Wednesday, June 22, 2005

The House of Joshua

If it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River; or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. (Joshua 24:15)
Joshua’s name means “Yahweh is Salvation.” In the Greek translation of the Old Testament it is Iesous. In English it is Jesus.

Joshua was the son of Nun (“posterity” or “perpetuity”) and of the tribe of Ephraim (“doubly fruitful”). A man full of faith, he was one of the twelve spies sent by Moses to spy out the Promised Land, and one of only two who came back with an accurate report (see When Its All About God).

Probably trained for war in the Egyptian army, after the Exodus, he became Moses’ right hand man. In fact, God selected Joshua as Moses’ successor, and Moses laid his hands on Joshua and imparted to him the spirit of wisdom. God also promised to be with Joshua just as He had been with Moses. With strong faith, and saturating himself with the instructions and promises of God, Joshua showed himself to be a strong and effective military strategist and leader for his people.

The Book of Joshua is the history of how Joshua led the children of Israel to take possession of the Promised Land. At the end of the book, Joshua reviewed the history of how God kept His promise to the house of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

Along the way, there had been much faithlessness, and Joshua issued this challenge to the children of Israel:  
“Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve.”
There were only three possibilities:
  • The gods their fathers had served on the other side of the River.
  • The gods of the former inhabitants of the land on which they now dwelt.
  • Yahweh, the God who delivered them from Egypt and established them in the land of promise.
There was no “none of the above.” If we do not serve the true God, then we will inevitably be found serving idols.

Joshua had long ago made his own decision, and he stated it clearly and concisely:
“As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”
Of the tribe of “double fruitfulness” and the house of “posterity and perpetuity,” Joshua followed in the inheritance of faithfulness. His decision was not only about himself—it never is. His decision set the destiny of his house. Joshua was a man of full of faith, and his children would be as well.

You must choose — it cannot be avoided. If you do not serve Yahweh God, you will ultimately be serving satan — no way around it. There are no “self-made men,” and no one is the captain of their own soul. The choice you make will affect the destiny of your house, your children and your children’s children. Choose wisely.