Each generation must make their own decision and fight their own battles. Each generation of believers is called to ensure that the next generation has an informed choice. The question must be put.
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Hi, everyone. And welcome to training for life redeemed. I’m your host, Dan, and as always, I’m joined by my father, David Jackson. Today’s our last episode looking at the book of Joshua. And we’re going to finish off here with Joshua chapters 23 and 24, we’re at the end of the book we’re about to, Joshua is about to die. So we seem to have skipped say 20 or 30 years in the storyline as we come up to the end of Joshua’s life. Joshua doesn’t sound too hopeful though, with his last speech , Dad.David:
No, he’s not. He’s a realist. He’d lived through the 40 years in the wilderness with Moses. He’d seen Israel whinge and grumble all the way through, and he’s come to a point with this particular generation where they’ve done pretty much, they’ve done everything right. And so, as he looks into the future, he’s also looking back. Moses finished up with the blessings and the curses, and he warned the people of what would happen if they walked , if they stepped off the path, if they deviated from Yahweh and Lord knows they did enough of that with, y ou k now, all the goings on in the desert. So now we’re at a point where he’s looking to the future he’s 110 years old. Yay. old fellows, and, he’s just looking at going, yeah, well, the next g eneration’s g ot t o hold it and then w here’s it g oing t o g o? It’s inevitable that people are going to sin. It’s inevitable that people are g oing t o walk away from the covenant. And so h e’s just looking at that going, God’s been really good to us, but Hey, two generations later, w ill you guys remember this? Will you be faithful? What’s g oing t o be the cost if you’re not. So he’s looking at his grandchildren effectively. And, knows that, that, that hope is really very tenuousDan:
Dad this is the third time that Israel has renewed the covenant with Yahweh . They’ve done it with Moses, at Mount Sinai. And since t hat again, when Moses was saying goodbye and all that kind of stuff w e did at Mount Ebal Mount Gerizim likes to do the mountains b y t he sounds o f things. Why, why do we keep doing this? W hy d o we keep renewing the same covenant? And just going over and over again doing the same thing?David:
Yeah, I think pretty much at each step when we renew the covenant to significant time and the significant times were Mount Sinai, when God establishes Israel, as my people, my treasured possession, a nation, a kingdom of priests, then 40 years later when they’ve broken the covenant and, you know , dropped dead in the desert, we go to about to enter the promised land. So you have the whole book of Deuteronomy and that’s Moses his last few speeches before he dies. And he does all of that on Mount Nebo. And it’s sort of like your last will and Testament. You’ve got this beautiful, old Testament idea that the patriarch is , is about the kark it. He knows he’s going to die. So he gathers the whole family around him and warns them about what’s to come and tells them about God’s blessings and pours his heart out. And all the people say, yes, we will follow the Lord. And he wanders up the hill and dies. And then they all cross into the promised land. Now that you’re in the promised land, you’re facing the challenge of all these battles and everything. Let’s renew the covenant where God gave his promises to Abraham. Because if you stand at Shechem them, you’ve come full circle. I promised you the land all the way around. You’re in the land. Now you should be standing there going, wow , God keeps his word. We’ll keep ours. We’ll make our commitment. Well, that generations now, Josh, that was Joshua’s generation. And you know , there are 110 toó, so the question is what’s the next generation going to do? And so he pulls the next generation up and we tell the stories and we, we remind people. So, you know , a little earlier, I asked you to go and grab your , your Bible. You want to wave that around? That’s the one. When, when we baptized people , I remembered that the Puritans, they all Puritans in England had a little phrase. They called, improve your b aptism. and when you use th e, when they use the word improve, it’s this, they meant it in the sense that we do home improvements, a better translation would be build on your baptism. So one of the things we did when, when people were converted and are baptised, is we got, I used to make up, get a certificate made up and we g et everybody who witnessed their baptism to sign it. And then particularly in the case of the kids, we’d give them a Bible like that one. And everybody who saw them get baptised would sign the Bible. And they’d have that as a memory to say, I made a covenant commitment. I need to build on that. And if I walk away from the Lord, you know , that thing sitting there reminding me of that commitment and screaming at me to come back. So we don’t want people to forget. that God committed to us. We did say, yes, it’s basically like going back to your marriage vows and saying, you know, I said this, I meant it. And I still mean it. So he’s calling the next generation and here’s the, here’s the difficulty you don’t control the next generation Oh that we could. They make their own choices. Don’t they ? And we know that, you know , the gospel’s going to split families. So we don’t have a guarantee that all of our kids and all of our grandchildren are going to be converted. So we do this to try and warn them, encourage them, invite them. And Joshua has got great stories to tell. So this is, this is a real good model for families, for churches. And particularly for young people, when you make a commitment, go back and remember it. There are people who celebrate their, the day of their conversion. Like you would a birthday. And they go back and renew that commitment every year. I think there’s wisdom in that.Dan:
Yeah. I know. I’ve definitely enjoy having this Bible still on this images on it. And still sometimes go back and look at who was there and remembering who it was, but Dad as Joshua is about to die, does he do what Moses did? and kind of go, you know, you’re the next in line to lead the people or what happens here? Because, who’s taking over?David:
Short answer nobody. This, I think this is one of the really challenging things about Joshua. It starts off with be courageous, be strong. I’m going to call you to go and do some really brave things. You’ve got to enjoy. You’ve got to persevere. It ends with calling the next generation to do that. And by the way, they did. Joshua’s group of old fellows, And then their kids are the only two generations in Israel’s history that were faithful. That’s extraordinary. And so he must’ve done something, right. God was certainly at work there. But I think this is really interesting. There is nobody to take over from Joshua. And it seems to be that if you have, Yahweh has brought you out of Egypt, Yahweh has given you the land. Yahweh has conquered, your enemies, Yahweh has given you, given you, given you. And one of the things he gives you is the book of instruction. So you’ve got one , I’ve got a little bit of a puzzle there because Joshua writes these words in the book of instruction, which sort of means that the book of Joshua belongs as volume six with Genesis to Deuteronomy. You know, this is your book of instruction, how to live in God’s world. And he hands it to them. And he says, you know what? You don’t need anything else. You’ve got Yahweh at the tabernacle. You’ve got the priests and the Levites to teach you and resolve your issues. You’ve got the book of instruction, go enjoy, follow it. It’ll work. You don’t need a king. You don’t need a government. You just need a heart that loves the Lord and will spontaneously want to do the right thing. And you sort of imagine a world, you know , what, if we didn’t need a government, what if we all just went out and fixed the road when it needed fixing, you know , what, if we took care of our people without being asked and without being, it being a law, what if we generously contributed their money to take care of the poor instead of waiting for the government to do it? You know, what if we were together just for the love of it, rather than because we were forced to and God . So I think what God’s doing here is he’s saying, yeah , there’s your book, there’s your land? There’s your life. Enjoy. And what do you think happens next?Dan:
Oh, you have to find out when you read Judges That brings us to the end of the book of Joshua. But I thank you so much for joining us for this little series on Joshua next series. We are starting job and I cannot wait to get into that. Dad has actually written a book on Job. So I’m looking forward to diving into that a lot more deeply with that. If you like the show notes or to grab the study notes for this episode, please head over to trainingforliferedeemed .com/ 47. You can get everything that you need there. If you enjoy the episode, please leave us a review and make sure that you subscribe and come back. So you can also get nice and deep into the book of Job with us. Thank you so much.David: