Joshua 5: Angelic Encounter
I had forgotten about the angelic encounter in Joshua chapter 5. Let me give you the verses right away, and then we can take a look at them.
Jos 5:13 And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries?
Jos 5:14 And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant?
Jos 5:15 And the captain of the LORD’S host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so.
Joshua apparently did not realize this was an angel right away. The reason I say that is because he did not respond with the terror that most people exhibited when they met angels.
As soon as they began speaking, the angel explained who he was, and Joshua all of a sudden bowed down and asked what God wanted him to do.
He knew that the angel came to him for a reason. Angels don’t generally appear spontaneously. God has a purpose for sending them to talk to people.
This particular angel only had one thing to say. If you look ahead to the next chapter, the angel had gone away. All that he had to tell Joshua was that the ground was holy.
It is kind of funny that the message was so simple, but I think that the angel was preparing Joshua for what would happen next. As we all know, we are getting very close to the battle of Jericho which wasn’t very much of a battle.
Perhaps God just wanted to remind him that this land was not only given by God but also blessed by God. All of the success that the people of Israel were about to have was also directly from God. It is not that Joshua was arrogant whatsoever, but maybe God just wanted to emphasize without a shadow of a doubt that He was there and was powerful.