Summary: The 12th and last message in a series from Joshua on Victorious Christian Living

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Sermon by: Dr. Todd Morris

Text: Joshua 23:1-8

Title: An Old Soldier Prepares to Break Camp (Joshua #12)

Date: February 22, 2004

Introduction: Verse one of our test really tells the story. Israel has acquired the land that God had promised them. Their faithful leader, Joshua, is old and is preparing to die. However, before he leaves them he has some things to tell them about serving the Lord. In order to do this he calls two meetings. The first recorded in chapter 23 and the second in chapter 24. The first involved just the elders and leaders; the second involved all the people of Israel.

As the old faithful soldier prepares to break camp he wants to encourage Israel to stay true to the course of God. He knows that the old guard, those who had known Moses and him were quickly dying off, and tat the new generation that was coming along had not seen the miracles that God had done in their midst. Before he dies he just wants to remind them of the God they serve.

There are some valuable lessons for us in these chapters as well. We live in a day when many have forgotten about the glory and the power of God, and those who know these things are becoming fewer and fewer. We need to be reminded of the glory of God. Our children need to be exposed to His power.

These verses tell us what we need to know about keeping God’s work alive. As we look at them today, we need to allow the Lord to speak to us about making any changes in our own lives that need to be made in order that this dying world might see the glory and the power of God at work in His church and in the lives of His people. Let’s look in as this old faithful soldier prepares to break camp.


A. He Fears Complacency (6)

B. He Fears Compromise (7)

C. He Fears Lack of Commitment (8)


A. Consider God’s Wrath (23:9-16)

B. Consider God’s Works (24:1-13)

C. Consider God’s Will (24:14-18)

D. Consider God’s Witness (19-24)


A. It Involved A Great Stone (25-28) – it was a remembrance of the oath they had taken.

B. It Involved Some Grave Stones (29-33)

1. The Gravestone of Faithfulness (29-31) – Joshua’s own

2. The Grave Stone of Fulfillment (32) – Joseph’s, who died centuries before in Egypt, but to whom God promised the land and that his bones would be returned there.

3. The Grave Stone of Finality (33) – Eleazar, Aaron’s son, the first high priest of Israel, his stone marks the changing of the guard, it is time for a new generation to pick up the mantle and go on.

Conclusion: Where are the Elisha’s this evening? Where are the Joshua’s? Where are the Paul’s? Where are those who are willing to stand up and be counted for Jesus? Where are those who are tired of business as usual? Where are those who are willing to pay the price?

When those who had known the glory of God died out in Israel, those who were left turned to other God’s and wickedness. Beloved, let it not be so with us. We need people who are willing to pay the price to have the power of God fall. We don’t need a program! We don’t need 40 days of purpose, we need a life of total commitment and holiness. We need to stay in this altar until the power of God falls. We need to stop asking what the church can do for us and start living for the church. The God of Moses and Joshua and Joseph is not dead! The problem with out generation is that there are so few Moses’ and Joshua’s. God is waiting for us to step up to the plate and be what God has called us to be. As a young man D. L. Moody heard Henry Varley say, “The world has yet to see what God can do with a life totally surrendered to Him.” Moody said, “I will be that man.” God used him to touch two continents for Jesus. God is still looking for someone to say, “I will be that man.” I ask, is that person you?

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