In more than three decades of my Christian life, I have been blest by 2 types of Daily devos'
(matter not exceeding 500 words) in universal Christian literature. Not only those Devos'
which have a different theme everyday but also the ones which revolve around a certain
theme over a period of time, say a fortnight, have richly edified me. In fact, both
styles have their own inherent advantages. If the former style caters to the varying
spiritual needs of a christian from day-to-day, the latter aims 'to ground'
a child of God in a certain subject in order he derives the full benefits of the
deep insightful study of a certain topic, spread over a fixed span of time.
In my Daily devo page, I have consciously tried to go in for 'a blend of both the
styles' whereby within a constant theme, I would be aiming to focus on different
facets of it which admittedly is a closer imitation of the 'Constant theme' style
than the 'Varying topics' one.
Having dwelt on the topic of Christian journey in the previous month, now in the month
of Febraury, I intend to focus on a monumental piece of Jewish history….the
Conquest of Canaan, with its particular relevance to modern day breed of
Christian spiritual warriors.
Once again, let me wish you a happy and an edifying read…
The implicit obedience
Then the LORD said to Joshua, "See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands,
along with its king and its fighting men. March around the city once with all the armed men.
Do this for six days. Have seven priests carry trumpets of rams' horns in front of the ark.
On the seventh day, march around the city seven times, with the priests blowing the trumpets.
When you hear them sound a long blast on the trumpets, have all the people give a loud shout;
then the wall of the city will collapse and the people will go up, every man straight in." –
Finally, the time for assault had come, the first city in the land of
Canaan was there for taking but formidable barrier by way of an imposing
wall stood in the way of the assault. And wonder of wonders contrary to
all the traditional military designs Joshua must have had on his mind of
breaching that wall by way of raising a siege mound or employing a battering ram,
the solution which came from God for all of his problems was as simple as
stupefying as the above captioned scripture portion bears out.
Taken to one extreme, it was almost akin to a General asking his
fully charged, bayonet-pointing, adrenalin-pumped foot soldiers
on the threshold of a battle to relax, to drop their guard for a while and
play the flute for their adversary to be disarmed! Would they do it?
Their battle-hardened logic would rebel against such a thought, leave alone action.
But if they really trusted their General, who had time and again in the past
had proved to be worthy of their trust, they would implicitly take him at his word
and obey and that’s exactly what Joshua and his army did on hearing God’s
apparently bizarre orders.
The design of this whole proceeding was obviously to impress the Canaanites with
a sense of the divine omnipotence, to teach the Israelites a memorable lesson of
faith and confidence in God's promises, and to inspire sentiments of respect and
reverence for the ark as the symbol of His presence but honestly to reiterate
prima facie, God’s instructions must have seemed queer. However, the events to
unfold would testify to both Joshua and his people that it pays to implicitly obey God,
no questions asked, even if his instructions sometimes seem at variance with human
reasoning or logic.
As Christians in these modern times, in the face of adversity or even at normal times,
are we taking God at his word and implicitly obeying Him, even if sometimes His
instructions seem to be freakish. History bears out that in such situations many
like Joshua implicitly obeyed and reaped rich dividends. Should we not also follow suit?
The very thought that, we are following a stupendous God fills us with awe and thanksgiving.
Forgive us Father for sometimes not taking thee at thy word and grieving thy heart.
In light of the Biblical lesson today, once again, Father we resolve to obey thee, COME WHAT MAY.
In Jesus’ name. Amen