Friday, April 16, 2010

Don’t be deceived

Joshua 9:3-14
[3] And when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done unto Jericho and to Ai, [4] 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; [5] And old shoes and clouted upon their feet, and old garments upon them; and all the bread of their provision was dry [and] mouldy. [6] 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. [7] And the men of Israel said unto the Hivites, Peradventure ye dwell among us; and how shall we make a league with you? [8] And they said unto Joshua, We [are] thy servants. And Joshua said unto them, Who [are] ye? and from whence come ye? [9] And they said unto him, From a very far country thy servants are come because of the name of the LORD thy God: for we have heard the fame of him, and all that he did in Egypt, [10] And all that he did to the two kings of the Amorites, that [were] beyond Jordan, to Sihon king of Heshbon, and to Og king of Bashan, which [was] at Ashtaroth. [11] Wherefore our elders and all the inhabitants of our country spake to us, saying, Take victuals with you for the journey, and go to meet them, and say unto them, We [are] your servants: therefore now make ye a league with us. [12] This our bread we took hot [for] our provision out of our houses on the day we came forth to go unto you; but now, behold, it is dry, and it is mouldy: [13] And these bottles of wine, which we filled, [were] new; and, behold, they be rent: and these our garments and our shoes are become old by reason of the very long journey. [14] And the men took of their victuals, and asked not [counsel] at the mouth of the LORD.

Here we have a narrative about Joshua and the men of Gibeon. They knew Joshua was a force to be reckoned with. They needed to make a plan not to be annihilated like the other nations. The plan was to deceive Joshua and his men. Dressing in old clothes and shoes the men started on their journey of deceit. They took moldy bread and old worn wine bottles to complete the deception.

Meeting with Joshua and his men they told a story of traveling from far away. The bread was warm from the oven but now it was moldy. The wine bottles were brand new but now they were broken and no good. Look at our clothes and shoes, they are ripped and worn from the treacherous travels. We have been traveling for a very, very, very, long time. Joshua listen as the men told the tale of woe.

Continuing to keep the deception going they asked to be made servants. We will do anything, just don’t kill us. We have heard so much about what you and your men have done. We heard about your great God and all He did in Egypt. We will be content with just being your servants.

Joshua’s men inspected the food. The visitors were not lying; the food was all dried out and decayed. Then in a moment without thinking the Israelites made a league with the strangers. The key to the decision is in verse fourteen, “they asked not the counsel of the Lord.” Joshua made the decision totally in the flesh. He did not pray and ask God what to do. Within three days he learned the truth, the men were not strangers from a far away land but Gibeonites, next door neighbors. The decision came back to “bite him.”

What about you? Do you ever make a snap decision without consulting with God? I do, there have been plenty of times that I made a decision because something looked good, later finding out that it was not the right decision to make.

Are there decisions you need to make? Are you caught between many opinions? Where can you go? Who can you listen to?

Don’t make a rash decision like Joshua made. Pray and ask God to show you what to do. God will never fail you with His counsel.

Have a blessed day,

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