Pastor Hill: Me and my house

“And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”

In chapter 24, Joshua calls the assembly together and issues a challenge for them to choose to serve God. He gives the reasons why they should choose God. God has been good to them and has provided for them from the time of Abraham until the conquering of Canaan, the Promised Land. He states that we are to serve God, “in sincerity and in truth.”

Speaking the Truth in Love by Pastor Tommy Hill

Speaking the Truth in Love
by Pastor Tommy Hill

He then places his family forward as an example to all, identifying his choice to serve God, whether some think it is evil and some do not. In Joshua’s challenge, we find two options. We must choose the God of creation or the gods of the world. What have you chosen for your family? What truth can we find in Joshua’s choice that will help us in our choices today? It is a decision of urgency for Joshua says we must choose today.

Joshua’s faith was public. He displayed his trust in God before all Israel. He kept no secrets when it came to choosing Christ. There are many who proclaim that their faith is private and refuse to discuss whether they choose Christ or not. This is not a biblically true position. For faith in Christ to be real, it can never be private. Jesus commanded all Christians to, “go ye into all the world and preach the gospel.”

There were many times He instructed those who trusted in Him to go and tell others. The epistle to James teaches us that our faith without works is dead. We can therefore conclude that our faith is a visible part of our lives. What we do, where we go, and Who we trust. Our faith is to be a public witness of our trust in Jesus Christ. “Matthew 10:32-33, Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.”Jesus’ love for us moved Him to suffered OPEN shame and pain for our salvation. He did not keep His love secret; it was public for the world to see for all time.

Joshua’s faith was personal. He did not choose God because others had chosen God. He made the choice because he was convinced there was no better choice for him and his family. When he made his choice there was no uncertainty in Joshua’s decision. He left no misunderstanding about where he stood when it came to his decision to trust in God. Our faith must be personal. Our life should indicate our choice to serve God.

Jesus said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” One of His commandments was to worship Him together with others in a local assembly. It is, oftentimes, in the church where we worship together, that we draw closer to Christ through Bible teaching, Bible preaching, and biblical worship. Make your faith personal today.

Joshua’s faith was parental. He said in verse 15, “but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” As a parent, he did not leave this most important decision up to his family. His children did not have the choice, while living at home, to decide if they wanted to participate. God has given fathers the responsibility to be spiritual leaders in the home and to make sure their children receive spiritual and biblical training.

I have often wondered how a parent could require a child to attend school to receive an education that greatly assists them in this life but not take them to church to learn about Jesus Who is the only way to eternal life and a heavenly home. Both are important, but only one lasts for eternity.

Joshua’s faith was persuasive. He determined to take a stand for God and the nation of Israel was so convinced that they also chose to follow Joshua’s example. As a father, one desire I have is that my family will see my determination to serve and God and will choose to place their trust in Him. While they are in my home, I will ensure they learn of Jesus so they will choose Him for themselves. I desire for my faith to be persuasive enough that they will make godly spiritual choices and serve God faithfully all the days of their lives, after I am gone.

I pray that I never present a manner of life to them that will encourage them to turn away from God and not be faithful in attending God’s house where they may continue to learn about God for the rest of their earthly lives. May I ask you, “Is there a more important choice we could make for our families?” What will be your choice today? Who will you choose? Me and my house, we choose God.

Pastor Tommy Hill is the pastor of First Free Will Baptist Church in Hamlet. He is a Richmond County native. He can be reached at firstfwbchurchhamlet@gmail.com. His column will appear each Friday in The Pee Dee Post.

Filed in: Opinion, Religion

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