Joshua 5 1 And it came to pass, when all the kings of the Amorites, which were on the side of Jordan westward, and all the kings of the Canaanites, which were by the sea, heard that the Lord had dried up the waters of Jordan from before the children of Israel, until we were passed over, that their heart melted, neither was there spirit in them any more, because of the children of Israel. Word had spread far and wide about the God of the Israelites drying up the Jordan River.
2 At that time the Lord said unto Joshua, Make thee sharp knives, and circumcise again the children of Israel the second time. 3 And Joshua made him sharp knives, and circumcised the children of Israel at the hill of the foreskins. The Lord said do it, and Joshua did it. Is the road to success.
4 And this is the cause why Joshua did circumcise: All the people that came out of Egypt, that were males, even all the men of war, died in the wilderness by the way, after they came out of Egypt. Men of war = adult males [20 and up] All died just as God said they would.
5 Now all the people that came out were circum-cised: but all the people that were born in the wilderness by the way as they came forth out of Egypt, them they had not circumcised. 6 For the children of Israel walked forty years in the wilderness, till all the people that were men of war, which came out of Egypt, were consumed, because they obeyed not the voice of the Lord: unto whom the Lord sware that he would not shew them the land, which the Lord sware unto their fathers that He would give us, a land that floweth with milk and honey.
7 And their children, whom HE raised up in their stead, them Joshua circumcised: for they were uncircumcised, because they had not circumcised them by the way. 8 And it came to pass, when they had done circumcising all the people, that they abode in their places in the camp, till they were whole. They are in the Promised Land, fixing to conquer Jericho. The Lord said, "Sharpen your knives and circumcise all the men."
We see here more evidence of Israel's unbelief and spiritual indifference . Circumcision was the sign of God's covenant with the nation. It began with Abraham and was commanded as an eternal commandment . Yet in forty years they had not obeyed.
I can imagine that there was a debate about this delay. Military men would have wanted to strike while the enemies were fearful. The time was right for victory. But Joshua says, " No , we have to circumcise all the men before we go any farther."
None of the men had been circumcised except Joshua and Caleb , because they were all born in the wilderness. Every man except Joshua and Caleb had died in the wilderness because they believed not the Lord. They believed the evil report of the doubting spies.
Only God can give them victory. God does not bless a disobedient people. They were His children. Disobedient They were living under reproach ; But after they had circumcised the men in obedience to God's Command:
9 And the Lord said unto Joshua, This day have I rolled away the reproach of Egypt from off you. Wherefore the name of the place is called Gilgal (wheel) unto this day. The reproach of Egypt was slavery. On this day of renewing the covenant through circumcision, God rolled it away . No longer slaves in a sinful land, they have become a victorious army conquering the land.
Before we were saved, we were living in bondage: Slaves to sin and its consequences . But now we are born of the Spirit of God into the family of God . The children of the Most High God . Free from the power of sin, no longer slaves but free men,
We must choose to walk in our God-given freedom . Our circumcision is of the heart . But its effects will be evident in our total lives. Romans 6 1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? 2 God forbid . How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
1 Peter 3 (NIV) 10 For, "Whoever would love life and see good days must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from deceitful speech. 11 He must turn from evil and do good; he must seek peace and pursue it. 12 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and HIS ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil."
When we walk in sin, we walk in bondage. Romans 6 (NIV) 12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13 Do not offer the parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life ; and offer the parts of your body to HIM as instruments of righteousness.
We constantly make choices that determine what our lives will be.
Even as Christians, God's children , when we offer ourselves to sin we live in bondag e . 1 Corinthians 6 18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. Ephesians 5 18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;
1 Timothy 2 8 I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting. To be in bondage to wrath is as terrible as to be in bondage to sexual sins or drunkenness. To be in bondage to doubt may be the worst of all. Doubt makes us live in fear . To doubt God opens the door to all other sins.
Choose to love life and see good days. Choose to let God remove the reproach of sin and its bondage from off of you. Today is the Day of Choice. Choose to live a life of joy and peace and contentment. Turn from self and sin unto God and Righteousness .
Remember to prepare for the Thanksgiving Service this Wednesday night. When we recount our blessings, we honor God . November 22, 2009 Connie, Mama, and I will be out of town next weekend at her brother-sister reunion. Pray for us a safe and trouble-free trip. Also pray that everyone will have health to enjoy being together.