Deuteronomy 1:1 - "These are the words Moses spoke to all Israel in the wilderness east of the Jordan."
In this passage, Moses explains the last forty years of his experience with God, the Israelites, and his enemies.
Deuteronomy 3:23-29 - "At that time I pleaded with the Lord: “Sovereign Lord, you have begun to show to your servant your greatness and your strong hand. For what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do the deeds and mighty works you do? Let me go over and see the good land beyond the Jordan—that fine hill country and Lebanon.” But because of you the Lord was angry with me and would not listen to me. “That is enough,” the Lord said. “Do not speak to me anymore about this matter. Go up to the top of Pisgah and look west and north and south and east. Look at the land with your own eyes, since you are not going to cross this Jordan. But commission Joshua, and encourage and strengthen him, for he will lead this people across and will cause them to inherit the land that you will see.” So we stayed in the valley near Beth Peor."
After serving the Lord for the last forty years, Moses pleaded (begged, prayed) to the Lord to see the promise land.
Moses had led God’s people for the last forty years as a leader and pastor. He interceded for his people in many occasions. Several times he cried to the Lord for his people – for food, for water, for deliverance from the Egyptians, in the crossing of the Red Sea, before the wall of Jericho.
He faced a lot of opposition from within the Israelite camp.
He settled many issues in Israel during their journey.
With his leadership, the Israelites defeated many enemies during their journey through the wilderness.
All this time, Moses had been speaking of the promise land to Israel, a land he had never seen.
It was his lifelong ambition to see that beautiful land, but the Lord did not allow him.
Look at how Moses reacted to God's response. It was one of humility – as a humble servant of God, he accepted God's answer with respect – revealing his servant heart.
Forty years of experience as a leader did not make him above of his master.
Moses did not argue with the Lord - he didn't say, "Lord it is my right to see the land" - he did not fight with God for his right.
Moses teaches us the lesson of humble obedience - simply obey the Lord - pray not my will but His will be done in your life.
Numbers 12:3 - "Now Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth."
Be humble before the Lord, even when our rights are refused or rejected!
It is a test that proves the intensity of our relationship with our Lord.
How do we react in such situations when our prayers are unanswered or our desires are not fulfilled?
Moses accepted His master’s final decision with respect and humility, no questions asked.
Our Lord Jesus Christ is also a good example for us. When He prayed and asked God to remove the cup of suffering, He said "Father not my will but your will be done in my life."
Matthew 26: 39 - "Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”
Apostle Paul also pleaded God three times to remove the "thorn of Satan", but Jesus did not answer his request.
2 Corinthians 12:9 - "I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me."
When we study these three examples of willful obedience, we can understand that the Lord did not simply ignore their prayer. Instead, God gave each of these individuals a special package to honor them.