March 4, 2006
GOD IS THE VICTORY
Jos 8:1 And the LORD said unto Joshua, Fear not, neither be thou dismayed: take
all the people of war with thee, and arise, go up to Ai: see, I have given into thy hand the king of Ai, and his people, and
his city, and his land:
Ai means "mass, heap of ruins."
There was a battle to be fought, a city to be conquered.
It was a small one, compared with Jericho. It wasn't heavily fortified as Jericho was. But it was important. God said take
all your people of war with you. Today we war not with flesh and blood but against principalities and powers, and spiritual
wickedness in high places. And the weapon we use is prayer, and the word of God, mixed heavily with faith. (2Co_10:3-5)
was sending Joshua back to Ai, to conquer what had previously smitten him and his people. The thing that had overcome them,
they were told now to go up against and conquer. They were to put people on either side of the city, the north and west, to
ambush it after they went in toward the front, and drew them out. They knew the inhabitants would leave the city vulnerable
and come out against them. The men of war would come out to fight, and the armies of Israel would rise up from behind the
city and destroy it.
I was reading back over this and you know came to mind? It was eye opening-
For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the LORD will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your
So, when a Christian goes up to battle a besetting sin, or an obstacle, whatever weakness or battle, whether
it be mental, job related, or whatever, God says you don't have to run. You face that thing. I will go before you and I will
also watch your back. Whew. If that is not worth a shout of hallelujah, I don't know what is?!!! If the enemy is oppressing
your mind (and that has been one of my biggest problems,) or if you are being tempted by things around you that are hindering
you from going forward into the promises of God, he says you don't hide from that thing, you don't ignore it, you face it.
He is with you, and HE IS the victory. Nothing can stand against God. Nothing can defeat God. Glory to his name. Thank you
Father, for helping me see that yes, this is about more than a battle fought thousands of years ago. That it also applies
to me. See how lovely God illustrates how he can help his people? What an awesome, adorable, lovely, BEAUTIFUL and MIGHTY
God we serve!!!!!!!
Remember though, in order for this to work, God had to be the one in charge. Faith had to be in
action. Joshua had sought the Lord, was in communion with him, was drawing close to him. You can see from reading over several
passages, he lingered in the presence of God, in the tabernacle, when Moses was leading the people. God was already preparing
him to be Moses' successor long before Moses died. Remember when Moses went up the mount to get the ten commandments? Joshua
went with him, the word of God says Joshua was his minister.
Exo 33:11 And the LORD spoke unto Moses face to face,
as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man,
departed not out of the tabernacle.
Exo 24:13 And Moses rose up, and his minister Joshua: and Moses went up into the mount
See, even as a young man, before the people of Israel got shut out of the promised land because of their unwillingness
to believe God, Joshua departed not out of the tabernacle. He saw something Moses had with God, and he wanted it, I think.
And I am not talking about the mantle of leadership. I am talking about the relationship Moses had with God. Why else would
he linger in the tabernacle, if not for he craved the presence of the Lord? That was what set him apart, I think. That was
what caused God to choose him for Moses' successor, I think. Joshua had a desire for God, for intimacy with him. He lingered.
He tarried. How often in the Bible are God's people told to wait on him? (Sigh, sigh) I can't help it, this makes my heart
hungry....I have been in his presence, it's intimidating, but at the same time, it thrilled my soul so deep-it's like nothing
I've ever felt in my life. There truly is no greater high than being in his presence. Than feeling his warmth, his love, and
if you wait long enough, hearing his still small voice speak in your heart. THAT will cause faith to explode inside you.
the enemy will fight you to keep you out of that secret closet of prayer. He knows that is where the power is. When you experience
God's presence, hear him speak peace to your heart-the joy that comes, strengthens you. It destroys fear, destroys unbelief.
I want more of that. Everything around will try to distract. Kids, the phone, family, friends, life itself. That's what makes
the early morning hours before daylight such an increasingly special time. There's a renewed hunger in my heart, to not neglect
prayer, and it's a gift from God I asked for. I just want to know him for myself. He has been so good to me. Having him in
my life, knowing he loves me, it rejoices my heart. He knows all my flaws, all my mistakes, all my failures, and yet he loves
me anyway. He's still working on me. He knows I get impatient sometimes, and he's helping me. He knows all my battles and
weaknesses. Yet he loves me. Oh, praise his holy name. No wonder Joshua wanted to linger. It's a fight, though. Your flesh
will urge you to get up, your carnal mind will remind you of all the things you need to be doing, whether it's shopping, cleaning,
or calling somebody, or whatever. But God help us take the authority he's given us over this-and remember what he said in
Phi 3:21 Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to
the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.
Jos 8:18 And the LORD said unto Joshua,
Stretch out the spear that is in thy hand toward Ai; for I will give it into thine hand. And Joshua stretched out the spear
that he had in his hand toward the city.
Stretch out the spear in your hand. We have a sword in ours, which is the
word of God (Eph_6:17). In 2 Ch 20, when Israel was battling the Ammonites, God set ambushments. When they began to praise
the Lord, he ambushed their enemy. That devil thinks he can conquer God's people, but when God's people trust in him, even
though the enemy comes in like a flood the Lord raises up the standard against him-and that standard is his WORD which is
the ROCK. My Foundation. My Life. My hope. It's a contract between God, and his children, binding, forever settled in heaven,
can't be changed. It's my adoption papers, if you will. It gives me rights. Rights to what God has given Jesus, with whom
I am a joint heir (Rom_8:17). And the Word says he has given all things into the hand of his Beloved Son, and I am in him,
(Col_2:9-10) Everything I need is in Him. I am complete in him. He's over everything. The Word of God is my TREASURE. It's
a priceless gift I cherish more than anything I have. It's my hope, it's my children's hope. It's my husband's hope. It amazes
me how he so patiently takes time to teach it to me. To speak to me through it. How he makes things stand out to me and opens
my understanding. Oh, I wish I had a brain and body that could contain it all!!!!
But I noticed as I finished reading
this chapter, after this victory, instead of having a celebration or party, instead of having a feast, they dove into the
Word of God. Joshua sat and read and re-wrote the statutes and laws of God in the presence of the people. I think it is wise,
when God does something great for us, when we get the victory through the Lord over something that has been standing in our
way, not to relax, but to get back in his word. To keep our minds renewed. To keep our hearts humble. Moses had commanded
that the words of the law be written by every leader, and studied, and taught to the people. (Deu 17:18, Deu 27:3; but in
the new covenant which he gave us after Jesus came, he said he'd go one step further and do the writing of the law for us-on
and in our hearts- Jer_31:33
Oh, what precious promises he has given us. What a blessed people his children are.