Joshua 9

Spend time in prayer and silence with God asking him to meet you and speak to you.

Bible Reading

But when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and to Ai, they on their part acted with cunning and went and made ready provisions and took worn-out sacks for their donkeys, and wineskins, worn-out and torn and mended, with worn-out, patched sandals on their feet, and worn-out clothes. And all their provisions were dry and crumbly.

And they went to Joshua in the camp at Gilgal and said to him and to the men of Israel, “We have come from a distant country, so now make a covenant with us.”

But the men of Israel said to the Hivites, “Perhaps you live among us; then how can we make a covenant with you?”

They said to Joshua, “We are your servants.”

And Joshua said to them, “Who are you? And where do you come from?”

They said to him, From a very distant country your servants have come, because of the name of the Lord your God. For we have heard a report of him, and all that he did in Egypt, and all that he did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon the king of Heshbon, and to Og king of Bashan, who lived in Ashtaroth. So our elders and all the inhabitants of our country said to us, ‘Take provisions in your hand for the journey and go to meet them and say to them, “We are your servants. Come now, make a covenant with us.”‘ Here is our bread. It was still warm when we took it from our houses as our food for the journey on the day we set out to come to you, but now, behold, it is dry and crumbly. These wineskins were new when we filled them, and behold, they have burst. And these garments and sandals of ours are worn out from the very long journey.”

So the men took some of their provisions, but did not ask counsel from the Lord. And Joshua made peace with them and made a covenant with them, to let them live, and the leaders of the congregation swore to them.

– Joshua 9:3-15


The Gibeonites had seen the power of the God of Israel firsthand as Israel destroyed nation after nation in their conquest of the land of Canaan.

They realized that defending themselves against an attack by Israel, or even attempting an offensive attack, was going to end in their destruction so they devised another plan to protect themselves.

The Gibeonites used cunning and deceit to trick Israel into believing that they were travelers from a far nation in order to obtain a covenant of protection with the Israelites.

The leaders of Israel had become overconfident in their own abilities and trusted their own intuition so they did not seek counsel from the Lord.

Because of this, the Gibeonites were not destroyed and became a constant reminder to Israel of their disobedience.

The Big Question

In your current walk with God, how often do you take the time to seek his counsel and direction?

Conclude in prayer and silence, reflecting on what you’ve learned.