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Delighting in the fear of God

Finally, I brought you into the land of the Amorites on the east side of the Jordan. They fought against you, but I destroyed them before you. I gave you victory over them, and you took possession of their land. Then Balak son of Zippor, king of Moab, started a war against Israel. He summoned Balaam son of Beor to curse you, but I would not listen to him. Instead, I made Balaam bless you, and so I rescued you from Balak. “When you crossed the Jordan River and came to Jericho, the men of Jericho fought against you, as did the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Girgashites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. But I gave you victory over them. And I sent terror ahead of you to drive out the two kings of the Amorites. It was not your swords or bows that brought you victory. I gave you land you had not worked on, and I gave you towns you did not build—the towns where you are now living. I gave you vineyards and olive groves for food, though you did not plant them. Joshua 24:8-13 NLT

From the text, God reminded the Israelites through Joshua that they were brought out of Egypt so they could be brought in to the Promised Land. “He brought us out of Egypt so he could give us this land he had sworn to give our ancestors” (Deuteronomy 6:23). But their ancestors died off in the wilderness because of their disobedience to God’s plan when they were in Kadesh Barnea. The Israelites experienced victory against their enemies every time they walked behind the Ark of God. God also gave them the land of the Amorites. When Balak and Balaam plotted to defeat the Israelites, instead of Balaam pronouncing a curse, God twisted his tongue that he blessed the Israelites instead (see Numbers 22-24). God proved His power over darkness and over the spirits of men. Then, after they crossed the Jordan River, God sent ahead of them swarm of hornets to defeat the two kings of the Amorites. This was in fulfillment of the prophecy: “I will send my terror before you and will throw into confusion all the people against whom you shall come, and I will make all your enemies turn their backs to you. And I will send hornets before you, which shall drive out the Hivites, the Canaanites, and the Hittites from before you” (Exodus 23:27-28 ESV). All their victories were all God’s doing, “It was not your swords or bows that brought you victory” (Joshua 23:12b). God has been with them and had provided them victory after victory until they reach the place of inheritance. God has been keeping His promises to the Israelites. With all these blessings they have received and continue to receive, all God wants form them is to remain faithful to Him and His word. It is the fear of the Lord that will help them overcome temptations. When our innermost being is continually getting transformed by God, we cannot be easily deceived by the enemy. “Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart” (Psalm 51:6).



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