Summary: He was fearless in the face of opposition, he always pleased God, and He was 100% committed to loving God his whole life even when it was unpopular.
Opening Video: Courage
Start with a Challenge:
I have this quote/question to stir us from, “God Chasers” today:
“We think we know where God lives. We think we know what He likes, and are sure we know what He dislikes. We have studied God’s Word and His old love letters to the churches so much that some of us claim to know all about God. But now people like you and me around the world are beginning to hear a voice to them with persistent but piercing repetition in the stillness of the night:
“I’m not asking you how much you know about me. I want to ask you, ‘Do you really know me? Do you really want Me?”
…Listen, my friend, God doesn’t care about your music, your midget steeples, and your flesh-impressive buildings. Your church carpet doesn’t impress Him-He carpets the fields. God doesn’t really care about anything you can do for Him; He only cares about your answer to one question: “Do you want Me?” (Tenney, God Chasers - chapter 1)
Isa. 40:31: “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength…”
2 Chronicles 7:14: “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will hear their land.”
Truth: You cannot live in the presence of God without a heart of repentance. You cannot experience the Holy Spirit and His presence without a repentant heart and a obedient heart. You cannot partake of the Spirit of the Lord without a genuine connection to God and His will.
Over the last few weeks we have been sharing the power of the story! We have been looking at how a person’s life can make a difference in the eternal realm of God.
Quote: Stories are powerful. Stories give meaning to who we are and how we became who we are. Stories help us understand how life happens, and they give value to our experiences. Some of the most powerful testimonies to Christian faith come not from lists of accepted doctrinal beliefs (though they’re important) nor from recitations of biblical principles (also important), but from the enlivened re-telling of how God has acted, overtly or covertly, in each of our lives (from http://www.whatsyourstoryonline.com/).
Sermon: Joshua’s Story
Joshua’s Story and life reminds us that success in this life depends on obedience to God’s Word and a desire in your heart to become a God Chaser.
Joshua 1:6-9: The command from the Lord to Joshua on how to live his life and lead God’s people.
6“Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. 7Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. 9Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Joshua 24:14-15: Joshua’s heart and leadership for God and His commands
14“Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshiped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. 15But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”
28Then Joshua sent the people away, each to his own inheritance.
29After these things, Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the LORD, died at the age of a hundred and ten.
30And they buried him in the land of his inheritance, at Timnath Serah in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash.
31Israel served the LORD throughout the lifetime of Joshua and of the elders who outlived him and who had experienced everything the LORD had done for Israel.
The name “Joshua” means - The Lord saves or the Lord delivers. I always find it fascinating whenever God names a place or changes the name of someone – like he did Joshua – The Lord changes people’s names to make a point spiritually – Joshua’s name was changed from Hoshea to Joshua – Why? Hoshea means “salvation” to understand why his parents may have names him this is to think of the meaning behind his name – he would be people’s salvation - God knew and Joshua knew that he would never be people’s salvation only Jehovah can do that!