Explore the Bible
July 1, 2012
Charles A. Collins
Baptist Hospital, Little Rock
A dare is a challenge to either do something or to not do something. It usually is something at best challenging and difficult. I can remember some of my classmates of yesterday daring me to do something.
The dare was there to push me out of the neutral zone into activity.
The one and only thing more difficult than a “simple” dare was what we called a “double-dog dare.” That was serious stuff, and we were either committed to action or we were made to look bad as we sat on the sidelines. There was no way to negate such and retain one’s dignity and poise. It had to be accepted and acted upon.
Joshua’s words to the Israelites sound like a double-dog dare to me. He had become the leader of the military after Moses’ death. He had seen the people waver between two opinions long enough. His challenge was to make up their mind and to make a commitment that was sincere with a promise that would not be broken.
Joshua’s double-dog dare was to choose between following the Lord and serving Him in sincerity and truth and following the gods that had been worshipped before the crossing of the river Jordan. There could be no neutrality. The word used for “choose” is used almost 200 times in the Old Testament. It is used, for example, in Isaiah 48:10 to indicate a serious choice after careful examination. The result will be the best choice. In 1 Samuel, it is a careful and well thought- out choice after discarding other possibilities. The choice for David would make the difference between whether he lived or died.
His mother had just died only a few minutes before I arrived. I told him that I had visited with her before. He asked me, “Did you tell Mama about Jesus?” I could not remember. I hoped I had. I dare you to make the decision to share the story of how Jesus has changed your life. Your testimony could make the difference between heaven and hell for someone.