1 Corinthians 10:10 Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. 11 Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.
The Bible tells us in 2 Timothy 3:16, 17, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” We are also told that the things recorded in the Old Testament are for our learning (Romans 15:4) and admonition (1 Corinthians 10:11). One area we can learn and take the warning from is about the dangers of murmuring.
The Apostle Paul, in the New Testament, 1 Corinthians 10:10 warned the Corinthians and told them to learn from the experience of those Old Testament believers in the wilderness. “Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.” To murmur means to mutter, grumble, say anything in a low tone; indignant complaining; to voice displeasure or complain (more privately than in public); a grudging; and a secret debate among people. This murmuring kept them from entering their destiny in the Promised Land because they were overthrown in the wilderness. The context of all of the warnings in 1 Corinthians 10 is as God is advancing His people as they move forward in His will, some get overthrown and stop advancing.
Advancing in the plan of God for our lives often exposes us to adversity, pressure, and obstacles we have to overcome. We must also realize that advancing provokes the enemy. The temptation to murmur and complain seems to come to stop our advance. The children of Israel’s murmuring in the wilderness that destroyed their advance was in three different areas. They murmured about:
- The PLAN OF GOD (His plan to get them into their destiny. He brought them out to bring them in) Exodus 16:2, 3.
- The PROVISION (their circumstances – the wilderness, manna, quail, and water) Exodus 17:1-4.
- The PRESCRIBED AUTHORITY OF GOD (who God put over them; or their leadership) Numbers 16.
In each of these three areas that they murmured it was really an expression of displeasure as well as unbelief toward God’s order for their life. It was God’s plan, provision, and prescribed leaders that they murmured about. God didn’t consult them about it, He didn’t submit it for their approval, and He wasn’t adapting down His standard to be relevant to them. He is God and they are not. He delivered them from Pharaoh of Egypt and 400 years of slavery. They really had a hard time yielding to His order of things because they doubted His love for them. This was the root to their rejection to His order of things.
We must realize that everything God does for us He has our best interest in mind. There’s nobody that loves us as much as He does and He has planned the best possible life on Earth for us that anyone could live. We need to resist the temptation to murmur and complain and take encouragement from Paul’s message in Romans 8:35-39 “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” The devil tempts us to doubt God’s love in order to get us to justify rejecting His plan and the authorities He has put in our lives. When we trust His love we can accept His plan and submit to His authorities.