These are those who were numbered by Moses and Eleazar the priest, who numbered the sons of Israel in the plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho. But among these there was not a man of those who were numbered by Moses and Aaron the priest, who numbered the sons of Israel in the wilderness of Sinai. For the Lord had said of them, “They shall surely die in the wilderness.” And not a man was left of them, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun. – Numbers 26:63-65
Just prior to their entry into the land that God had promised to give them, God instructed Moses to take another census of all the Israelite men 20 years of age and older. The count revealed that over the 40 years of wilderness wandering, Israel had lost a net total of 1,820 men. Some tribes grew in number, while others declined. The tribe of Simeon lost more than half its former strength.
However, the bottom line of this story is not found in the “how many,” but in the “who,” for not one of the men (except Joshua and Caleb) that had lived when Israel had originally turned back, survived. Exactly 648,094 men were buried in the wilderness while Israel waited and wandered.
The cost of an unbelieving, disobedient spirit can indeed be devastating. Has God spoken? Best to believe and obey.
A man’s real belief is that which he lives by. What a man believes is the thing he does, not the thing he thinks. – George Macdonald