July 13, 2021: Take a Stand!
“Then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve. ... But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord” (Josh. 24:15, NIV).
Israel had witnessed the Lord’s powerful hand at work during their campaign to conquer the idolatrous inhabitants of the land of Canaan. Despite this—and without excuses—they weren’t fully devoted to God.
From the crossing of the Red Sea to the water that gushed from the rock at Horeb to manna that fell daily, they should have viewed each miracle as an opportunity to firm up their allegiance to God. They had witnessed so much of His love, and each instance should have brought them closer to their Lord, solidifying their total devotion to Him.
But they simply didn’t allow themselves to submit fully to His leading. Even after His divine hand protected them during their battles against
the Canaanites, they tended to drift away. I believe Joshua proclaimed the words of this text because he saw that, in the coming centuries, they would continue to slowly and deeply drift back into idolatry. This happened years before they worshipped the golden calf, and later caused the men of Israel to lust after Midianite women and become lured into Baal worship. Sadly, this same sin would continue to haunt them for hundreds, if not thousands of years. Do our choices cause us to become susceptible to idolatry?
When we devote ourselves to anything other than God, we fall into the same trap as Israel. Naturally, we don’t fall identically as they did, but the result is the same. As Christians, we must take a stand! I can’t speak for you, “but as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”
Lord, may our choices bring glory to You. And when faced with hard decisions, may we stand up and stand firm! Amen.
Jared Briggman is a church planter for the Mountain View Conference.