Day 83: The gibeonite trickery

Joshua 8:1-29 God handed Ai over to the Israelites, and Joshua accomplished the victory by way of a decoy. His act of stretching out his javelin while the battle raged recalls the episode in which Moses stretched forth his arms so Israel might defeat the Amalekites (cf. Ex 17:11-13). In both cases, the raised arms and hands signified a prayer of petition for God’s assistance. 

Ch 8:30-35 Like Moses before him, Joshua celebrated the victory by building an altar and offering a sacrifice to God. He then wrote out a copy of the Mosaic Law and read it to all the people. The message was that Israel was the beneficiary of God’s promise by keeping his Law. (CCC 709-710)

Ch 9:17-21 As neighboring nations of the central and southern region formed a coalition to fight Israel, the Gibeonites, sensing the futility of such a battle, instead carried out a ruse to win protection from Joshua. Israel kept its promise to the Gibeonites even after their trickery was made known, living in peace with these neighbors and employing them as servants and woodworkers. Although they were not yet ready to embrace the religion and the Law of Israel, the Gibeonites acknowledged God’s presence and power amidst the Israelites. (CCC 201)

Psalm 126 The final stanza of this psalm encapsulates the mystery of the great fruitfulness of suffering. What is sown in pain and sorrow is reaped in peace and joy. As Christ taught in the Parable of the Seed, a thing must die and be buried in order to grow and produce an abundance of fruit. Struggling against hardships and acceptance of suffering eventually redounds in happiness here on earth AND IN THE NEXT LIFE. (Cf. Pope Benedict XVI, General Audience, August 17, 2005)

The Lord has done great things for us: This verse evokes the Magnificat, Mary’s canticle of praise and joy at the Visitation (cf. Lk 1:49). (CCC 2097, 2619)

Key Event 32: Covenant Renewal (Joshua 8:30-35)
After conquering Jericho and Ai, Joshua leads the people to Mount Ebal to renew the covenant, as Moses had prescribed (Duet 27:1-26).  This covenant renewal includes sacrifice as well as the engraving of a copy of the Law of Moses on stone (Josh 8:32; Ex 34:29).

Gibeon: Covenant by Craftiness 

(*Walking With God: A Journey Through The Bible by Tim Gray and Jeff Cavins)

Prayer by Fr. Mike: “Father in Heaven, we give you praise and glory. We thank you. We just give you thanks, Lord God, because you are good and your deeds are good. That is what we need to be reminded of again and again. Lord God, in the course of our daily lives we seek out your counsel and desire to do only those things that are in your will, only those things that you are calling us to do. And we also desire to live in the freedom of that obedience, live in that freedom of belonging to you and choosing to say “yes” to you with everything we have. Help us to do that with your grace, with your salvation, with your mercy, and with your power. We make this prayer in the mighty name of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.”