Faith Really Is The Victory—Joshua 6:1-27

INTRODUCTION

 

15 And it came to pass on the seventh day, that they rose early about the dawning of the day, and compassed the city after the same manner seven times: only on that day they compassed the city seven times. 16 And it came to pass at the seventh time, when the priests blew with the trumpets, Joshua said unto the people, Shout; for the Lord hath given you the city…

 

20 So the people shouted when the priests blew with the trumpets: and it came to pass, when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city. (Joshua 6:15-16, 20)

 

Life is full of circumstances that are bigger than we are. Each of us could probably point out a “wall of Jericho” that we have faced or even are facing right now. It could be a disease, like cancer or diabetes. Maybe it’s a problem in your marriage or at work. Whatever it is, to you it looks like the wall of Jericho.

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God’s Faithfulness In Joshua—Joshua 1-24

INTRODUCTION

 

In Genesis 12, God called Abraham to leave his land in Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq). God sends him on a journey that ends in the area that today we know as Israel. After parting ways with his nephew Lot, Abraham is told by God to look all around. Then God says:

 

15 For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. (Genesis 13:15)

 

But Abraham and his descendants did not get to inherit the land immediately. In fact, at the end of the book of Genesis, they end up in Egypt, where they would be for generations. Finally, Moses was born and, when he was 80 years old, God used him to lead Israel out of their slavery Egypt. 

 

But they did not go directly to the land God had promised their ancestor Abraham. Because of their lack of faith in believing that they could go in and take the Promised Land, God consigned them to wander for forty years in the wilderness of Sinai.

 

The book of Joshua is the inspired record of how Israel finally came into the land that God had promised them. It’s a book about God’s faithfulness to His people. 

 

In this lesson, we are going to cover the whole book of Joshua. We won’t, obviously, be able to cover every detail, but we will see the main theme of the book—God Is Faithful. First, we’ll see that…

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Be Strong And Courageous By Fully Relying On God—Joshua 1:1-9

INTRODUCTION

 

One of the best Western novels ever written is called Shane. Written in 1949, it has a crisp, clean style that is the mark of a classic. The main character, Shane, is a mysterious stranger who wanders onto the farm of a family in Wyoming Territory in the late 1880’s. The narrator is the eleven-year old son of the family—Bob. 

 

Shane is taken with Bob and his family and stays on to help them settle their homestead. But there is a ruthless rancher who wants to push the homesteaders out and take their land.

 

Shane is the idealized man: strong and silent…loyal and true…and, of course, independent. He lends Bob a few words of wisdom throughout the book, such as:

 

“A man who watches what’s going on around him will make his mark.”

 

“Listen, Bob. A gun is just a tool…A gun is as good—and as bad—as the man who carries it. Remember that.”

 

“What a man knows isn’t important. It’s what he is that counts.”

 

There’s a lot to commend about Shane…he is strong and courageous…but where does his strength and courage come from? In the end, Shane disappoints, because his strength and courage are merely human strength and courage. 

 

We mere mortals—we who are not fictional Western heroes—need a strength and courage greater than what we can dig up from within. For that, we turn to the premier passage in the Bible about strength and courage—Joshua 1:1-9.

 

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Be Strong and Courageous For The Tough Task Of Fatherhood—Joshua 1:1-9

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Levi Durfey 

 

INTRODUCTION

 

The need for strong fathers today is greater than ever before. Here are just three ways fathers need to be strong.

 

1) Kids need to see fathers who are willing to protect them, not just from physical threats, but also from the spiritual threats that lurk everywhere. 

 

2) Fathers need to be involved in their kid’s lives and keep up on what their interests are and who their friends are and basically where they are going in their lives. To know who they are as a person.

 

3) Fathers need to be strong examples of godliness in their kid’s lives. They need to see their fathers pray and read the Bible; they need to see them make mistakes and ask forgiveness. They need to see that their fathers have a real relationship with Jesus.

 

Those are just three ways a father needs to be strong, and I am sure you can add more. It’s a daunting challenge to be a father—and most especially, a good and godly father. As someone said, “It’s easy to become a father, it’s tough to be a father.”

 

Thankfully, we have a Father in Heaven who loves us and gave us his Word to encourage us. So we’ll turn to the Bible for encouragement and direction. We’ll learn about a man named Joshua whom God told to be strong and courageous as he faced the tough task of leading Israel into the Promised Land.

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Choose One—Joshua 24:14-24

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Levi Durfey

 

INTRODUCTION

 

Sit In One Chair

 

“When I was a boy, my father, a baker, introduced me to the wonders of song,” tenor Luciano Pavarotti relates.  “He urged me to work very hard to develop my voice…a professional tenor in my hometown of Modena, Italy, took me as a pupil.  I also enrolled in a teachers college.  

 

On graduating, I asked my father, ‘Shall I be a teacher or a singer?’  “‘Luciano,’ my father replied, ‘if you try to sit on two chairs, you will fall between them.  For life, you must choose one chair.’  

 

“I chose one.  It took seven years of study and frustration before I made my first professional appearance.  It took another seven to reach the Metropolitan Opera.  

 

And now I think whether it’s laying bricks, writing a book–whatever we choose–we should give ourselves to it.  Commitment, that’s the key.  Choose one chair.” (Gordon)

 

At the end of the book of Joshua, we find that Joshua is approaching the end of his life. So he gathers the people together for a kind of farewell speech. It’s found in Joshua 24. 

 

In it, he challenges the people to make a commitment, to sit on one chair, to serve the one true God.

 

The Motivation For Obedience

 

In the first part of the speech he reminds them of how God had taken them out of Egypt, led them through the wilderness, and then into the Promised land. Speaking God’s words, Joshua says,

 

Joshua 24:13 And I have given you a land for which ye did not labour, and cities which ye built not, and ye dwell in them; of the vineyards and oliveyards which ye planted not do ye eat. 

 

Rehearsing God’s blessings was a good way for Joshua to begin his challenge to the people to make a serious commitment to the Lord. It’s always good to meditate on the goodness of God in our lives as a motivation to obey him.

 

Every Christian should daily bring to mind what Jesus has done for them. He went to the cross so that we would not have to. 

 

He set us free from the penalty of sin, from the power of sin, and one day, we will be completely free from the presence of sin.

 

Those truths should spur us on to obedience, an obedience that flows from gratitude and love for a God who spared not his own Son for us.

 

After reminding them of the blessings that God had given them in order to motivate them, Joshua challenges them. He says to the Israelites,

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Lessons From Jericho For The Lord’s Warriors—Joshua 6:1-27

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Levi Durfey

 

INTRODUCTION

 

Unbelievers will often look at the battles found in the Old Testament and scoff at how a loving God could cause the violent death of so many in holy war. 

 

But the believer can look at the same battles and find in them lessons to learn about having faith and hope in God.

 

4 For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope. (Romans 15:4)

 

The Battle of Jericho is perhaps the most famous battle in the Old Testament and is packed full of spiritual lessons for us. Our first lesson is the reminder that…

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We are Great Sinners, but Christ is a Great Savior!—Joshua 2:1-24

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Levi Durfey

 

INTRODUCTION

 

John Newton, famous today for his great hymn, “Amazing Grace,” was not exaggerating when he wrote:

 

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,

That saved a wretch like me….

 

  • He was a wretch, and he knew it. 
  • He participated in one of the most vile of human trades—the slave trade. 
  • He shattered families, tearing husbands and wives and children apart. 
  • He used slave women for his own immoral purposes. 

 

Beyond that, he was a man with a very foul mouth, a streak of dishonesty, a drinking problem, and other vices.

 

Yet, this was a man that God not only saved, but put in the forefront of God’s work in Newton’s day. We only know him because of “Amazing Grace,” but in his time and place, he was a well-known warrior for God. 

 

It’s amazing what God’s grace can do with the vilest of sinners. Newton was forever grateful for that grace. 

 

One of the final things that he would say in this life was: “My memory is nearly gone, but I remember two things: That I am a great sinner and that Christ is a great Savior.”

 

Newton was not, however, the first person to discover this truth. Rahab the harlot, over 3,000 years earlier could have said the same thing.

 

All of us need to remember that… Continue reading