To love God is to obey Him
Then Joshua called together the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh. He told them, “You have done as Moses, the servant of the Lord, commanded you, and you have obeyed every order I have given you. During all this time you have not deserted the other tribes. You have been careful to obey the commands of the Lord your God right up to the present day. And now the Lord your God has given the other tribes rest, as he promised them. So go back home to the land that Moses, the servant of the Lord, gave you as your possession on the east side of the Jordan River. But be very careful to obey all the commands and the instructions that Moses gave to you. Love the Lord your God, walk in all his ways, obey his commands, hold firmly to him, and serve him with all your heart and all your soul.” Joshua 22:1-5 (NLT)
After the conquest, the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half tribe of Manasseh were excited to hear from Joshua that they can now experience rest for they are now going home to their families. They were away from their homes for seven years fighting side by side with the Israelites against the Canaanites. Joshua commended the valor of these tribes and their commitment to the promise they made to Moses (see Numbers 32 and Deuteronomy 3:12-20). Though Moses was gone, they followed through with their promise by following the leadership of Joshua. Despite the adversities and challenges they faced, they remained faithful not because of Joshua but because of their devotion to the Lord. Their loyalty is first to the Lord. They were carrying out the mission of the Lord. The same thing should be true to each and everyone of us. With the uncertainties we are facing in this new year, it will be good if we establish our commitment to God and that our loyalty should be to Him alone. We are representing the Name of the Lord and we seek His glory. We are in the service of the Lord therefore our service should be far above our devotion to a leader or a cause for our devotion is to the Lord. Having fulfilled their mission, now they can enter God’s rest. Rest in the Book of Joshua does not simply mean end of the war. It means that despite of war, we know that we will come out victorious for God is with us. When we enter rest, it also means that we are no longer fighting God’s will for our lives, instead we trust what He is doing though us. Every time we trust God, it means that we are relying upon His provisions, we claim our inheritance by faith, thus we enjoy the riches of our spiritual life in Christ. No matter what this new year will bring to us, let us come to God and cling to Him. Take up His yoke and experience that deeper rest (see Matthew 11:28-30). Imagine the joy we find when we yield to God and trust His Word. “Love the Lord your God, walk in all his ways, obey his commands, hold firmly to him, and serve him with all your heart and all your soul” (Joshua 22:5). If we claim we love God, then let us obey Him. “If you love Me, keep My commandments” (John 14:15, NKJV).