Dream word – POSITION
“Then Joshua called for them, and he spoke to them, saying, ‘Why have you deceived us, saying, “We are very far from you,” when you dwell near us? Now therefore, you are cursed, and none of you shall be freed from being slaves — woodcutters and water carriers for the house of my God.’ So they answered Joshua and said, ‘Because your servants were clearly told that the Lord your God commanded His servant Moses to give you all the land, and to destroy all the inhabitants of the land from before you; therefore we were very much afraid for our lives because of you, and have done this thing. And now, here we are, in your hands; do with us as it seems good and right to do to us.’ So he did to them, and delivered them out of the hand of the children of Israel, so that they did not kill them. And that day Joshua made them woodcutters and water carriers for the congregation and for the altar of the Lord, in the place which He would choose, even to this day.” NKJV.
Below bastards – the position of the pariah people
So, Israel in not seeking the counsel of God, have been duped into an unwanted protectorate alliance with the Gibeonites. The Gibeonites were alive, but they and their descendents were cursed with a perpetual and menial servitude. They were a protected class but nevertheless, to all of Israel they were a pariah class. Indeed, they were the untouchables within Israel, eventually living in the suburbs of the temple and in the Levitical cities. It was the Gibeonites who were also culled and killed by Doeg the Edomite under the direction of mad King Saul and so consequently, it was later King David, who, wanting to avert the disaster of the judgement of God upon Israel for carrying out these particular murders, also handed the seven remaining sons of Saul over to the Gibeonites for summary disposal. Obviously, the outcome of this Saulish massacre was a diminishing in the Pariah class and so it was King David who later supplemented their ranks with captured enemy soldiers. These new combined capture of the old Gibeonites and newer enemy soldiers became known as the “The Nethinim” or “The Given Ones”, their tasks and duties being totally at the behest and discretion of the Levites.
The later whoring of Israel in chasing after foreign Gods led to among other things, the worship of Astarte, a demon of lust embodied in female form and linked with the so-called sacred prostitution of fertility worship. This Astarte worship actually took place in the temple and in all probability, the Nethinim females were active participants in all its sexual practices, so much so, that their subsequent descendents could not trace their fatherhood at all. Probably because of this, the Talmud lists these “social outcasts in sacred service”, as well below bastards and foundlings! Nethinim then, could never marry Israelites. They were perpetually cursed and excluded. Nevertheless, their eventual disappearance after the post-exilic return to the land seems to indicate that they were eventually absorbed into general Israelite society. The sect and the sin went underground you see, lying like a viral infection waiting for its ignition point. May I present you with but a small handful of thoughts gleaned from the history of this circumcised caste tonight.
First. That sin absorbed, will eventually reveal itself in time.
Second. That God allowed the social outcast into a sacred service for Him.
Third. That like it or not, and I don’t like it, the Lord allowed the perpetuation of a pariah class as a continual reminder as to what the people of God had been saved from.
Fourth. That these pariah people were “given ones” and were made both vital and integral to the function of the temple.
Fifth and finally, for those with true spiritual sight, even this degrading position of continual menial servitude was nevertheless far, far more desirable then dwelling in the damned tents of the wicked.
Think about that tonight, ponder this blessed curse of the pariah people. Now, remember your exalted position in Jesus and your privilege of being Royal sons, a Holy priesthood who are honoured to be able to offer spiritual sacrifices to God most high. You are not below bastards, you are above the angels, you are the adopted sons of God.
Listen: “I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness.” Psalms 84:10,..
Pray: Lord help me to appreciate the blessedness of my position in Jesus Christ my Lord, for in Him, having been raised from the position of a pariah, having been moved from being listed below even a foundling and a bastard, I am now found at the top of the list, yes, I am now even adopted by You and possess the full rights and inheritance of a Son of God. Thank you for this O my Great Father, in Jesus magnificent name, amen.
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