12. EVEN WHEN EVERYONE IS AGAINST YOU, BEING ON GOD'S SIDE IS SUFFICIENT.
Joshua 11:4-6 - "So they went out, they and all their armies with them, as many people as the sand that is on the seashore in multitude, with very many horses and chariots. And when all these kings had met together, they came and camped together at the waters of Merom to fight against Israel. But the LORD said to Joshua, 'Do not be afraid because of them, for tomorrow about this time I will deliver all of them slain before Israel. You shall hamstring their horses and burn their chariots with fire.'"
There is an ever-present temptation to trust in numbers, whether the issue is a military one or an ethical one. Numbers ultimately don't matter; they don't change what is wrong into right. What matters is whether or not one is on the Lord's side. Noah knew this (cf. I Pet. 3:20) and so did Joshua & Caleb (cf. Num. 14:29,30). Friends, follow the Lord's way no matter who is against you. In the end you will be thankful you did.
13. DOING IT YOUR OWN WAY INSTEAD OF GOD'S WAY IS ALWAYS A MISTAKE.
Joshua 17:13 - "And it happened, when the children of Israel grew strong, that they put the Canaanites to forced labor, but did not utterly drive them out."
This is a serious mistake, and it would cost them dearly later. God wanted the Canaanites annihilated from the land. Israel had lost sight of God's purpose. There is a difference between destroying God's enemies and making them your slaves! God wanted His people to remain pure; He wanted the corrupt influences of idolatry removed. By allowing a remnant of the enemy to survive, Israel invited disaster for their future (cf. Deut. 7). Today we must not follow our own wisdom but that which is from above (cf. Prov. 3:5-7). God knows best, and He has provided the direction we need in His Scriptures.
14. GOD KEEPS HIS PROMISES.
Joshua 21:43-45 - "So the LORD gave to Israel all the land of which He had sworn to give to their fathers, and they took possession of it and dwelt in it. The LORD gave them rest all around, according to all that He had sworn to their fathers. And not a man of all their enemies stood against them; the LORD delivered all their enemies into their hand. Not a word failed of any good thing which the LORD had spoken to the house of Israel. All came to pass."
It may take a while from man's perspective, but God's timing is perfect. He always keeps His word. God gave them "all the land" He had promised. The land promise to Abram has been fulfilled (cf. Neh. 9:7,8). Sadly, the rest the Israelites enjoyed was short-lived for they wandered from God's ways.
15. FALSE WORSHIP HAS ALWAYS BEEN VIEWED BY THE GODLY AS A SERIOUS OFFENSE.
Joshua 22:11,12 - "Now the children of Israel heard someone say, 'Behold, the children of Reuben, the children of Gad, and the half tribe of Manasseh have built an altar on the frontier of the land of Canaan, in the region of the Jordan--on the children of Israel's side.' And when the children of Israel heard of it, the whole congregation of the children of Israel gathered together at Shiloh to go to war against them."
The 9 1/2 tribes were willing to go to war over what they believed was false worship by the 2 1/2 tribes east of the Jordan River. It didn't matter that they were brethren. The main tribes were very zealous for pure worship. They quickly learn, however, that they were mistaken. The tribes on the east side of the Jordan had merely set up a memorial, not an altar for worship or sacrifice. Do we respect God to this degree? Do we view "self-imposed religion" as a serious offense before the Lord (Col. 2:23; cf. John 4:24)?