Scripture and Encouragement

Obedience Before Victory

The story of Joshua marching around Jericho is one of my favorite stories.  Every time I read it, like most scripture, God reveals something new to me.  When my husband and I were going through infertility it brought me peace and comfort.  It was a reminder that even though I couldn’t see the outcome, or some days any progress at all, that God was still working.  During that time in my life this story was a lesson about trusting God.  That season of my life has past and this story has now become a lesson of obedience as well.  So I wanted to share a few things that I think we all know, but sometimes we need to see in action!

Obedience can require great faith and trust on our part.

In Joshua 6:1-5 we read where God has given Joshua instructions for defeating Jericho.  If you know this story then you know that instead of plotting and planning their attack, like any normal military would do, they marched around the city walls.  In order to obey God’s plan he had to disregard his military training for a moment and trust that God’s plan, as weird as it may have sounded, was better than anything his training and experience could have devised.

God may ask us to do something unconventional, or seemingly impossible.

Joshua had to go to the priests (v 6-7) and tell them to take up the ark of the covenant and march with them.  Priests were not normally seen on the battlefield, never mind the ark of the covenant.  So not only was having the priests and ark of the covenant there unconventional, but so was marching around the city in order to collapse the walls.  Let’s be real, it sounds like a ridiculous and impossible plan.  Really God?  Marching around the city, sounding trumpets, and shouting is going to bring down this fortress?  That’s the point though.  What seems strange or impossible to the human mind is not for God.  Thus, giving Him the glory for our victories.  So when you feel that tug and that calling from God to do what seems weird and impossible, know that it really is from Him.  He will call us to such things for His namesake.

Obedience brings victory.

For seven days Joshua and his men marched around the seemingly impenetrable wall of Jericho.  I think we can probably say that had Joshua not been obedient and proceeded with a “human plan” the outcome would have been very different.  If we go back to verse 2 we see that God told Joshua “…I have delivered Jericho into your hands…”  God had already given Joshua the city of Jericho before he had even given him any instructions.  God has given you the victory in your battle, BUT it requires obedience. We need trust to do what seems impossible and faith to know He will fulfill his promise.

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