Leader says “you can’t”, the people say “we will”
Joshua 24:19-21 lays out the hard facts about serving God.
19. Then Joshua said to the people, “You will not be able to serve the Lord, for He is a holy God. He is a jealous God; He will not forgive your transgression or your sins.
20. If you forsake the Lord and serve foreign gods, then He will turn and do you harm and consume you after He has done good to you.”
21. The people said to Joshua, “No, but we will serve the Lord.”
Exodus 23:25 is a conditional statement about sustaining life and guaranteeing health.
But you shall serve the Lord your God, and He will bless your bread and your water; and I will remove sickness from your midst.
Ruth 1:1 establishes famine in the land
Now it came about in the days when the judges governed, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Bethlehem in Judah went to sojourn in the land of Moab with his wife and his two sons.
Nehemiah 5:3 reports famine
There were others who said, “We are mortgaging our fields, our vineyards and our houses that we might get grain because of the famine.”
They should all be alive today if they had served (had not forsaken) Yahweh.