After God pronounced judgment on the Israelites for their disobedience, the people responded by grieving. However, there is a difference between grieving sin and grieving the consequences of sin.
When we grieve the consequences of sin, we are distraught by being disciplined or because we missed out on something that we wanted. The focus is on us. But when we grieve sin itself, we are distraught because our fellowship with God has been disrupted and we are failing to glorify God as He deserves. The focus is on God.
The Israelites’ willingness to go into the promised land without the presence of God shows that they hadn’t repented of their sin. They didn’t want God’s presence; they wanted God’s presents. The worst place for us to be is in sin because it disrupts our fellowship with God. Having anything without God is far worse than having nothing with God. We need to remember this, let God drive it into our hearts, and be quick to grieve over our sin, not just its consequences.
How have you grieved over sin recently? Have you focused on the sin itself or on the consequences of sin?