But if serving the Lordseems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”

Joshua 24:15
You’ve probably heard this verse before. It’s key to the book of Joshua. And on this final day of the prayer walk series, I’d like to gather you all together and ask you the same question. Who are you going to serve?
Like the Israelites, we have ancestors who have served false gods. In Egypt there were over 2,000 gods. After serving as slaves in that culture for 430 years, the Israelites’ understanding of the one true God would have been muddied. That’s why God introduced himself to them through Moses, and showed how superior He was by defeating the ten main gods of Egypt through specifically targeted plagues.

The gods worshiped where you and I grew up are probably a little harder to pinpoint. Regardless of your economic status, the gods worshiped or served in your household might have included money, education, power, sensual pleasure, drugs or alcohol, physical fitness, patriotism, revenge, relationships, or even family. Some of these things are good balanced with other aspects of life. But anything that claims our thoughts, time, and affections ahead of God is a false god.
Joshua also mentioned the gods of the Amorites, where they were living. The Israelites had finally made it to the Promised Land, but had yet to take it over.  The people who lived there had rejected God and chosen their own variety of deities. These were a snare to many Israelites, because instead of obedience and holiness, their worship encouraged sexual immorality and wild behavior.

This sounds like our world today. No matter where in the world you’re reading from, there are gods that appeal to the part of us that wants to “do it our way.” People all over the world worship nature, psychology, atheism, humanism, New Age, witchcraft, shamanism, animism, various prophets and teachers, and so many more. Even if you don’t consciously follow any of these religions, it’s easy to absorb false beliefs, because the ideas are everywhere and subtly packaged.
All of them are rooted in the same lie the serpent used to entice Adam and Eve to eat the forbidden fruit in the Garden. He promised, “‘You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. ‘For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil’” (Gen. 3:4-5). To seek fulfillment apart from God is a dead end road.

Joshua called the people to make a conscious choice; it’s what we must do as well. Who will you serve? How you answer that question will determine all the other choices you make in life:

  • Who you marry
  • Who you pick for leaders
  • Whether you fear man or God
  • Whether you’ll pursue wealth or wisdom
  • Who your best friends are
  • How to express your sexuality
  • Whether you’re friends with the world or with God
  • Whether you’re on a path to death or to life everlasting

I hope this last day of the series isn’t your last prayer walk. I encourage you to think about the gods you’ve encountered in your lifetime. Ask God to reveal any you’ve bowed before or sacrificed those you love to, for self-gratification or the pursuit of truth. Ask Him to show himself mighty on your behalf—as the only Provider, Healer, Truth, Life, Light, Comforter, Lord, Savior, Friend, and Almighty God. Turn away from all others who claim to be those things, but are powerless to meet the deepest need of your soul.
As for me and my household, we have chosen, and will continue daily to choose Jesus, the only Lord and Savior. The only God.
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Romans 12:21
*My book Taking Back October is a terrific resource for families looking for a great discussion guide and ideas for Halloween alternatives! Available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/Taking-Back-October-Believers-Pursuit/dp/1502516292/ref=sr_1_1_twi_pap_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1505868831&sr=8-1&keywords=taking+back+October
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