Summary: Joshua gives some practical instructions to ensure success in serving the Lord.
The purpose of my sermon this morning is to encourage your wholehearted obedience to the Lord God Almighty and to warn you of the consequences of disobedience to Him.
The famous last words of Todd Beamer on US Airlines Flight 93 before crashing into the Twin Towers, “Are you guys ready? Let’s roll.” America will never forget what took place on September 11, 2001. We all remember where we were, how we felt, how we prayed. Because of the evil intent of radical Islams, 3000 people went to meet God that day.
* An issue of the “Focus on the Family Magazine,” [Christin Ditchfield. September, 2002. “A Light In the Darkness.” pp. 18-19] detailed the actions of Al Braca. Al worked on the 105th floor of Tower One. When he realized that they were trapped in the building and would be unable to escape, Al shared the gospel with 50 of his co-workers and led them in prayer and many no doubt were saved before they died. Some of those same individuals had in the past mocked him for his faith. For many Christians, we stepped our witness of the Lord Jesus Christ to others because of that day. In light of eternity, we spoke out with more boldness about the Lord Jesus and the free gift of salvation He purchased for us on the cross of Calvary. Dying, shedding His innocent blood, so we can live forever in His Presence.
Joshua has some strong words every person needs to hear today. These are the words of a dying man, one of the strongest soldiers and leaders in the army of God. Joshua knew his death was imminent. Joshua 24:15 – “Behold this day, I am going the way of all the earth.” So, he gives us, as God’s people, our “Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth” or “B-I-B-L-E.”
I. Serving the Lord is a lifelong total commitment, not a one time decision. 23:1-2
* Bob Dylan had a hit years ago called, “Gotta Serve Somebody.” I won’t sing it, but here are a few lyrics. “You may be an ambassador to England or France; You may like to gamble, you might like to dance; You may be the heavyweight champion of the world, You may be a socialite with a long string of pearls; But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes indeed; You’re gonna have to serve somebody; Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord; But you’re gonna have to serve somebody.”
Joshua gives his last sermon near the age of 110. How much would you give to have heard him preach one last time God’s wonderful Word? Caleb was there to here Joshua preach. Eleazar the High Priest and his son Phinehas would have been gathered around close to hear the final charge from the man of God. James M. Boice states, “…the soldiers who had fought with Joshua through the various campaigns (were there). Most of these men would have been mere youths back then. Now they would be grown. They would have families. All would have risen to positions of important leadership in the nation.” Think about Joshua, there was not quit in his bones, only fire in his bones for the worship, Word, and will of God!