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Good Morning.

I will not drive them out from before you in one year, lest the land become desolate and the beasts of the field become too numerous for you. Little by little I will drive them out from before you, until you have increased, and you inherit the land. (Exodus 23:29-30)

Though the conquest of Canaan was assured, it would nevertheless be gradual; if fact, it was not completed until the days of David. The issue was that there were too few people to fill the land which means, void of the other people, vacant areas would be overrun with wild beasts. In effect, Israel would be exchanging one adversary for another. And so, even though the idols of the land and those who worshiped them were not permitted to remain in the land, in His infinite wisdom, God saw fit to let some of them remain in order to hold back the wild beasts that would have proven to be a constant threat to His people.

It occurs to me that, in every believer’s life, this same pattern can be seen. When we are born again, though we are a new creation and old habits and ways of thinking are dropped, none of us are immediately made perfect — no, we begin the process of being perfected. Some of the old inclinations remind us from time to time that, though we are being conformed to the image of the Son, we still inhabit a corruptible body. If we are following after our Master, these imperfections within can be the provocation to grow even closer to Him.

Years ago we used to sing a song that said, “Jesus on the inside; working on the outside, O what a change in my life.” The point is, just as it was at the outset of the conquest of Canaan, all of our internal enemies don’t disappear at once. Some are still present years after we made a decision to follow Messiah. That should not be considered as a resignation to live with these “enemies,” however. As the return of the Messiah draws ever closer, we must commit ourselves to overcoming every inclination that would prevent us from becoming one with Him. The time is at hand when we must lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily causes us to falter. Therefore, keep your eyes on the Author and Finisher of our faith because, through Him, we can overcome this world.

Blessings and Shalom,  




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