Speaker: Rev. Shine Thomas
Are you facing anything that is impossible for you? You have started something with great difficulty but now you feel you must quit. You feel cannot go forward any more.
Today we are going to see how we can face our problems and get deliverance from the Almighty God.
The children of Israel started their journey from Egypt with great enthusiasm. Now after crossing river Jordan the first city they face is Jericho. Now, Jericho is considered the greatest walled fortress of all times. Jericho was a military citadel unparalleled in those days, with walls so thick that chariots could traverse atop them. From a human perspective it was considered an unconquerable city, impossible and impregnable.
We all face the walls of Jericho in our lives. It is a place of hopeless defeat we don’t think we can conquer. It is a barrier that stands in our way and we find no way to overcome it.
Maybe it is a sin that seems to haunt you and you can’t seem to get the victory. For some it might be a sickness you are dealing with. For others some it may be an unanswered prayer. What is your Jericho? An unhappy marriage? Guilt over past sins? Lack of education? Lack of motivation? Lack of confidence? Lack of money! A financial downfall?
The devil wants to erect a fortress around your personal success, your family and put you in fear. Today the walls of Jericho are going to fall in Jesus’ name.
When you come to your Jericho, you have only two choices: flee from it or face it. If you flee, there’s only one place to go – back into the wilderness. Back into dry land, without water and freshness, that should not be an option. The other option is to face it head-on. We must face our Jericho and that is what God wants us to do.
HOW TO FACE OUR JERICHO? BY FAITH.
Hebrews 11:30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, after they were compassed about seven days.
Victory over Jericho came only by faith. “Victory is not achieved through fighting…it is received through faith!”
1 John 5:4 …this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
See how Joshua approached Jericho. Joshua went on an inspection trip to Jericho. He went to survey the situation. He looks up at those high walls of Jericho, and no doubt trying to strategize as a general of the army. Joshua suddenly saw a man who came out of nowhere. He just appeared!
Joshua 5:13-14 13 Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, “Are you for us or for our enemies?” 14 “Neither,” he replied, “but as commander of the army of the LORD I have now come.” Then Joshua fell facedown to the ground in reverence, and asked him, “What message does my Lord have for his servant?”
Who is this mysterious person? It is none other than the Lord Jesus Christ making an appearance in the OT. If it was an angel it would have turned down the worship Joshua offered.
Now, here is the point. When we approach our Jericho we go with our strategies and plans just like Joshua. Should I use a ladder? Should I use force? We come out with our own plans on how to defeat Jericho. Then when we have finalized our plans we want God to fit into our plans.
See what Joshua did: Joshua saw Jesus Christ in Jericho. There is God right in the midst of our problems. If your eyes are open you will see it. He is there right in the midst of your problem. Do not get God to your side; you get onto God’s side. Then your Jericho will become God’s problem. Turn over your problems to God.
Probably Joshua was looking deep into the walls of Jericho and it led to fear. But now after seeing Jesus Joshua is looking onto Jesus not onto the walls. Get your eyes off the problem and keep your eyes on the Lord.
Illustration: In the NT Peter walked on the water as long as he kept his eyes on the Lord, but when he started looking at the storm he began to sink…but just a look back up at the Savior and he again rose above.
Fear is looking at God through your problems. Faith is looking at your problems through God!
See what God says:
Joshua 6:1-4 1 Now Jericho was tightly shut up because of the Israelites. No one went out and no one came in. 2 Then the LORD said to Joshua, “See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands, along with its king and its fighting men. 3 March around the city once with all the armed men. Do this for six days. 4 Have seven priests carry trumpets of rams’ horns in front of the ark. On the seventh day, march around the city seven times, with the priests blowing the trumpets.
What strange instructions. From a military standpoint they made no sense. Here God was testing their obedience. We all have faith but we do not want to be obedient to our faith. Obey God even when it doesn’t make sense. We all wait to understand and then obey. The point is you will not understand it until you obey it.
The people of Jericho were seasoned warriors. Oh how they must’ve laughed as they looked down from those walls. They would have insulted and abused the Israelites. Maybe the world is looking at you and laughing at your faith. Do not worry what is foolishness to the world is faith for a child of God.
1 Corinthians 1:18 18For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
Understand, their faith was really tested here. Each day they made circular trek around the city and nothing happened. On the seventh day they circled the city once, Joshua told them to go again, as if they need to keep trying until they succeed. They circled the city 7 times and still nothing happened. I wonder how tested their faith and patience became. Waiting time is not wasting time. God’s delays are not necessarily denials. Some of you have done your rounds with your Jericho many times and you’re about to quit just before God moves. God doesn’t work on our timetable. He doesn’t consult our schedule – we need to wait on the Lord and get on His schedule.
Illustration: Naaman the leper was told to dip 7 times in Jordan to be healed of his leprosy. Each time he came up he must’ve looked at himself to see if it is progressively getting better, but it wasn’t. Nothing seemed to be happening. But I know he was glad he kept at it until the 7th time when he was cleansed and healed!
Joshua 6:16,20 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! 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.
God gave them the victory in God’s time.
Today God is powerful to give you victory from whatever difficulty you are going through. There is no such thing that God cannot solve. We are going to shout and worship and the walls of Jericho are going to fall down in faith. Amen!