"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." - 1 Corinthians 10:11
A couple of hunters chartered a plane to fly into the Canadian wilderness. Two weeks later when the pilot came to pick them up, he saw the two animals they had bagged and said, "I told you fellows I could only take you and one moose. You'll have to leave the other behind." "But we did it last year in a plane this size," protested one of the hunters, "and the other pilot let us take two moose." "Well, okay," said the pilot. "If you did it before I guess we can do it again." So the two moose and the hunters were loaded in and the plane took off. Because of the heavy weight, it rose with difficulty and was unable to clear an obstructing hill. After the crash, the men climbed out and looked around. One hunter said to the other, "Where are we, anyway?" His companion surveyed the scene. "I think we got about half a mile farther than we got last year."
A few weeks ago I had a blunt but necessary conversation with my son: "Son, if you make mistakes in life that is just part of becoming a man. If you make the same mistakes that I made, you are a fool. God gives you examples, teachers, parents, and people in life who have gone down the road further than you to help prevent you from making the same mistakes as they made. If you make mistakes, at least make some new ones!"
One of the many reasons that I believe in the inspiration and preservation of the Scripture is the fact that God does not just give us only the positive points in people's lives in Scripture. He also gives us the negative side and many times the people writing are telling the negativity of their own actions! Who does that? Only God could inspire people to write things that do not paint themselves in a positive light. Moses, David, Samuel, Paul, Peter, the list could go on and on of the negative things that these Bible writers said about themselves. It was not really them saying it, it was God giving us a warning!
I get frustrated with the children of Israel when I read the accounts of the wilderness wanderings in Exodus. I get impatient with the disciples when it seems that they are clueless to what our Lord was doing in His earthly ministry throughout the narrative of the Gospel records. I get indignant towards the church of Corinth when I read in 1 Corinthians of all the open sin that they were participating in and turning a blind eye towards in their congregation.
Then I stop and think about me. How many times has God revealed truth to me in His Word and I go right back to living my life like I never read it in the first place? May God help us to learn from the examples, positive and negative, in the Scriptures so that we will not be foolish but we will be wise and discerning Christians. Learn from the mistakes of others. Take heed to the Word of God and start today being a doer of the Word not just a hearer!