Increasing Our Awareness and Dependence Upon God
Ill. Review Joshua is the appointed leader of Israel. Moses has died.
Orders from Moses to Joshua are to cross into the Promise land and drive out and destroy people who live there. This was not just to be a show of military might but a demonstration of how to live and sustain the supernatural life with God leading us from victory unto victory.
The night before crossing over the Jordan, Joshua has an encounter with the Lord. At first he does not know it is the Lord because the Lord appears as a man with a drawn sword.
Joshua 5:13-14 MEV
3 things Joshua had to learn that we must learn in order to live a supernatural life in the Promise land. The Promise land is not heaven. It is here and now with enemies, battles, attacks to overcome.
1. We are never alone - Immanuel = He showed He is always with us in 3 places:
Bethlehem = God with us
Calvary = God for us
Pentecost = God in us
Xns are like the children of Israel in the sense we are here to take the land by bringing the gospel to people all around us.
2. We are only 2nd in command. Joshua learns he is not the captain of army but the Lord is captain of the hosts. Lord of hosts – 285 times = Supreme ruler over all.
- In NT we see Jesus is Lord over all. We have been bought with a price and we are not here to do our own will but to find, follow and fulfill His will and plans for our lives day by day. We are to live dependent upon Lord and come to Him for His directions and guidance and learn not unto our own understanding.
- We are not to make self directed decision according to what we only see or feel. We are to live a Spirit-led and directed life which will result in supernatural life and peace (Romans 8:6).
3. We are to believe God’s Works are finished and in order to experience His Life and victory.
- This is where we lose most of the people of God!
Ill. So many times God tells Joshua and His people – “See I have given you the land.” In the natural you can’t see it. You see it with eyes of faith that hear and believe God rather than waiting to see then believe.
- To Thomas after resurrection Jesus appeared and said, “Because you have seen Me, you now believe. Blessed are those who have not seen, and yet have believed.” Jn 20:29
A couple verses later scripture says,
“But these (the Bible) are written that you might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.” Jn 20:31
Believing God is what turns the lights on in your house! The power is turned on by believing what God says and acting on it. This will require you start moving before you see anything happening.
God has ordained that everyone who walks with God must take steps of faith. Faith is trusting God more than what you see or feel.
- This life is to be a supernatural walk with God leading your steps to walk in His victory.
Ill. A man asked me to come and pray for a pastor who had something wrong with his knees and he could hardly walk. I prayed and then told the translator to tell him to check it out and try to do something that he normally could not do. The Translator said, “You want me to put him on the spot like that?” No I want him to exercise some degree of faith because faith without works is dead. He didn’t do anything and we left.
- The power (life of God) comes when someone believes God not just when you pray. But power must also be received and acted upon.
What if I prayed in faith for healing but I see nothing changed?
1. Hold your position – this is warfare! Abraham held position for 25 years! “Cast not away your confidence . . .” Ask God to show you if you still are in unbelief or doubt.
2. To ask God for something He says is already done means I don’t believe it is done. (like salvation).
3. Occupy yourself with praise and thanksgiving.
4. Don’t get snared with the words of your mouth. Prov.6:2
5. “The Prayer of faith will save the sick.” James 5:16
ill. The prayer of faith has been prayed by everyone of you who are born again. You had to Romans 19:9-10 in order to get saved!
- We are made in the image of God so that we rule with the words of our mouth and make things happen.
Here is where most Xns refuse to move forward in faith. Yet this is the place we cross over into Promised land living. God uses this example of Israel and the generation who died in the wilderness as an example and warning for us today.
We could end up the same way! ill. How many Xns will have DNF on foreheads in heaven? Did not Finish! A whole generation of Israel!
“Today, if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion . . . where your forefathers tested Me and saw My works for forty years. Therefore, I was angry with that generation . . . and I swore they shall not enter My rest.
So they could not enter in because of unbelief. Therefore, since the promise of entering His rest remains, let us fear least any of you should come short of it!
For the gospel was preached to us as well as to them. But the Word preached did not benefit them, because it was not mixed with faith in those who heard it. We who have believed have entered this rest.
His works have been finished since the creation of the world. God rested on the seventh day from all His works. Therefore, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God. LET US LABOR TO ENTER THAT REST, LEST ANYONE FALL BY THE SAME PATTERN OF UNBELIEF. (Hebrews 3 – 4 various verses).
Heaven is the reward given from Jesus not our goal. Our goal is to believe God to the point we enter His supernatural rest now regardless of the giants we face, circumstances we are to overcome, troubles and trials we have to deal with.
Life walking with God and resting in His Word makes us unshakable.
Your only labor is to enter God’s rest.
The enemy uses every weapon he has to get you out of rest and faith in God. All his weapons against you are based solely upon lies and trying to get you to believe them. You only become susceptible to Satan’s weapons if you are not established in grace. For example God says,
“No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises up against you in judgment YOU SHALL CONDEMN. This is the heritage of the servants (sons) of the Lord, AND THEIR RIGHTEOUSNESS IS FROM ME.” Isa. 54:17
- It is your job to rebuke and condemn voices that try to get you to believe sickness is yours, lack is yours, guilt and fear are yours, depression is yours! “You shall condemn these things!”
- If any of Satan’s weapons have been getting through to you it is because you are not built up and exercising faith in that area!
There was a generation of people that believed in God and did all the religious church stuff – the wilderness in the Tabernacle – sacrifices – YET they did not worship God the way He wanted!
They died in a dry barren wilderness – not their destiny. Near the land flowing with milk and honey but dying within a few steps of reaching it.
Ill. One of the biggest problems in the church today is many believers are aimless or without any direction in life. They have trusted God for salvation, but are not surrendering daily their lives to God’s leading and guidance. They are not fighting the good fight of faith to receive all that God has promised that He has already given us. We settle for far less than what God has promised!
It is possible to have a saved soul but a lost life. It happens because people trusted God to get out of Egypt but not enough to get into the Promise land which requires more surrender to God.
Concl: Last week while I was preaching to you – it was if God gave me insight that I did not have until that moment. Worship of God is seeing Him as He is and then falling at His feet in full unconditional surrender. This is not a one time thing but daily surrender to Him and then dependence upon Him for direction. Every worship service is to be for this purpose. Bringing us back to the altar of uncut stones (not mam made religion) but raw and real surrender to God.
Ill. WW2 Japan hit with Atomic bomb and devastated and sent message to General McArthur. What are the terms or conditions of surrender? His answer was clear – Unconditional surrender nothing less. After you surrender then we will tell you the next thing to do.
When Joshua stood before the Lord with sword drawn this was what God was showing Joshua. To enter the Promised land of destiny I have for you will require nothing less than unconditional surrender.
Everyday after this I believe Joshua remembered this experience and he would early in the morning re-surrender his life to God. He realized he was a man with only a certain amount of days on this earth who was under an assignment from God with limited time.
Through surrender and faith dependence upon God he led Israel into the Promise land that their ancestors failed to enter.