Sunday, December 9, 2012

Obey God Today!

"So be very careful to love the Lord your God" (Joshua 23:11), and "choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve....But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord" (Joshua 24:15).
Joshua was a great leader. As a leader, Joshua was faithful, ethical, and courageous.  He and Caleb gave the good report to Israel in the wilderness to trust God (Numbers 13 -- 14) and he was chosen by God as Moses' successor (Numbers 27:15-23; Deuteronomy 34:9). Moreover, Joshua was an excellent military leader. When God spoke, Joshua obeyed. Joshua's obedience to God serves as a model.  Joshua obeyed God, led the people across the Jordan River (Joshua 1:1-18; Joshua 3:1–4:24) and conquered Canaan, the Promised Land. But the key to Joshua’s success was his commitment, allegiance, and obedience to God. Joshua was confident in God and in God’s strength. As a result of Joshua’s leadership and obedience, Israel served God faithfully and the nation of Israel prospered. 
Joshua remained completely faithful to God throughout his life.  In Joshua’s farewell address to the people, Joshua encouraged the people to wholeheartedly obey, love, and trust the true and living God of Israel (Joshua 23-24). In the New Testament, Stephen mentions Joshua in his final sermon to the people (Acts 7:45), and the Book of Hebrews use Joshua’s victory of Jericho as an illustration of faith in God (Hebrews 11:30). Amazingly, Joshua and Jesus are the same name in Hebrew. Both Joshua and Jesus obeyed God the Father faithfully and brought salvation to the people: Joshua led Israel into physical salvation of Canaan and Jesus leads everyone into eternal salvation through faith in Him.

The Book of Joshua found in the Old Testament records the story of Joshua’s obedience to God reminds everyone to love and obey God!  Only with God’s help and our obedience to Him can we succeed and prosper (see also Deuteronomy 8:1-20). Victory comes as we trust in Him and not our own human strength, muscle, or mental abilities. 

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God bless you! You are loved by God (Romans 5:5).