Joshua 15:63  Complacency is a man’s greatest enemy

Joshua 15:63

Now as for the Jebusites, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the sons of Judah could not drive them out; so the Jebusites live with the sons of Judah at Jerusalem until this day.


Judah inherited more than 100 cities with the exception of Jerusalem whose inhabitants they failed to drive out. In the description of Judah’s inheritance, what commenced with Caleb’s claim over Hebron made in faith towards God, concluded with Judah’s failure. In today’s devotion, we learn that complacency is a man’s greatest enemy. God’s blessings and provision is meant to stir His people towards greater love for Him. It must not in any case lead us into complacency and divine discipline.


Israel had been warned never to make peace with the inhabitants of Canaan. The failure to do so would incur wide ranging consequences as was amply played out by the events recorded in the book of Judges. And yet the same failure was repeated by the tribe of Benjamin in Judges 1:21:

But the sons of Benjamin did not drive out the Jebusites who lived in Jerusalem; so the Jebusites have lived with the sons of Benjamin in Jerusalem to this day.

By this we know that for whatever reason, the Jebusites were hardy and difficult to uproot.


Complacency is a man’s greatest enemy

Many churchgoers at the prospect of blessings and having their immediate needs met “rushed” to receive Jesus as their Savior. They followed God’s instructions religiously in hopes of solving their problems. But as soon as they emerge from danger, they enter into a phase of complacency where God is no longer their passion, or their first love. Complacency robs man of the glory and the abundant life that God has ordained for him. Many of them stop reading the Bible daily, being preoccupied with the cares of life and the pleasures of the world. God’s blessings and provision did not spur them on to greater passion for His kingdom; on the contrary the very blessings themselves become their security and idol.

Throughout Joshua’s military campaign, from the central to the south and to the north, Israel had never lost a battle. They successfully captured every city that stood in their path. However, the victorious streak ended the moment the land distribution began. As to completely wipe out the inhabitants of Canaan was no longer a matter of survival, complacency sets in. In fact, it has now become a matter of necessity to sanctify the land as commanded by God. As the threat of Israel’s annihilation was a thing of the past, it no longer carried the same urgency as before. As we know it, Israel’s underestimation of the Canaanite remnant resulted in the dark ages of the judges. The remnant that Israel considered as insignificant grew and turned on them with a vengeance. It is here that we catch a glimpse of Caleb’s urgency to stake his claim on the yet possessed land of Hebron. Caleb saw the danger of Israel falling into complacency and he intended to inspire Israel to fight on until all of Canaan was conquered.

When God’s people stop sanctifying themselves in the truth, and when they become laggard in the work of the gospel, complacency has already set in. God’s answer to complacency is divine discipline which comes in various forms to jolt His people out of their state of stupor. In doing so, God hope to awake His people to what awaits them: a heavenly lifestyle, a higher form of existence and glory. God’s blessings and provision is meant to stir His people towards greater love for Him. It must not in any case lead them into complacency.


When was the last time God saved you from imminent danger? Now that you are enjoying God’s blessings and abundance, did His favor spur you towards greater fervour for His kingdom’s work? There will be no end to the pursuit of financial security because our true security is found only in God. It is important to be in fellowship with like-minded Christians and to serve God together. Perhaps, it is time to consider participating in the church’s discipleship programme and be part of a cell group.

Dear Lord, I thank you for saving me from dangers and place me on solid ground. Forgive me for slipping into a state of complacency and lukewarmness. Rekindle in me a fire to acquire higher levels of revelation and sanctification. Strengthen me against the enemies of the flesh and cause me to overcome them. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

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