Summary: Be careful of wanting and learn contentment
We continue our study of the Book of Joshua. God chose a people to reveal Himself. The Old Testament is the revelation of God through Israel with its 12 Tribes. God is always God and the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. What we learn about God through Israel is applicable to us today. But as Christians, we now see God through Jesus Christ, God’s ultimate revelation of love and the future! Live with Jesus Christ in mind and we will live life to the fullest!
Let us learn from Joshua 16-17 today…. Read along with me….
16:1-4 the sons of Joseph became 2 Tribes (Ephraim and Manasseh) who inherited their land.
16:5-9 territories of Ephraim were described
And what does v10 of Joshua 16 tell us??
16:10 – The Tribe of Ephraim sinned against God by not destroying the Gezerites!
Joshua 17 – describes the land allotted to the Tribe of Mannaseh
What does v12 tell us??
The Tribe of Mannaseh sinned against God as well like Ephraim.
We see this over and over again don’t we? God provides but all people sin against Him. There is no question why God Jesus Christ had to come to earth to die; man has a problem and the only solution is for God to pay the penalty for ous ins in order for us to have a relationship with God again! Sin separate us from God who is holy but belief in Jesus Christ cleanses us from our sins; as we believe in Jesus Christ, God sees as holy like Himself because we are clothed with Jesus Christ. Have you truly put on, believed, in Jesus Christ as your only Savior and Lord?
Now look again at v14…. What can we say about the Tribe of Manasseh in v14??
The Tribe of Manasseh was not content enough with what God gave!
We can note that Joshua did not have any direct instructions from God regarding extra land for Ephraim, so what did Joshua say to them??
v15: Joshua basically said, if you want more, work for it!!
And how did the Tribe of Manasseh responded in v16??
v16: the Tribe of Manasseh wanted more but they did not want to work for it!!
Was the Tribe of Manasseh capable of fighting and winning?? Why??
Verse 1 actually tells us that the Manasseh Tribe have become great soldiers. We also need to note this truth: How did they become great soldiers?? – training!
A second reason why the Tribe of Mannaseh was capable of taking on anyone was over and over again God tells His people be courageous, do not be discouraged, I am with you always you go!
And so, the Tribe of Manasseh was well trained for battle and God promised to empower them but they were simply lazy and found excuses not to take action right away. I think this is the main biblical principle from this passage. Can we see ourselves here?
Let’s not miss Joshua’s final words; v18 – Joshua encouraged them, “You can do it!!”
I stated in the beginning: God is always God and the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. We are the created and we cannot talk back to our Creator! We need to evaluate our lives to note how much time we really spend in listening to God compared to anything else. God tells us to pray without ceasing and most of it we should be listening!
And again, what we learn about God through Israel is applicable to us today. But as Christians, we now see God through Jesus Christ.
God chose a people, Israel, to relate with Him. Today, God calls people to relate with Him by believing in Jesus Christ.
God promised a land flowing with milk and honey. Today, God promises abundant life and eternal heaven to Christians.
God called Israel to work and take the land. Christians are to go into all the world and make disciples of all nations!
What have we learned from the Tribes of Ephraim and Mannaseh which we should do??
Avoid sinning against God for there will be consequences although we can be forgiven.
Be careful of wanting and learn contentment
Be ready to take on the spiritual battles in our lives by being biblically trained and yielding to God’s power.