Summary: Decisions outside the will of God have consequences.
A. FIGHTING A BATTLE WHEN YOU DON’T WANT TO JOSHUA 10
1. Decisions outside the will of God have consequences. When the mighty Gibeonites tricked Israel Joshua said, “They did not ask counsel of the LORD” (9:14).
Why We Don’t Pray
• Self-confidence and not a walk of faith.
• We think we don’t need God.
• We are blinded spiritually.
2. Past problems have future consequences.
“The king of Jerusalem was afraid of Israel’s power because they destroyed Jericho and Ai. Gibeon had defected from the alliance of the six nations that joined together to fight the Jews. The king of Jerusalem felt Gibeon should have fought with them against Israel, because Gibeon was mightier than Ai. Therefore Jerusalem and the alliance sent their best soldiers to fight Gibeon to force them to join again the alliance of six” (Joshua 10:1-5, Amplified).
3. Joshua was drawn into a battle he didn’t want to fight. Gibeon sent a message to Joshua to come fight against the alliance (10:6).
4. We must keep our promises when it is not convenient. “Joshua made a pledge with Gibeon” (9:15, ELT).
5. This battle was God’s providence. Israel could face five nations at once in open field battle, instead of assaulting five different walled cities. “The Lord said, ‘Fear not, for I have delivered them into your hands’” (10:8).
6. God used a four-fold strategy for victory.
“Joshua and his soldiers quick-ran all night from Gilgal to Gideon and surprised the enemy in a dawn attack. The soldiers from the alliance ran away and a sudden hail storm killed more enemy soldiers than Israel did with their swords. When it looked like the enemy would escape and hide because night was coming, Joshua said, ‘Sun stand still over Gibeon and the valley of Ajalon.’ The sun did not go down and Israel destroyed the army of the alliance because the Lord listened to the voice of a man and fought for Israel” (10:9-14), Amplified).
7. First man’s strategy; an unexpected maneuver. Israel marched all night. “Joshua came unto them suddenly” (10:9).
8. Second, God’s providence; the alliance army retreated. “As they fled . . . the Lord cast down a great hail stone . . . more died from hail storms than from Israel’s swords (up to that time), (10:11, ELT).
9. Third, a miracle; God allowed the sun to shine all night.
10. Fourth, God’s enablement. Unexpected energy for Israel’s soldiers who marched all the first night, chased the enemy all the next day, and then was able to fight all the second night.
11. The principle of Division of Labor, i.e., God does what only Deity can do; we must do what humans are expected to do. The miracle of the long day and energy to fight two nights.
12. This is also called the principle, “It takes two wings to fly.” We must prepare as best we can, then God’s power delivers the results.
13. How did God do the miracle of the long night?
a. Stopped the earth’s spinning on its axis.
b. Stopped the earth in its trajectory.
c. Bent the light rays around the horizon.
d. Created light at Gibeon for one night (a Shekinah).
e. Some other way. God who originally created laws can create more powerful laws.
B. CONSEQUENCES FOR PAST BAD DECISIONS: JOSHUA 10:1-27
14. When fighting a spiritual battle, be thorough. Take no prisoners.
Joshua was told the five kings were hiding in a cave. Joshua said, ‘Roll a great stone over the cave and have guards keep it.’ Without leadership, the five kings couldn’t keep Israel’s soldiers from destroying their soldiers. When the battle was over, Joshua had the cave unsealed and the five kings brought out. Joshua had Israel’s captains put their feet on the necks of the kings and told all the people, ‘This is what the LORD will do to the rest of our enemies in the Promise Land’” (10:17-25, Amplified).
15. Just as Joshua bound the five kings in a cave, Jesus told us to bind up our spiritual enemies. “How can you enter a strong man’s house and spoil his goods, unless you first bind up the strong man?” (Matt. 12:29).
16. We should use spiritual symbols to communicate victory. “Come now put your feet on the necks of these kings” (10:24).
a. Encourage workers
b. Motivate them to further work.
c. They glorified God in victory.
17. Show the world God’s victory. “Joshua killed them and hung them on five trees” (10:26). Joe Leonard poured his whiskey into his lake.
a. Our repentance makes it easier to resist temptation.
b. Our reputation gives us resolve.
c. Symbols of victory glorify God.
18. Put every indication of past consequences out of your mind. “And Joshua . . . laid great stones in the cave’s mouth, which remain until this very day” (10:27).