Joshua Chapter Nine (Part Two)



Introduction:A key idea in Joshua is that God blesses obedience. Today, we hope to continue our discussion of the deception, by the Gibeonites.

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Body:

Read Joshua 9:14-26

B. Conquest of Southern Canaan. 1. Deception of the Gibeonites (continued). Joshua and the leaders made a treaty with the deceptive Gibeonites. The truth was found out about them being neighbors.

In spite of the grumbling, the leaders stood by their vow. The Gibeonites were designated as the woodcutters and water carriers for the community, as a punishment for their sin.

Applications -

- Our company. Notice in vs. 14-15 of Joshua that the spirit of not making a treaty with those close to the people of Israel was to prevent Israel from becoming defiled with idolatry and other types of sin. In like manner, we have to be careful about the company that we keep.

Most of us have to work hard to obey the Lord. But it comes so easily to disobey the Lord, especially when we have people urging us on with their examples of enjoying sin. Let’s work on watching our company.

Under this application comes ideas like making sure the church provides healthy alternatives for sinful company. We should also understand that we cannot be so holy that we don’t even try to save the lost and interact with them in the things of this world. Could you image not receiving your pay check from the clerk because the clerk was not saved?

- The truth comes to light. Notice in vs. 16 that the truth came out about the Gibeonites. In like manner, the truth has a way of coming out today. Thus, we should avoid lying. Let’s work on living truthful lives.

When you tell one lie, you are often tempted to tell another. And after we have finish with our lies, we then have to face both the truth and the lies that we have told. We should also thank God that the truth will come out regarding those who are being deceptive in our lives.

You may have someone who is being mean to you in one setting and act so nice in another setting. People doubt what you say about the person. Don’t worry. The truth has a way of coming out.

- Grumbling. Notice in vs. 18 that the people grumbled or complained. There are too many people who get upset about what leadership does or doesn’t do and begin to grumble or complain. The problem with this response is that God gets angry.

When we grumble and complain, instead of pray and trust God, we behave as if God is not around or not responsive, in spite of His promises. If a correction is within our power then we should make the correction.

If we are able to file our complaint or concern in an orderly way then we should. But to take on a spirit of grumbling is sinful. Let’s learn to do the best that we can and pray for the rest, instead of adopting a grumbling spirit.

- Unified leadership. Notice in vs. 19 that the leaders stuck together. There was unity among Joshua and the rest of the officers. It is difficult to find a church that is suffering a great deal of internal conflict, when the leaders are on one accord.

However, when the leaders are divided, it easily turns into a divided church. When the church is divided, it is not strange for the church to consume more energy from its members than to disburse blessings and empowerment to them.

Let’s pray for the leaders to line up behind the senior leader that God has sent. There is strength and blessings with unity, but there is weakness and punishment with disunity.

- Keeping our word. Notice in vs. 19 that there was a deep concern about keeping their word. On one hand, the people of God should be known for giving their best to keeping their promises, as a representative of God - the great Promise Keeper.

On the other hand, there are too many who do terrible jobs of keeping their word. Some give very little effort to living up to the Church Covenant. Some don’t live up to their wedding vows. And the list continues.

It is a contradiction of terms to be a “lying Christian.” Let’s work on keeping our word and commitments. For some, this application includes making less commitments, so you can do a better job of doing what you say you will do. Learn to say “no” or “let me think about that.”

- The cost of lying. Notice in vss. 26-27 of Joshua the cost of lying for the Gibeonites was that they were woodcutters and water carriers for the community for the rest of their known days.

There is a cost for lying. Even when people don’t find out about your lies, you know about them and, most importantly, God  knows about them. Let’s work on living truthfully, or be prepared to face the consequences. (see the earlier application about choosing the least of the evils - being killed or being a servant).

Conclusion: Let’s work on obeying God’s word. God has much for those who obey Him.

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