6-Week Series: Against All Odds

Sermons

Summary: I began this series by talking about how God and I are not on the same page when it comes to timing. I am an impatient person who likes everything done now, and our God is an extremely patient God waiting to the last moment to act. And that left me with a question. "Why?"

Introduction:

I began this series by talking about how God and I are not on the same page when it comes to timing. I am an impatient person who likes everything done now, and our God is an extremely patient God waiting to the last moment to act. And that left me with a question. "Why?"

It was at that point, I felt the Holy Spirit's guidance bring me to some of the last-minute miracles recorded in the Bible, so I can better understand why God moves when He does.

And so far, I have discovered that God can wait to that last minute to work and still be right on time because when He does step in to act on my behalf, He is unstoppable. And last week, I saw that when God does move in my life, He changes everything.

Today, the Holy Spirit takes me back to an Old Testament story about the Israelites to teach me another reason why God can wait to the last second to act and still be a right on time, God. Take your Bibles and turn with me to Joshua 3:7-17.

Scripture

Joshua 3:7-17 (NKJV)

“7 And the LORD said to Joshua, "This day I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that, as I was with Moses, so I will be with you.

8 You shall command the priests who bear the ark of the covenant, saying, 'When you have come to the edge of the water of the Jordan, you shall stand in the Jordan.' "

9 So Joshua said to the children of Israel, "Come here, and hear the words of the LORD your God."

10 And Joshua said, "By this you shall know that the living God is among you, and that He will without fail drive out from before you the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Hivites and the Perizzites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Jebusites:

11 Behold, the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth is crossing over before you into the Jordan.

12 Now therefore, take for yourselves twelve men from the tribes of Israel, one man from every tribe.

13 And it shall come to pass, as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests who bear the ark of the LORD, the Lord of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of the Jordan, that the waters of the Jordan shall be cut off, the waters that come down from upstream, and they shall stand as a heap."

14 So it was, when the people set out from their camp to cross over the Jordan, with the priests bearing the ark of the covenant before the people,

15 and as those who bore the ark came to the Jordan, and the feet of the priests who bore the ark dipped in the edge of the water (for the Jordan overflows all its banks during the whole time of harvest),

16 that the waters which came down from upstream stood still, and rose in a heap very far away at Adam, the city that is beside Zaretan. So the waters that went down into the Sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, failed, and were cut off; and the people crossed over opposite Jericho.

17 Then the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the LORD stood firm on dry ground in the midst of the Jordan; and all Israel crossed over on dry ground, until all the people had crossed completely over the Jordan.”

Background Information

The Jordan River stands between the Israelites and the Promised Land. In life, there will always be obstacles that stand between where you are and where you want to be. You may desire to have a particular job, but maybe lack of expertise stands in the way. You may long to retire, but financial resources going forward prevent you from coming home.

The Israelites obstacle was the Jordan River. When they looked out at the Jordan, they saw a river that filled its banks. They could see no low water crossing. They knew that they could not go around it, because it was 150 miles long. And there were no bridges to go over it. And what is surprising is that God has guided the Israelites through the wilderness to this particular spot, and now God says: “it is time to cross the Jordan.”

So, what is the lesson of this last-minute miracle?

POINT #1

SOMETIMES I NEED A LAST-MINUTE MIRACLE BECAUSE I GOT MYSELF IN A MESS; SOMETIMES, I NEED A LAST-MINUTE MIRACLE BECAUSE GOD BROUGHT ME TO THE PLACE THAT I NEED ONE.

I don’t need much help to get myself in a mess; I seem to be able to do an excellent job of it. And it is at those times, that I need God to intervene and do a last-minute miracle to make things right. The Apostle Peter was a master at getting himself in a mess and needing that touch from God. Peter, one time, asked Jesus if he could come to Jesus on the water. And the Bible says Peter seeing the wind began to become afraid and began to sink. Jesus reached out His hand as a last-minute miracle. Another time, Jesus was about to be arrested, and Peter took out his sword and cut off the ear of the High Priest’s servants. Jesus had to rescue Peter from that situation by restoring the servant’s ear in a last-minute miracle.

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