“It was by faith that the people of Israel marched around Jericho for seven days, and the walls came crashing down.” (Hebrews 11:30 NLT)
What is it that you’re desperate for God to do for you? Is it financial? Health related? A relationship? A job or career issue? A lost loved one or friend? Whatever it is, on some levels it’s like the Israelites when they faced their first battle after finally crossing the Jordan river into what they hoped would soon become their promised land.
Sometimes when I read the Bible, I don’t stop to ask questions, but when I do that, I often miss the blessing of seeing something of real value and hearing from the Lord. The Bible isn’t simply comprised of words on a page, it’s an alive and breathing portrayal of life and death, faith and hope, victory and defeat. It’s a chronicle of our lives from which we can gain valuable insight if we’ll take the time and make the effort.
Think of the children of Israel as they stood on the shoreline of what it meant to be free. For the most part this is the 2nd generation of free Israelites. They are the children of the slaves who had served the Egyptians their whole lives. These men and women had never known slavery, but neither had they ever had an opportunity to live a life that approximated any sense of being normal. They’d been camping in the wilderness trying to eek out an existence their whole lives.
The men had been well trained, but most had never seen battle and were far from being the seasoned warriors with whom they would soon square off. And to compound the problem, the first city they have to conquer has huge walls that surround the whole city. So, what’s their strategy? They do the only reasonable thing they can – they pray!
And what does God tell them to do? Joshua 6:3-5 says: “You and your fighting men should march around the town once a day for six days. Seven priests will walk ahead of the Ark, each carrying a ram’s horn. On the seventh day you are to march around the town seven times, with the priests blowing the horns. When you hear the priests give one long blast on the rams’ horns, have all the people shout as loud as they can. Then the walls of the town will collapse, and the people can charge straight into the town.”
Okay, sounds reasonable. Get a little exercise (the town of Jericho was estimated to be about 1.24 miles around), play a little music, but it doesn’t seem like a very effective military strategy. Yet, when they obeyed God’s directives to the letter, the walls came down and Israel won the victory. Okay, that’s all well and good, but what does it have to do with the “walls” I’m facing? That’s a great question, I’m so glad you asked!
Here’s my takeaway. We must do as the children of Israel: they prayed, they listened, they believed, they exercised their faith by obeying exactly what the Lord told them to do, then they watched God work. Remember, prayer is the work, then God works. What’s my point? For the most part, for us as believers in Jesus, our battles aren’t physical, they’re spiritual.
Paul writes in Ephesians 6:12: “For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” Then he goes into the necessity of being well equipped by putting on the whole armor only God can provide.
This is too rich to leave it hang, let’s look at this a little more closely in tomorrow’s post.
Blessings, Ed 😊
One thought on “What Walls Are You Marching Around?”
Thank you for your faithfulness!