Hey, there! I’m super excited to be writing this post, and I’m going to try something new! I’ve been studying the bible with Women Living Well for over a year now, and it’s been such a blessing to me. Why not pay it forward? I’m planning on creating 2 blog posts per book of the bible that we work through in order to share what I’m learning…and hopefully spread some encouragement! Let’s check out some takeaways from Joshua 13-24!
*This post contains affiliate links.
**If you’re looking for a bible study to follow, you can check out our Facebook devotional group by clicking the “devotional” tab in the navigation bar above!
Cling to the Lord
The entire book of Joshua can really be summed up with this one statement. Joshua had the giant task of leading 2 million+ people to conquer all of the land that God had promised the Israelites. That meant dealing with a new and foreign land complete with the opposing inhabitants of the land. Whoa.
Joshua 23:8 – “…but you shall cling to the Lord your God just as you have done to this day.”
When I think about the fact that most of us can’t make it an entire day without looking a question up on the internet, it’s wild to think about how scary it must have been trekking into a completely new territory without any idea how to go about conquering it. Thankfully, we don’t have to ever go at it alone. God was right there every step of the way providing the Israelites with instructions, mercy, guidance, discipline, and love. God is with us every step of the way in our lives, as well. We all have big, scary mountains to climb. We all have a “new land” to conquer. We can move forward in confidence if we are clinging to the Lord.
We can be cities of refuge
Joshua 20:9 – “These were the cities designated for all the people of Israel and for the stranger sojourner among them, that anyone who killed a person without intent could flee there, so that he might not die by the hand of the avenger of blood, till he stood before the congregation.”
I always feel very convicted when I read about the cities of refuge! These were places to which a person could flee if they had accidentally caused the death of another person. These cities were a safe place free from judgment until the person could be evaluated on whether the crime was an accident or not. We also see that these cities were places for the people of Israel, but also for those that were traveling through the land. All people were able to take advantage of these merciful cities if they needed them.
I want to be a city of refuge for those around me. It’s so easy to judge someone that we have heard negative things about, and it’s much harder (and can sometimes feel impossible) to be impartial and kind instead. Instead of listening and partaking in gossip about those that we know or don’t know, let’s aim to be a person who doesn’t pass judgement. Let’s aim to be a safe place to land for those around us; even those that we don’t know very well.
Faith Like Caleb
We see in Joshua 14 that Caleb receives his inheritance…45 years after it was promised. (Check out numbers 14:24) Can you imagine waiting for anything for that long? We live in the age of “I want it, and I want it now!”. The internet, credit cards, and our smart phones make it easy to access just about anything that our heart desires with the push of a button, but it wasn’t like that for Caleb. The thing that he was looking forward to didn’t come about until 45 years later!
Sometimes, it can seem like an eternity while we are waiting for our prayers to be answered. We might begin to get impatient, frustrated or even resentful with God. In those times, let’s think back to Caleb’s unwavering faith. We can be encouraged to stay patient, and know that God will provide on His timetable. God’s timing is perfect and best for us.
Joshua 21:45 – “Not one word of all the good promises that the Lord had made to the house of Israel had failed; all came to pass.”
beware making marriages with temptation
I’m not talking about actual marriages here, but the wrong things in life that we allow to exist side-by-side with us. Temptations have become so mainstream in our society that it can be really hard to tell the right thing from the wrong thing. SO many times, I find myself having to think twice (and maybe a third time) about a TV show I’m about to watch. It seems innocent enough, but is it?
Joshua 23:12-13 – “For if you turn back and cling to the remnant of these nations remaining among you and make marriages with them, so that you associate with them and they with you, know for certain that the Lord your God will no longer drive out these nations before you, but they shall be a snare and a trap for you, a whip on your sides and thorns in your eyes, until you perish from off this good ground that the Lord your God has given you.”
When we open the door and allow temptation to walk right into our lives, we are uniting ourselves with the things that the Lord does not approve of. By surrounding ourselves in that cloud of evil, we see in the above verses that those seemingly innocent things will become a trap for us. They will keep us from reaching a true and personal relationship with God by distracting us from what is actually important. We cannot have both a heart for God and a heart for this world. We have to pick one or the other. It’s time for us to be extra vigilant on our mission to see through society’s lies, and focus on the Lord’s perfect plan for us.
Below are some of my favorite resources for studying the bible and just growing in faith in general!
War Room *
(Items with an * next to them are affiliate links. Learn more about what that means for you, here!)
Are you reading along in the book of Joshua? What is your biggest takeaway so far?