Today’s Tasting: Joshua 9–11: These three chapters describe Jehovah clearing the way for Joshua to take the land for Israel. It chronicles the Israelites’ path to victory over their enemies. The Gibeonites deceived Israel into thinking they were not from the region so Israel would make a peace treaty with them. The Israelites didn’t ask God for His guidance in the matter, but entered into the treaty. When they discovered the Gibeonites’ deceit, the Israelites kept their word and did not destroy them, but made them servants as a consequence. Five kings of the west banded together to attack Israel. God told the Israelites that He would give them victory. Hailstones rained down from heaven and killed most of the enemy armies. Significantly, more were killed by hail than by the sword. Joshua spoke to God and the Lord heard him and stayed the sun at the midday sky for hours, so that they could gain more victories that day. They captured the five kings of the west and hung them. The Israelites moved on through the region until they had total victory just as God had promised Moses. Then they rested from war.
Today’s Nourishment: The main lesson for me in these three chapters is total trust and submission to God and His promises. Joshua was totally committed, as the leader of Israel, to do everything God asked him to do. If God said it, Joshua believed it and obeyed. The fate of the Gibeonites is a picture of God’s grace. They were deceitful, but pleaded for mercy and repented. Thus, they were allowed to live. God never goes back on His Word and Joshua wouldn’t allow Israel to go back on theirs. There was a consequence, however; the Gibeonites became the servants of Israel. In the same way, when we repent and seek God, He will save us, although we may still have to deal with the consequences of our actions.
What a stunning story of faith! Joshua’s complete, unwavering faith is so compelling. His faith and trust in God were so strong that God stopped the sun in the sky at midday so Israel could have a longer day to fight before night came. Joshua was filled with the Spirit and Mind of God. God also quickens our hearts and encourages us in our daily battles with the enemy of our soul, Satan. As the Israelites were empowered by God to wipe out all their enemies, so are we given power in Christ to overcome Satan. We must pursue the enemy of our souls with that same passion that Joshua had.
As we walk with the Lord, we are engaged in war just as the Israelites were—a spiritual war against Satan and his kingdom. Jesus has given us the sword of His Spirit and the whole armor of God to defeat our foes (see Ephesians 6:10–18). So let us stay in the Word, obeying His voice, praying constantly, so we can win those battles and in the end, enter into His rest, just as Israel did! Hallelujah, Lamb of God!
Tomorrow’s Tasting: Joshua 12–15
Noni of 11