All of Israel was to march around Jericho, six days in a row! Then on the seventh day … God would cause the City’s wall to fall down “flat!” Well, 99% of it anyway, think of Rahab!
But, there were stipulations!
In all their circumnavigations … “And Joshua had commanded the people, saying, YE SHALL NOT SHOUT, NOR MAKE ANY NOISE WITH YOUR VOICE, NEITHER SHALL ANY WORD PROCEED OUT OF YOUR MOUTH, until the day I bid you shout; then shall ye shout.” Joshua 6:10
I have always heard that there is … a time to talk and a time to “hush.” But Joshua 6:10 actually raises that adage to a command!
DO NOT MAKE ANY NOISE WITH YOUR MOUTH!
Due to reverence for God? As in… “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10
Due to the sheer fear of the Lord?
Because of some military strategy?
They will be commanded to loudly SHOUT (the very opposite of the “no words” command) on the seventh day of the siege, on the seventh trip around the city that day. But not until then!
God is aware of our words!
Of the “noise” we make in chatter!
So here’s a lesson on “being quiet,” at least doing so at the right times.
Proverbs 10:19 might help here. “In the multitude of words there wanteth (lacketh) not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise.” (In other words, the MORE we talk, the MORE we sin!)
And when going to Church? “Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and BE MORE READY TO HEAR. Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: THEREFORE LET THY WORDS BE FEW.” Wow, listen more than speak!
There were times when even Jesus was deliberately quiet! Here’s an example: “And Pilate asked him again, saying, Answerest thou nothing? Behold how many things they witness against thee. BUT JESUS YET ANSWERED NOTHING; so that Pilate marvelled.” Mark 15:4-5
Back to Proverbs … 17:28 this time … “Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace (keeps quiet), is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips (shuts up) is esteemed a man of understanding.” Pretty clear, isn’t it?
I do not know exactly why God would not let the Jews make any noise (verbally) as they marched those days, not for sure.
But I (now) do know that there are times when I … might should refrain from speech!
Thank you, Lord … for Scripture!
— Dr. Mike Bagwell
Oh, do add Proverbs 29:20 to your “tongue tamer” list! “Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? there is more hope of a fool than of him.” Too quick to speak!
And what about Proverbs 21:23? “Whoso keepeth (guards, watches closely) his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles.”
One of my favorites, Psalm 41:3. “Set a watch (an observer), O LORD, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.” Hear every word I speak, and grant me wisdom to know Thou art hearing me!
And I close (again) with Matthew 12:36. “But I (Jesus) say unto you, That every idle (useless) word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.”