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Joshua 13-17


A Devotional Journey
     led by Dr. Gene Pearson                                                                                                                                 
Thru the Bible in a Year
       When Joshua was old God recognized that his fighting days were numbered and instead of keeping him young forever, simply made him the bearer of God's plan for the rest of the conquest of Canaan.  Much of the Land remained to be conquered, none the less, God divides it anyway knowing what will eventually happen.
       The Land east of the Jordan River is described and divided, then the Land west of the Jordan.  It is particularly noted that Caleb (the original spy other than Joshua who had urged the people to trust God and conquer Canaan) is given the city of Hebron (a place of special significance even to Abraham. 
       Not everyone is pleased with the division as Joshua presents it.  Not ever tribe is able to carry out their assigned conquests.  Whether this is because of some kind of unfaithfulness, or simply the result of God allow a process to unfold rather than miraculously intervening each time an army goes out is not completely clear, but it appears to be the latter.
       The tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh are dissatisfied with the size of their allotment because their numbers are so great, but Joshua tells them they can add forested country to the north if they wish.  To their complaint that the nearby Canaanites have iron chariots and will be a formidable foe, Joshua replies that as they have previously insisted, they are a large and therefore strong group and should have no real problem conquering the area assigned and even the additional area if they wish. 
       God has a logic to His distribution that sometimes  escapes us.  Blessings, spiritual gifts, opportunities all may be seen around us and in our lives at various points.  When we complain that His decisions appear unreasonable or unfair God has a tendency to call us forward anyway, thus teaching us to trust His judgement and accept His assignments and evaluation of our needs.
       Is there anything about which you would like to complain to God today?  Do you wish He would do things differently in your life today?  Remember that just as with the tribes of Israel, God's decisions have to do with more than any one person:  they have an impact on many others also.  God's plan for Israel was ultimately not only fair but excessively gracious.  His wisdom and justice are not always visible at first, but they are always there, and we can eventually see them if we will trust Him.
       Ask God to help you trust Him more today.  Then think of some challenge or problem in your life that disturbs you and go to work on it with Him.  God does care; He will lead you though.
A. Eugene Pearson 2011