Summary: Israel is at the crossroads again, they are in the same spot they stood just forty years earlier. Will they trust God this time? Are you ready to trust God? We pray you are!
• SLIDE #1
• Forty years prior to where we are today in the Story, the nation of Israel was on the cusp of going into the Promised Land.
• SLIDE #2
• God was ready for them to enter, and God told them to send scouts into the land, they came back and 10 of the scouts said they people of the area were bigger than God.
• Joshua and Caleb disagreed and the people followed fear instead of faith. Now many parents today like to use the “time out” method of discipline. It seems God like it also because He gave the Israelites a 40 year time out in the desert.
• The challenge seemed overwhelming, those cites over the past forty years were probably more fortified, the people was probably bigger.
• I would imagine from the text that the people currently living in the Promised Land knew the day would come when God’s people would come marching into the land.
• Have you ever faced a situation in life that seemed so overwhelming that you were paralyzed by fear?
• Now here they are once again on the cusp of the Promised Land. What will it be, fear or faith?
• It has been over 600 years since God promised to make Abraham a great nation. The folks had just lost their leader Moses. Joshua is now in command.
• Under Joshua, God has commanded the Israelites to take the land!
• Joshua had to be fearful, God knew it and so God encourages him.
• SLIDE #3
• Joshua 1:6–7 (NIV) 6 Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them. 7 “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go.
• In verses 6-9 God tells Joshua three time to be STRONG AND COURAGEOUS!
• Joshua is going to need it because when he goes back to the people and tells them to get ready to cross the Jordan into the Promised Land, they made what I see as a chilling promise in verses 16-17
• SLIDE #4
• Joshua 1:16–17 (NIV) 16 Then they answered Joshua, “Whatever you have commanded us we will do, and wherever you send us we will go. 17 Just as we fully obeyed Moses, so we will obey you. Only may the LORD your God be with you as he was with Moses.
• So it is almost time to go, God speaks with Joshua and gives Joshua some things that will help him. It starts with…
• SLIDE #5
I. God’s three keys to success.
• Who better to get counsel from than God?
• Since God wants us to be successful and He wanted the Israelites to be successful, God is going to give some counsel to help them.
• As He speaks with Joshua in chapter 1, He begins with a great key to success!
• SLIDE #6
• Joshua 1:7–8 (NIV) 7 “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
• SLIDE #7
A. Be people of the Book.
• Self-help books are a big seller in the USA today. I do think there is a place for them. We also see a lot of books written by successful people who are trying to impart their philosophy of success to their readers.
• As great, smart, and successful as those authors may by nothing compares with God’s Word!
• As God is encouraging Joshua to be strong and courageous because one must be strong and courageous to follow the Word of God because many times from our lower story perspective it does not make sense.
• Think about the situation the people are in.
• They will need to get over one million people across the Jordan River without boats or floaties!
• The river was at a high stage at this time of the year. Then as we will talk about in a bit, God will have a pleasant surprise for all the males in the camp! Then they are to go into battle.
• Would it not have been easier for God to just wipe out the inhabitants then let the nation cross over and take the land?