Category: Daily Devotional Thoughts

In Joshua 9, we read about the Gibeonite deception. While the rest of Canaan was freaking out about Joshua and the Israelites, preparing to go to war with them, the Gibeonites had another idea: They would pretend to be from far away and make a treaty with the Israelites. Such a ruse should never have worked, considering Joshua’s relationship with the Lord. Joshua spent a lot of time with the Lord, so he should have recognized the deception. Exodus 33 gives us this insight about Joshua.

The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his young aide Joshua son of Nun did not leave the tent.

Exodus 33:11 (NIV)

Yet, when the Gibeonites tried to deceive the Israelites, they got away with it, and Joshua 9:14 tells us why.

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One of the more memorable incidents in the Old Testament is the Israelites’ first defeat when attacking Ai. Shortly after annihilating Jericho, a few thousand Israelites go to take Ai and are routed, with 36 men killed. After a short investigation, Achan, the son of Zerah, took some of the devoted things. Thereby condemning all of Israel to failure. We read about the consequences of Achan’s sin here. 

Then Joshua, together with all Israel, took Achan son of Zerah, the silver, the robe, the gold bar, his sons and daughters, his cattle, donkeys and sheep, his tent and all that he had, to the Valley of Achor. Joshua said, “Why have you brought this trouble on us? The Lord will bring trouble on you today.” Then all Israel stoned him, and after they had stoned the rest, they burned them (emphasis added)

Joshua 7:24-25 (NIV)

Everyone in Achan’s immediate family was stoned to death and then burned, which brings to mind these two verses.

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We’ve been getting a lot of rain this year here in California. We’ve so desperately needed rain since we’ve been in a drought for years. One thing I’ve noticed about the rain is how long it takes for the ground to dry after it rains. Part of my daily devotions is walking and spending time with the Lord out in nature. This means walking on paths that get muddy and often when there’s too much mud, become impassible.

While reading Joshua today, something I hadn’t thought much about stood out to me. When the Israelites crossed the Jordan, the ground was dry. Indeed, the same thing happened when they crossed the Red Sea.

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Years ago, when I was studying San Soo, my instructor had a very intriguing way of describing combat. He said that when engaging an opponent, there is no fight and no combat. There is only the predator and the prey. “Does the lion worry about the gazelle or zebra?”

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