Archive for September 12th, 2009

Joshua 9

Joshua 9 teaches us a very important lesson.  Two of the enemies are defeated now – the people of Jericho and Ai are gone, but there is a host of others still in the land.  “They came together in a coalition to fight against Joshua”.  But one tribe – “the people of Gibeon” – decide to take a different approach and play dress up and pretend and come to Joshua and the leaders under a rouse claiming to be poor people from far away in need of help.  They played the story well, and convince the leaders of Israel to make a covenant with them to allow them to stay and be safe.  “The men of Israel looked them over and accepted the evidence”.  They checked them out and things seemed to be as they were told.  But they missed one critical part of the process.  Scripture gives us the real key to knowing truth: “but they didn’t ask God about it”.  Did you catch that?  These men, leaders that were appointed to lead and protect the people, were swindled because it seemed right and true to them.  But they never bothered to check things out with God.  They didn’t even stop to ask and seek God’s direction.  It was just look and see what seemed right to them.  How often do you make decisions without checking with God?  How often do you move ahead and not even slow down so God can lead?  I struggle with this and would have fit in with the leadership of that day.  So they made a covenant with these impostors that they would be safe and now they are stuck keeping it.  They had given their word before God, even though they hadn’t checked in with Him.  Now they had a problem.

 “The congregation was up in arms over their leaders”.  These men had blown it and now the people of Israel were saddled with caring for a whole additional group of people.  They couldn’t clean out the land as they were supposed to.  The leaders made excuses and sold the people on turning these Gibeonites into slaves basically, but it was a breach of trust and definitely what God had planned.  Joshua confronts the Gibeonites for their lies, but they explained “we were terrified because of you, that’s why we did this”.  It isn’t unusual behavior for someone who knows they are going to be killed.  So they are made to be wood cutters and water carriers for the congregation and the workers at the Altar.  We need to realize that people will always do things to attempt and get their way – even using deceit if necessary.  As humans we can’t necessarily see that very clearly.  God can, and is more than able to lead us to the truth if we only ask.  That is where we tend to fall down.  We do things on our own until we mess up and then we seek God.  We need to change that approach and make God part of all decisions we make.  They aren’t too small or unimportant for Him.  He is not too busy.  We just need to ask!

%d bloggers like this: