“And the LORD said to Joshua, ‘Today I have rolled away the reproach of Egypt from you.’” – Joshua 5:9
The LORD explained in verse 9 why He had commanded the Israelites to circumcise their sons at Gilgal: Today I have rolled away the reproach of Egypt from you.
What is the reproach of Egypt? Remember how Moses prayed to the LORD after Israel worshipped the golden calf. He said:
“O Lord God, do not destroy Your people . . . lest the land from which You brought us say, Because the LORD was not able to bring them into the land that He promised them, and because He hated them, He has brought them out to put them to death in the wilderness. For they are Your people and your heritage, whom You brought out by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm” (Deuteronomy 9:26-29).
The unbelief and rebellion of Israel constantly brought God’s work of salvation into question. How can people like this be saved? How can people like this be God’s people, God’s beloved children? Our sin puts a question mark behind God’s promises.
But God erases that question mark with the gospel: God saves sinners for the glory of His Name (Ephesians 1:3-14), and He has exalted His Name and His Word above all things (Psalm 138:2). Israel’s arrival in Canaan was never really in doubt. God vindicated His Name when He brought Israel through the Jordan on dry ground. He has staked the glory of His Name on your salvation; believe that He will bring you to Himself, through the saving work of Jesus Christ.
Suggestions for prayer
Thank and praise God that He has chosen to glorify His Name in your salvation, and rejoice in the certainty that that gives you.