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Numbers 20: 8, 11

Take the rod; and you and your brother Aaron assemble the congregation and speak to the rock before their eyes, that it may yield its water. You shall thus bring forth water for them out of the rock and let the congregation and their beasts drink. Then Moses lifted up his hand and struck the rock twice with his rod; and water came for abundantly and the congregation and their beasts drank.

This is undoubtedly one of the hardest lessons for us to learn. Moses sure learned it the hard way. God told him to speak to the rock and the rock would then yield its water. Moses, instead, struck the rock with his rod. It was an act of pure defiance and it cost Moses dearly. Because he disobeyed God, striking the rock instead of speaking to it, Moses was not allowed to go into the land of promise.

I don’t believe Moses was kept out of the Promised Land as some form of punishment. I think God couldn’t use Moses to take the people into the Promised Land. God was teaching His people that you must speak to your mountains if you want them to move. When they finally did enter into the Promised Land behind Joshua they took Jericho with obedience and a shout. God knew what lay ahead and He had a plan to turn over the land to the Israelites. In order to receive their new land the Israelites need to learn obedience, when to speak and when not to speak. There is a deep message here and it has a great deal to do with the words of our mouth. 

Our words are containers for God’s power. However, if we cannot marshal our tongues then He cannot give us His power. When God instructed the people to march around Jericho He also gave them explicit directions about when to keep silent and when to speak. When the appropriate time came they were instructed to shout. Then the walls of Jericho fell at their feet and all they did was march, obey and speak.

Jesus told us to speak to our mountains in the same way that the Israelites spoke to those walls. (Matthew 17: 20, Matthew 21: 21, Mark 11: 23). He learned from his father that the way to get water from a rock or to get a problem to desist was to speak to it. This is the lesson we must learn if we would live the life of success and grace that Jesus meant for us. Jesus did not say that if we would pray to the Father the mountain would get up and jump in the sea. Now I believe most earnestly in prayer but I am also fervent about doing what Jesus said. That means that I must eventually embrace this notion of speaking to the rock and commanding it to give me water, and talking to that mountain and ordering it into the sea.

I do not expect this teaching to be comfortable. It isn’t to me but I understand that this is where a great number of us are missing it with God. He has told us to speak to the rock and we’re running around hitting it with a stick. There is a time to pray. There is a time to seek. There is also, though, a time to speak to that mountain and this we must learn. Whatever that mountain is that is blocking your way, start speaking to it in the name of Jesus. Tell it what the Word says and tell it to move out of the way. It has to obey.

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