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July 24, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“See, I have divided to you by lot these nations that remain, to be an inheritance for your tribes, from the Jordan, with all the nations that I have cut off, as far as the Great Sea westward.”—Joshua 23:4 (NKJV)
The sun is starting to set on the life of the great man from whom this record gets its name. Joshua, the youthful apprentice of Moses. Joshua, the faith-filled spy who believed God was greater than any enemy. Joshua, the successor to the leadership of Israel into her homeland. Joshua, the one who bowed before the Commander of the Lord’s army. Joshua, the weathered warrior who fought to fulfill the Lord’s will. Joshua, the intercessor whose prayer stilled the sun. Joshua, the victorious head of a victorious people.
Imagine for a moment what it must have been like to be this man. How many moments, how many memories, how many miracles must be piled high in the treasury of his heart? With a life so rich and full of the extraordinary, we can’t help but stop and give attention to what he has to say . . . for as the mouth reveals the heart, his words can only possess precious value.
As he prepares for his inevitable departure, Joshua reminds his people that there is still work to accomplish. Keep in mind, there remained a lot of unconquered enemies living within the Promised Land. Enemies that Joshua knew they would need to defeat in his absence.
But Joshua doesn’t end it there. He goes beyond what they need to do and reminds them how they are to do it: “The Lord your God will expel them from before you and drive them out of your sight. So you shall possess their land, as the Lord your God promised you” (Joshua 23:5 NKJV).
Notice how Joshua reminds the people that God will be the One, as always, to give them future victory. Their hope didn’t rest on the promises of Joshua but on the promises of God.
This truth is applicable to us as well. As Christians, those who have been commissioned to share the truth of Jesus with all the world, there’s still a lot of work to be done! Although the Christian Church has come a long way, our mission is not fully fulfilled. But we must also remember that our commission has been given by One who dwells inside us and empowers us towards its eventual fulfillment.
Yes, there is more for us to do . . . but it can only be done through God’s power at work within us.
DIG: What was Joshua’s two-part message to Israel here?
DISCOVER: How does this relate to the Christian life?
DO: What is God doing through your life to fulfill your mission? If you’re not entirely sure at the moment, please spend time praying and fasting about this.
Pastor Dan Hickling serves our online community, also known as the Calvary Chapel Online Campus. He and his wife Becky have been married for 22 years and have two children, Lauren and Danny. Both Dan and Becky have been part of the CCFL church family for 22 years and have served in full time ministry for 20 of those years.