Wednesday, September 2, 2015

OT DAY 308 - Why Joshua Sent Spies? Why Two, Not Twelve Again? (Please click here for English podcast)

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1.   Put on your “brakes” and stop for a moment of silence
2.   Wait for God. Breathe deep for God's peace and feel His presence. Exhale your worries.

Praise and Thanksgiving

1.   Think through your day, all the times that made you smile
2.   Thank God for all those moments, and for all those people
3.   Open your heart to praise the Lord

   Some wandered in desert wastes,
          finding no way to a city to dwell in;
    hungry and thirsty,
         their soul fainted within them.
  Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble,
         and he delivered them from their distress.

         Psalm 107:4-6

Confession and Repentance

1.  Pray for the Holy Spirit to work in you:

     “Dear Holy Spirit, shine your light into the places of darkness in my life. Show me my sins, everything that blocks me from encountering God. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.”

2.  Through the Holy Spirit, examine yourself for a short silence and then pray:

     "Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for dying on the cross for our sins and being victorious over death and sin. I confess my sin to you(pause, to tell Jesus what the Holy Spirit has shown you). Forgive my sins by your blood and help me follow you. Holy Spirit, fill me that I may be able to receive your gift to love God and His people. In Jesus Name I pray, Amen."

The Word (Joshua 2:1-3 that I recited loudly today)

English(ESV): 2&version=ESV

And Joshua the son of Nun sent two men secretly from Shittim as spies, saying, “Go, view the land, especially Jericho.” And they went and came into the house of a prostitute whose name was Rahab and lodged there. And it was told to the king of Jericho, “Behold, men of Israel have come here tonight to search out the land.” Then the king of Jericho sent to Rahab, saying, “Bring out the men who have come to you, who entered your house, for they have come to search out all the land.”      Joshua 2:1-3

Let's have a time to be still and give the Holy Spirit space to speak through the passage of scripture we have just read. Offer this time up to Jesus as you listen to him, while listening to "Gabriel's Oboe"

My Listening
      The past few days we read how God confirmed to Joshua that He is going to be with him and the Israelites, so that they have faith to cross the river entering into the Promised Land. And God said many times. Yes, many times through all kinds of methods.

      Then yesterday we read Joshua got enough confirmations, had strength and courage to do it. Suddenly, Joshua ordered two spies to check the city of Jericho out. Why? He lost faith? God commanded Moses to send twelve spies forty years ago. This time, God did not ask Joshua to do that, why? And, why two, not twelve again?  

Let's see how Professor John Goldingay tells us: 
( :
     What on earth does Joshua think he is doing? Why does he need a couple of spies to check things out in Jericho? It isn't as if his army is going to attack it. All Israel is going to do is undertake a religious procession, blow their horns, and watch the city's walls fall down. It is going to be rather like the Reed Sea event. So why the reconnoiter? The question is given added point by the contrast with the previous ill-fated spy story in Numbers 13-14. There, it was God who commissioned the expedition, not Moses, though God's reasons for doing so are not clear, and one wonders whether it is a kind of test; certainly this is how it turned out. Further, Moses himself later speaks of the venture as the people's idea (Deuteronomy 1:22). So Joshua's initiative raises questions. 

John Goldingay. Joshua, Judges and Ruth for Everyone. Louisville,KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2011, p.12.

     We always talk about our faith should like the two spies with names, Caleb and Joshua, not like the ten with no names. What we have been reading since Exodus to here in Joshua is a faith journey. We have to acknowledge that we do not have faith. It is God who gives us lots of tests to increase our faith.

     To send out two spies in this context can be the request of the people because they still lack faith. Or, could be Joshua because he still needs one more confirmation. Anyway, it is good that he sent out two spies and not twelve spies. May be he had a talk with Caleb and both of them said, "Well, just you and me is enough, right?" So, two rather than twelve because they learned a hard lesson.

     It's OK if you want to have more confirmations for you to cross the river God commands you to cross. It's OK because you are a human. But, when can you be sure that you have got all confirmations you need and have the strength and courage to cross the river to enter into God's prepared Promised Land? That's the question from Jesus to you today! 

Dear Lord Jesus, 
Help us to acknowledge that we are just human beings and we lack faith. Give us signs and confirmations so that we can be strong and courageous to enter into your Promised Land.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Reflect on these questions:
1. Are you waiting for some more confirmations to do the thing God is calling you to do? Do you think God has given you enough confirmations, it is you lacking faith?

2. What have you got from Jesus today?

Today's Time with Abba daily reading that I recited loudly
Psalm 97:7-12
Ecclesiastes 1:1 - 3:22
2 Cor. 6:1-13
Proverbs 22:15

Photos of my copying the Bible today using Time with Abba passages today


Praise and Thanksgiving
Let's give thanks for God with us. Let us praise Him:
10,000 Reasons

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