It was a sermon I heard when I was a third year student at university during 2003. This has stuck with me ever since and I often refer to it to others, but also internalise it. Something learned, I have to share.
In the book of Joshua 11 God tells this Israelites that He will lead them in a battle. He will help them destroy the armies of all the kings that inhabit the land. Joshua and his army have to plunder the cities, hamstrung their horses and burn their chariots. He had to kill everyone, including the kings.
And so Joshua did. Every battle was won since Joshua obeyed everything the Lord told him. Verse 23: So Joshua took the entire land, just as the Lord had directed Moses, and he gave it as an inheritance to Israel according to their tribal divisions. Then the land had rest from war. This was, apart from verse 22: No Anakites were left in Israelite territory; only in Gaza, Gath and Ashdod did any survive.
Was this part of the plan?
If you read the entire book you will learn that the people who lived in the hill country of Gath were giants. Where else in the Bible do we learn about giants? Yes, you guessed correctly: Golliath, the giant who joined the Philistines in battle against the Israelites many years later: 1 Samuel 17. In verse 4 you will learn that he was a decedent from Gath...
Is this not irony at its best??? Years later another giant appears, again against the Israelites, again at war. BUT, that is the whole point! Had Joshua and his army killed the giants during their time, their kids would not have to battle against them again.
What can we learn from this thousands of years later? Simply this: deal with your issues, your sins. Make an end to them before you pass them on to the next generation. Let us not allow our kids to face the same problems we face today.
Slay those giants, before they steal from you!