The Method to follow God (Josh.1:1-9)
1/5/2014 ITCS morning prayer meeting
After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: 2“Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them—to the Israelites. 3I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses. 4Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates—all the Hittite country—to the Mediterranean Sea in the west. No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. 6Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.5
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. 8Keep 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. 9Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
1) Greeting, First of all I am glad to meet you again in the will of God. Especially for me I praise God for his wonderful work in my way through several things. First God gave his grace to me for my daughter Esther had been restored out of her very chronicle serious sickness. At the last Christmas she stayed at my home for two night. I appreciate you for your constant prayer. Then I understood that our God works that sometimes he work with 100 miles per hour and also sometimes he works with 10 miles per hour for his glory. In this time I realized that fact again in my life. Although we want to be solved our issues in our lives, God works slowly through the process of training. This fact is revealed in the book of Joshua obviously.
2) As we know, the book of Joshua is not a story but a actual direction that reveals how to follow God’s leading. For his success and his prosperity, how did he follow God?
First, Joshua followed God with strong heart. (5-6)
1) “No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. 6Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them. “
Joshua, who received the great mission, needed the courage. God promised not to leave him and his ministry. He emphasized “be strong and very courage.” What does it mean? It means that he needs the strong faith.(7, 9)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. 9Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” True faith is expressed as courage because God is the background of strong power. Whoever takes God the almighty as his foundation shall be strong, bold and not give up his step. As we know, David confessed only the Lord as his strong power in using 8 metaphors in psalms chapter 18: those are; the rock, the fortress, the power, the refuge, the deliverer, the strength, the stronghold, the shield and the horn. (1-5) Just like David, Joshua followed the Lord with the strong heart.
2) So the text reveals that the source of power must be “to walk with God.” What does it mean? It is Immanuel. Strong encouragement comes out of Immanuel “God be with him”, (5 No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. , refer to verse 9) Actually Immanuel is the summarized term of all God’s grace, those are, the presence of God, the fullness of Holy Spirit, the source of blessing and the power of God.
3) Do you have such strong heart in front of this year in our school life? If you want to occupy this year in Christ at your present situation have this powerful heart that Holy Spirit provide through the meditating the Word of God. Although you meet some big problem as stone, first make sure this heart. And seek to it to God sincerely before God in your prayer time. Then you shall receive that surely. Matthew 7:7-8 says “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.“
Second, God demands the complete obedience.
1) Secondly, we should remember that strong courage comes out of the complete obedience. Verses 7-8 reveal that fact. Whoever obeys “the written words”, the Law shall be prosperous. So the Lord told to keep all the word of God and his mouth do not depart out of the Law.“ And also the meditation was emphasized in his heart. Why God emphasize to meditate the Word of God? Here to meditate means to think some themes repeatedly in his mind with proper action those speaking, writing and murmuring. When we concentrate on the word of God shall work in our minds. The secret that breaks out the strong disobedience must be to meditate the Word of God. Therefore we should enjoy the spiritual abundance through the meditation of the Word of God as the Psalms 1:2. “but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.”
– Do you have this plan to meditate the word of God in the new year? Any case, any place and any time, if you meditate the word of God in your mind, you shall find the wonderful grace in your life. Why? The Word of God is the revelation shone in your life as a light. If you want to meet the sun of righteousness in Malachi 4:2 (But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays.) And you will go out and frolic like well-fed calves. , you need to meditate the word of God. In this year we should approach to this point in our school life. So Psalmist confessed that he meditates the word of God for all day long (Ps. 119: 97) “Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long.” and also he praises 7 time every day. “Seven times a day I praise you for your righteous laws.”(164)
Why? Because through that action he could experience the wonderful grace in the Word of God as the sweet tastes, the burning taste and the abundant tastes. “How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” May the grace of God be with you.(163)
2) So God stressed , “so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.” (8) As we obey the word of God, God promised the prosperity and success.
In our future lives we should follow on the way of obedience any time, any place, then God provides the wonderful events and the unspeakable grace to us. If we fall down into miserable state, do not worry about that. Obey the word of God at that situation with your own best to God. Our Lord absolutely shall keep his faithful promise.
And also In our faithful ministry we should believe that God shall take care of us. Look at two case in Christ birth events, then we can find wonderful more obvious fact in them.
Ex: in the case of magi we can find it. They pursued on the star on the sky in order to meet messiah who is the savior of the world, and as they meet some suffering they obeyed the Lord although their enemy set some snare on them.
Ex: In the Joseph and Mary case, we can find the wonderful fact. They met some tribulation in the process of obedience. Then they had some struggles to overcome the situation in their wondering mind, but when they know the will of God, they could avoid the crisis. Obedience in Christ is very very important .
In this year what do you want to do in your situation? The first action should be the obedience in your life. The obedience to the Word of God should be our purpose in our lives. Do you believe in it?
What is the method to follow the Lord in our lives? It is the obedience and submission to the Word of God. So we concentrate on to meditate the Scripture in our heart. Then we shall experience the reality of blessing that Psalms 1:3 points to us. Let’s go to that place in our year.