By Dr Cecil Stewart OBE
JOSHUA CHAPTER 9
Please take your Bible and read carefully the whole chapter before you begin. While reading the study please keep your Bible open, so that you can gain the maximum benefit from this feast in the Word.
Following Joshua’s great victory at Ai his enemies united, desiring to destroy him.
VERSES 1 - 3
Winning United Allies And Enemies
Those who are totally committed to the purpose of God will become involved in spiritual warfare, uniting with those who fight the good fight of faith. There will also be a uniting of your enemies. Satan will fight back and try everything to rob you of the victories you have gained but he cannot do it, unless you let him. JAMES 4:7 reminds us of our need to submit to God and promises that satan will flee from us when we resist him. Remaining submitted to God means walking by faith and not by sight (2 CORINTHIANS 5:7). One of the ways satan tries to win over us is to pull us down to the realm of human reasoning where we depend upon our own five senses rather than upon God’s Word. Let God be true and every man a liar, let every symptom of disease and depression be a liar and let God’s Word be upon our lips, rather than what we may feel. (Read 1 PETER 2:24, ISAIAH 55:8.) The scripture tell us in REVELATION 12:11 that they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony. Jesus said in MATTHEW 12:30 ‘He that is not with me is against me, and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.’ We cannot talk the language of defeat and failure while at the same time agreeing with the Word which says we are more than conquerors and overcomers (1 JOHN 5:4). We are exhorted in EPHESIANS 4:27 to give no place to the devil. The next step the enemy took against Joshua was to bring deception.
VERSES 4 – 13
Deception Designed To Defeat
The enemy came to Joshua with a false story to make him think that they had come from a far country and succeeded in deceiving him so that he made a league with them because of their craftiness and flattering words. The reason they were deceived is stated in v14 where it says “they asked not counsel of the Lord.” Soon they realized the mistake they had made but it was too late, they had already made peace with them and could not break the covenant. Many times believers are snared into making decisions that ruin their lives simply because they failed to wait on the Lord for His counsel and guidance.
PSALM 1:1 reminds us that the man who does not walk in ungodly counsel is blessed. PSALM 33:11 says “the counsel of the Lord standeth for ever.” ISAIAH 9:6 reveals the greatest of all counselors. He is the one that we must all go to for guidance. We really cannot afford to rely on our own understanding because we only see surface things. God is all seeing and all knowing. (Read PROVERBS 3:5.) Deception is designed by the devil to defeat us, but if we will hold fast to God’s Word in our thinking, speaking and living we will have dominion over deception and the devil will be under our feet. (Read LUKE 10:19.)
JAMES 1:22 shows that when we fail to be doers of the Word we are deceived.
GALATIANS 6:7 says “be not deceived, God is not mocked, for whatsoever a man soweth that shall he also reap.” PROVERBS 28:26 says “he that trusteth in his own heart is a fool.” The wise person will never agree any course of action no matter how attractive it looks until they have asked counsel of the Lord and know they are standing on a foundation of truth.
Fight For Freedom
Joshua fought for his freedom and we must do the same. It does not come easily, men and devils will try to pull us down to the level of fear and failure that most people live on, but we can live in His presence and in heavenly places according to EPHESIANS 2:6.
How God Helped Me
There was a great battle that took place in my own life in 1967 when severe depression and TB came upon me. It felt like my future was hopeless when the doctor advised me that I would have to go into a sanatorium because of the fact that TB was contagious. As a young man in my early twenties I could not cope with having to withdraw from an active life and be confined inside a sanatorium. Darkness and sorrow seemed to grip my mind and spirit like thick black cloud of satanic depression. Soon I realized that this was exactly what was happening and it was at this point that my real fight for freedom began. Deep in my heart the truth that had been planted from God’s Word began to come alive and I began to thank the Lord that He had taken the infirmity already. (See 1 PETER 2:24, MATTHEW 8:17.) Then I found myself able to serve notice on the trespassers to leave and the words of Jesus moved before my eyes. I was free because of the truth. JOHN 8:32, “Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.”
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