Summary: Facing the defining moments in life requires us to make the correct decision


Joshua 1:1-11

* Turn with me to the first chapter of Joshua and in just a moment we will read verses one through five. Forty years earlier, under the leadership of Moses, the Children of Israel came to a defining moment at Kadesh-Barnea God said, “I am giving you this land so go take it.” Now, think about this dimension of Jehovah God. He gives us gifts and says, ‘this is yours’, but then, He gives us the opportunity to make a choice. We either demonstrate our love for Him and our commitment to God or we demonstrate our arrogance and lack of trust in him.

* As we all know and remember the Children of Israel, motivated by the majority report of the “Overseeing Committee” made a bad decision. God has told them to cross Jordan and go forward and they said, “we can’t and won’t.” Have you ever given this any lengthy thought? God could have just as easily completed in a single act what he allowed to take 40 years to do. May I suggest that God wanted some lessons burned into the memory of the up and coming generation so he sentence the older folks to spend their last forty years of life wandering in the wilderness.

* The book of Joshua picks up after the 40 years in the wilderness. This generation has spent these 40 years wandering, burying their ancestors, eating manna, having no home, and learning to trust God. Let’s read our text.

* This is very interesting to me. Seems to me God is simply saying, “I said it before and I’m saying it again. I’ve given you a mission and even though 40 year and over a million people have passed you by, I haven’t changed my mind. Let’s go!”

* To finish the story, this time – they didn’t put it to a vote. Joshua just sent the word – “get ready to go” and they went. They made their needed preparations, crossed the Jordan, and fulfilled God plan for their lives. The crossing of the Jordan became a symbol of being committed and on task for the Father.

* There is another interesting lesson we learn from the lives of the Children of Israel, “every decision that we made is crucial & critical. At every step we have the ability to walk away from the Lord and his will at any time. Tonight, we may find ourselves like the children of Israel at a defining moment, so let’s look at them.

* Please consider with me 3 reason why this young group of Hebrews chose to do what their parent’s had refused to do and then let’s see how it may apply to us.

1) TO Make a Dent- This is a colloquial phrase. Yet for me it was a phrase we used a great deal when I was young. In the early 1960’s FBC Purvis, MS, built a new and beautiful worship center. It was a beautiful edifice. Less than 3 years later, the church building burned. In the days which followed, we worked diligently to clean out the charred ruin. After the first day, it seemed hopeless to us young folks, for we didn’t even make a dent in all that needed to be done. Truth is, there is much to be done in and through the HBC family than every before. Sometimes it is easy to feel overwhelmed yet be reminded that in our own strength we could work, have activities, & never make a dent in His mission. There are just too many people, problems, and needs. Yet, God does not expect us to go it alone, He is clear, “For I will go with you.” He calls us to make a dent. But He also calls us:

2) TO Make a Difference- I am not really an Alabama fan but I am struck by the multitudes of people whose lives affected by "Bear" Bryant. It matters not where you go you hear good stories about the life of Bear Bryant. You see, He decided to make a difference and He did. He taught young men and a university how to be or become winners. Please listen, the only way to “make a difference” is to “be difference” This requires us to make good decisions, both personally and collective. Are we? Can we? Will we?

* TO Make a Determination- This might be better stated as “to be determined! It was Adrian Rogers who said "half-heartedness & mediocrity don’t inspire anyone to do anything." My personal belief is that we, as believers, must be different. How we thing, act, do, and respond must be focused on HIM. It must not be our way but His. Why? Because He knows the way. We must follow Him where we have never been. Why? He’s already been there. Finally, we must forget that Satan tells us what we "cant" do, because God says "we can."

* My prayer is this; That we will "Cross Jordan"!

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