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Showing posts from December 3, 2017

Gilgal

After the time of the judges and the three Israeli kings (Saul, David, and Solomon), civil war broke out creating the Northern and Southern Kingdoms. The prophet Hosea spoke around 760 B.C. against the Northern Kingdom of Israel and its King Jeroboam II. That kingdom would go into captivity only 39 years later in 721 B.C. because of its great wickedness of idolatry. Hosea said, "The Lord says, 'All their wickedness began at Gilgal…'" (Hosea 9:15) Gilgal was an important place, the location of first encampment of the Israelite nation after crossing the Jordan River into Canaan and their headquarters during the seven years of conquest. (Joshua 4:19-24) It also was the place that Saul became their first king. He was told by the prophet Samuel to "go down to Gilgal ahead of me. I will join you to sacrifice burnt offerings and peace offerings. You must wait for seven days until I arrive and give you further instructions." (1 Samuel 10:8) But Saul became impatient…

The Gateway of Hope

As the children of Israel walked away from their victory after the walls of Jericho came tumbling down, they were not aware of Achan's sin. This man, a part of the tribe of Judah, eventually confessed that "among the plunder I saw a beautiful robe from Babylon, 200 silver coins, and a bar of gold weighing more than a pound. I wanted them so much that I took them." (Joshua 7:21) This was contrary to the direction of God through Joshua that no booty was to be taken from Jericho. When found out, "Achan, the silver, the robe, the bar of gold, his sons, daughters, cattle, donkeys, sheep, goats, tent, and everything he had" (7:24) were brought to the valley of Achor and stoned by all the Israelites and burned up. They piled a great heap of stones over Achan, which remained to the day of the writing of the book of Joshua. This is why the place has been called the Valley of Trouble because of the trouble that was brought down on Achan. Hosea, talking about judgment on I…

Assumptions

There is great danger in assuming. For the one assuming thinks he knows all he needs to know and that he has interpreted the information properly so that his conclusion is the truth. This is where we all struggle because we forget that in processing any words or an event we can miss facts that are important to coming to the right conclusion. Make sense? Consider this: There are six possible messages in one set of words or an event: 1.What you meant to say or think you said. 2.What you actually said. 3.What the other person heard you say. 4.What the other person THOUGHT they heard you say. 5.What the other person FELT about what you said. 6.What YOU THINK the other person felt about what you said. That leads us to a story in which assumptions almost created a civil war. Under the leadership of Joshua the people of Israel waged three military campaigns when they entered the land of Canaan: central, southern and northern. After seven or more years they "sort of" completed the task and t…