And when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and to Ai,…
Do we not see here, first and foremost, the pitiable shifts to which all spiritual fear is driven? The fear of Israel came upon the Gibeonites, and the result was an invention, a false arrangement, an attempt to escape the inevitable. This is the story of to-day. Volumes might be written upon this one thought, namely, that spiritual fear is always and of necessity driven to the most pitiable shifts. Spiritual fear says, "What can I do? I will undertake long pilgrimages; I will discharge severe and exhausting penances; I will build churches, and seem to worship; I will commingle with the people of God as if I were one of them when my heart is a thousand leagues away from the very poorest soul in all the sacred number." The trick of the Gibeonites is the game of to-day. Spiritual fear knows not the spirit of truth, and cannot, of course, know the spirit of joy. Are we not always cursed by this spirit of fear? It leads us to misconstructions of God. He ceases to be God when He is looked at through the medium and under the base inspiration of servile fear. The man in whom the spirit of fear is cannot read the Bible. It is a mere idol to him.
(J. Parker, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done unto Jericho and to Ai,