Joshua 24:14-28

We make decisions every day. But if we never learn how to make good decisions, we will go through life unhappy, uncertain, and wondering what went wrong. I wish someone had spoken to me a long time ago about making the right choices. How do you make the right choices? I believe God’s Word has all the answers and principles we need.

Many years ago, there was someone who knew how to make the right choices, and he was found making a decision in Joshua 24:14,15. You know who it is, and you may remember what he said when he talked about serving the Lord: “. . . but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua made a decision, and he made the right decision.

Let’s be honest: We’ve all made some bad decisions. We tend to try to cover up our bad decisions or try to make the results come out right even when we have made a bad choice. What we need to do is admit that we made a mistake and ask the Lord to teach us how to make the right choices from now on. And that is what the Lord does in His Word. Through the life of His servant Joshua, God has given us some principles that we must always apply.


Joshua and those he influenced chose this. Matthew 6:33 says, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” The context of this verse is “priorities”—what was first in these folks’ lives and what choices they were making.

Many people choose the carnal, the physical, the clothing, the food, the shelter, or anything that is not spiritual. This doesn’t mean you can’t have material things, but it does mean that if it comes to a decision between the spiritual and the carnal, the right choice is the spiritual.

The reason many Christians are unhappy is because they fail to apply this principle.


Joshua chose to serve the eternal God rather than have the pleasures of sin for a season (like his predecessor Moses). Read in Matthew 16:21-26 about when Jesus told Peter that he cared not about the things of God but only about the things of men. Jesus went on to say that a man’s soul was more important than gaining the whole world.

That is difficult for a worldly-minded person to understand. We are so interested in what we can get out of life right now that we forget there is an eternity out there much longer than the here and now. But making the right choices takes a heavenly-minded person.

Temporal decisions are just that—temporary. I have known men who refused a higher-paying job in an area where there was not a good church; their priority was to keep their families in a high-quality spiritual atmosphere that would produce eternal rewards.

Some have trouble making a decision because of the conflict here. One young man said that God wanted him to go to the mission field, but he knew he could make more money as a lawyer. True, but that’s the wrong choice. Money is temporary, but God’s will is eternal. As a lawyer, you may get some folks out of jail, but wouldn’t it be better as a missionary to get some folks out of hell?


Joshua knew the previous generation in Egypt had succumbed to manmade gods and had influenced the present generation. A choice had to be made between God’s will and man’s will. Joshua made the right choice and led the people to do the same.

When Saul was saved on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:6), he had been making decisions based on what men wanted him to do. The Jewish leaders wanted him to round up all the Christians and put them to death, and he was doing just that.

Then he met the Lord and, after he was saved, his first statement was, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” Everyone who claims the name of Jesus should be asking, “Lord, what is it you want me to do?” instead of “Peers, what is it you want me to do?” We should be more interested in pleasing God than in pleasing our peers.

God’s will never goes against His Word. It doesn’t matter how man rationalizes something; if it goes against God’s Word, it is wrong. It is the wrong choice. Don’t be influenced when you know God’s will.

In John 8:29, Jesus said, “. . . for I do always those things that please him.” And God will reveal the decision that pleases Him (Ps. 32:8), but sometimes He is the last one we ask. He is the only one we need to please, so He ought to be the first one we ask.


In verse 19, Joshua implied that the people couldn’t serve the Lord because it wasn’t convenient for them. Is God too holy for your lifestyle? You see, there is a cost in serving the Lord. But we need to make decisions based on our commitment to the Lord and His Word rather than on whether or not it is convenient to obey.

Rivers are crooked because they take the path of least resistance. That’s why a lot of Christians are crooked in their spirituality—because they take the path of least resistance instead of standing up straight and saying, “I’m going by the Book.”


In his younger days, my dad helped start some youth camps. Before long some worldly people got involved and wanted to throw out some of the biblical standards that the camps were founded on. Dad took a stand and others followed, but not for long. Several months later, when my dad was absent, these people voted out some of the rules of modesty and clean living.

Dad asked one of his friends why he didn’t speak up. The preacher said, “Who am I?” Dad said, “It doesn’t matter who you are; what matters is who you stand for.” Dad went out and bought his own youth camp, which, to this day, stands on the principles of God’s holy Word.

Making the right choices is not difficult when we follow God’s biblical principles. Always choose the spiritual over the carnal, the eternal over the temporal, God’s will over man’s will, and commitment over convenience. Oh, how we need more Christians making the right choices.