Making decisions involving others is not an easy task. There are people out to take advantage of you, to get all they can get from you. The Great and Awesome God who has made all things gave us a mind and heart to use, but we do need help at times.
I want to take us today to an event in the life and leadership of Joshua and Israel after they had conquered Jericho, been defeated by Ai due to their sin, conquered Ai after dealing with the sin in their midst.
There was a tribe of people from Gibeon who were inhabitants of the land of Canaan, and tried to deceive Joshua into believing they were from a land outside of Canaan.
“Wherefore our elders and all the inhabitants of our country spake to us, saying, Take victuals with you for the journey, and go to meet them, and say unto them, We are your servants: therefore now make ye a league with us. This our bread we took hot for our provision out of our houses on the day we came forth to go unto you; but now, behold, it is dry, and it is mouldy: and these bottles of wine, which we filled, were new; and, behold, they be rent: and these our garments and our shoes are become old by reason of the very long journey. And the men took of their victuals, and asked not counsel at the mouth of the LORD.” Joshua 9:11-14 (KJV)
These Hivites had heard of the victories of Israel on the other side of Jordan; the defeating of Sihon and Og. They were frightened for their lives, and practiced deceit to win their lives. Not any different than many people today. “Whatever it takes” we will often do to save our own lives, and that of family.
The sentence of the verses above I want us to focus on is verse 14…
And the men took of their victuals, and asked not counsel at the mouth of the LORD.
Joshua and the leaders took their word, their food, as a gift of assurance that they were from outside Canaan. Had they prayed, and asked the LORD’S counsel the outcome would have been much different.
These Gibeonites would eventually be found out; made servants for Israel; and would be a pain, sorrow, and thorn in the side of the people of God.
When it comes to dealing with others; making deals, promises, and such we ought always go to God in prayer first. Prayer should not be the last resort; it should be the first thing we do when making decisions of life’s importance.
“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: for every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.” Matthew 7:7-8
Pray. Seek God’s counsel. Always.