Joshua 5:13 - 6:5

Tearing Down Walls


It was the Mid 1960’s Bubba Smith who was recently  Voted one of the 100 greatest players of all time/ Bubba great name for – Football player

A)Defensive lineman Mich. State / Hall of fame NFL Career


B) Bubba had a very Embarrassing moment in College – Bubba’s Michigan State Spartans were playing arch rivals the University of Michigan Wolverines

1)   Bubba 6’8 280 Defensive end – on this day was going both ways – Playing on the offensive line-


C) His task that day: Keep 5’7 160lbs Leon Morris out of the Backfield

1st Play – Legs / 2nd Same   / 3rd – Shoulder / 4th – Bite your head off …..


D) Leon Morris was able to succeed & do well – on the gridiron because of sheer hard work and Determination


What works on the football field –what works in Business environment – doesn’t necessarily work in the Christian life

A)Our receiving blessing and direction in our Christian walks has more to do w/ Surrender / than hard work & Determination


B) Here in Joshua Ch. 5 – Joshua finds that out – Scene Surveying Jericho Huge wall 30 ft High / 15 thick – he has an interesting ENCOUNTER

1)   One that gives us some great insight into bringing down the walls that can stand in our way – Spiritual growth / Victory  Rd v.13-15


C) Now there are Several things  that I want to pt out that led up to the  Victory that God gave to Israel over Jericho




A)Are you for us or for our Adversaries – No – Commander …..come



B) Who was this man dressed in Full Battle Array ? Jesus { Theophony

1)   How Know: Joshua’s Response – Not Cool – God is sending in the Heavy Enforcements – He worships { And it was Accepted


C) So first we know this was Jesus because of what Joshua Did / And 2nd because of what – The Commander says – v. 15 Take off ……..ground

1)   And notice again – Joshua did so


D) Now it is Interesting to note – Joshua is Preparing for Battle how does the Lord appear – Commander –

1)   Valley of the Shadow of Death – Shepherd to lead us

2)   Blind – Light of the World –

3)   Rev Mist of the Churches –   { I AM – Whatever the Need /


E) Provision = Jehovah Jireh – The Lord our Provider / Direction & Guidance – He is the wonderful Counselor


Why was it so important that Joshua – Have this encounter w/ the Lord and Have this Revelation of Him as the Commander

A)Joshua needed to be Reminded that the Battle Belonged to the Lord


B) Any Victory was not going to come thru – Joshua’s Generaling – but thru the Lord’s Leading { Spiritual Battle

1)   Joshua asked – Are you for us or against us – Answer No – Wrong Question – Not am I w/ You – But Josh are you w/ me


C) God had already Promised – I am w/ You – We have that same Promise –

He sent His Son –

1)   What God is wanting to know – Is are we w/ Him


There is an interesting Phenomenon in sports today – See in the Pros / College / High school – grade school – Any Close game

A)Players Praying – Lord help him make the shot / Lord help him make the Field goal


B) Here is the interesting this though – On one side you have guys praying Lord help him make it – on the other side – As many …… Help him miss

1)   It kind of puts God in a dilemma  who’s prayer does he answer ? Flip a coin ? Does He look to see who is the most Deserving ? – No – Grace


C) Personally I don’t think that the Lord is not so interested in the outcome of the game as He is in the outcome of the person

1)   He wants to be there for the reactions – keep Humble the Winners & Strengthen the losers


Listen when we go into a Sporting event – We can’t say- I know God is w/ us so we are going to Win

A)God is w/ us but it might not be for that reason


B) But when it comes to the things of the Lord – Comes to Spiritual Battle He is w/ us & We have Won !!! 


C) SO  this encounter was important for Joshua to be reminded that the Battle belongs to the Lord

1) Joshua needed to be Reminded that the Battle was a Spiritual one


D) Yes there was a Physical enemy they were to encounter – The Battle was more about the Forces of Satan against the forces of God

2 Cor 10:4  For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds,


E) Great thing for us to remember – Spiritual battle { There might be physical people involved – but – real battle is below the surface

1)   Friction in the marriage / Friction in the Friendship – so & so is being a jerk – Know this Satan is at work


F) Our Approach to the Battle needs to be from that perspective





So the First thing that was necessary for the Victory for bringing down the walls of Jericho was – Joshua needed to see the Lord being w/ Him

A)But Joshua’s Response here is also a Big Key to this Victory – It sets everything else in Motion


B) See Joshua is suddenly aware of the fact that He is in the Presence of a Holy God –

1) And His reaction is [one of Humility – He Bows]  AND  Adoration – He worships


C) Isaiah had a Similar Experience – Isaiah 6 – First 5 Chapters / Isaiah is focused on the Problem – peoples sin & the Plight of the nation

1)   Woe is you – Ch 6 – Vision of the Lord in the Thrown Room – Angels – Crying Holy Holy holy is the Lord - Woe is Me I am Undone –


I think that this is something that is terribly lacking in the American Church Culture today – No Concept of the Holiness of God

A)When we think of God we like to think of Him in Terms that He is Loving / Gracious/ that He is Merciful / Good Shepherd / Father


B) He is a Friend who sticks closer than a Brother – And PTL He is all of those things

1)   But He is also A HOLY GOD


C) EX 19 – Ominous Picture of the Holiness of God – Ten Commandments

The Lord descended upon the MT in Fire

1)     – Mt was filled w/ Smoke / Lightning thundering { Earthquakes


D) David Declared Ps 30:4  Sing praise to the LORD, you saints of His,

And give thanks at the remembrance of His holy name.  


E) The word Holy is used directly used 649 times in the Scriptures – Talks about His Holy Mt / Holy City / Holy name / Holy one of Israel

1)   Dwells in a Holy Temple/ The Holy Place

But this is a side of God that many of us don’t think about too often

A)We compromise – rationalizing in the back of our minds that God will forgive us


B) We hold on to grudges / we Justify our bitterness – because we know that God is gracious


"One day as I was reading the second chapter of I John, I realized that my personal life's objective regarding holiness was less than that of John's.  He was saying, in effect, "Make it your aim not to sin.' As I thought about this, I realized that deep within my heart my real aim was not to sin "very much' Can you imagine a soldier going into battle with the aim of "not getting hit very much?'" (Jerry Bridges, The Pursuit of Holiness )


C) The scriptures declare that our God is a consuming Fire

1)   Now Fire can be a GOOD OR BAD thing depending upon your relationship to it –

D)If your House is on fire & You are trapped inside – it is a terrifying thing

       1) But if it is in the Fire Place it is very warm & Inviting !!!!


E) Our God is a consuming fire – who doesn’t want to Fry us – but Warm us – He wants to consume our lives – Burn brightly for Him


But here is a Startling Truth – That God doesn’t  fry everyone of us is a Because of His Grace Mercy & Love

A)Because the fact of the matter is everyone of us have given Him reason to: We have lied / Cheated / Angry w/ out Cause


B) We have been Hypocrites – a time or two – God would be totally Justified in Frying us – But because He is gracious & Loving He doesn’t !!!!


C) And that is how we need to see those attributes of God – always seeing them in light of His Holiness – Magnifies their Beauty

1)   And Inspires us to Worship & Magnify the Lord

D) See when I have a healthy perception of the Holiness of God – I know that getting fried is what I deserved –

1)   But this is what I am been Given – Grace, mercy & love – fills my heart – w/ a deeper appreciation of the Holiness of God


E) And Motivates me to want to live a Holy life !!!!!


Joshua Has this encounter w/ the Lord – right away – moved to Humility & Worship

A)What would be our Reaction if the Lord came in a Visible Presence here today – Oh – look it is the Lord – Like Joshua on our faces


B) Yet – 2 or 3 gathered his name there in the mist – Inhabits or is enthroned in the Praises of His People


C) God is seeking people who will worship Him in Spirit & in truth

1) Right Perception of His Holiness & His Grace 


D) The reason I pt this out – in relation to our story is Worship communicates an Attitude of Surrender –

1) That is what Joshua was Communicating in this Posture of Worship - Lord it is not about me but it is about You !!!


E) And worship Prepares our hearts to receive Instruction from the Lord

1) It was only after Josh had bowed in Worship & Surrender to the Lord that He was able to say  what does my Lord say to his servant


Now Notice this instruction that Joshua Received – Ch. 6:1-5

A)Now this was one Crazy plan – but it reminds us that the Lords ways are not our ways    Isa 55:8-9


8 "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," says the LORD.  9 "For as the heavens are higher than the earth,

So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.

B) Now I am sure that Joshua had a Preconceived idea about how the Lord might want to take the city – He was a general –

1)   He had fought some battles – I Know this for sure – He wasn’t thinking this


C) You know that so often is our problem: We have these preconceived ideas about how we think that God is Going to work

1) We have a preconceived idea – about what is the answer to the Problem in our marriage / in that friendship / w/ our teenager / In that ministry


D) And that Preconceived idea – can keep us from being open to what the Lord wants to do

1)   I have learned on mission trips that the Lord rarely works the same way twice – So I have to be open { listening / sensitive to His SPIRIT


I wonder how many hear today – faced w/ a wall – in marriage / Conflict w/ a Friend – Wall in the work place – Struggling Porn / Drugs / Bitter

A)Because you haven’t come to the Lord in Worship & Surrender – You haven’t prepared your heart to receive instruction


B) And when the Lord has tried to instruct- sermon / word / thru a friend – you haven’t listened

1) because you have an idea of what Should happen – what the Problem is


C) Listen are you at that place today where you would say like Jesus Not my will be done but yours Lord – that is what I want you Will!!!!


D) Oswald Chambers – My Utmost for His Highest – Get into the Habit of saying speak Lord – and Life will become a Romance


E) I like that because I know that the best times in my relationship w/ Denise is when she is saying to me Speak Lord –

1)No is when – we are on the same page – communicating – going after the same things – Open to the Lord – Closeness{ So too w/ the Lord


So Joshua receives this Crazy Plan – March around the city once a day for 6 days – 7th day – 7 times – 13 trips around the city

A)If this was  My Plan – Once time – Josh the same – but here we learn that not only is the Lord’s ways different from ours but so is His timing


B)Most of the time the Lord’s timing is slower than ours – We have a hard time w/ that – Fix it Now / Bless me Now / Job now / Healing Now


C) Now if I were to ask you what has been or what is the greatest challenge to your faith ?

1) Or what is the one thing in life that presents the biggest obstacle in your ability to completely trust God ?  What would you say?


D) I wonder how many of us would answer / greatest challenge /biggest obstacle is when God does not act or respond the way we expect Him to

1) And how many times do those feelings come when we think that God is taking too long !   We can become disappointed w/ God !


E) We start to think that God has let us down !   we interpret God’s delays as denials            

1) Vending machine / stuck / shaking /  We do that w/ Him !


F) We need to learn to wait & Realize that God’s timing is Perfect – He is never late !!


Dr. Alan Redpath in his commentary on Joshua suggest that many people don’t see the answers to their prayers simply because they have stopped one round short in their conquest of their personal Jericho. We may have been doing the right things, but we simply stop doing them.


Why did the Lord have them wait ? My own personal opinion was so they could see the impossibility of the situation !  

A) Each day those walls seemed bigger ! Each day the task seemed more



Isa 40 :28-31 28  Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength.  Even the youths shall faint and be weary, And the young men shall utterly fall,But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.


As we wait on His timing / His Plan / we don’t get weary or faint hearted / but  He gives strength & Power!

A)Crossing Jordan – waited 3 days – speaks of Rez – Here 7 days # of Completion –


B) We learn from this that there is complete Victory for us when we are walking in that Rez Power

1) Most of the time there is a waiting period in God’s time table


C) Disciples were waiting on the Lord in Jerusalem when the Spirit Came !!


But there comes the time when the waiting Period is over & the Lord says now it is time to act – After 7 days – Trumpet blast – shout

A)     Now here is the dilemma  what if I shout & nothing happens

          What if I step out in faith & fall on my face !  Chance we take !


B) But my experience is when we have sought the Lord – Bowed our hearts in worship & surrender & received that instruction

1)   We have waited on Him – When He says it is time to shout – It is because – He is going to do something { We find


God is able to do exceedingly abundantly beyond all we can think or ask!


C) But the Bottom line is not the Result/ But  it is our Obedience to Him




Close w/ this if you are a believer in JC this story should really encourage you – Whatever the need – Jesus is there to be the answer

A)Whatever wall facing – He is able to bring it down – if you will bow your heart in Worship & Surrender – If you will submit instruction


B) Nothing is too big for Him { Believer be encouraged –


C) But if you are not a Christian – Haven’t committed your life to Christ – this story should scare you –

1)   because this same General Jesus is coming Again – He is going to set up His Kingdom –


D) Those who haven’t bowed to Him – will – but it will be too late