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06(Joshua 06) Conquest of Jericho

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I.       Assuring His Success (6:1-2)

A.     Shutting the door on God - Fear of the people of God led to closing the doors

B.     Putting up barricades to God underestimates the power of His people

C.     Victory is assured before the battle is fought. (6:2)

§  God is always victorious.

§  If you are on the losing side of a battle, where is God in your struggle?

§  Remember: the issue is not whether God is on your side, but whether you are on His side.

II.    Attacking The Enemy’s Strongholds (6:3-16)

A.     Man’s wisdom built the city – God’s wisdom will tear it down.

§  (6:3). Marching around the city once seems senseless. The people needed to trust in God. Waiting seven days for the city may have been one last attempt by God to give the inhabitants of Jericho a chance to repent. Only the armed soldiers marched. The families and livestock waited in the camp.

B.     God desires worship (6:4)

§  (6:4). The number seven is used 14 times in this chapter, it is a number of completion. Its use along with the use of the ceremonial rams horns, the use of priests and the ark shows that this is more than a military campaign: it is a religious event. Israel was to always remember that God gave them this land.

§  (6:6-7). This is not a needless repetition but an emphasis on the unusual means of victory.

C.     They were armed – there was to be a fight.

§  (6:9). The presence of the armed guard before and behind the ark was an indication, contrary to some, that there was fighting to be done.

§  (6:15). Given the relatively small size of Jericho (5-6 acres) and the number of armed troops for Israel, it is likely that the army column doubled over against itself again and again coming out of the camp until the column was many layers deep all around the city.

III. Assaulting Our Own Sensibilities. (6:17-25)

§  (6:17). Accursed (KJV) here is literally “devoted to destruction”. Here lies one of the most troubling aspects of this story as well as the concept of the annihilation of the Canaanites. This is a moral problem for modern sentiments. How are we going to explain this to our friends? How do we justify this? consider the hoopla concerning the tsunami that occurred. The media was ablaze with stories of fundamentalist Christians who saw that tragedy as the hand of God. I have no reason to suspect God was punishing these poor people, but folks God is going to destroy all of unbelieving humanity with a variety of cataclysmic events.

A.     Many family members and friends are enablers.

§  Rather than confront the sin of a loved one, they keep marching in circles.

§  We do no good to a sinful brother when we don’t battle the sin and selfishness.

B.      Even the rescue of Rahab involved purifying. (23, 25)

§  They stayed outside the camp for a period of time.

§  Then they were assimilated into the congregation.

C.     A curse fell to any who would try to smooth out God’s judgment (26).

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