of peril. When the foundation of the faith of the younger leaders seems to be swept away and their houses falling, the testimony, like that of Caleb, will be heard from the old warriors, “Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it.” Then the voice of unbelief was heard. “We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we.” One word of unbelief prepares the way for more. Satan does not easily let alone any person whom he can tempt to dishonor God by expressing unbelief....

What effect did this report have upon the congregation? ... “And all the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron: and the whole congregation said unto them, Would God that we had died in the land of Egypt! or would God we had died in this wilderness!” ...

Let all read carefully the fourteenth chapter of Numbers, and let them understand that people can make false reports as did these who had been sent on an errand that concerned the movements of more than a million people....

Those who bore the discouraging report and brought discouragement to the whole camp of Israel, when opposed because of their unfaithful witness, served the satanic powers in complete rebellion. And they carried the disappointed congregation with them, in that they believed their interpretation of the land. The congregation took the wrong side, and, inspired by satanic agencies, they cried out against the faithful spies, and bade them stone Joshua and Caleb, who dared to bear the truthful representation in regard to the land.

But there is always a defense provided for those who have borne witness for the truth. What was it that saved the lives of Joshua and Caleb? “And the glory of the Lord appeared in the tabernacle of the congregation before all the children of Israel.” ...

We have here a positive evidence that the anger of the Lord was awakened against the rebellious people—those who had been blessed with great light and precious opportunities to know the will of God, which was communicated to them by Christ Himself, their invisible Leader, enshrouded in the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night.—Letter 106, 1897 (Manuscript Releases 15:289-291).

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