Summary: After crossing over Jordan, was Jericho imediatly on the mind of God? No first they needed to be ’conditioned for the conquest’.
Conditioned for the Conquest Part 1 Joshua 4&5;
Today we are going to cover only chapter 4;
After they cross we would expect Jerico to be conquered in short order. We think that Jerico is immediately on God’s mind. Not so, they spent some 10 days here at Gilgal and some 6 days before they saw the walls of Jerico fall down. In all there are 39 verses and 10 days between the crossing of the Jordan and the conquering of Jerico. (Make some application here)
As we look at this it is a picture for us with a huge difference, for them, God had to get them ready, for us He has gotten us ready.
2Peter 1:3, "He has given us everything we need for life (with all of its complexities and circumstances) and godliness, (our response as a believer to these).
Victory does not come because we need to be more prepared but when we accept the victory that has already been won. Romans 8, we are more than conqueror",
2 Cor. 2:14, He always leads us in triumph. Every believer here today has been CONDITIONED FOR THE CONQUEST.
Their conquest is a Promised Land, our is a promised life, His life.
Theirs is TAKING THE LAND OURS IS RECEIVING HIS LIFE. So today we are going to look at what took place in their midst to get them ready for the conquest, and at the same time we are going to see what God has done in Christ for us so we are conditioned for the conquest.
1. THERE WAS A CROSSING THAT HAD TO BE COMPLETED. V1-14; v1;v10;v11;v13; Before there could ever be a conquest, they had to complete the crossing. They had to enter in to what God had done; he had cut off the water for them to pass; once the crossing had been completed, there were three things that happened that would have an impact upon them when they started the campaign;
a. There would be REMINDERS of the crossing; v2-7; STONES; TAKEN FROM THE MIDDLE; THEY WERE TO BE FOR A SIGN AMONG THEM; THE SONS AND DAUGHTERS WOULD ASK; What would be the answer? V7; the waters were cut off before the ark of the Lord; They would take something from this experience that would be eternal reminders of their passage from the wilderness to Canaan. APPLICATION FOR US; JESUS CHRIST’ DEATH ON THECROSS; WE DIED WITH HIM; Not only the penalty of sin but the power of sin as well has been done away with; I MUST ACCEPT, MY DEATH NOT ONLY IN HIM BUT WITH HIM.
What are the reminders for me? One day I crossed over, I took away some reminders. Freedom; rest; a new eyesight; a new insight; when I learned he had cut the waters off for me; this truth is important when we are faced with the circumstances and complexities of life; in our marriages, in our jobs; in our relationships to accept our death; there will be reminders of this;
b. When they had crossed over they were ready for war; v11-13 Put on Christ; the armor;
c. When they crossed over and it was completed, the relationship with Joshua changed; v14; they never had the same attitude toward him ever again; With us it is the relationship with Jesus that changes; He is not just Lord He is Life; No longer live by list but by His life in us and through us; we are not slaves anymore but friends; WE ARE ALREADY CONDITIONED FOR THE CONQUEST BECAUSE HE HAS FINISHED THE WORK ON CALVARY; WE HAVE REMINDERS OF OUR HAVING ENTERED INTO THAT WORK; WE HAVE BEEN READIED FOR THE BATTLE; AND WE HAVE A WHOLE NEW RELATIONSHIP;
2. THERE WAS A CROSSING THAT MUST BE FINISHED; BUT SECONDLY THERE WAS A COMING UP THAT FREED THEM; v15-24; 4 times this phrase is used; as a result of the Priest coming up;
a. they were SAFE and SECURE on the other side on dry ground; v16-18a
b. they were SEPERATED from the wilderness v18b;
c. the STONES now meant something to them; (until you have been freed from the wilderness, it is only talk; but when you have been freed we become living letters known and read by all men;) RAISED TO WALK IN NEWNESS OF LIFE; WE FIND THIS IN CHAPTER 6, AND THEN CHAPTER 8 COMES;
Is there a chapter 4 in your life? You and I have been conditioned for the conquest.