After spending 40 years wandering in the desert of Sinai, the people of Israel were now on the eastern banks of the Jordan. Their challenge: take the land of Canaan, the Promised Land. In this message Stephen shows us how the description of the complete obliteration of Jericho was recorded in Scripture in order to teach us several lessons, most importantly that obedience, even if God’s commands seem foolish, brings victory. When we are faced with seemingly insurmountable odds, we must learn that our Jericho victories are won only when our faithful obedience to God is complete. Jericho situations require Jericho victories, which requires Jericho obedience.
Over the last couple of months we have considered Israel’s conquest of Canaan, recorded in the book of Joshua. The boundaries of the land God had given then, He clearly laid out for them, so their success was measured by their progress of driving out their enemies, to possess their inheritance in full.
The Apostle Paul tells us (1 Co 10) that these things were recorded to instruct us, His church. In this message we consider principles that can be seen in the record of Joshua of how to reach the boundaries of potential God has for us, and to remain faithfully within the boundaries of God’s protection.
In Joshua 4:1-8 we read about memorials that were built by the people of God to remember and commemorate the goodness, blessing, salvation and protection of the Lord. In this message, Stephen shares with us how we can all build memorials in our lives, but often they are not positive and can actually restrict our walk with God. However there is one memorial that we can all look to with great hope and thankfulness – the cross; a memorial that not only reminds us of our sinful condition but also the incredible love and grace of God, turning tragedy into triumph, failure into success and death into life!
Joshua 20 describes cities that God set up to offer safe haven for those who were on the run. In these days, God wants our homes and churches to also be available, accessible, safe and secure; to rescue and restore those who need saving from sin and death.
This week we look at the life of Caleb. There is much that we can be inspired by as we consider his pioneering spirit, his confidence in the promises of God and the legacy he left not just for his own children but for thousands of pioneers for the Kingdom of God who would come after him.
When we look in the word we see time and again the complete and utter faithfulness of God. Joshua saw it toward Moses, and knew it for himself. When we know God is faithful; we can know His company, comfort and courage in our every day lives!
When we read the account of the Israelites’ journey to the promised land, we see the tragic moment where they become too afraid to take what God has promised them; they’re faced with an opportunity to step out of their comfort zone, but instead ask if they could go back to Egypt where things were more familiar… more comfortable. But Joshua is a man who is willing to get out of the comfort zone, trust God, and ultimately inherits all the promises 40 years later. In today’s message we look at this account and how we can be a church who is willing to step out of their comfort zones in order to see all of God’s promises today and not in 40 years’ time.
God loves family! He wants our families and households to be secure and blessed, and to be a blessing. This will come about when we, like Joshua’s declare, ‘As for me and my family, we will worship GOD’. We look at how his example will help us ensure we too have whole households.
For Joshua and his generation the time had come to cross boundaries, overcome obstacles and possess the promises of God – and great strength and courage were the outstanding characteristics needed for their success. These things are true for us too, and this message is a call to recognise the urgent need of our day, the great harvest all around us, and the fact that the clock is ticking…. This is your time, God is with you, and so are we! So be bold, be strong and don’t miss the moment!
This week we look in Joshua 2 and consider how God and His people had a reputation in Jericho, the parallel with Jesus’s life as ‘news about him spread…’ at the start of his earthly ministry as a result of the filling of the Holy Spirit and finishing with an encouragement to dream and bring into being a time when Jesus is the talk of the town in Market Harborough.
Joshua is repeatedly commanded and encouraged to “be strong and courageous” as he leads God’s people into their inheritance, and the same simple phrase is spoken into the lives of several others at different times in the Bible. What does this mean for us today? What is God calling us to that requires great strength and courage, and on what grounds can we be strong and courageous, brave and fearless? We pray that this message will bring fresh confidence to you and your church as you serve the Lord together…
In Joshua 2 we discover how the “house of Rahab the prostitute” was significant for the success of the advance God’s people into the promised land. In Rahab’s house we notice that there is radical living, influential reports, hospitality for strangers, faithful promises, and rescue from death and destruction! “Let’s go to Rahab’s house and learn from the examples there, for our own success in advancing into all God has promised us.
At the cross, Jesus Christ’s body was broken and His blood was shed. His broken body has brought us into eternal unity with one another and his blood poured out has purchased for us life in new covenant relationship with God. We can’t just sit back, however, expecting to enjoy all of the goodness of these great truths. We are called to stand shoulder to shoulder, soldier to soldier and lay claim of our wonderful inheritance – just like Joshua and the Israelite army!
Joshua 1:11– In the first chapter of Joshua we enter a new phase in Israel’s history and find a new leader, with a threefold command for God’s people (v.11) to get them ‘fit for the fight’ of their lives! In this message we consider the relevance of this threefold instruction for us today, as we enter a new phase in our history, and how it can help us also to get battle-ready.
The book of Joshua covers around 30 years of history and describes how God leads His people, by faithful and obedient leadership, into His amazing promises. In this session we set the scene of this great book of the Bible, look at God’s plan and the great heroes of faith within it.