Jošua 23

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1 Proteklo je mnogo dana kako je Jahve dao Izraelu da otpočine od svih neprijatelja unaokolo. I Jošua bijaše ostario, zašao u godine.

2 Dozva zato Jošua sve Izraelce, starješine, glavare, suce i upravitelje njihove i reče im: "Ostario sam i odmakao u godinama.

3 Vi ste bili svjedoci svega što je Jahve, Bog vaš, pred vašim očima učinio svim narodima radi vas: Jahve, Bog vaš, borio se za vas.

4 Vidite, razdijelio sam ždrijebom u baštinu vašim plemenima sve narode koji su ostali i sve one narode koje sam istrijebio od Jordana do Velikog mora na zapadu.

5 Jahve, Bog vaš, sam će ih goniti ispred vas i otjerat će ih ispred vas i zaposjest ćete njihovu zemlju, kao što vam je obećao Jahve, Bog vaš.

6 Budite, dakle, postojani i sve čvršći u tome da čuvate i vršite sve što je napisano u Knjizi zakona Mojsijeva i da ne odstupite od toga ni desno ni lijevo.

7 Ne miješajte se s tim narodima koji ostadoše među vama; i ne spominjite imena njihovih bogova niti se kunite njima; nemojte im služiti i ne klanjajte se njima.

8 Nego se držite Jahve, Boga svoga, kako ste činili do danas.

9 Jahve je protjerao ispred vas velike i moćne narode i nitko se nije do danas mogao održati pred vama.

10 Jedan je od vas tjerao pred sobom tisuću, jer se Jahve, Bog vaš, borio za vas, kao što vam je obećao.

11 Brižno pazite da ljubite Jahvu, Boga svojega, jer se radi o vašem životu.

12 Jer ako se odmetnete i prionete uz ostatak onih naroda koji preostaše među vama i s njima se povežete tazbinom i pomiješate se s njima i oni s vama,

13 znajte dobro da će Jahve, Bog vaš, prestati goniti te narode ispred vas; oni će vam postati zamka i mreža, bit će bič bokovima vašim i trnje očima vašim, sve dok se ne iselite iz ove dobre zemlje koju vam dade Jahve, Bog vaš.

14 Evo, ja krećem danas na put kojim je svima poći. Spoznajte i priznajte svim srcem svojim i svom dušom svojom: ni jedno od svih obećanja koja vam je dao Jahve, Bog vaš, nije ostalo neispunjeno.

15 I kao što vam se ispunilo svako obećanje što vam ga je dao Jahve, Bog vaš, tako će Jahve ispuniti i svaku prijetnju dok vas ne izbriše s lica ove dobre zemlje koju vam je dao Jahve, Bog vaš.

16 Ako prekršite Savez koji je Jahve, Bog vaš, sklopio s vama; ako budete služili drugim bogovima i klanjali se njima, buknut će gnjev Jahvin na vas i nestat će vas ubrzo iz dobre zemlje koju vam je Jahve dao."


Exploring the Meaning of Jošua 23      

Napsal(a) Rev. Julian Duckworth

Joshua 23: Joshua’s farewell address to all Israel.

Now that the people of Israel are living in the land of Canaan according to the Lord’s promise to them, Joshua, now old, gathers Israel together and offers the people his final words. It is a review of God’s faithfulness to them, His power in their victories, the gift of a good land in which they may live, and finally, a warning: they must not turn away from the Lord and follow the gods of other nations, or the Lord’s anger will follow them.

The spiritual meaning of Joshua’s address is about our experience of the Lord’s activity in our lives, our responsibilities in the work of regeneration, and what happens in us when we drift away from our relationship with the Lord. Every part of Joshua’s speech touches on these subjects, and it is a shining statement for our spiritual well-being. We will look at each part of what Joshua says and their spiritual meanings.

Joshua called for all Israel, and for all of their leaders - their elders, their heads, their judges and their officers. Spiritually, what leads and commands our mind is what we hold as true, which then informs our actions.

Joshua says he is old and advanced in age. Spiritually, this stands for acquiring wisdom during regeneration. Perhaps ‘advanced’, with its range of meanings, is a clue here.

Then Joshua turns to the Lord and the conquest. Joshua reminds the Israelites of what the Lord has given them, and says that the Lord will help them drive out the remaining nations until the whole land is theirs. Spiritually, this is about the ways in which the Lord guides us through regeneration, and how He will be present in our continuing spiritual work.

Joshua then urges Israel to keep the law of Moses and not turn away from it, nor go among other nations who are alongside Israel, nor mention their gods, nor swear by them or serve them or bow down to them. For us, this means following the Lord, and not giving in to the other influences that could lead our lives - for example, greed or ambition. If we do give thought to these other things, they can entrap us. It is enough for us to see them in our mind and quickly refuse their place there.

Joshua then says that because the Lord has been fighting for Israel, no one has been able to stand against them. In verse 10, he says, “One man of you shall chase a thousand: for the Lord your God, he it is that fighteth for you, as he hath promised you.” This means when we acknowledge that the Lord rules our life and empowers us, the influences of hell will be powerless against our resolve.

Joshua then tells Israel that if they do turn to the other nations and their gods, the Lord would no longer drive out these nations, and they would become snares and traps for Israel. This is about the spiritual consequences of going against the Lord. This will inevitably bring on its own dangers, and we can be drawn in without realizing. The Lord can only drive out our spiritual enemies when we turn to Him for guidance.

Finally, Joshua says that not one thing God intended for Israel has failed to happen; so, just as God had given Israel many blessings, He would bring harm on Israel if they grew unfaithful. In our spiritual lives, this is only how things appear. We may feel that God is punishing us at times, but in reality we bring harm on ourselves when we no longer follow the Lord. So, Joshua says, the good land would be taken from them, just as the delight of heavenly life is taken from us if we turn away from the Lord.

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