Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | February 3, 2015

“The Lord is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”

Today’s devotion comes from Joshua Chapter 17.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Joshua+17&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“3 However, Zelophehad, the son of Hepher, the son of Gilead, the son of Machir, the son of Manasseh, had no sons, only daughters; and these are the names of his daughters: Mahlah and Noah, Hoglah, Milcah and Tirzah.  4 They came near before Eleazar the priest and before Joshua the son of Nun and before the leaders, saying, “The Lord commanded Moses to give us an inheritance among our brothers.”  So according to the command of the Lord he gave them an inheritance among their father’s brothers.

“14 Then the sons of Joseph spoke to Joshua, saying, “Why have you given me only one lot and one portion for an inheritance, since I am a numerous people whom the Lord has thus far blessed?”  15 Joshua said to them, “If you are a numerous people, go up to the forest and clear a place for yourself there in the land of the Perizzites and of the Rephaim, since the hill country of Ephraim is too narrow for you.” 16 The sons of Joseph said, “The hill country is not enough for us, and all the Canaanites who live in the valley land have chariots of iron, both those who are in Beth-shean and its towns and those who are in the valley of Jezreel.”  17 Joshua spoke to the house of Joseph, to Ephraim and Manasseh, saying, “You are a numerous people and have great power;  you shall not have one lot only, 18 but the hill country shall be yours.  For though it is a forest, you shall clear it, and to its farthest borders it shall be yours;  for you shall drive out the Canaanites, even though they have chariots of iron and though they are strong.”  Joshua Chapter 17:  Verses 3-4 and 14-18.

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We meditate on two requests in today’s Scripture.

In today’s Scripture, in verses 3 and 4, we are first reminded of the request of the daughters of Zelophehad:  “Our father died in the wilderness, yet he was not among the company of those who gathered themselves together against the Lord in the company of Korah;  but he died in his own sin, and he had no sons.  Why should the name of our father be withdrawn from among his family because he had no son?  Give us a possession among our father’s brothers.”  Numbers 27:3-4.

Later, in this chapter, we first read of the complaint/request of the sons of Joseph for more land.  Verses 14-18.

Both requests were granted, but in different ways.  The request of the daughters of Zelophehad was simply granted.  It does not appear that they had to fight for or work much for their land.  In contrast, the request of the sons of Joseph was also granted, but they had to both fight for it (“for you shall drive out the Canaanites”) and work hard for it (“For though it is a forest, you shall clear it”).

Likewise, we may have requests that may be granted quickly and easily.  We may get what is wanted as quickly and easily as one opens a Christmas gift.  Or, in contrast, we may get what is wanted but we will have to fight for it and work for it.

But, even for those requests that we have to fight for what we want and work for it, we should not be dismayed or discouraged, for part of the grant of our request is that God will certainly guide us and empower us to get what we want.

The Lord is the one who goes ahead of you;  He will be with you.  He will not fail you or forsake you.  Do not fear or be dismayed.”  Deuteronomy 31:8.

We see this most clearly in our most common request for money.  Although God can give us money through an inheritance or through other gifts, most of the time, we will need to work for it (and figuratively fight for it).  But, let us not be dismayed or discouraged for God will certainly guide us and give us power to make wealth as part of His grant of our request.

“But you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth, that He may confirm His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.”  Deuteronomy 8:18.

“And the Lord will continually guide you, And satisfy your desire in scorched places, And give strength to your bones;  And you will be like a watered garden, And like a spring of water whose waters do not fail.”  Isaiah 58:11.

“For such is God,
Our God forever and ever;
He will guide us until death.”  Psalm 48:14.

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