Message: In Joshua 7 Israel was scouting out the land of Ai. They had just conquered Jericho and when they saw the size of Ai they opted to take just a portion of their army to defeat the small city. This may have indicated an attitude that they were going to do this themselves. Instead they got their butts handed to them and they didn’t know why. Joshua got on his face and began to complain to God that they shouldn’t have ever crossed the Jordan. Then he taunted God by asking God what he would do about his great name when their enemies found out. This behavior seemed to be a default response and it reminded me of the same response from Israel every time they encountered something difficult. He didn’t ask God why, or even ask for help but it seemed he was blaming God and taunting him instead. When God instructed Joshua to separate the people by tribes, clans and families the man who was unfaithful was exposed. Unfortunately, his unfaithfulness affected not only himself, but his family and all of Israel. His unfaithfulness also made a mockery of God’s plan and purpose for Israel. I thought about this in regard to my own sin. We often feel like we’re only hurting ourselves, but the truth is everything we do affects ourselves, our families and the body of Christ. What we do in secret is bigger than ourselves. It makes a mockery out of the plan and purpose God has for our lives. The remedy for Israel was to consecrate themselves. God warned them that if they didn’t remove the items set apart for destruction, that they would not be able to stand up against their enemies. This is so true of us all. We will not be able to stand up against our enemies if we don’t consecrate ourselves. This means that we don’t mess with things that God has set apart for destruction and we don’t take things for ourselves that were set apart for God.

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