Whom Will You Serve?
I thank You, Heavenly Father, for the high privilege of being Your beloved child and serving You each day.
Read Joshua 24:1-15
 Then Joshua assembled all the tribes of Israel at Shechem. He summoned the elders, leaders, judges and officials of Israel, and they presented themselves before God.  Joshua said to all the people, “This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ‘Long ago your ancestors, including Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor, lived beyond the Euphrates River and worshiped other gods.  But I took your father Abraham from the land beyond the Euphrates and led him throughout Canaan and gave him many descendants. I gave him Isaac,  and to Isaac I gave Jacob and Esau. I assigned the hill country of Seir to Esau, but Jacob and his family went down to Egypt.  “‘Then I sent Moses and Aaron, and I afflicted the Egyptians by what I did there, and I brought you out.  When I brought your people out of Egypt, you came to the sea, and the Egyptians pursued them with chariots and horsemen as far as the Red Sea.  But they cried to the LORD for help, and he put darkness between you and the Egyptians; he brought the sea over them and covered them. You saw with your own eyes what I did to the Egyptians. Then you lived in the wilderness for a long time.  “‘I brought you to the land of the Amorites who lived east of the Jordan. They fought against you, but I gave them into your hands. I destroyed them from before you, and you took possession of their land.  When Balak son of Zippor, the king of Moab, prepared to fight against Israel, he sent for Balaam son of Beor to put a curse on you.  But I would not listen to Balaam, so he blessed you again and again, and I delivered you out of his hand.  “‘Then you crossed the Jordan and came to Jericho. The citizens of Jericho fought against you, as did also the Amorites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hittites, Girgashites, Hivites and Jebusites, but I gave them into your hands.  I sent the hornet ahead of you, which drove them out before you-also the two Amorite kings. You did not do it with your own sword and bow.  So I gave you a land on which you did not toil and cities you did not build; and you live in them and eat from vineyards and olive groves that you did not plant.’  “Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD.  But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat great challenge did Joshua leave with his people?
We live in a world of advancing technology where we can access huge amounts of information at the push of a button. The need to remember phone numbers has gone since all necessary details are stored in our phones. In such a world, the oral tradition, the art of the storyteller, is in danger of being lost. Nevertheless, it has been said that, as Christians, we need to interpret all of history as “His Story.” In today’s passage we see that God’s people had become complacent and were in danger of forgetting the past work of God on their behalf. They would trust in their own might rather than the strength of their savior God. By telling them an old story, Joshua takes the opportunity to remind them how God has directed them over the centuries (3). It was God alone who shaped their history (13) for his purposes (14). Joshua’s call is for honesty. The people had compromised by worshiping other gods (14b), but now was decision time. Was serving God so undesirable (15a)? For Joshua and his household there was only one choice and that was to serve the true and living God.
How might God want you and your family to serve him in the week ahead? How will you do it?
Lord, please show me how best to serve You in the days ahead and help me to do it faithfully.
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