Therefore I also said, “I will not drive them out before you; but they shall be thorns in your side, and their gods shall be a snare to you.”
God gave the Israelites specific instructions: Drive the Canaanites out of every corner of the land,and obliterate any vestige of their abominable idol worship. Thisassignment was challenging! Their enemies had formidable chariots. TheCanaanites had seemingly impregnable fortresses that were dangerous and difficult to overcome. The Israelites failed to drive all theCanaanites from the land. Much about the Canaanite lifestyle andreligion appealed to the Israelites’ sinful nature. Rather than destroying them and their idolatry, Israel compromised.
The Canaaniteswould prove to be a troublesome distraction to the Israelites. Theiridol worship would present a constant temptation. When you became aChristian, God declared war on sin’s strongholds in your life. Sinfulbehaviors and attitudes were firmly entrenched in your character, butGod commanded you to tear them down. The Holy Spirit pointed out areasof your life that were resistant to God’s will. Were you tempted tomerely establish a truce rather than obliterating every sin? Is angerone of sin’s strongholds? If so, it will rise up against you inmoments of weakness. Is there a stronghold of lust in your life? Ifso, you will succumb to it when caught off guard. In careless moments,these strongholds will still tempt you to continue your past sinfulbehaviors. Do not underestimate the destructive power of sin. If thereare strongholds in your life that you have never defeated, the HolySpirit is still prepared to bring you complete victory.