“…And I said, ‘I will never break My covenant with you. And ye shall make no leagues with the inhabitants of this land; ye shall throw down their altars: but ye have not obeyed My voice: why have ye done this? Wherefore I also said, ‘I will not drive them out from before you; but they shall be as thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare unto you…” (Judg. 2:1-3).
Reaching the Promised Land is an enormous feat, but it is not the end of the journey. It is actually only half the battle. Once we arrive at the land of promise, we will begin to notice that there are already inhabitants in the land. What must we do at this point? We must remember our marching orders given to us by our Commander in Chief, Jesus Christ.
Our marching orders included entering the land, and taking dominion over it and everything within it. This can only happen by dispossessing those who are currently residing there. It may be perceived as wrong to oust the current occupants from their place of residence; however, just because someone has taken up residence in a place, it does not mean that they are rightful owners of the place.
Our marching orders also included removing not just the inhabitants, but to remove their practices and lifestyles. If we were to continue to allow their practices and lifestyles to remain, those same practices and lifestyles could become a distraction away from the mission at hand. The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life can ensnare us easily because we are unaware of its subtlety (1 Jn. 2:16). We are often living right in the midst of it, and because we have become desensitized to it due to the evolution of its presented form, we become entangled and, subsequently, overcome by it.
Our obedience to the Commander’s marching orders is of paramount importance. It is the key to our success, not merely our survival. We were called to live in victory and have “good success”, not just engage in basic survival tactics (Josh. 1:8). The “Light” of our warfare should overtake the forces of darkness in every area of the world that we occupy. But this can only happen if we operate in obedience.
All things considered, God is not obligated to reward us with neither victory nor “good success” if we disobey His commands. He knows what it will take for us to secure the victory in life, and has provided us with the resources we need to accomplish it. As we continue to walk in obedience, we will observe how our Great Champion forces back the darkness of this world as He utterly defeats every enemy and obstacle we face.
Sean Mungin, author of “The Thorn In The Flesh”