And whenever the cloud lifted from over the tent, after that the people of Israel set out.

Numbers 9:17

I used to read the Old Testament and think, “Man, if I saw what the Israelites saw, it would be so easy to follow God.”

I mean a gigantic cloud hovering over the entire people of Israel by day and a pillar of fire that moved and all by night? C’mon, that would make following God so easy.

And then I realized something about the people–they still wouldn’t follow God.

Even if God wrote it in the sky, it wasn’t a matter of how spectacular or supernatural displays of God are, without a heart that is renewed, no one will follow God. This is why the new covenant is so important, our relationship with God is not something external, it’s internal, written on our hearts, communicated in the spirit.

Even though the Israelites could see God’s leading by the cloud and pillar of fire, we have a more sure leading because we have the Spirit of Jesus inside of us speaking and leading us.

That is why we can live by faith, and not by cloud.