Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, “Are you for us or for our enemies?” “Neither,” he replied, “but as commander of the army of the Lord I have now come.” Then Joshua fell facedown to the ground in reverence, and asked him, “What message does my Lord have for his servant?”

– Joshua 5:13-14 (NIV)

Today’s commentary
by Dave Whitehead, Senior Pastor, GraceNYC.org

Even though Joshua was doing what God told him to do, the stranger does not swear allegiance to Joshua, but to God. This commander reminds Joshua that any of us could subtly use God’s purpose for our own agenda. Joshua was not expected to figure out how to take the Promised Land; he was expected to fall on his face and listen, for God wanted Joshua to follow His ways, not just His will.

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