Bible Teaching Notes
Tuesday, May 21, 2019
Omar C. Garcia

Joshua 24

Joshua 24:14-27

24:14 Now therefore fear [reverently worship] the LORD, and serve [with complete devotion; not halfhearted loyalty and service] him in sincerity and in truth [with integrity and faithfulness]: and put away [essential outward expression of their commitment to the Lord; cf. Josh. 24:23] the gods which your fathers served on the other side of [area where Abram and his father Terah had lived] the flood [the Euphrates River in Mesopotamia], and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD.


24:15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose [no neutrality] you this day [do not delay] whom ye will serve [every body must worship and serve something or someone]; whether [1] the gods [included the moon god and numerous idols] which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood [Mesopotamia], or [2] the gods of the Amorites [people group living in Canaan; sometimes a general designation for all Canaan’s inhabitants], in whose land ye dwell: but as for me [Joshua set an example by his own choice] and my house, we will serve [3] the LORD.


24:16 And the people answered and said [easy to say, hard to follow-through], God forbid that we should forsake the LORD, to serve other gods;


24:17 For [the people recalled God’s mighty acts on their behalf] the LORD our God, he it is that brought us up and our fathers out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage, and which did those great signs in our sight, and preserved us in all the way wherein we went, and among all the people through whom we passed:


24:18 And the LORD drave out from before us all the people, even the Amorites which dwelt in the land: therefore will we also serve the LORD; for he is our God.


24:19 And Joshua said [words not meant to discourage but rather to cause the people to realize the cost of serving the Lord (cf. Lk. 14:25-35); “a kind of holy provoking” (Bisagno)] unto the people, Ye cannot serve the LORD: for he is an holy [separate or set apart] God; he is a jealous [God demands and deserves our undivided loyalty and love] God; he will not forgive your transgressions [conveys deliberate revolt against God] nor your sins.


24:20 If ye forsake the LORD, and serve strange gods, then he will turn and do you hurt [cf. Deut. 28:15-68], and consume you, after that he hath done you good.


24:21 And the people said unto Joshua, Nay; but we will serve the LORD.


24:22 And Joshua said unto the people, Ye are witnesses against yourselves [in other words, their own words would condemn them if they failed to follow-through on their commitment] that ye have chosen you the LORD, to serve him. And they said, We are witnesses.


24:23 Now therefore put away [essential outward expression of their commitment to the Lord; cf. Josh. 24:14], said he, the strange gods which are among you, and incline your heart [inward loyalty] unto the LORD God of Israel.


24:24 And the people said unto Joshua, The LORD our God will we serve, and his voice will we obey.


24:25 So Joshua made a covenant [a renewal of the covenant God had made with them through Moses (cf. Ex. 19:1-6)] with the people that day, and set them a statute and an ordinance [basic stipulation was that they follow God in complete loyalty and obedience] in Shechem.


24:26 And Joshua wrote [so that they wouldn’t forget] these words in the book of the law of God, and took a great stone, and set it up [to serve as a perpetual witness to their agreement; a tangible outward expression of their inner commitment] there under an oak, that was by the sanctuary of the LORD.


24:27 And Joshua said unto all the people, Behold, this stone shall be a witness unto us; for it hath heard all the words of the LORD which he spake unto us: it shall be therefore a witness unto you, lest ye deny your God.

Source:Omar C. Garcia

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