Summary: If we are to live victoriously, a time and place will come when we will meet the man with the sword in His hand and we will learn to know Him in a personal way.
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As a minister waited in an airport to board his flight, he watched a soldier in uniform embrace and say goodbye to his wife, children, and parents. He breathed a prayer that God would somehow allow him to be seated next to the soldier on the flight. In time, they took seats next to each other; and the minister commented about the farewell scene in the terminal. The young man acknowledged he was going away and would likely see warfare. As their conversation continued, the young man admitted he had thought about death and eternity. He told the minister that he, his wife, his children, and his parents had all accepted Christ as Savior and were living as faithful believers. The soldier stated he was a happy man who had learned a very important lesson in life: Life is not lived in length but in depth.
We live in hurried times, and many people seldom take the time to get alone with God and hear from Him. In eternity, we will have forever to think about what we should have done, said, or been for God. If we are to live victoriously, a time and place will come when we will meet the man with the sword in His hand and we will learn to know Him in a personal way.
Many are sidetracked by the abundance of amusements today. The word “amuse” comes from two Greek words: “a” meaning “no,” and “muse” meaning “think”—“no think.” That is the problem with our society—no thinking; no time to get alone with God.
During their time in Gilgal, the Israelites had time to be alone with God. 14“Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and bowed down, and said to him, ‘What has my Lord to say to his servant?’” Joshua 5:10-15 covers a three-day period. The Israelites are camped in Gilgal, about one and a quarter miles from Jericho. Those were days of significance of going with God. Now we see the seriousness of going in God. We can have the person of victory in our lives. Three tremendous truths relate to the person of victory.
PERCEIVE THE REALITY OF GOD’S PURPOSE
1. The Passover was celebrated.
10“While the sons of Israel camped at Gilgal, they observed the Passover on the evening of the fourteenth day of the month on the desert plains of Jericho.”
The Israelites had not celebrated Passover for 38 years. If you have never allowed the blood of the Lord Jesus to cover your sins and you want peace and joy, you must come to a place where you let Christ come into your heart and life.
The Passover was celebrated, but the produce was also consumed.
2. The produce was consumed.
11“And on the day after the Passover, on that very day, they ate some of the produce of the land, unleavened cakes and parched grain.”
They had not only received a new faith, but they also received new food. Manna had been intended to sustain them; but now the corn, wine, grapes, and pomegranates and the milk and honey were intended to strengthen them. Manna is not good enough for Canaan victory, for the victorious life, or to conquer Jericho. We need new food, a new faith, and a new relationship with God Almighty. The Passover was celebrated, the produce was consumed, and the progress was consequential.
3. The progress was consequential.
12“And the manna ceased on the day after they had eaten some of the produce of the land, so that the sons of Israel no longer had manna, but they ate some of the yield of the land of Canaan during that year.”
There was no more griping or complaining that the manna was gone. After tasting the depth, width, and breadth of God, who wants to go back to manna? Who wants to go back to “What is this food?”
Even now many of God’s people are frustrated, aggravated, and defeated. Many come into God’s house on Sunday and sing and shout; however, some of those same people can be seen mourning on Monday, tense on Tuesday, worried on Wednesday, troubled on Thursday, frustrated on Friday, and sad on Saturday; but when Sunday comes, it is Canaan time again. God wants us not only to sing and shout on Sunday but also to be ministering on Monday, trusting on Tuesday, worshipping on Wednesday, thankful on Thursday, fruitful on Friday, and saving the lost on Saturday. Then when we return to the house of God on Sunday, we can honestly report that everything is great, grand, and glorious. Camping in Canaan and living off the land does bring the joy of Jesus into our hearts and lives.