It is advisable you meditatively read the text first
TEXT: JOSHUA 17:8-18.
KEY VERSE “And Joshua spake unto the house of Joseph, even to Ephraim and to Manasseh, saying, Thou art a great people, and hast great power: thou shalt not have one lot only” (JOSHUA 17:17)
The children of Joseph consisting of the house of Manasseh and Ephraim were strong-minded, enterprising as well as valiant men of war. Joshua referred to them as great people with great power who were uninhibited and having enormous strength to conquer and possess as much land as they desired. Joshua’s assessment and encouragement of this tribe to go for more of the Promise Land is commendable.
This shows that the leader and statesman knew God’s plan for the children of Israel concerning the land of Canaan and would want all the tribes to secure and control as much of the land as God and their strength would permit.
It is God that gives us power to possess wealth. We must shun laxity and a false sense of satisfaction. We must not be like Esau who told Jacob his brother that he had enough when in fact he was truly poor of grace, truth, love, forgiveness and other virtues that endear one to God. Like Joshua, we must urge and encourage fellow believers to reach out to greater heights in their spiritual and secular pursuits. The Spirit of Christ dwelling in us conquers and dominates. He has assured us, as concrete champions, that all things are ours by the mention of His name.
But as the Lord equips us, He expects us to deploy our energies more for spiritual goals such as going the length and breadth of the world to fulfill the demands of the Great Commission. We must conquer every soul for our Redeemer.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY Christ in us makes us great people equipped to accomplish exploits.
BIBLE IN A YEAR: ACTS 7-8.
Paradox of life: Growing stronger but getting weaker?
- The children of Joseph were allocated a large expanse of land vv10-12.
- There were some cities they could not conquer initially v12. They decided to avoid them.
- They requested more land and surprisingly Joshua gave them additional more difficult villages to conquer and possess vv15-17.
- Joshua, a veteran faith-oriented war Lord, assured them that with God on their side, no enemy is invincible v18. What a greater challenge of their faith!
- Truly, they developed militarily and became stronger than the dreaded enemy v13.
Wow, you should develop your prayer life, spiritual muscles, knowledge of the word of God, what is needed for your career upliftment and happy fulfillment in life and becomes all an all-round success!
A Itemise areas you need to develop spiritually, socially, in your career, prayer life etc and write out plans to move to higher grounds. Nobody will do it for you and without it you remain stagnant and loose out.
Lord, give me wisdom, understanding and grace to rise to the challenge of self-development
- Unfortunately, when they became stronger, they refused to obey God and totally destroy the adversary but decided to cohabit against God’s will v13.
- Thus, they became stronger militarily but weaker morally and in obedience to God v13.
This is the general human tendencies that need grace and determination to overcome. As he grows stronger in one good area, he could not sustain improvement in another relatively good area. Think of there realities:
Physically wealthier but spiritually weaker
Greater achievement in the society, but less achievement in soul-winning
Greater open doors of ministration but less time for the family
More preaching opportunities but less communion with God
More success in activities but less of the grace of God and the fruit of the Spirit
More earthly possessions and prospects but less heavenly-mindedness
Q What other paradoxes do you observe in your life?
Wisdom To overcome this danger you must set your priority right, have definitely plans to take care of all important and good areas and prayerfully stick to the plan.
Lord, teach me how to manage success and popularity and still live a balanced life
Lord, let the wisdom and consecration of “eternal things first” be my mindset in all my plans.
Pray that God will use the word of God to stir us all to all round personal development and growth
Command the power of stagnancy to be broken in your life!
HYMN Higher ground
- I’m pressing on the upward way,
New heights I’m gaining every day;
Still praying as I’m onward bound,
“Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.”
Lord, lift me up and let me stand,
By faith, on Heaven’s tableland,
A higher plane than I have found;
Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.
- My heart has no desire to stay
Where doubts arise and fears dismay;
Though some may dwell where those abound,
My prayer, my aim, is higher ground.
- I want to live above the world,
Though Satan’s darts at me are hurled;
For faith has caught the joyful sound,
The song of saints on higher ground.
- I want to scale the utmost height
And catch a gleam of glory bright;
But still I’ll pray till heav’n I’ve found,
“Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.”