Friend or a foe
When Joshua was near the town of Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with sword in hand. Joshua went up to him and demanded, “Are you friend or foe?” “Neither one,” he replied. “I am the commander of the Lord’s army.” At this, Joshua fell with his face to the ground in reverence. “I am at your command,” Joshua said. “What do you want your servant to do?” The commander of the Lord’s army replied, “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did as he was told. Joshua 5:13-15 NLT
Part of knowing the will of God is to find where God is at work. When we go ahead doing something for God without having the assurance about His leading and presence could lead to a disaster. Joshua will not proceed to take action if he is not sure about God’s leading. He wants to be sure that God’s presence is with him. This is why it is important for him to live by the promises of God. “I will be with you as I was with Moses. I will not fail you or abandon you” (Joshua 1:5). From the text, Joshua was startled by the presence of the “commander of the Lord’s army...with sword in hand.” This was a threatening sight to him for he did not recognize the man standing opposite him. It was important for Joshua to find out if this man is with the Lord or not; “Are you friend or foe?” The man revealed his identity and Joshua realizing who he was “fell with his face to the ground in reverence.” It must have been a great assurance and encouragement for Joshua to know that he is not alone and that God was with him. He needed this assurance for he is about to make big decisions leading the Israelites. There was no compromise for Joshua. He knew that God’s presence is for those who will follow and trust God alone. The same thing with us: if we are true to our commitment, God promised to be with us. “The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us; the God of Israel is our fortress” (Psalm 46:7). Your commitment to God should prove that you are for Him. After Jesus performed a miracle before the crowd and the religious leaders, He revealed who He was and where He came from, then He stated this piercing statement to them; “Anyone who isn’t with me opposes me, and anyone who isn’t working with me is actually working against me” (Matthew 12:30).