Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Wandering from Taberah

Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom
that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful,
and so worship God acceptably
with reverence and awe,
for our “God is a consuming fire.”
Hebrews 12:28-29

It's an Idiom: From the frying pan into the fire. Been there; done that!
Not only is it an idiom, but it describes actual places (see photo) known as Taberah, and as Kibroth Hattaavah.
Oh you won't find them on any map, but as sure as the sun rises, they're places I've visited. They are always located in a wilderness.

We find both of them described in scripture, in the Book of Numbers, chapter 11 (parts):

Now the people complained about their hardships ...
Then fire from the LORD burned among them
and consumed some of the outskirts of the camp.
So that place was called Taberah,
because fire from the LORD had
burned among them. (1-3)

The rabble with them began to crave other food,
and again the Israelites started wailing and said,
“If only we had meat to eat!"... (5)

(God told Moses to) ... “Tell the people:
‘Consecrate yourselves in preparation for tomorrow,
when you will eat meat.
The LORD heard you when you wailed ... (18)

All that day and night and all the next day
the people went out and gathered quail.
But while the meat was still between their teeth
and before it could be consumed,
the anger of the LORD burned against the people,
and He struck them with a severe plague.

Therefore the place was named Kibroth Hattaavah,
because there they buried the people
who had craved other food.

Taberah means: Burning
Kibroth Hattaavah means: Graves of craving

As I read the story about these particular instances of contemptuous whining, it reminded me of some things I've learned, and that I keep learning ...

  1. When looking BACK (to the land of Taberah) with longing- as if what I've given up of the world's ways was or is desirous today - how burnt & singed is my heart. Those days were not, and are not worth repeating.
  2. When looking AROUND (to the land of Kibroth Hattaavah) - as if searching out & craving the things of the world that might somehow make my present condition more satisfying (or pleasurable) - how miserable is my soul.
Best to plant one's tent securely in His kingdom, in Beulah. It's no wilderness, and the only fire there is one that will warm you.

Come to think of it, it's like going from the frying pan into God's own loving arms. No idiom, but definitely a desirable destination!


Grace on the Narrow Path said...

Well said my friend. Praise God.

Sonja said...

yes, this gives new meaning to the old song 'dwelling in Beaulah Land!'... right where I want to be!


how funny...the word verfication is SPASY, as in spasy sassy granny??? :)

Janet - AKA: Latte Lady said...

Amen sista!

Nothin like Holy Spirit fire burnin in your soul!




Beth E. said...

Well said, Kathleen...AMEN! You've given me a lot to ponder. I definitely have been guilty of looking back to Taberah and looking around in Kibroth Hattaavah. Both are miserable places.

Focusing now on Beulah land...

"Beulah land, I'm longing for you
And someday on thee I'll stand
Their my home shall be eternal
Beulah land, sweet Beulah land."


Rita said...

When troubles overwhelm us, it is so easy to think of going from that fire into His loving arms. Oh that we could keep that in mind all the time when things were going good.

S said...

It was so good catching up with you this morning. A lot of food for thought! Hugs!

Just a little something from Judy said...

Looking back...or worrying about the up ahead...neither bring me joy or peace. It did not bring it for those you mentioned way back there, or for any of those coming after us. It is just a fact of life...and yet it is still a part of daily life at times, for me. Makes me look forward to Beulah land more than I ever did before, when I know this cycle will be no more.