In our study of Joshua chapter nine, we will look at how the devil deceived Israel and apply it to our walk as Christians.
"Now when all the kings west of the Jordan heard about these things - the kings in the hill country, in the western foothills, and along the entire coast of the Mediterranean Sea as far as Lebanon (the kings of the Hittites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites) - they came together to wage war against Joshua and Israel." NIV translation
As we saw in chapter 8, Israel was back on track with the Lord and God had given them another victory in the land of Canaan. The people living in the land heard about the victories over Jericho and Ai. They decided to band together to try to stop the Israelites.
As Christians, sometimes the same type of thing seems to happen. We can be walking victorious with the Lord and the next thing we know it is like the entire world is lined up against us.
"However, when the people of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and Ai, they resorted to a ruse: They went as a delegation whose donkeys were loaded with worn-out sacks and old wineskins, cracked and mended. They put worn and patched sandals on their feet and wore old clothes. All the bread of their food supply was dry and moldy. Then they went to Joshua in the camp at Gilgal and said to him and the Israelites, 'We have come from a distant country; make a treaty with us.'" NIV translation
The Gibeonites did not join the coalition against Israel but decided to try to trick them. This is also a picture of our Christian walk and the struggles that we face. Most of us recognize the enemy (the devil) at work in those who attack us but we often miss those that try to deceive us (Gibeonites).
"The Israelites said to the Hivites, 'But perhaps you live near us, so how can we make a treaty with you?' 'We are your servants,' they said to Joshua. But Joshua asked, 'Who are you and where do you come from?'" NIV translation
We see that Joshua and Israel was watching out and trying to obey God as He had told them not to make a treaty with the people of the land. When questioned, the Hivites (Gibeonites) lied and we are reminded that Satan is the father of lies.