April 7, 2023
“At that time, the Lord said to Joshua, ‘Make flint knives and circumcise the Israelite men again.’ So Joshua made flint knives and circumcised the Israelite men at Gibeath-haaraloth.”
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“At that time, the Lord said to Joshua, ‘Make flint knives and circumcise the Israelite men again.’ So Joshua made flint knives and circumcised the Israelite men at Gibeath-haaraloth. This is the reason Joshua circumcised them: All the people who came out of Egypt who were males – all the men of war – had died in the wilderness along the way after they had come out of Egypt. Though all the people who came out were circumcised, none of the people born in the wilderness along the way were circumcised after they came out of Egypt.” Joshua 5:2-5 (HCSB)
Sometimes our sin cannot be fully realized in our lifetime. This is especially true with so-called “secret sin,” or sins of the heart. Of course, God knows everything, so there is no “secret sin.” But sinful thoughts and attitudes, which are not displayed in overtly demonstrative ways, are still transmitted and “caught” by those close to you: this is whether you know it or not. People close to you know you better than you may think.
Not all people who do good deeds have a good heart. But all people whose hearts are right will do good deeds. If you follow a righteous person home and spy on their intimate surroundings, you’ll find that righteousness begins with simple habits of personal worship: They read their Bibles and pray; they begin the day grounded. Then, they teach God’s Word to their children, share it with their spouse, friends, and co-workers, etc.
Israel had developed a “heart problem.” After they had personally set themselves apart through circumcision, they had neglected to circumcise the next generation. So much so that EVERY boy born in the desert could be distinguished by his un-circumcision!
God commanded Joshua to perform a simple (albeit extremely painful) procedure that every parent had denied their baby boys on the eighth day after their child’s birth. Interestingly, doctors say circumcision hurts infants much less than adults. Infants heal faster and are less mobile, thus irritating their circumcised “area” less.
There are certain things the Lord requires of us; no questions or negotiations allowed. Delaying obedience only delays the inevitable. The “Exodus generation” Israelites’ lack of personal zeal affected at least two generations: Theirs and their childrens. 1) They were personally not allowed to enter the Promised Land, and 2) They caused undue trauma to their children.
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©Steve Wiggins 2021