Read Numbers 26:51-65

For the Lord had said of them, they shall surely die in the wilderness. And there was not left a man of them, save Caleb the son of Jephunneh, and Joshua the son of Nun. Numbers 26:65 KJV

Chapter 26 provides the second census of the children of Israel as they prepared to enter the Land of Promise after forty years of wandering in the wilderness. Verse 65 helps to make three summary statements which are very insightful. First, the names listed in the census are not the same as the names listed in the census taken forty years earlier in chapter one. The reason given is they all died in the wilderness just as the Lord said they would due to their earlier rebellion and refusal to enter the Land of Promise. Second, in verse 51 the number of Israelites in the second census is smaller than the first. Unbelief among God’s people had reduced their number. Unbelief in the church today does the same. Third, there were two exceptions mentioned, unlike the rest, Caleb and Joshua were in both the first and second census because they believed and acted on God’s Word.

Lord, what a sad story is told by the two censuses taken in the book of Numbers, but what a good testimony is given by Caleb and Joshua. May my testimony be like the later than the former!