“Now therefore fear the Lord and serve him in sincerity and in faithfulness. Put away the gods that your fathers served beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord. And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:14, 15 ESV)
Just before this famous passage God outlines all that he has done for them, from calling Abraham and the promise of land, blessing, and relationship to the fulfillment of that promise in the distribution of the land of Canaan. In light of that great work, Joshua calls the people to serve him. Grace always precedes obedience. It reminds me of another famous passage in Romans 12:1-2,
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God–this is your spiritual act of worship. (Romans 12:1 NIV84)
Paul calls the church to do the same thing: to serve the Lord in light of his great mercy which he has just spent 11 chapters explaining. The past works of God are our heritage too. These things were done for us, as well as all that went into calling us to know Jesus. We cannot underestimate what God has done or make light of it, for it is the fuel of our commitment to Him.
How much has God done for you? Do you know? How committed to Him are you?
Chronological Reading Plan plus Psalms: Josh 1:22-24, Ps 88