Leadership Lessons Learned by Joshua (by Kyle Bilby)
“And the men took of their victuals, and asked not counsel at the mouth of the LORD.” (Joshua 9:14)
Today’s Passage – Joshua 8 – 9 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click here to view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)
(Second Milers also read – 1 Timothy 1 – 3; Proverbs 14; Psalms 66 – 70)
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – 1 John 4:7 & 8
Read the “0314 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon.
Chapter 8 picks up where 7 left us. Israel just got defeated at Ai. Achan and his family were the root cause of this. They kept some of the “loot” from the victory at Jericho Which was forbidden by God after this specific battle (6:18). Achan and his whole family and possessions were destroyed and Israel repented. Note here that Joshua sees Gods will and wisdom (7:6-9).
Chapter 8 begins with God responding to the repentance for Achan’s family’s sin with an encouraging set of instructions for final Victory in Ai. Remember that it has always been God’s will for his people to destroy the inhabitants of the Promised Land and give his people possession of this land. God even tells them that all the spoils of the battle of AI can be all theirs. He gives Joshua the battle plan. This time Joshua and the people do exactly as God commands them. They draw out the soldiers from the town and sneak in behind, burn and destroy the city and the inhabitants. Complete victory in Ai. No doubt because they did exactly as God told them.
Lessons Learned from Chapter Eight:
- Follow the Lord’s Plan for our lives
- Use all the resources God has given
- Seek Gods will and his wisdom
- Expect the outcome that God has promised (Good or Bad)
In chapter 9, the southern kings are starting to understand that God is on the side of the Israelites. They are seeing these great cities and strongholds fall to Israel and I’m sure they know that without God it wouldn’t have been possible. They decide to group together in a united front to oppose the Israelites, except for the Gibeonites. They devise a plane to trick the Israelites into signing a “peace treaty” with them to save them from destruction. They claimed to be a people from a far country, taking moldy bread, old wineskins, patched up sandals. They really went out of their way to put up this front, claiming they traveled so far their sandals were coming apart and their food had spoiled. It works. Israel agrees to this covenant, which was strictly forbidden. (Exodus 23:23-24) Israel was not suppose to make any covenants with any Canaanite tribes. The key verse for this chapter is 14. “And the men took of their victuals, and asked not counsel at the mouth of the lord.” They use their own wisdom and fall for these lies that the Gibeonites had told them instead of seeking God’s wisdom. When Joshua finds out that they lied it was already too late. Israel holds to the oath and does not harm them when they come into their land. Even though the people complained to the rulers of Israel they knew that keeping an oath, even a bad oath was better than allowing one sin (wiping out the Gibeonites) to follow another sin (making the oath without seeking God). Joshua instead turns the Gibeonites into servants to the Lord as a punishment (9:21-27). The Gibeonites were not thrilled about becoming wood cutters and water carriers for Israel, but they knew that this was better than destruction. Like David would write in Psalm 84:10:
“For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.” (Psalm 84:10)
In these passages we see that it’s never too late to call sin … sin . Point it out. Get rid of it. Repent and seek God’s forgiveness. In the end you’re far ahead if you seek God’s wisdom in your everyday life. Pray about the all the “little” things. The Big ones will be automatic.
The history of Israel’s experiences reflect the cyle of most christians:
-Obedience followed by victory
-victory followed by a blessing
-blessing followed by disobedience and pride
-disobedience followed by defeat
-defeat followed by judgement
-judgement followed by repentance
-repentance followed by obedience
-obedience followed by victory
These chapters are a great example of:
The battle is always the Lord’s including the one you may be facing.
If you find yourself in sin, repent and lean on our Lord.
Do it His way and let Him handle it.
Seek Him in everything you do.
Posted in Devotions by Kyle Bilby with 4 comments.