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Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

Joshua Obeys

on July 17, 2015

joshuaMemory Verse:  1 John 5:4

Bible Truth:  While running your race be obedient.

As Israel prepared to enter the Promised Land, they faced a very strong obstacle – the walls around the city of Jericho. As Joshua viewed the city of Jericho and its impenetrable wall, the Commander of the Lord’s army appeared to him.

Joshua 5:13-15 NKJV

“And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold, a Man stood opposite him with His sword drawn in His hand. And Joshua went to Him and said to Him, “Are You for us or for our adversaries?” So He said, “No, but as Commander of the army of the Lord I have now come.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped, and said to Him, “What does my Lord say to His servant?” Then the Commander of the Lord’s army said to Joshua, “Take your sandal off your foot, for the place where you stand is holy.” And Joshua did so.”

The city of Jericho closed its gates, sealing itself off from Israel’s attack. God wanted Israel to overcome Jericho so they could live victoriously in the Promised Land. To do that, Israel would have to overcome the wall surrounding the city.

Joshua 6:1 NKJV

“Now Jericho was securely shut up because of the children of Israel; none went out, and none came in”

God’s enemy Satan tried to use the wall to discourage Israel, making victory seem impossible.

Joshua 6:2-5 NKJV

“And the Lord said to Joshua: “See! I have given Jericho into your hand, its king, and the mighty men of valor.
You shall march around the city, all you men of war; you shall go all around the city once. This you shall do six days. And seven priests shall bear seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark. But the seventh day you shall march around the city seven times, and the priests shall blow the trumpets. It shall come to pass, when they make a long blast with the ram’s horn, and when you hear the sound of the trumpet, that all the people shall shout with a great shout; then the wall of the city will fall down flat. And the people shall go up every man straight before him.”

God gave instructions for Israel to follow in conquering Jericho. Joshua gave the people the instructions that God had given him – march around Jericho daily for six days. Only by obeying God’s instructions could Israel have victory over Jericho. They needed to know what God said, believe it, and act upon it.

Joshua 6:6-7 NKJV

“Then Joshua the son of Nun called the priests and said to them, “Take up the ark of the covenant, and let seven priests bear seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark of the Lord.” And he said to the people, “Proceed, and march around the city, and let him who is armed advance before the ark of the Lord.”

Marching around the city each day probably did not make sense to the people, but they obeyed.

Joshua 6:8-14 NKJV

“So it was, when Joshua had spoken to the people, that the seven priests bearing the seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the Lord advanced and blew the trumpets, and the ark of the covenant of the Lord followed them.
The armed men went before the priests who blew the trumpets, and the rear guard came after the ark, while the priests continued blowing the trumpets. Now Joshua had commanded the people, saying, “You shall not shout or make any noise with your voice, nor shall a word proceed out of your mouth, until the day I say to you, ‘Shout!’ Then you shall shout.” So he had the ark of the Lord circle the city, going around it once. Then they came into the camp and lodged in the camp. And Joshua rose early in the morning, and the priests took up the ark of the Lord. Then seven priests bearing seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark of the Lord went on continually and blew with the trumpets. And the armed men went before them. But the rear guard came after the ark of the Lord, while the priests continued blowing the trumpets. And the second day they marched around the city once and returned to the camp. So they did six days.”

Israel obeyed God, silently marching around Jericho for six days. On the seventh day the people marched around Jericho seven times, and Joshua commanded that when they heard the trumpets they were to shout.

Joshua 6: 15-16 NKJV

“But it came to pass on the seventh day that they rose early, about the dawning of the day, and marched around the city seven times in the same manner. On that day only they marched around the city seven times. And the seventh time it happened, when the priests blew the trumpets, that Joshua said to the people: “Shout, for the Lord has given you the city!’

Joshua told the Israelites that Jericho and all its inhabitants (except Rahab and her family who believed God) were doomed to total destruction.

Joshua 6:17-18 NKJV

“Now the city shall be doomed by the Lord to destruction, it and all who are in it. Only Rahab the harlot shall live, she and all who are with her in the house, because she hid the messengers that we sent. And you, by all means abstain from the accursed things, lest you become accursed when you take of the accursed things, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it.”

God declared His judgment on Jericho because of the sin of the people. Most of the people of Jericho refused to believe in God, and now they would suffer His judgment on their sin.

Joshua 6:19-20 NKJV

“But all the silver and gold, and vessels of bronze and iron, are consecrated to the Lord; they shall come into the treasury of the Lord.” So the people shouted when the priests blew the trumpets. And it happened when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat. Then the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.”

At the trumpet blast, Israel gave a loud shout, and the wall fell down flat by God’s great power, allowing the Israelites to march in victoriously. All in Jericho were destroyed except Rahab and her family.

Joshua 6:21-25 NKJV

“And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, ox and sheep and donkey, with the edge of the sword. But Joshua had said to the two men who had spied out the country, “Go into the harlot’s house, and from there bring out the woman and all that she has, as you swore to her.” And the young men who had been spies went in and brought out Rahab, her father, her mother, her brothers, and all that she had. So they brought out all her relatives and left them outside the camp of Israel. But they burned the city and all that was in it with fire. Only the silver and gold, and the vessels of bronze and iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the Lord. And Joshua spared Rahab the harlot, her father’s household, and all that she had. So she dwells in Israel to this day, because she hid the messengers whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.”

Camp Challenge

Satan wants to discourage us and he wants us to do wrong. He will do anything that he can to draw us away from God and cause us to loose sight of our final victory. God can give you victory over your temptations and obstacles. He can help you even when it seems impossible. Just as He did for Israel when they faced the obstacle of Jericho. When the people of Israel obeyed God, He miraculously provided victory for them.

In First Samuel we are told that obedience is better than sacrifices.

1 Samuel 15:22 NKJV

“So Samuel said: “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams.”

Jesus tells us that if we love Him, we will obey Him.

John 14:15 NKJV

“If you love Me, keep My commandments”

God wants to give you victory too. When the world’s temptations try to draw you away from obedience to God, remember that you are born of God and that you can overcome the world.

1 John 5:4 NKJV

“For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world – our faith.”

Prayer Points

Ask God to give you strength to obey Him.

Ask God to help you overcome discouragement.

Ask God to help you overcome temptations and obstacles.

Ask God to help you remember that it is He who gives you victory.

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