Joshua Commissioned by The Lord

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God instructed Moses to meet Him at the tabernacle and to bring Joshua, his successor with him. Speaking from the glory cloud, the Lord told the two men that Israel would turn from the true and living God and worship idols, and that He would turn away from them and send the judgment named in the covenant (Deut. 28). At this time when the Children of Israel are ready to enter the Promised Land, you would think that God would not take them in if there was a chance of their falling. Yet He tells Moses this is exactly what will happen (vv. 14-16). God knows human nature. He knows our every thought and intent.

The Lord commands Moses and Joshua to write a song and teach it to the children of Israel (vv. 19-30). By singing it they would be warned against idolatry and would also acknowledge their obligation to obey the Lord. This song would warn the new generation and generations to come against the perils of idolatry and the tragic consequences of apostasy. It would also remind them of the goodness and mercy of the Lord. After Moses and Joshua wrote down the song (v. 19), they taught it to the leaders (v. 28) and to all the congregation (v. 30). Moses prefaced the song with the reminder that after his death, they would abandon the Lord and invite the chastening of the Lord.

Moses knew that the Israelites, in spite of all they had seen of God’s work, were rebellious at heart (vv. 27-29). They deserved God’s judgment, although they often received His mercy instead. We too are stubborn and rebellious by nature. Throughout our lives we struggle with sin. We must constantly turn from our sins to God and let Him in His mercy cover them with His blood.


The fact that God used music to communicate His message shows the importance of it. If it was important for Israel in their day it stands to reason that it is an effective tool in the church today.

Deuteronomy 31:14-30 (English Standard Version)

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