The picture in the Book of Numbers is painted ever so clearly. God's people find themselves stuck in a pattern they cannot get out of themselves. Over and over again they turn to Moses to intercede on their behalf, begging Moses to ask for mercy from God. One by one the leaders fall victim to this sin cycle. The Levites, Miriam and Aaron, and lastly Moses, himself, disobey God's commands.
It is easy to brush this off and simply quote Paul, "We all sin and fall short of the glory of God," then go about our day, living daily in that destructive cycle. Or we can go the other way and claim that we are so horrible and unworthy that nothing will ever bring us back to God's presence and we proceed without hope (not to be confused with precede which means to go before. I hear they can be easily confused. Please watch the sermon for context.)
Either extreme keeps us stuck, hopeless and disconnected from a God who desires our company, the God who willingly set up a plan for our sin to be atoned and for our hearts to be made right, able to stand in His presence once again.
We are moving into Deuteronomy as Moses gives his final farewell speech. He knows he will not enter the promised land, but he has hope that even as the new generation may (will) fail, there will be a time when the hearts of God's people will no longer be hard and selfish and that true transformation will occur. There will be a day when we all will be able to love God fully and obey His Word.
Until then, just as the Israelites did with Moses as their intercessor, we too must lean heavily on our intercessor, who is none other than Jesus. Until God's promises are fulfilled we must lean on Christ as our intercessor, our mediator, our Savior - the only One who can truly take us to God.