Joshua 24:22 Our Own Worst Witness

Joshua 24:22 (KJV)
And Joshua said unto the people, Ye are witnesses against yourselves that ye have chosen you the LORD, to serve him. And they said, We are witnesses.

Faith is a choice of the free will. Having made the choice to follow the Lord, to turn back would be a terrible testimony not against God, but against the backslider.

God tells us to let our “yea be yea and our nay be nay.” He tells us it is better not to make a vow than to make one and break it. It is a matter of character and right.

To turn into sin, after professing faith in God, hinders the Lord in no respect. But it does bring reproach upon those who do it.

 

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Joshua 24:22 Our Own Worst Witness

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Joshua 23:11-13 The Ease of Slipping

Joshua 23:11-13 (KJV)
Take good heed therefore unto yourselves, that ye love the LORD your God.
Else if ye do in any wise go back, and cleave unto the remnant of these nations, even these that remain among you, and shall make marriages with them, and go in unto them, and they to you:
Know for a certainty that the LORD your God will no more drive out any of these nations from before you; but they shall be snares and traps unto you, and scourges in your sides, and thorns in your eyes, until ye perish from off this good land which the LORD your God hath given you.

God warned Israel, through Joshua, of the ease in which a believer can slip away from loving God.

There are all around us in this world, things that crave our attention, and our affection. From the ways we spend our time to the people we are drawn to as companions, Christians are constantly enticed into compromising relationships. It is only through awareness of the problem and diligence in our walk with God that our love of Him is steadfast.

And it is only in our love for Him that we find blessing.

 

To my readers:
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For this and more than 4000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Joshua 23:11-13 The Ease of Slipping

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Joshua 21:1-3 God Turned The Curse Into a Blessing

Joshua 21:1-3 (KJV)
Then came near the heads of the fathers of the Levites unto Eleazar the priest, and unto Joshua the son of Nun, and unto the heads of the fathers of the tribes of the children of Israel;
And they spake unto them at Shiloh in the land of Canaan, saying, The LORD commanded by the hand of Moses to give us cities to dwell in, with the suburbs thereof for our cattle.
And the children of Israel gave unto the Levites out of their inheritance, at the commandment of the LORD, these cities and their suburbs.

The New Testament Christian has been made both king and priest. As such the Levitical priesthood has something to teach the Christian.

  • Upon Levi was pronounced a judgment for his part in the slaughter of Shechem.
  • It was this judgment that determined they would have no lot in Israel but be scattered throughout their brethren
  • The ministry of the priesthood required they be nearby to all of their brethren
  • So their judgment became a blessing to themselves and their brethren

Christians might fairly call themselves the chiefest of sinners. Far from earning salvation, we have been given a gift we could never deserve. As the Spirit-born children of God we are strangers and pilgrims in this world. We are scattered across the face of this earth as witnesses to those around us of God’s goodness.

God turned the curse into a blessing.

To my readers:
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For this and more than 4000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Joshua 21:1-3 God Turned The Curse Into a Blessing

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Joshua 13:6-7 Get After It!

Joshua 13:6-7 (KJV)
All the inhabitants of the hill country from Lebanon unto Misrephothmaim, and all the Sidonians, them will I drive out from before the children of Israel: only divide thou it by lot unto the Israelites for an inheritance, as I have commanded thee.
Now therefore divide this land for an inheritance unto the nine tribes, and the half tribe of Manasseh,

The passage begins “in the red.” Joshua is old. The days of his labor are drawing to an end but there is still a lot of work to do. God’s purpose, in this passage, is to lead him to get it done.

We may be able to use the passage to inspire our own productivity when we find ourselves behind.

There was a promise from God
God would drive out the enemy before them. We have God’s promise of help when we put our hands to the plow.

There was a plan to be made
The Land was to be divided. Look at it as delegation. Each tribe was given a chunk of the work to do. Planning and delegation always precede accomplishment.

There was a command given
We can lean on promises and make plans all we wish. If we want to get the job done we have to get up and do it. No plan will be foolproof. No assignment will be accomplished with 100 percent efficiency. Adjustments will need to be made as we move along. But failure to move in favor of better planning is failure all its own.

There is plenty for us all to do in God’s work. Let’s:

  • Claim His promises
  • Make a plan
  • Accept some responsibility and
  • Get after it

To my readers:
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For this and more than 4000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Joshua 13:6-7 Get After It!

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Joshua 9:3-6 Wily Workers in Church

Joshua 9:3-6 (KJV)
And when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done unto Jericho and to Ai,
They did work wilily, and went and made as if they had been ambassadors, and took old sacks upon their asses, and wine bottles, old, and rent, and bound up;
And old shoes and clouted upon their feet, and old garments upon them; and all the bread of their provision was dry and mouldy.
And they went to Joshua unto the camp at Gilgal, and said unto him, and to the men of Israel, We be come from a far country: now therefore make ye a league with us.

Seems to me that there are a bunch of folks like this in churches. Christian history is filled with accounts of wily workers. These are people who, for any number of reasons, have made a league and joined a church group.

  • They may have been afraid of God
  • They may have been impressed with the congregation
  • They may have seen an opportunity for improvement

Whatever the reason, they never met Jesus and they never became part of the family. They are (technically) members of the church but they have no fellowship with the Holy Spirit. They go about serving Christianity in the power of the flesh. They are unhappy and they are ineffective unless they can overpower others or buy their influence.

True believers are far from perfect but they are born again into God’s family.

 

To my readers:
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For this and more than 4000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Joshua 9:3-6 Wily Workers in Church

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Joshua 8:1-2 Will God Ever Forgive Me?

Joshua 8:1-2 (KJV)
And the LORD said unto Joshua, Fear not, neither be thou dismayed: take all the people of war with thee, and arise, go up to Ai: see, I have given into thy hand the king of Ai, and his people, and his city, and his land:
And thou shalt do to Ai and her king as thou didst unto Jericho and her king: only the spoil thereof, and the cattle thereof, shall ye take for a prey unto yourselves: lay thee an ambush for the city behind it.

Many Christians live in fear of the past sins they have committed, wondering if God will ever forgive them. What if, as so many people do, God holds grudges? What if He claims to forgive but, just when you most need a blessing, He brings those sins up again and pounces on you?

This passage answers those fears.

Israel had experienced a devastating loss.

  • They had not humbled themselves after the amazing victory in Jericho.
  • They had neglected to examine themselves for uncontested sin.
  • They had judged others while not judging themselves and it had resulted in tragedy.

Now Ai must be faced again. Would God ever forgive and bless them?

The answer is yes. Once the sin had been addressed God promised to be with them just as He was in Jericho.

Be honest about your sin. Confess it. And then move forward, trusting God to be with you.

 

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 4000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Joshua 8:1-2 Will God Ever Forgive Me?

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Joshua 7:2-3 The Danger of Success

Joshua 7:2-3 (KJV)
And Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which is beside Bethaven, on the east side of Bethel, and spake unto them, saying, Go up and view the country. And the men went up and viewed Ai.
And they returned to Joshua, and said unto him, Let not all the people go up; but let about two or three thousand men go up and smite Ai; and make not all the people to labour thither; for they are but few.

Here is an example of one of the great dangers of success, especially resounding success. Israel immediately forgot about the miraculous aspect of their victory at Jericho. They only saw the victory.

They won so decisively that they instantly assumed there was no enemy that could defeat them. They forgot that they could put themselves at odds with God.

Notice that their next function was to judge others. They went to access the capabilities of Ai.

  • They did not look inward to judge themselves
  • They did not look upward to see God’s view
  • They assumed they were fine and everyone else was not.

There is a place and time for judgment. But it always comes after seeking God and thoroughly examining self.

 

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 4000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Joshua 7:2-3 The Danger of Success

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Joshua 6:24 Your Offering, Burnt To Dust

Joshua 6:24 (KJV)
And they burnt the city with fire, and all that was therein: only the silver, and the gold, and the vessels of brass and of iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the LORD.

Here is a principle we see again and again in the Old Testament; the thing that is offered to God is burnt to dust.

There is a symbolic thing that happens there. God, of course, needs nothing. When we give to God in this “careless” way, we acknowledge that. He does not need our gifts. We give out of obedience and worship, not His necessity.

Then too, by burning it up we insure that we don’t come back later to reclaim it. It is gone for good and forever. In much the same way we must view our offerings as gone from us forever. We can’t take them back. We must not force control over them.

Some of the goods from Jericho were kept for the house of the Lord. Our gifts are truly sacrificed; never to be brought up again. At the same time those gifts enter into the treasury of God’s house. There they support the facilities and the ministries of the church.

 

To my readers:
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For this and more than 4000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Joshua 6:24 Your Offering, Burnt To Dust

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Joshua 3:3-4 Your Pastor, Your Friend

Joshua 3:3-4 (KJV)
And they commanded the people, saying, When ye see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and the priests the Levites bearing it, then ye shall remove from your place, and go after it.
Yet there shall be a space between you and it, about two thousand cubits by measure: come not near unto it, that ye may know the way by which ye must go: for ye have not passed this way heretofore.

Early in my ministry I learned a lesson, from whom I don’t recall. This lesson has been difficult to practice but I believe is very wise. I have since known numerous pastors[1] who practice this lesson, all of us with the same difficulty. The practice is leading, but with some distance. The pastor must be friendly to all but a friend to none in his congregation. This passage serves to reinforce that lesson.

Israel was about to take a path they had never traveled before. Joshua therefore instructed that, when they saw the priests lift up the ark, they were to arise and follow. But they were cautioned not to get too close. Proximity would have obscured the view.

The same is true of the pastor’s relationship with his congregation. He is close to them. He loves them and they, in return should love him. But familiarity would potentially destroy his ability to lead them. They would never know if they got off track because they had never passed this way before. By the time they were in a position to hear their pastor’s warnings it would likely be to late.

Follow and pray for your pastor, enjoy his fellowship. But don’t ask him to be your best friend.

[1] Itinerant preachers such as missionaries and evangelists often do not practice it, to the harm of many a pastor and church.

 

To my readers:
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For this and more than 4000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Joshua 3:3-4 Your Pastor, Your Friend

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Joshua 1:16-18 What We Expect of our Leaders

Joshua 1:16-18 (KJV)
And they answered Joshua, saying, All that thou commandest us we will do, and whithersoever thou sendest us, we will go.
According as we hearkened unto Moses in all things, so will we hearken unto thee: only the LORD thy God be with thee, as he was with Moses.
Whosoever he be that doth rebel against thy commandment, and will not hearken unto thy words in all that thou commandest him, he shall be put to death: only be strong and of a good courage.

It is the order of things that leadership changes. No matter how strong a leader is, how secure his title, how good a leader he may be or how much the people may wish he might stay in power, we live only so long. Age gets us all.

And so Moses was dead. Joshua had been prepared for the job and was now installed. The people agreed to follow him wholeheartedly. They only asked two things of him:

  • That the Lord be with him and
  • That he be strong and of good courage

Any group of followers have a right to ask these of their authorities:

Be strong and of good courage
No leader is perfect. We can’t ask that of them. But we can expect them to be prepared, confident and decisive.

Be right with God
Though this expectation has lost value in recent years it shouldn’t have. We know our leaders can’t be perfect. That’s why we depend upon them to be blessed of God.

 

To my readers:
I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

For this and more than 4000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit https://mckenzie-visit-with-god.blogspot.com. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

If you have been blessed by this blog, please subscribe to my feed and share it with others.

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Joshua 1:16-18 What We Expect of our Leaders

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