Summary: This message was given for our "Vision Casting Day." It was meant to encourage us to move forward with God in establishing His vision for His church. The formula "Vision + Faith + Action = Victory was gleaned from Jerry Dunn in a message by that name.
FROM VISION TO VICTORY - Putting The Pieces Together!
A. Praise the Lord!
1. The psalmist stated O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.  Let the redeemed of the Lord say so…Psa 107:1-2
2. We have gathered here this morning to so at least two things:
a. First and foremost – worship our great God and His Son Jesus Christ!
b. Secondly, to seek God’s divine purpose, will and direction for His church.
B. By way of introduction I want to use the opening chapters of Joshua for an illustration – the nation of Israel is about to embark on a great mission – it will begin by crossing the Jordan River and then be followed by many years of hard work and battles.
1. Three times in the first chapter we read the words “be strong and of good courage.
a. In the first two (vv. 6 & 9) God is speaking to Joshua and He adds these encouraging words
1) …for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land…Joshua 1:6
2) …; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest. Joshua 1:9
b. The third time the phrase is used, Joshua is speaking to the people
1) They have promised to follow Joshua as they had followed Moses (I don’t know if that would be comforting) and he warns them to keep God’s commands
2) In other words there is to be unity and submission to God.
2. In chapter 3 the people cross the Jordan river
a. Their life long experience of faith has begun.
b. They first see God do a miracle to get them under way in dividing the river so they might cross on dry land.
3. In Chapters 4 and 5 they take time to worship God, praise Him for what He had done, and affirm their commitment to God and His plan for Israel.
4. Then in chapter 6, where our message is from, the real work begins.
C. So here we are – Vision Day, what does this introduction have to do with us?
1. I want you to think about it this way – the buying of the 48 acres of land is our Jordan River
a. God did a miracle for us in order for us to get it
b. And we sit here, this very moment, worshipping God, praising Him for what he has done and affirming our commitment to Him!
c. The land, just like the river, was the easy part – now comes the work!
2. And so the words in Joshua 1 need to be spoken and they need to resonate in our ears BE STRONG AND OF GOOD COURAGE!
a. God has an inheritance to give us - Vision
b. We are not to be afraid or dismayed for we know our God is with us - Faith
c. We must move forward in unity and in submission to Our Lord’s commands - Action
4. When we put all the pieces together, in our spiritual life as a church, we come up with this: Vision + Faith + Action = VICTORY!
D. To help us get this solidly in our minds I want to go to two passages of scripture as they relate to Israel’s history
2. Joshua 6
E. May God give us, not only the vision, but the faith and action to see it become reality.
I want to begin this morning by looking at an occasion where things did not work out so well. Here we see
I. VICTORY RELINQUISHED, Num 13:25-28 & 14:1- 4, It all began with a
A. Flawed Vision - Numbers 13:25-28 And they returned from searching of the land after forty days.  And they went and came to Moses, and to Aaron, and to all the congregation of the children of Israel, unto the wilderness of Paran, to Kadesh; and brought back word unto them, and unto all the congregation, and shewed them the fruit of the land.  And they told him, and said, We came unto the land whither thou sentest us, and surely it floweth with milk and honey; and this is the fruit of it.  Nevertheless the people be strong that dwell in the land, and the cities are walled, and very great: and moreover we saw the children of Anak there.
1. Now by flawed I do not mean that it was not a vision given to them by God, but rather their idea of the vision was flawed.
a. God had been promising the land to Israel from the days of Abraham about 700 years ago.