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March 25 – Preserving in obedience by faith in the promises

“Joshua made war a long time with all those kings.” – Joshua 11:18

Scripture reading: Joshua 11:16-20

God didn’t let Israel just walk in and take the land of Canaan. According to verse 18, Joshua made war a long time. Why did Israel have to fight at all? God didn’t need their help. He could have just swept all of those Canaanites out of the way and given Israel the land. Why did God make them fight?

We might ask the same question about why God doesn’t just snap His fingers and bring every elect person to faith or why He tells us to go and make disciples. Our business is to believe and, by faith, obey.

God said to Israel, I’m going to give you the land in the way of faith and obedience. That’s how we receive the things that He’s prepared for us. And we always have to be asking ourselves, Are we living by faith in the promises? Are we doing what God has commanded us to do?

When we set our hearts on what we see, we will live for what we can have here and now, and we will fall away. But when we set our hearts on having what God has promised us, we have our hearts set on doing what God has commanded us to do, and we will persevere. The Holy Spirit is saying, This is how you endure, how you conquer, how you receive all of the wonderful things God has prepared for you: by setting your hearts on what He’s promised and on doing what He has commanded you to do.

Suggestions for prayer

Ask the Holy Spirit to help you set your heart on having what God has promised you and to be committed to living the life God commands you to live.

Rev. Dick Wynia is currently the minister of the Vineyard Canadian Reformed Church in Beamsville, ON


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