Now therefore, fear the Lord, serve Him in sincerity and in truth, and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord! And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.
Joshua is a remarkable leader. Following Moses is no small achievement, and his military feats are amazing. Like most other star players in the Bible, he didn't desire power or attention. He was content in his job as assistant. Even so, God was preparing him to lead.
Consider some of Joshua's highs and lows:
1. When Moses sent twelve spies into Canaan, only two men, Joshua and Caleb, returned with faithful determination.** They believed God for every victory.
2. Joshua climbed Mt. Sinai with Moses and spent one-on-one time in God's Presence.*** Like Moses, Joshua learned from God and remained devoted to His service.
3. Twice Joshua forgot to consult God: 1) The first expected win at Ai. 2) The Gibeonites' sneaky request. Both mistakes brought unfortunate results.****
4. When one of his soldiers stole and hid loot, Joshua had a tough clean-up job. The disobeying thief was rooted out, showing that bad yeast must be discarded.
5. As he was nearing the end of his life, after winning most of Canaan's cities, Joshua saw the threats and needs ahead. He declared the most urgent choice we face.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: What truths can you learn from Joshua? Maybe that giants aren't big to God. Maybe that assisting is godly. Maybe that God rewards faithfulness and punishes fearful complainers. Maybe that your God-time is vital. Maybe that forgetting to ask God can bring an unfortunate outcome. Maybe that even good men can err. Maybe that churches should be cleaner and you shouldn't condone coverups. Maybe that you can't choose God and gods.
To Be Continued...
* Short article: What should we learn from the life of Joshua? http://www.gotquestions.org/life-Joshua.html
** See Numbers 13:1-14:10: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Numbers+13%3A1-14%3A10&version=NKJV
*** Short article: Was Joshua with Moses on Mt. Sinai? https://michaelcjbradford.wordpress.com/2014/02/08/was-joshua-with-moses-on-mt-sinai/
**** Longer article (also describes Joshua's mistake re: Ai): Defeat at Ai and the Sin of Achan, https://bible.org/seriespage/6-defeat-ai-and-sin-achan-joshua-71-26
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the The Enemy's Game series.