This is part of scripture that I was encouraged to memorize when I was a kid. The cause of this life requires both courage and faithfulness. In the case of Joshua, this would lead to great blessings. If he acted on the word of God, and kept close to it.
1After the death of Moses the servant of the LORD, the LORD spoke to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ assistant, saying, 2“My servant Moses is dead. Now proceed to cross the Jordan, you and all this people, into the land that I am giving to them, to the Israelites. 3Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given to you, as I promised to Moses. 4From the wilderness and the Lebanon as far as the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, to the Great Sea in the west shall be your territory. 5No one shall be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will not fail you or forsake you. 6Be strong and courageous; for you shall put this people in possession of the land that I swore to their ancestors to give them. 7Only be strong and very courageous, being careful to act in accordance with all the law that my servant Moses commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, so that you may be successful wherever you go. 8This book of the law shall not depart out of your mouth; you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to act in accordance with all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall be successful. 9I hereby command you: Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”
Joshua was a general, with a mission and a promise. He acted on this, expelling the Canaanites and ceasing the wickedness of the Amorites. (That they were wicked is beyond dispute. Child sacrifice and institutionalized cultic prostitution. You cannot break the natural law or the law of God for ever and not get payback).
Now the battle of this time is not as much against a nation. It has not really been against a nation since the Cold War — for both of the hegemonic powers of that era (my childhood) encouraged dissent, rebellion, proxy wars. Total war is now limited by our fear of it moving nuclear. The battle, in the West, is not against destructive ideas. Consider for a second this analysis..
Christian wives employing denial of sex have another problem, however. The Bible is very clear that this creates an opening for Satan. Yet if the husband isn’t kept sexually unsatisfied she will lose much of her power over him. This means not just denying him the sex which is his due as her husband, but ensuring that he doesn’t have any other outlets of release. And what of her own culpability for creating sexual temptation in her husband contrary to specific scriptural injunction? The answer here is to invert the meaning of the command to not deny sex at risk of creating temptation for sexual sin. In this new twisted version of the scripture, wives are commanded not to deny their husbands sex unless their husband is tempted by sexual sin
What we have here is the perversion of teaching to accommodate feminism and the current wish that one gender has to be empowered, to take control. And then their frustration when they are in control — which is all too often blamed on the man.
Now, the man is still responsible for his sin. The reason we are told to give in to the others wish for sex in marriage is to keep us from straying. Paul was writing to Corinth, and Corinth was the ancient equivalent of Las Vegas with institutionalized sex tourism added as a spice.
Within marriage, we need to take courage and stay within the biblical teaching, which is now overtly counter-cultural. Outside marriage, we need to be faithful in a celibate calling, which is seen as unmanly, unhealthy, — and economically traitorous, because you are not supporting bars, clubs, casinos and worse.
Outside of our homes, we need to see and speak the truth, not be corrupt,,, in a society that is corrupt. This requires both a canny ability to read and study the times and being continually grounded in the Word and in God. Our courage flows from our convictions. and our foundations.They need to be in Christ.
Because to act in this world according to scripture and the clear moral teachings contained within is to be called homophobic, sexist,… to be told to shut up. But that is our duty. The time is evil. It takes courage to stand. So today, let us pray for the courage we need.