Biblical Last Words: Joshua Challenges

Biblical Last Words: Joshua Challenges

Biblical Last Words: Joshua Challenges.

“‘Put away the foreign gods that are among you, and incline your heart to the Lord, the God of Israel!’ So Joshua made a covenant with the people that day.” (Joshua 24:23-25).

Joshua died after he had sent the people away thinking about their commitment to Yahweh. Joshua, the “servant of the Lord,” was 110 years old. (Joshua 23:29). He had made a big community event out of this last covenant before he died, making statues and ordinances, putting up a huge stone to serve as a reminder to the people, writing it down for all to read in the future. He had done everything he could to challenge them to live into their covenant with the Lord. Joshua knew very well what Moses had told the people before Moses had died. “I know your rebellion and stubbornness… I know that after  my death you will utterly corrupt yourselves, and turn aside from the way which I have commanded you; and evil will befall you in the latter days.” (Deut. 31:27-29).

Moses’ words were probably still ringing in Joshua’s ears when Joshua’s time on earth had come to an end. Joshua wanted with his dying breath to impress upon the Israelites the supreme importance of their faithfulness to Yahweh. He made them say it with an oath. He wrote it down. He set up a stone monument. He put up statues. He wanted to inspire a strong commitment on the part of the Israelites. After Joshua had done all he could, he died and was buried in the Promised Land.

Joshua was Moses’ capable and loyal assistant through everything… the exodus, the wandering in the wilderness, the approach to the Promised Land. In the beginning of their journey, he and Caleb were the only spies of Israel who trusted in God to deliver the Canaanites into their hands. Those two alone were not intimidated in the least. And that typified Joshua throughout his life, courageous and faithful to the very end. Joshua truly was a “servant of the Lord.”

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