Summary: From a human perspective it was an unconquerable city. Improbable? No, impossible! Impregnable. And each of us have a walled city in our lives. Link inc. to formatted text, audio & video, PowerPoint.
Let the Walls Come Down
The children of Israel have moved:
• From the wilderness of worry to the promised land of peace.
• From the wilderness of wandering to the promised land of progress.
• From the wilderness of despondency to the promised land of delight.
• From defeat to victory...the victorious Christian life of rising above and gaining new ground.
It is walking in the Spirit...and the fruits of that Spirit.
The first city they come to after crossing Jordan is Jericho, considered the greatest walled fortress of all time, and a militarily citadel unparalleled in those days, with walls so thick that chariots could traverse atop them. From a human perspective it was considered an unconquerable city. Improbable? No, impossible! Impregnable.
And each of us have a walled city in our lives. A place of hopeless defeat we don’t think we can conquer. A barrier that stands in our way and it seems to give up on that one is the only way to view it.
What is your Jericho? It shouts at you in defiance when you think about it, “If not for me, you’d have made it! All your dreams stopped cold when you crossed my path! God’s perfect will was within reach if not for me! The ambitions of your heart might have been accomplished, but you couldn’t get over me!”
Maybe it is a besetting sin that seems to haunt you and you can’t seem to get the victory. The devil uses it on you time and again because it works so well on you. For others it might be an unhealthy attitude. Maybe you were genuinely done wrong by someone, but now your heart has bitterness toward them and it is eating at you from the inside out. You can’t seem to let go of that grudge. What is your Jericho? An unhappy marriage? Guilt over past sins? A lack of education? A lack of motivation? A lack of confidence? A lack of money! A financial downfall? The devil wants to erect a fortress around your personal success...but don’t let Him keep you from entering in to the abundant Christian life. Don’t let him keep you home from PM services or from Sunday school. [salvation / baptism / discipleship / faithfulness / service / tithing / missions / surrendering to the ministry / achieving your dreams!]
When you come to your Jericho, you have only two choices: flee from it or face it.
To flee, there’s only 1 place to go...back into the wilderness. And that should not be an option. We must face our Jericho, and we’re gonna have to do it God’s way, because humanly speaking it may be true, that there’s no way I can get past this!
By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, after they were compassed about seven days.
“By faith...” Victory over Jericho came only by faith.
“Victory is not achieved thru fighting...it is received thru faith!”
When God has a big job to do He always gives faith the contract.
...this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
1. Faith and its object.
5:13-14a Joshua is out in the field on a reconnaissance mission, surveying the situation. He looks up at those high walls of Jericho, and no doubt trying to strategize as the general of this army. He turned around to see a man who came out of nowhere. He just appeared!
Joshua asks the first logical question: Are you for us or them? Good guy or bad guy? Black cowboy hat or white? Are you for us or for our enemies? The man gives a unique answer: No.
Who is this mysterious character? None other than the Lord Jesus Christ making an appearance in the OT.
v. 14 An angel would have turned down that worship.
Here’s a valuable lesson: We should stop trying to get God on our side, and we should get on God’s side! We should take off our sword, lay it in the dust at the feet of our captain, and when we do so our Jericho is no longer our problem...it’s God’s problem...and that’s no problem!
It’s an attitude change.
When you realize that you cannot get victory over that stubborn sin in your life you are in a great position to give it to the Lord and to see victory happen thru Christ by faith!
When you’ve tried everything in your marriage and nothing is working, that’s great news if you will now learn to turn it over to God! It’s victory thru surrender. Not surrendering to the enemy but to God. Drowning in debt? Hopeless at work? Clueless at childrearing? Restless at worry? LET GO AND LET GOD!
Before we can be a conqueror we must first be conquered ourselves. All that we are and all that we have must stand at attention before the captain of our souls, the Lord Jesus! We must lay our worldly weapons of warfare at His feet, and like little David, cast off the bulky armor of human wisdom and pick up the shield of faith! And then we’ll see giants fall and walls collapse.