Today in Sunday school, we discussed Joshua chapter 17. At first glance this is one of thos boring Old Testament chapters listing people long dead and obscure, unpronounceable place-names. One is tempted to dismiss or skip over this chapter and the others like it. But the Bible is the inspired word of God. Paul teaches that all scripture is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training (2 Tim 3:17), so that means that these obscure passages must have a purpose, something to teach us, right?
Joshua 17 is describing the land allotments for the tribes of Manasseh and Ephraim, in the promised land. It is very detailed, listing towns and describing landmarks and boundary lines. So, what relevance could this possibly have on our lives today?
Acts 17: 24-26 says:
The God who made the world and everything in it is the the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else. From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live.
2 Peter 2:9 says
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
As you seeing the theme here? God not only is aware of your specific situation, he has a purpose for you and he has ordained that you should be exactly where you are, at this exact time, for the purpose of praising and glorifying him. I, for one, find this very encouraging.