Daily Devotional for October 25, 2020
These are the nations Yahweh left to test all those Israelites who had not experienced any of the wars in Canaan (he did this only to teach warfare to the descendants of the Israelites who had not had previous battle experience): the five rulers of the Philistines, all the Canaanites, the Sidonians, and the Hivites living in the Lebanon mountains from Mount Baal Hermon to Lebo Hamath. They were left to test the Israelites to see whether they would obey Yahweh’s commands, which he had given their forefathers through Moses.
The Israelites lived among the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. They took their daughters in marriage and gave their own daughters to their sons, and served their elohim. Jud 3:1-6
Worshiping and serving Yahweh would be much easier and simpler if we lived in a society where everyone accepted and worshiped Him. In such a utopian existence, every one would observe the weekly Sabbath and keep all of the annual Feast Day convocations. No unclean foods would be served. No one would pursue the wife or husband of another and there would be no inappropriate sexual relations. Filthy and lewd content would be absent from everyday language. Murder and theft would not exist and each person would have a love and concern for his or her neighbor.
But we do not live in such a splendid civilization and neither did the Israelites when they entered the land. Yahweh allowed them to exist in a land where their dedication to Him could be tested. They failed. Yahweh allows us to exist in a world where our dedication can be tested by unconverted persons all around us. Are we fairing any better?
Instead of complaining about having to deal with events on the Sabbath that we would like to participate in but can’t because they are on the Sabbath, or the difficulty we have in securing employment where working on the Sabbath and the Feast days are not a problem, or finding restaurants where we can eat kosher food, we should be saddened that the world rejects Yahweh’s Law and will for man. We must take the approach that we live in the world and among people who do not worship or reverence Yahweh, while never accepting their ways.
Yahweh has placed us here in this time and place in order for us to develop the sense of resolve and determination necessary to maintain our faithfulness to Him regardless of the obstacles placed in front of us.
This is a test—a test we can pass; a test we must pass. Work and live with the people of the world. Witness to them. Encourage them. Help them whenever you see a need. But never give in to becoming like them in worship or daily practice.