“For from the rising of the sun even to its setting, My name will be great among the nations!”
How “great” is God’s name in your life? The word glory in the Old Testament is related to the idea of weight or heaviness. God’s glory is something to be felt, admired, it should change the way we walk and move—it cannot be ignored. God’s uncontainable glory is the reason for his matchless name. We do not live in a world where God’s name is great; or at least, it is not receiving the recognition of greatness it deserves. Therefore, God spoke to the prophet Malachi and, speaking of a time still yet in the future, said, “My name will be great among the nations!”
When God whooped up on Egypt, a shockwave spread throughout the ancient world as Egypt was probably the most advanced, secure, and formidable of all empires in the whole world at the time. Every Pharaoh was considered a god-man, by whose power the world functioned with stability. In the Exodus, God trumped every Egyptian god and made a fool of Pharaoh. No other power on Earth could have done such a thing. The Israelite slaves didn’t just flee Egypt, they were heaped with countless treasures by the Egyptians while they were being begged to go. You know the story, Pharaoh soon changed his mind so he pursued the Israelites right before he went swimming for the last time.
CNN (the Camel News Network) spread this story over the whole ancient world. By the time we hop in to Joshua 10, we see kings coming together, uniting themselves to oppose Israel. They’ve heard the story of the Exodus, they’ve heard the story of Ai, and they’ve even heard the story of how the Gibeonites (wisely on their part) made peace with Israel. These tales weighed heavy on Adoni-zedek, king of Jerusalem, and “he feared greatly” (10:2).
Joshua believed mightily in God’s word. He may have been pondering Deuteronomy 7:17–18 as he rushed to Gibeon after receiving their warning, which reads, “If you should say in your heart, ‘These nations are greater than I; how can I dispossess them?’ you shall not be afraid of them; you shall well remember what the Lord your God did to Pharaoh and to all Egypt.”
These kings understood rightly that they did not have the strength to withstand Israel’s God. They reacted the way we are all tempted to react—by looking around to see what we have that can give us an advantage. In this case, they had friends.
God told Joshua as he marched through the night, “Do not fear them, for I have given them into your hands; not one of them shall stand before you” (8). Judgment had fallen on these wicked kings. Yet, although Joshua carried the sword, his strength was not in his own might. His strength was in the Lord. It was the Lord’s battle to fight and win.
What about you today? Are you fighting in your own strength or are you letting God fight for you. Take a moment today and meditate on Ephesians 6:10–17 looking at the armaments God gives for the battle. Write in the comments what God is teaching you as you seek to make his name more famous.
By: Tyler Short