Joshua 9 … Consider His Far-Reaching Fame

The word of His Fame is spreading… and so is the fear.

The inhabitants of Gibeon have heard the report and they quickly act to save their own necks. Many questions arise in this account: why Joshua did not seek the counsel of the Lord; how the nation was deceived into a covenant with the Gibeonites by merely taking them at their word; why God allowed it at all? Although we can speculate, the answers are not clearly articulated.

What is expressed, however, is the Far-Reaching Fame of our great and glorious God; moving men, desperate to escape destruction and death, to offer themselves as slaves as their only hope for life.

Consider His Far-Reaching Fame

  • His Far-Reaching Fame advanced by His Deeds
    • They said to him, “Your servants have come from a very far country because of the fame of the Lord your God; for we have heard the report of Him and all that He did in Egypt, 10 and all that He did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon king of Heshbon and to Og king of Bashan who was at Ashtaroth,” (9:9-10 emphasis added).
  • His Far-Reaching Fame advanced by His Word
    • So they answered Joshua and said, “Because it was certainly told your servants that the Lord your God had commanded His servant Moses to give you all the land, and to destroy all the inhabitants of the land before you…” (9:24 emphasis added).

How do we respond to His Far-Reaching Fame?

We can learn much from the frightened and humbled Gibeonites; motivated by His Far-Reaching Fame and fear of His Deeds and Word, they chose slavery over death.

“… therefore we feared greatly for our lives because of you, and have done this thing. 25 Now behold, we are in your hands; do as it seems good and right in your sight to do to us,” (9:24-25).

However, we do not have to concoct deceptive plans to escape death. We need only, in true humility, accept by faith His offer of life in His blood in the New Covenant.

And when He had taken some bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” 20 And in the same way He took the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood,” (Luke 22:19-20).

Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, (Romans 8:1).

This is My covenant with them,
When I take away their sins,”
(Romans 11:27).

When we receive His life and escape condemnation, we are freed from slavery of sin to become His slaves of righteousness.

Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness? 17 But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed, 18 and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness, (Romans 6:16-18).

When we receive His life, and escape condemnation, we are created as His workmanship to advance His Far-Reaching Fame.

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them, (Ephesians 2:10).

  • Are we advancing His Far-Reaching Fame as others see His Deeds in our lives?
    • “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven,” (Matthew 5:16).
  • Are we advancing His Far-Reaching Fame as we share His Word with others?
    • “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age,” (Matthew 28:19-20).
  • Let us bow at His feet and submit our lives in worship and obedience, that we might become holy vessels to advance His Far-Reaching Fame.
    • Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship, (Romans 12:1).
    • Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from these things, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work. 22 Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. (2 Timothy 2:21-22).

Let’s Grow Together!

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