Summary: This section of Scripture is one of the most mystifying

Victory Side of Life # 7

Enter the Captain of the Hosts by Gerald Van Horn

Joshua 5:13-15

And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for the adversaries? And he said, Nay, but as the captain of the host am ’I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my Lord unto his servant? And the captain of the Lord’s host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place wherein thou standest is holy, and Joshua did so.

1. The mystery man.

This section of Scripture is one of the most mystifying in the book of Joshua. Everybody loves a mystery. Even the Holy Spirit must have been intrigued by this situtation.The Holy Spirit took great care in placing this setting in the book of Joshua. To me one of the marvelous things about our God is the fact that He doesn’t reveal everything about His person. Deuteronomy 29:29 “The secret things belong unto the Lord our God; but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of the law.” We stand in awe of our great God. If some could know everything about God they probably would spend a great deal of time trying to deny Him even more than they do now. It does bring us face to face with some great truths.

Men of the Old Testament have wanted to know God and some were successful.

Only until Jesus came do we learn more about God. Jesus said, ”He that hath seen me hath seen the Father.” John 14:9 The mystery man is revealed in the New Testament. He is the God of all truth, love and majesty. He is the great creator and all in all. John 1.

Joshua is now spying out the territory of the enemy. One of the greatest challenges in his life is before him. He has done all he was commanded to do. His ability to lead Israel ranks right up there with other leaders. Joshua must have visit Jericho once before! Numbers 13:16. He now sees a great fortress. Impregnable in the eyes of men. He surely senses that he needs help.

We also need help. It does not matter your situation. You may be struggling with life’s problems. It may be a conflict. It may relational. The Devil may be on the prowl for your soul. We turn to the Psalmist David for inlightment:

* Psalms 33:20 “Our soul waitheth for the Lord; he is our help and our shield.”

* Psalms 46:1 “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

* Psalms 70:5 “Thou art my help and deliver.”

* Psalms 121:1 “I will lift up my eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my


* The poor man cried, and the Lord heard him, and saved him out of all his


2. The mystery man revealed.

This has to be the Lord Jesus Christ. We conclude this because of the title given Him and the response of Joshua. He identifies Himself as captain of the host of Israel. Joshua falls on his face and worships Him. This is called a theophany or preincarnate appearance of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Lord revealed Himself to many in Old Testament in His preincarnate form.

* Jesus appeared to Adam in the garden of paradise. Genesis 3:8

* He appeared to Abram before he was Abraham. Genesis 12:1-3

* He appeared to the three Hebrew children in the firey furnace. Daniel 3:24

Jesus also revealed Himself in New Testament after His resurrection:

* He revealed Himself to two on the road to Emmeus.

* Jesus Christ appeared to Saul before he was Paul. Act 9:3-6

* He also appeared to John the Revelator. Revelation 1:12-18

William Booth met the Lord and was converted and started the Salvation Army which has touched many lives.

Billy Sunday met the Lord sitting a street curb listening to music and testimonies from the Pacific Garden Rescue Mission. He went to the mission. He fell on his knees and staggered out of sin into the arms of the Saviour. God put a call on his life to preach and he touched thousands in his generation.

John McDuff met Jesus under most unusual circumstances. He lived in Texas city, Texas. On night the sky was aflame of fire as some oil tankers caught on fire. The following Sunday he was at church and gave his life to Christ and received a call to preach the Gospel. John has traveled all over the United States and has ministered to thousands.

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