Summary: The 4th in a series of messages from Joshua dealing with living the victorious Christian life
Sermon by: Dr. Todd Morris
Text: Joshua 5:1-13
Title: Are You Ready To Conquer Your Canaan
Date: January 4, 2004
Introduction: The very first verse of this chapter tells us that the heathen nations in Canaan saw the powerful manner in which the Lord brought His children through the Jordan, and that they were totally demoralized by these events. It would seem that they were absolutely resigned to their fate. It would appear that this would be the perfect time for Joshua to lead the people forward into the attack. However, instead of commanding the people to go forward into battle, God commands them to stay at Gilgal and to do several things that on the surface seem very strange. It even appears that the things they are required to do put them at risk before the enemy.
While the ways of the Lord may seem strange to us, God is always right on time. He knows what he is doing, even when we don’t. It is not ours to understand what God wants us to do; it is for us to be obedient. You see, God never gets in a hurry! He has the liberty to take His time and do things on His schedule. While the things that appear in this chapter seem strange against the backdrop of impending battle, the truth of the matter is God is simply preparing His army to fight. He makes them engage in some things that appear odd, but let me remind you that God’s people often are involved in battles that go far deeper than the physical realm. In fact, before the battle ever begins in the physical, it has already begun in the spiritual. God’s battles are spiritual battles. If we expect to win these spiritual battles we must make the right kind of spiritual preparations.
Israel appeared ready for the battle. They possessed a large army and they faced an enemy that was terrified at their presence. However, God knew that they would never be ready to fight and win the battle until the proper spiritual preparations had been made. That is what this passage is all about. The lesson taught here can help us in our spiritual battles.
Let me ask you a question this evening; are you ready to conquer your Canaan? The answer, only if you are willing to make the right spiritual preparations. Let’s take a few minutes tonight to consider the steps that Israel was commanded to take before they could conquer their Canaan. As we do, ask yourself whether or not these things have been taken care of in your life, because until they are, you will never be able to conquer your Canaan. Are you ready to conquer your Canaan? Let’s find out tonight.
I RENEWING THEIR COVENANT WITH GOD (2-7)
A. God reminds Israel that all men are to be circumcised
B. Israel had to remove a small piece of skin as a sign of their covenant. We must remove those things that stand between God and us.
C. To the Jew circumcision was a reminder that they were a “marked people.”
D. Separation serves the same purpose in our lives.
II REAFFIRMING THEIR CONFIDENCE IN THE LORD (8)
A. At this time Israel is camped in the midst of enemy territory, and after the men are circumcised, they are temporarily unable to fight, so it took great faith to obey God.
B. Just as they had to demonstrate their faith and confidence in God by placing themselves in a place where only He could protect them, we must completely trust God having no concern for self.
C. Over and over when God’s people aren’t able to take care of themselves God has demonstrated his ability and determination to do so.
1. Noah’s family
2. 1st born of Israel
3. 3 Hebrews in furnace
4. Daniel in Lion’s den
5. Paul given grace for his race.
III REMOVING THEIR CONDEMNATION BY THE LORD (9)
A. The term reproach of Egypt has a reference to 2 events during Israel’s wilderness wanderings.
1. When they made a golden calf and worshipped it as God.
2. At Kadesh-Barnea when they refused to enter the Promised Land.
3. On both occasions God threatened to destroy the nation.
B. Up until this point they were still under reproach. Some of you may be living under reproach tonight because of past sins.
C. Let me remind you that if you are a child of God you are no longer under condemnation, but you have been forgiven forever.
D. For condemnation to be removed repentance must take place.
IV REMEMBERING THE COMMITMENT OF THE LORD (10-12)
A. Israel once again celebrated the Passover, a celebration of remembrance of the salvation of the Lord.
B. In times of spiritual battles we need to remember when: