Catching up with posts today!
13 “Go, consecrate the people. Tell them, ‘Consecrate yourselves in preparation for tomorrow; for this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: There are devoted things among you, Israel. You cannot stand against your enemies until you remove them. (Joshua 7:13 NIV)
In the midst of God’s miraculously-provided victory, some of the men took some of the valuables meant for the Lord’s treasury. All else was to be destroyed.
Again they are told to consecrate themselves – to make themselves holy. God will reveal what has been hidden from Joshua and others as well. God knows that no one else knows or sees.
When God reveals there is always preparation – yesterday’s reflection was about “miracle-wonders.” Today’s is a revelation of wrong-doing and of sin in the midst of the people. God needs a space made for his movement. To sanctify is to make room for God to move and speak and do.
Do I really think that I can hide my sin from God – or from others for that matter? Maybe the latter but not the former. But even others will see the effects of that sin if they do not know or recognize the sin itself. They will see its symptoms if they do not see the disease.
And sin here is what Wesley termed “sin properly so called:” conscious choosing to do wrong in the light of knowing better. To know God’s will and not do it – to know the divine law and disobey – is a different thing than acting ignorantly.
And this repeated emphasis on preparation is a good reminder of why extended seasons of preparation like Lent are also reminders that we ought always to make ready for whatever God is doing or saying.
God of Revelation – as surely as you reveal yourself in wonder and miracle, sometimes you reveal our sin and wrong. Prepare us to hear who we really are and who we could be and can be in Christ instead. Show us how to prepare to hear you when you speak words of judgment as much as when you do wonders. Both come from your boundless love and your infinite holiness. Amen.