Saturday, February 7, 2015

February 7 - Joshua 11

Today's reading in our daily plan is Joshua 11. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • Other kings learn the massive success of Joshua's battles against Israel's opposition. Like the kings we read about in Joshua 10, they are upset by his progress and decide to team up against Joshua and his forces.
  • Once again, Joshua's forces are wildly successful in overcoming their opposition. Verse 21 explains that Joshua "totally destroyed" the forces who attempted to defeat him.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • Verse 20 says God "hardened the hearts" of the military leaders Joshua destroyed. This sounds harsh. It's important to understand that the most likely reason God did this is because those people had already turned away from God and weren't open to turning back to him (for more on this, see Exodus 4:21 and 7:13). And when it's a matter of God versus people who are opposed to him, he is the greater force.
  • The odds were stacked against Joshua. If you were to hear a news story that nearly a dozen armies were waging war against a single small army, you would think the small force was crazy for believing they could hold any ground against such an overwhelming opposition. But when God is on our side, we can do big things for him that defy the odds.

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
  • What odds are currently stacked against you as you're pursuing God? Are you in the middle of a hopeless situation? Are people in your life making it hard for you to wholeheartedly embrace life with God? Ask him to give you the wisdom and strength to push through the difficulty and experience true life with him.