“The five Lords of the Philistines and all the Canaanites and the Sidonians and the Chivites who dwell in Mount Lebanon — from Mount Ba’al-Chermon as far as Lebo-Chamath. They were for the training of Israel to know whether they would obey the commands of Yahweh which he commanded their fathers by the hand of Moses.”
To us, this repetition might seem redundant. To others, they may justify the repetition due to the ancient world being predominantly an oral culture. Yet, let us also not lose sight of the fact that these words are also recorded for us…we who need the reminder that God expects and even demands obedience from us. He expects that we be obedient to His commands that have been handed down through the generations.
The reality is that our corporate memories are as short as these ancient Israelites. It is kind of sad, isn’t it? As a result, the Israelites are surrounded by pagans and live with pagans in their midst. As a result, the church in America today is also surrounded by pagans and we have pagans again in our midst. How little times change because how little the sinful heart of man changes. Thus, we need the same reminders.