Joshua 7 & 8: Fear Not
Verse of the Day: (8:1) And the LORD said unto Joshua, Fear not, neither be thou dismayed: take all the people of war with thee, and arise, go up to Ai: see, I have given into thy hand the king of Ai, and his people, and his city, and his land
1. Few (7:1-26)
And they returned to Joshua, and said unto him, Let not all the people go up; but let about two or three thousand men go up and smite Ai; and make not all the people to labour thither; for they are but few. (7:3)
Why Israel manage to defeat a great city like Jericho, but failed to overcome a small city like Ai? Sins in the camp and complacency! Joshua and Israel thought that they could defeat Ai with only 2,000 to 3,000 men as Ai had only few people, but they failed to realise that it was God who shall grant them victory over their enemies. The reason for the defeat of Ai was that there were sins in the camp, as Achan had stolen and kept the forbidden spoils of their enemies. Subsequently, God revealed to Joshua that Achan from the tribe of Judah was the culprit. Achan, his family and possessions were then stoned and burnt to death. Though Achan was from Judah, and her reputation had been tarnished, yet God did not condemn her, and even blessed her as out of her came forth Jesus, the Saviour of the world. Indeed, God is fair in His dealing with mankind. (Matthew 1:1-3)
2. Fear (8:1-23)
And the LORD said unto Joshua, Stretch out the spear that is in thy hand toward Ai; for I will give it into thine hand. And Joshua stretched out the spear that he had in his hand toward the city. (8:18)
Just like God commanded Moses to fear not, and to stretch out his hand with his rod, as He miraculously opened the Red Sea to let Israel crossed it dry so as to escape the pursuing Egyptians, He also commanded Joshua to fear not, and to stretch out his hand with his spear, as He shall miraculously defeat Ai for them. Indeed, God taught Moses, Joshua, Israel, you and me, that it is not really the rod or the spear or anything or anyone, but God alone, who shall overcome all our struggles and storms. (Exodus 14:13-22)
3. Fallen (8:24-35)
And it came to pass, when Israel had made an end of slaying all the inhabitants of Ai in the field, in the wilderness wherein they chased them, and when they were all fallen on the edge of the sword, until they were consumed, that all the Israelites returned unto Ai, and smote it with the edge of the sword. (8:24)
Indeed, God gave Joshua and Israel great victory over Ai, as all the people, except their King (who was subsequently hanged) were fallen and destroyed, as they trusted and obeyed Him. They then built an altar before God to thank Him for His great deliverance.
Prayer of the Day:
Dearest God, please help me to fear not, but to trust and obey You and You alone.