“So Joshua smote all the country of the hills and of the south and of the vale and of the springs and all their kings: He left nothing remaining but utterly destroyed all that breathed as Yehovah God had commanded.”
The promise of God to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob was that the land, whereon they dwelt as strangers, would be the inheritance of the nation of Israel. God put no conditions upon the inheritance and He continually reminded His people of His promise even though almost one thousand years would elapse from when the word was given to Abram, which included four hundred years of bondage in Egypt and forty years of wandering in the wilderness, until the time appointed of God that the fulfillment should be made manifest.
The Word of God came to His people as they were set to cross the Jordan into the land that they should not become encumbered with the business of the commerce or governments of the indigenous people of the land or be polluted with these people either in customs or religion. The ways of the people of the land were contrary to the ways of God. He is the Creator and they are His creation; He is the ruler and they are the ruled and He is the Lord God Omnipotent and Adam and his seed are completely dependent upon the grace and mercy of the purpose of God. As high as the heavens are above the earth so are the ways of God above the ways of man yet even to the most diminutive of observations it is clearly seen that His ways encompass and consume all that is of the His creation. God had made all men from one blood and has appointed the times of their habitations with every limitation thereof. He created the light and the darkness, the good and the evil. He alone has established the criteria for each and has declared that which is good and that which is evil. Since all things work together in complete harmony according to His irresistible will and all things come to pass after the good pleasure of His will, nothing is outside, above or beyond the predestinated course which He has established. Yet He has given commandments condemning that which is unacceptable according to His standard of holiness; this is the fullness of the nature of Adam with every thought, word and deed of man. He has decreed the ways of man to be incapable of hitting the mark of this perfection, subjected the natural desires of the children of the dust to the needs of the flesh and has filled the mind of Adam’s race with the things of this world to prevent them from finding out the work which God has done from the beginning.
He spoke after this manner to Moses concerning the nature of the children of Israel and their conduct when He gave him His Law at Mt. Sinai. Moses was delayed in his return from receiving the handwriting of ordinances at the hand of God and the people rebelled as Aaron forged the molten calves. Yehovah said unto Moses; “Go get down, for the people which you have brought out of the land of Egypt are corrupted”. He had full knowledge of this people, as He does of all His creation, and thus He said; “I have seen this people and behold it is a stiff-necked people”. These people as the nation of Israel are a manifestation of the natural characteristics and mannerisms of man. They stand as examples for every child of grace in explanation of the outward man which perishes and the conflicts of the inward man who delights after the Law of God.
After Moses was dead, God repeated the matter again to His servant Joshua, who reminded the people of these words; “you shall make no covenant with them nor shew mercy unto them, neither shall you make marriages with them; your daughters shall you not give unto his son nor his daughter shall you take unto your son” (Deut. 7:2). There were no grey areas or matters left for interpretation for the subject was clear; the children of Israel were to be separate from the people of the land because, “they will turn away your son from following Me that they may serve other gods; so will the anger of Yehovah be kindled against you and destroy you suddenly” (4).
This type of isolationism has been attempted in the past in order to contain the will of man but to a painful and catastrophic end. Those who have been so persuaded in these philosophies have not been taught of the Spirit of God concerning the land of Shinar, the country of two rivers, but are well skilled and learned in the religious teaching of the carnal mind. The people of the nation of Israel were indeed sons of Adam and as such, being formed from the dust of the earth, they could not isolate themselves from the things of this world. They could not cease to eat of the fruit of the fields, drinking the waters of the ground or breathing the air needed to survive; they were daily drawn away after the needs and desires of the flesh just as every son of Adam. They conducted their trade of commerce with the nations of the region, the lived in the huts, houses and towns which other men built and they ate of the crops which they had not planted. God instructed them not engage in a covenant relation with anyone who was not of Israel not because of natural matters but because of spiritual wickedness in high places.
Herein the type is further defined as being a child of the kingdom of the Israel of our God who inhabits a tabernacle of the dust of the earth. The tabernacle of the dust never changes into anything other than dust “for dust you are and to the dust you shall return” (Gen.3:19). The children of the nation of Israel were corrupt according to the nature of Adam and therefore, being by nature full of sin and unclean, they were disobedient to the word of God. They made alliances, treaties and covenants with all manner of man because they feared what these and other men might do unto them. They were persuaded by the peer pressure of man and eventually cried out to Samuel; “Nay, but we will have a king over us, that we may be like all the nations and that our king may judge us and go out before us and fight our battles” (I Sam. 8:19). They followed after their natural instincts to do that which was right in their own eyes and Yehovah God gave them the desires of their hearts but sent leanness into their souls (Ps. 106:15) in a further demonstration of the inability of man.
“Behold I send an Angel before you to keep you in the way and to bring you into the place which I have prepared for you” (Ex. 23:20).
The children of Israel stood at the base of Mt. Sinai and swore that they would obey every word which God spoke and keep his commandments (Ex. 19:8). He knew otherwise because He created them incapable of such perfection; “that no flesh should glory in His presence” (I Cor. 1:29). He sent them into the bondage of Egypt to protect them and make them into a mighty nation. They could not deliver themselves for they abode in an house of a man stronger that they, so He sent for the one ‘saved’ and ‘preserved’ being ‘drawn out’; Moses. He led them for forty years as they traveled their allotted path through the wilderness. He also gave Moses a young man who was with him as the only other man to see the tablets with the handwriting of God; Joshua. He fought the battle as Aaron and Hur held up the weary hands of Moses when Yehovah God “utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven” (Ex. 17:14). He was with Moses in the mount, he saw the tablets of stone wherein the finger of God had written, he told Moses there was a noise of war in the camp and he was in the Tabernacle of Israel when the glory of Yehovah descended upon it and spoke with Moses “face to face as a man speaks to his friend. And when he (Moses) turned again into the camp, Joshua the son of Nun, a young man, did not depart out of the Tabernacle”. (Ex. 33:10f)
This young man was first called Oshea (salvation – Num. 13:8) and while nothing is given in testimony of anything he said or did as a child yet Yehovah raised him up to stand with Moses. Moses therefore changed his name and called him, Jehoshua (Yehovah is salvation’) which is Joshua. This was a chosen vessel of God who bore a true witness when the spies went into the land. He and Caleb (dog) came forth and proclaimed “unto all the company of the children of Israel, saying, the land which we passed through to search out is an exceedingly good land. If Yehovah delights in us, then He will bring us into the land and give it us, a land flowing with milk and honey. Only do not rebel against Yehovah neither fear the people of the land, for they are bread for us. Their defense is departed from them and Yehovah is with us; do not fear them” (Num. 14:7ff). This was the ‘messenger’ (Angel) of Yehovah who was given not to be ashamed to preach the gospel of the Anointed Salvation of Yehovah for it is the power f God unto deliverance.
“And Yehovah said unto Moses, Take Joshua the son of Nun, a man in whom is the Spirit and give him a charge in their sight” (Num. 27:18).
God had promised to raise up an Angel from the midst of the people and that messenger was Joshua. He came forth after the death of Moses and Yehovah was with him as He had been with Moses. He brought the people to the Jordan River after the army of Israel utterly destroyed Sihon and Og as the captain of their deliverance. He led them across the Jordan River and circumcised all of Israel. He utterly destroyed Jericho for the Spirit of wisdom of Yehovah was upon him. He “drew not his hand back, wherewith he stretched out the spear, until he had utterly destroyed all the inhabitants of Ai” (the ruinous heaps of perversion and iniquity). When Adoni-zedec, king of Jerusalem (my lord is righteous) made a league with the five kings of Hebron, Jarmuth, Lachish and Eglon, Yehovah said unto His Elect Servant, “Do not fear them for I have delivered them into your hand; there shall not a man of them stand before you” (Josh. 10:8). Joshua thus spoke the same gospel to the people of Israel when he “said unto them, Do not fear nor be dismayed, be strong and of good courage for thus shall Yehovah do to all your enemies against whom you shall fight” (10:25).
Joshua utterly destroyed those who stood before him and he repeated the commandment of God to the people of Israel to do the same. God did not give them an alternate method of achieving the same result, claiming that ‘the end justified the means’, nor did He leave it up to them to ‘do the best they could with what they had’ in order to please Him. He commanded that the indigenous inhabitants of the land be utterly destroyed because the “iniquity of the Amorites” was now full (Gen. 15:16) and the wickedness of the Canaanites; “do not speak in your hearts after that Yehovah your God has cast them out from before you, saying, For my righteousness Yehovah has brought me into possess this land, but for the wickedness of these nations Yehovah drives them out from before you” (Deut. 9:4). He spoke and made this people willing in the day of His power as His name was proclaimed and His power made evident.
Joshua stands as a type of the Messiah who should come. He was blessed of God to subdue the land and put all his enemies under his feet yet he was flesh and blood and when the time of his habitation was over, he died and was buried. Messiah, however, is the Mighty God, the Eternal Father and the Prince of Peace. He has no beginning of days for He is Alpha. He has finished His work from before the foundation of the world and because He has overcome the world, He is seated at the right hand of the Father (the place of all authority and power). He has brought His people into their inheritance (the kingdom of God) which is eternal, incorruptible and undefiled and will never fade away, reserved for them in heaven (I Pt. 1:4) and He has given them rest; “So Joshua took the whole land according to all that Yehovah said unto Moses and Joshua gave it to for an inheritance unto Israel according to their divisions by their tribes; and the land rested from war” (Josh. 11:23).
“Therefore Yehovah left those nations, without driving them out hastily, neither delivered He them into the hand of Joshua” (Judg. 2:23).
When the children of Israel obtained their land assignments according to their lots, they were instructed as Yehovah did Moses and Joshua, to utterly destroy the inhabitants of the land. They were to show no mercy to any little or aged ones as every man, woman and child was to be completely eradicated, without exception. The children of Israel could not drive out the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hittites, the Hivites or the Jebusites not because they lacked the military strength or the proper tactics; they were unable to drive them out of the land because it was the will of God that these remain. God left a thorn in the side of this nation of people which stand as a type of the household of grace. They were chosen of Yehovah and nothing that was done or could ever be done could separate them from that distinction but they were made subject to the worthlessness of the habitation of the low of the land (Canaan). They are humbled by the reality of this presence as they are shown daily that salvation is of Yehovah. The Apostle Paul was given the same messenger from the destroyer so that he would think not more highly of himself than he ought.
Joshua, as a type of Jesus Christ, had indeed gotten Himself the victory in that he finished the work that was set before him. “Israel served Yehovah all the days of Joshua and all the days of the elders that outlived Joshua and which had known the works of Yehovah that he had done in Israel” (Josh. 24:31). Joshua the man lived and died when the time of his habitation was over. Joshua (Jesus) is the salvation of Yehovah. He lived and died as the sacrifice for the sin of His people but He was declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the Spirit of Holiness, by the resurrection from the dead. His work was finished before time began and is manifested in the fullness of time. He is therefore seated in heaven and rules over all the earth for He has “power over all flesh that He should give eternal life to as many as the Father has given Him” (John 17:2). These are those who are born from above as the eternal seed, which is the body of the Anointed, His Bride, and she is seated together in Him in that heavenly place. He has overcome the world and the Wicked One and she has overcome the same in Him. The revelation of this blessed reality comes to pass in time as the testimony of the victory is manifested, from faith to faith; this is the surety of the soul.
This is not the conversion or progressive improvement of the flesh unto salvation. The children of Israel, as a type of the chosen people of God, dwelt in earthen vessels which were afore prepared for them. The nature of each vessel is carnal and the appetites thereof are for the things of this world. This carnal mind and its desires are death because they are temporal and shall fade away as the smoke of the fire and the dew of the morning. There remains a constant warfare between the Spirit within and the natural man without, because that which is born of the Spirit is eternal life and the natural man is enmity with God. In the exact way that the children born of God cannot deny their Father, being hewn from that great Rock which is Anointed, so the children of the dust of the ground cannot deny or disown their father. He is the Canaanite who cannot be removed from off the land.
Praise (Judah) could not drive him off, though they fought oft. The children of the ‘son of My right hand’ (Benjamin) could not drive out the ‘threshing place’ (Jebusites) for this is ordained of God to separate the wheat from the chaff (Luke 22:31). The house of the ‘other son’ (Joseph) could not dislodge the ‘sons of terror’ (Hittites) and they lived with that fear as it continually ‘budded’ before them (Luz). Neither did Manasseh, who desires to ‘forget’ the constant reminders of his iniquity and shame, drive out the common people of the land , even the low and easily humbled people which so easily besets the sons of God in the tabernacle of this dwelling. Nor could the ‘fruitfulness’ of the Kingdom of God (Ephraim) drive them out because His Kingdom is not of this world and the fruit of His plantation is the peaceable fruit of righteousness. Nor could the ‘exalted’ and ‘honoured’ of the land of Israel (Zebulun) erase the stench of the odors of the incense of the sacrifices which were burnt morning, noon and night as a constant demonstration of the sinfulness and ungodliness of man (Kitron); nor could they remove the presence of the pastures (Nahalol) where the blood of the sacrifices were born and prepared for the shedding of the blood. These reminders are present in the weak and beggarly elements of the world which we live in and they constantly draw out our attention unto the earnest desire of Adam to present the works of his hands as proof of his righteousness. Yet the Spirit teaches His children, with wisdom and spiritual understanding, that we are all unclean things and all the works of righteousness which man can do or has ever done amount to nothing more than filthy, menstruous rags before the throne of God (Is. 64:6).
Asher could not alter the ‘straightness’ (Accho) of the path he was to walk. He was occupied with the need to hunt (Zidon) in the fertile places (Ahlab) and was deceived (Achzib) and held back (Aphik) by the fatness (Helbah) of the broad places (Rehob) of this world. Naphtali dwelt in the ‘house of affliction’ (Beth-shamesh) with the ‘house of the sun worshipers’ (Beth-anath) as it is the nature of man to look to the sun as the source of all life for his mind is filled with the things of this world (Ecc. 3:11). And the great swelling words of the Amorites forced the children of judgment (Dan) into the mountains for refuge (Judges 1:21-36).
Are these examples of the lack of faith in a child of grace? Is it time to bring forth the whips of selfish admonitions and shallow exhortations in order for the sons of the kingdom to don the whole armour of God and fight against these inveterate foes? God forbid! These all stand as a testimony of the fact that the children of the Israel of God dwell in booths as strangers in a foreign land. They testify that Joshua has won the victory and given His people rest in the inheritance of the Kingdom of God; therefore do the children of this habitation have hope. These enemies are of this world yet they desire the life which the eternal seed has. The children of grace cannot convert the natural man for he is of the earth and the Adamic nature cannot pollute or tarnish the beauty of the holiness of the Bride. Yet the warfare continues to which the child groans within himself waiting to be delivered from the body of this death and to be manifested as the sons of God (Rms. 8).
“So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your tribulations that you endure; a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God that you have been counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer: (II Th. 1:5).
Could any man turn a child of grace away from following his Father? Could another man’s voice lead the sheep from the shepherds pasture and cause them to go astray? Absolutely not! The nature of that which is born of God is spiritual and cannot be defiled. That which is born of the Father cannot deny the Father because His seed remains within and that which is eternal can never be altered in any manner. The sheep of His pasture hear His voice and follow Him. Another man’s voice they shall not hear and therefore they shall not follow nor go astray. The sons of God stand in jeopardy of nothing as there is therefore no condemnation to them which are in the Anointed Salvation of Yehovah because of the righteousness of the Elect Servant of God. This is the subduing of the land by Joshua and the peace under His rule.
There is however an appointed time of a habitation when they are made subject to the vanity of being partakers of flesh and blood. This habitation in an earthen vessel cannot approach the perfect beauty and holiness of the Beloved of the Lord. But it is appointed of the Father for good. God left these elements of the natural man in the lives of the children and made them subject to the sons of God. He assigned His children the earthen vessel in the appropriate time under the exact conditions for His purpose and made them subject to the worthlessness of this habitation; but He made the elder to serve the younger.
“And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure” (II Cor. 12:7).
Two nations have been separated from the womb of eternity and they have struggled together from the beginning. The first manifested was the natural (howbeit that the first is indeed spiritual and eternal). He is a great people and mighty but he is subservient to the needs appointed of the Master for the good of them that love Him, to the called, according to His purpose. The children of the Kingdom are no different today that the children of Israel before; the arm of the flesh cannot drive out the Canaanites but God has made them “so that they became tributaries” all the days of their existence.
The tabernacle of this world is a constant reminder of the vanity of this existence, the weakness of the flesh and the wretchedness of the body of this death. It is given as a witness of the hope of the glory which shall be revealed when the tabernacle of this dwelling is dissolved. The children of the Israel of God wrestle against spiritual wickedness in high places as the pride of Adam’s heart would exalt himself, as an eagle, unto the throne of God, where he would make his nest among the stars (Ob. 4).
Joshua has given His people the rest of the peace with God being justified by His faith; therefore His people give all diligence entering into that rest (Heb. 4:11)...
“For which cause we do not faint; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding, eternal weight of glory;” (II Cor. 4:16).
Your servant in Christ,
(Elder) Chet Dirkes
December 27, 2015