“Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, ‘Are you for us or for our enemies?’ ‘Neither,’ he replied, ‘but as commander of the army of the Lord I have now come.’ Then Joshua felt facedown to the ground in reverence, and asked him, ‘What message does my Lord have for his servant?’ The commander of the Lord’s army replied, ‘Take off your sandals for the place where you are standing is holy.’ And Joshua did so.” (Joshua 5:13-15 – God Takes the Initiative Through His Messengers)
God presented Himself in Joshua’s path as a messenger who, on being recognized, was worshiped by Joshua. The sacred encounter paralleled Moses’ encounter and call (Exodus 3) and reaffirmed God’s choice of Joshua. The revealing messenger was referred to as a man, yet led the heavenly armies and brought Joshua to his knees.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Precious Abba, let us not forget that You still send messengers and they may take any form You desire them to take. However, Joshua reveals how they are to be met, with reverence and to listen closely to the message You are sending. Today we continue to pray our troops serving in faraway lands and those in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, that a peaceful solution might be found and let the fighting be silenced. We also pray for those who are suffering in body, mind, and/or spirit, with friends, family, and for those we don’t know. Amen
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Life: the time God gives you to determine how you spend eternity.”
“Therefore I cut you in pieces with my prophets. I killed you with the words of my mouth; my judgments flashed like lightning upon you.” (Hosea 6:5 – God Takes the Initiative Through His Messengers)
Prophets spoke words of God’s mouth judging and destroying the people. The spoken word of God was a promise sure to be fulfilled.
“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” (2nd Timothy 2:15 – God Takes the Initiative Through His Messengers)
Carriers of the truth of God are to represent that truth and the God of truth well enough that we need never apologize for ourselves. God wants His people to be well prepared in the interpretation of God’s truth. The messenger who interprets God’s truth for others is an agent of His revelation.
SECOND THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Because of this, God in his wisdom said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, some of whom they will kill and others they will persecute. Therefore this generation will be held responsible for the blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the beginning of the world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the sanctuary. Yet, I tell you, this generation will be held responsible for it all.” (Luke 11:49-52 – God Takes the Initiative Through His Messengers)”
Jesus charged the religious leaders were ignoring God’s revelation through the prophets and in the laws. Those who saw themselves as helpers of God actually had become hindrances to the revelation personal obedience to God’s revelation.