Seldom do we have the opportunity to hear or see what is truly important to people. In rare circumstances--when someone chooses not to run for re-election, when a supervisor has a few weeks before retirement--the person lets down their guard and shares with us who they really are. In the twenty-fourth chapter of Joshua we clearly are seeing a man who is running his last lap around the track; the end is near, and he knows his death is close at hand. So what does the dying Joshua want to convey to his people and to us?
Joshua reminds the Israelites what God has done for them, beginning with Abraham, the leadership of Moses, and their miraculous journey out of Egypt. Joshua addresses the people: “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel… I gave you a land that you had not tilled and cities you had not built to dwell in; you have eaten of vineyards and olive groves which you did not plant.”
Joshua reminds the Israelites and us to remember the works of the Lord. And the works of the Lord include graciousness and mercy. Do not forget the works of His hands. For His mercy endures forever.