And the Walls Came Down- November 4, 2012
Joshua 5:13-15; 6
This event in the life and story of Joshua is often referred to as the conquest of Jericho, and although in one sense that is true in a broader sense it was not about Joshua at all and more about what God wanted to do through Joshua. In this second sermon in the series obstacles and opportunities we see the position that Joshua is in and often times we too feel like there is so much going on in our lives is insurmountable. We may be tempted to ask as Joshua did are you for us or against us? God in His power, mighty, knowledge, and will may have something else in mind to reveal His glory. We often times reduce life to winners and losers, forgetting that the great story has to do with the revealing of God’s glory in, through, and even in spite of the circumstances of life.
Joshua looks up and sees a man standing opposite him with his sword drawn in hand, and Joshua said to him, “Are you for us or for our adversaries?” Many times in life we see an obstacle and wonder if this is a sign is God for us or against us? Another familiar cry is why me? Joshua is reminded as we are that there is something much greater. He said, “No, rather I indeed come now as captain of the host of the Lord.” Joshua falls on his face and asks, “What has my lord to say to his servant?” Joshua recognizes there is more at work here, and he makes it personal by saying my lord bowing before him. Joshua is then instructed to take off his sandals because the place where he is standing is holy. This very phrase is meant to confirm Joshua as God’s successor to Moses. In another sense it is to remind us that during difficult times and during times of confusion the presences of God is among us and the place is holy because of His presence. Are we able to see the holy in the circumstances of life?
Joshua is told that the Lord has given Jericho into his hands. Perhaps all Joshua saw was the walls, but the Lord was already making the way. They were to march around the city once each day for six days and on the seventh day, march around seven times and the priests shall blow the trumpets, and the men shout a great shout the walls of the city fell flat. The Ark of the Lord went with them. After doing as God instructed on faith the walls came down and the men went in and destroyed the city. Only Rehab who had hidden the spies and her family were spared. God showed the great things because they trusted His plan. The greatest loss of life in the ancient world was getting through or past the walls of a well fortified city, God took that obstacle away.
If you think about your own life, is there anything you have not trusted the Word of God on? Is there something you know God wants to do in or through you but you can only see the obstacles? Perhaps there are walls of pride, or past hurt in relationships, and God can remove those walls too. God wants us to experience victory in Him as we live day-to-day.