06/09/2020 – The Wrong Place at the Right Time
PHASE 3 – Living out the Word of God – The battle of Jericho is underway.
Joshua 6:14 – “So on the second day they marched around the city once and they returned to the camp. They did this for 6 days.” They marched around the city of Jericho for 6 days without saying a word.
There are two things we can do when we’re marching around the city trying to be obedient when we’ve been ordered not to say a word.
(1) We can keep doing what the Lord has asked us to do. We can keep listening to those trumpets, stay focused on Jesus, remember what He has commanded and promised, and keep marching as we’ve been told- OR,
(2) We can spend the whole day thinking about what we’re doing, asking ourselves a lot of questions, and trying to second guess the Lord.
The first few days they marched around the city were probably pretty exciting as they were thinking about what the Lord was going to do for them. About the third or fourth day, I imagine it was starting to get a little boring. By the end of the week, it was undoubtedly getting old. This is ridiculous. There’s got to be more to it than this.
By the last day, the seventh day, they’re probably thinking, this is taking too long. What are we waiting for? We should have attacked at night and taken them by surprise. Now they all know we’re coming. They all know how small and unprepared we are.
Because the Lord commanded His people to remain silent the whole time they were marching, they would not be able inject their own brilliant ideas or infect each other with their own personal anxieties, doubts, and fears. He didn’t want His army to defeat itself by creating an epidemic of negative thinking and lack of trust.
Victory is not possible unless the Lord is in complete control. Since the day the manna stopped and Joshua met that man with the drawn sword in His hand, things would never be done the same way again.
Every believer who’s totally committed and surrendered to Christ has to fight the battle of Jericho. As long as we’re determined to fully live for Jesus; as long as we’re determined to stand up for Jesus in a world that worships and serves other gods, we’re going to be engaged in spiritual warfare against principalities and powers of darkness in the heavenly realms.
As we continue to engage in that warfare, we’re going to learn that:
(1) Every battle is different. We’re constantly coming up against new challenges and new obstacles. Every battle is different, and we don’t fight them all the same.
(2) Every battle has a purpose. The outcome of that battle always accomplishes something in us. It always makes a change in us. It always accomplishes something in the church and changes something in the church. Every battle has a purpose.
(3) We’ll never learn how to do this. We’ll never master the art of spiritual combat. The Lord will always be teaching us something new. We’ll always have to depend on and trust in Him for the outcome. We’ll never be able to take the lead. We’ll always have to follow. We’ll never learn how to do this.
(4) We’ll never fight, and we’ll never win, any battle alone. We’ll always be in this with the family of God. When one struggles, we all struggle. When one cries, we all cry. When one laughs, we all laugh. When one wins, we all win.
Jericho is about being in the wrong place at the right time. When we’re fighting the Battle of Jericho, we find ourselves in a place we’d rather not be, at the time the Lord wants us to be there. We find ourselves doing what we’d rather not do when the Lord is telling us to do it. We’re fighting the Battle of Jericho when the Lord puts us in a place where we feel completely out of place.
We’re fighting the Battle of Jericho when we feel the need to say something, but the Lord is telling us to be quiet. We’re fighting the Battle of Jericho when we just want to keep quiet and mind our own business, but the Lord keeps giving us something to say and He won’t let us rest until we say it.
We’re fighting the Battle of Jericho when we want to be doing something, but the Lord is telling us to wait, or when we’d rather not get involved, but the Lord keeps telling us to do something. It’s always the wrong place at the right time.
Jericho is where we learn to let the Lord have control of our lives. Jericho is where we discover we have no control of our lives. In Jericho, things only go the way the Lord wants them to go and if we try to interfere, it makes things worse and everything just takes longer.
Joshua 6:16 – “The seventh time around, when the priests sounded the trumpet blast, Joshua commanded the people, ‘Shout! For the Lord has given you the city.”
Joshua 6:20 – “When the trumpets sounded, the people shouted, and at the sound of the trumpet, when the people gave a loud shout, the wall collapsed, so every man charged straight in. and they took the city.”
In order for us to live the satisfying, productive, victorious, abundant life the Jesus has always intended us to live, the first wall that has to come down is the protective wall of our own independence; our defiant human will; our determination to stay the way we are; to hide behind, to continually excuse and justify our behavior; refusing to change or to be changed; insisting that it’s just the way we are and no one’s ever going to change us. But the Battle of Jericho will change us.
“They took the city.” How? By being willing to be in the wrong place at the right time. By faithfully continuing to do everything the Lord wanted them to do the way He wanted them to do it.
They achieved the victory; they reaped a harvest of blessing because they did not get tired of doing what they Lord had told them to do. They did not get discouraged and they refused to give up. Every personality trait was in submission to the will of God. The Lord takes what we are individually, and He makes it all work together to accomplish His purpose.
Hebrews 11:35-36: “So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised.”
As we’re fighting the Battle of Jericho, when the world looks at us, they won’t see us as separate, weak, imperfect individuals. All they’ll see is Jesus.
Next Tuesday, Lord willing, we’ll be moving on to see what we can learn from the Apostle Paul about recognizing the will of God. As always, I appreciate your comments and questions. Do you know of anyone you could encourage to get in God’s Word with Pastor Buj?