Day 83: Joshua 16–18, Psalm 70, John 4 – The Rt. Rev. Michael Curry

Joshua 16–18, Psalm 70, John 4
In Joshua, the tribal lands are distributed by the casting of lots. I guess that is where
we get language about allotments and “lot” as a designation for land. In biblical times,
the casting of lots was not like a roll of the dice to us. Today, the roll of the dice is seen
as a matter of random luck, though probability can be approximated. But few in Las
Vegas seriously think of the roll of the dice as a providential act. Not so in the biblical
consciousness, where lots were cast in prayer. In the New Testament, the apostles cast
lots to select Matthias to replace Judas as one of the Twelve (Acts 1:26).
There is some ancient wisdom here. By casting lots a decision is taken out of the hands
of humans, away from factions, interests, and political control. Everyone has an equal
opportunity. Joshua and the leaders did their part and left the final decision to God.
The late Benjamin Elijah Mays served as president of Morehouse College in Atlanta and
was a mentor to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and countless others. He was fond of saying,
“Faith is taking your best step and leaving the rest to God.” Interestingly enough, that was
the experience of the Samaritan Woman who met Jesus at the well in John 4. She gave
her best, courageously facing the truth about her life and making a decision to trust, and
Jesus did the rest.
The Rt. Rev. Michael Curry
Bishop of North Carolina
Raleigh, North Carolina
The idea of casting lots is an ancient way
of giving the ultimate decision to God.
What are some ways we can do our best
and then leave the rest to God? Imagine.
Gracious God, please grant me the wisdom
and strength to do that which accords with
your will. And then give me the grace to
move out of the way for you. Amen