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Study 11(f) Joshua- Deceived by the Gibeonites – CHARACTER STUDY SERIES

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Study 11(f) Joshua- Deceived by the Gibeonites

Joshua 9:3-27

The commission God gave to Moses, which was transferred to Joshua after his death was that he should go and possess the land of the Cannanites, the Hivites, the Hitites, the Amorites, the Perzzites and the Jebusites. The Lord said to them. "I will deliver the inhabitants of the land into your hand, and thou shall drive them out from before thee. Thou shall make no covenant with them ...they shall not dwell in thy land."- Exodus 23:27-33, Deuteronomy 6:18-19, 22-24.

Joshua and the children of Israel desired to possess the land which the Lord had promised and also destroy the inhabitants in order to avoid both spiritual and physical contamination through unholy association. (Deuteronomy 7:1-6). Every child of God will also desire to obey God at all times in order to be blessed. But the bible says we should be sober and vigilant because our adversary the devil is like a roaring lion walketh about seeking whom he may devour (1Peter 5:8)

"...that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world..." - Revelation 12:9

There are many situations which Satan and his agents know they can not withstand the Christian in spiritual combat. In the case of Joshua he was fighting a physical war and God had promised him that no man shall be able to stand before him all the days of his life. (Joshua 1:5). But Satan knows the spiritual principles by which the believer will always have victory or be defeated. Example was the case of Balaam who knew that God had blessed Israel and no one could curse them except they sinned against the Lord. So he advised Balak to send their girls into the midst of the children of Israel to seduce into fornication and in so doing will bring the wrath of God upon themselves because that was the only way their enemies could prevail against them. (Numbers 22:5-6)

In the same token, the Gibeonites (who were the remnants of the Amorites -2 Samuel 21:2) knew the commitment of the Israelites to any oath taken in the name of the Lord because when not kept attracted grave consequences. (2 Samuel 21: l-6). From our text, we can see that the Gibeonites disguised themselves as ambassadors from afar country and desired a peace, treaty with Israel with the plea that they knew that the Lord was in their midst and had heard of what they did to other nations and no one could withstand them. Somehow, they got to know the commission God gave to Moses to possess the land which Joshua was busy executing. (Read Joshua 9:24) Someone would have leaked the secret plan of Israel. We need to bridle our tongue and should not leak God's secret promise to us to the enemy. He might use it against us.

When the Gibeonites came and told their story, it sounded pleasant and edifying and made Joshua and the children of Israel feel superior and exalted. But indeed the Gibeonites were only out to deceive them and they fell for it. Brethren, the devil knows he cannot fight us spiritually but will try to deceive us with scriptural ideas and try to lure us into a commitment we can not dishonor being children of God. Example: in marriage, in business, in sponsorship and others. Not everyone that sounds humble, spiritual is of God. Remember that Satan also transforms himself into an angel of light in order to deceive!

The Bible says: "And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works." - 2 Corinthians 11:14-15.

Therefore whoever comes to us with any flattering words that may sound humble and spiritual should be tested with the word and the Spirit of God.

The Bible says: "And the men took of their victuals, and asked not counsel at the mouth of the LORD. And Joshua made peace with them, and made a league with them, to let them live: and the princes of the congregation sware unto them." - Joshua 9:14-15.

Though Joshua discovered later that they were deceivers; and were the remnants of the Amorites that were living close to them, they could not fight them to possess the land which God had given to Israel because they had sworn an oath to them. (Joshua 9:16-19). This caused a lot of murmuring against the princes of Israel. Brethren, there is no device the enemy will not use to deceive and bring down the believer. We need to be sober and vigilant to be able to discern to know when the enemy is lurking around to deceive. Remember the story of the young man of God in the days of Jeroboam. That was deceived by an old religious man another so called prophet.

Remember the Bible says: "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world." - 1 John 4:1

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