Watch this Text: “And the whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled together at Shiloh, and set up the tabernacle of the congregation there. And the land was subdued before them. And there remained among the children of Israel seven tribes, which had not yet received their inheritance. And Joshua said unto the children of Israel, How long are ye slack to go to possess the land, which the LORD God of your fathers hath given you?” Joshua 18:1-3
In Verse 1 “The land was subdued.”
But in verse 3 Joshua chides the Jews, seven Tribes of them anyway: “How long are ye slack to go to possess the land, which the LORD God of your fathers hath given you?”
Is this a contradiction?
I think not.
Verse 1 shows “the possibility, the promise fulfilled.”
Verse 3 shows “the reality.”
Notice they (the Israelites) are already worshipping God (at the Tabernacle) … but most of them have not yet fully obeyed God (out in the land, the suburbs)!
What a thought, what a danger!
The entire land HAD been conquered … at least to the extent that the boldest of the enemies were GONE! God indeed had kept his Word.
But specific areas of the Land, some promised to each Tribe of Israel, still had to be claimed and developed, with some enemies yet to be conquered!
The potential was there!
The realization of that potential rested in the hands of the people.
In God’s Word we have everything we need to live a victorious Christian life, everything. (Even the Holy Spirit accompanies God’s Word, He being its Author!)
But most of us Believers do not appropriate all God’s Word, applying it to our lives, internalizing and personalizing it … not like we should!
Therefore we too, much like those seven Tribes from the Lesson today, have failed to drive out our (spiritual) enemies!
Something to think about this cold, rainy (in Connersville, Indiana anyway) Wednesday in November!
— Dr. Mike Bagwell
“Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.” James 4:17