If you forsake the LORD, and serve strange gods, then he will turn and do you hurt, and consume you, after that he has done you good.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Joshua 24:20. He will turn and do you hurt — That is, he will alter his course, and the manner of his dealing with you, and will be as severe as ever he was kind and gracious. He will repent of his former kindnesses, and his goodness abused will be turned into fury.Deuteronomy 30:15 ff). He will turn, i.e. he will alter his course and the manner of his dealing with you, and will be as severe as ever he was kind and gracious.
Consume you, after that he hath done you good; he will repent of all his former kindness, and his goodness abused will be turned into fury.
then he will turn and do you hurt; not that there is properly any change in God, either of his counsel or covenant, or of love and affection to his people, but of his providential dealings, or outward manner of acting towards men; or the sense is, he will again do you hurt, bring evils and calamities upon you again and again, frequently as you revolt from him, such as the sword, pestilence, famine, and captivity, which these people after experienced when they fell into idolatry:
and consume you; by these his sore judgments:
after that he hath done you good; by bringing you into such a good land, and bestowing so many good things upon you, natural, civil, and religious; and yet, notwithstanding, being disobedient to him, and especially in the instances mentioned, they are made to expect his resentment, and the effects of it.If ye forsake the LORD, and serve strange gods, then he will turn and do you hurt, and consume you, after that he hath done you good.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)20. then he will turn] He will turn round; He will alter His attitude towards you. “Convertet se et affliget vos atque subvertet,” Vulgate. “The Lord schal turne hym silf, and schal turment зou,” Wyclif. Comp. Joshua 23:15; Isaiah 63:10.
after that he hath done you good] i.e. without any regard to the fact that He hath done you good, and poured His benefits upon you.Verse 20. - Then he will turn. There is no contradiction between this passage and James 1:17, any more than our expression, the sun is in the east or in the west, conflicts with science. St. James is speaking of God as He is in Himself, sublime in His unchangeableness and bountiful purposes towards mankind. Joshua and the prophets, speaking by way of accommodation to our imperfect modes of expression, speak of Him as He is in relation to us. In reality it is not He but we who change. He has no more altered His position than the sun, which, as we say, rises in the east and sets in the west. But as He is in eternal opposition to all that is false or evil, we, when we turn aside from what is good and true, must of necessity exchange His favour for His displeasure. Do you hurt. Literally, do evil to you. After that he hath done you good. This implies what has been before stated, that it is not God who is inconsistent but man, not God who has changed His mind, but man who has changed his. 1 Samuel 12:24; Psalm 34:10), and serve Him in sincerity and in truth," i.e., without hypocrisy, or the show of piety, in simplicity and truth of heart (vid., Judges 9:16, Judges 9:19). "Put away the gods (Elohim equals the strange gods in Joshua 24:23) which your fathers served on the other side of the Euphrates and in Egypt." This appeal does not presuppose any gross idolatry on the part of the existing generation, which would have been at variance with the rest of the book, in which Israel is represented as only serving Jehovah during the lifetime of Joshua. If the people had been in possession of idols, they would have given them up to Joshua to be destroyed, as they promised to comply with his demand (Joshua 24:16.). But even if the Israelites were not addicted to gross idolatry in the worship of idols, they were not altogether free from idolatry either in Egypt or in the desert. As their fathers were possessed of teraphim in Mesopotamia (see at Joshua 24:2), so the Israelites had not kept themselves entirely free from heathen and idolatrous ways, more especially the demon-worship of Egypt (comp. Leviticus 17:7 with Ezekiel 20:7., Joshua 23:3, Joshua 23:8, and Amos 5:26); and even in the time of Joshua their worship of Jehovah may have been corrupted by idolatrous elements. This admixture of the pure and genuine worship of Jehovah with idolatrous or heathen elements, which is condemned in Leviticus 17:7 as the worship of Seirim, and by Ezekiel (l. c.) as the idolatrous worship of the people in Egypt, had its roots in the corruption of the natural heart, through which it is at all times led to make to itself idols of mammon, worldly lusts, and other impure thoughts and desires, to which it cleaves, without being able to tear itself entirely away from them. This more refined idolatry might degenerate in the case of many persons into the grosser worship of idols, so that Joshua had ample ground for admonishing the people to put away the strange gods, and serve the Lord.
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