Joshua 9:12-15 - “‘Here is our bread. It was still warm when we took it from our houses as our food for the journey on the day we set out to come to you, but now, behold it is dry and crumbly. These wine skins were new when we filled them, and behold, they have burst. And these garments and sandals of ours are worn out from the very long journey.’ So the men took some of their provisions, but did not ask counsel from the Lord.”
This story is often called the “Gibeonite deception” that takes place as Joshua and the people of God were conquering the land of Canaan to bring God’s justice upon the people who were there. Hearing of their coming doom, the men of Gibeon tricked Joshua and the leaders into thinking they lived far away. If they could only get them to swear that they wouldn’t kill them, they would be spared. And their plan worked.
But it only worked because God’s leaders relied on what they saw (old bread, wine skins, and clothes) instead of seeking counsel from the Lord. They could have easily prayed and asked God if these guys were telling the truth or if he wanted Israel to make a peace pact with them. But they didn’t bother asking the Lord!
When is the last time you asked God a question in prayer? We face many decisions in life: Should I move? Should I retire? Should I change careers? Should I choose this career? Is this a good dating relationship? Should I marry this person? Should I spend God’s money on this? The lesson from Joshua is that we should ask the Lord we follow about these things and more.
Don’t be like these ancient brothers of ours and rely solely on your wisdom and observation. Instead seek counsel from God and his Spirit will direct you.
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