Bible Ballistics: Vol. 19 No. 01 Joshua Fit’, How About You???
There’s an old Gospel song, “Joshua Fit’de Battle”, one of my favorites (an old Negro Spiritual of unknown authorship—yet a song of heartfelt trust in ONE who IS in charge, no matter what the circumstances look like) and while it’s usually a fun song, it has a great word of encouragement for me today, and I hope I can share that encouragement with you.
Joshua fought a battle that was out of the ordinary, as the new leader of the people of Israel, who had wandered for 40 years for their disobedience to God, and their lack of faith in HIS promises, Joshua had a great task ahead. Yet, God gave Him what seemed like some most bizarre instructions.
“Now Jericho was straitly shut up
because of the children of Israel:
none went out,
and none came in.
2 And the LORD said unto Joshua,
See, I have given into thine hand Jericho,
and the king thereof,
and the mighty men of valour.
3 And ye shall compass the city,
all ye men of war,
and go round about the city once.
Thus shalt thou do six days.
4 And seven priests shall bear before the ark
seven trumpets of rams’ horns:
and the seventh day
ye shall compass the city seven times,
and the priests shall blow with the trumpets.
5 And it shall come to pass,
that when they make a long blast
with the ram’s horn,
and when ye hear the sound of the trumpet,
all the people shall shout
with a great shout;
and the wall of the city shall fall down flat,
and the people shall ascend up
every man straight before him.” Joshua 6:1-5
While these instructions were strange, they were specific and designed to encourage Joshua and the people he was trying to lead. While I won’t focus much on the battle, I do want to spend some time today examining how we face not only the battles before us, but also the directions that God gives us.
I know how difficult it can be to trust God and obey in the midst of out-of-control circumstances. I remember when my daughter was murdered some 2½ years ago, it was on a Thursday and I usually try to write and post on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, and I told my husband, “I don’t think I can write and/or post tomorrow!” And he wisely and simply told me to do what was right for me. Well, during the night God would awaken me with a scripture and I’d put a note on my phone, and roll over and go back to sleep, then He’d do it again, multiple times during the night, and I knew what HE wanted me to do. Yet, when I got up on that Friday morning, I told The Lord, “I can’t do this today!”, and God spoke to my heart, as clearly as if I had heard an audible voice, “YOU have hope, others do NOT! They need to know about your hope!” And with that, I went into my den and wrote the things that He had given me in the night; while I always try to be listening to what God would have me say/write, I can guarantee you that the message that came together that morning was straight from my Father, sending His Balm of Gilead to my soul, and to all who would receive it.
My battle was much different from Joshua’s, but the decision to trust and obey was the same. How about you? What battle are you facing, are you trying to ‘Fit ‘de Battle’ alone, or your own way, instead of God’s. It’s your choice, but God is still God—and you can trust to HIS care, or not.
“Seeing then that we have a great high priest,
that is passed into the heavens,
Jesus the Son of God,
let us hold fast our profession.
15 For we have not an high priest
which cannot be touched with the feeling
of our infirmities;
but was in all points tempted like as we are,
yet without sin.
16 Let us therefore come boldly
unto the throne of grace,
that we may obtain mercy,
and find grace to help
in time of need.” Hebrews 4:14-16
No matter your battle, no matter your circumstances, no matter your frustrations, fear, grief or sorrow—we have a “throne of grace” to which we can run, boldly run (not in arrogance or presumption, but in bold confidence in HIM who sits on that throne—God The Father, and Jesus Christ The Son of God who has boldly paid the price for our sin, and given us access into that throne room!) into the arms of the ONE who gave HIS life that we could have not only “life”, but “abundant life” IN HIM!
We can stand in Jesus, with complete confidence, just as Joshua did even at the end of his life—still knowing that God was all he needed, and that he would serve HIM boldly and faithfully—and he called all the people to recognize that it was their choice as to whom they would trust and serve.
“And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD,
choose you this day
whom ye will serve;
whether the gods which your fathers served
that were on the other side of the flood,
or the gods of the Amorites,
in whose land ye dwell:
but as for me and my house,
we will serve the LORD.” Joshua 24:15
Joshua didn’t force the people to choose God, and I can’t force anyone to believe in Jesus, but without HIM no person will enter heaven’s gates—we must be “born again”! Jesus’ own words say it best. Won’t you come to the One who died for YOU?
“Jesus answered and said unto him,
Verily, verily, I say unto thee,
Except a man be born again,
he cannot see the kingdom of God.
4 Nicodemus saith unto him,
How can a man be born when he is old?
can he enter the second time
into his mother’s womb,
and be born?
5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily,
I say unto thee, Except a man be born
and of the Spirit,
he cannot enter
into the kingdom of God.
6 That which is born of the flesh
and that which is born of the Spirit
7 Marvel not that I said unto thee,
Ye must be born again.” John 3:3-7
And when you belong to Jesus, you always have someone who can fight your battles, and lift you up when you are down!
“And he said, Hearken ye,
all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem,
and thou king Jehoshaphat,
Thus saith the LORD unto you,
Be not afraid nor dismayed
by reason of this great multitude.
for the battle is not yours,
but God’s.” 2 Chronicles 20:15
I’ll share Jesus in the valley—I’ll share HIM on the mountain top—I’ll share HIM, by God’s grace and faithful provision, in all I do and say. Jesus wants to care for YOU! Won’t you repent of your sin and receive the substitutionary, atoning sacrifice that JESUS made for YOU. Then you can have what I have, and all who are HIS! Your “fighting” days can be over!
“Humble yourselves therefore
under the mighty hand of God,
that he may exalt you
in due time:
7 Casting all your care upon him;
for he careth for you.” 1 Peter 5:7
It’s your choice but choose wisely—there is a test!!! Don’t fall for the lies of the enemy of your soul. (Satan is a thief and a liar!). Even if your heart is breaking—remember, Jesus IS the heart healer! Believe me, HE heals mine every day!
“The thief cometh not,
but for to steal,
and to kill,
and to destroy:
I am come
that they might have life,
and that they might have it
more abundantly.” John 10:10
Amen and Amen!!!