Marching On

Bible Book: Joshua  23
Subject: Submission; Progress; Faithfulness; Christian Living; Future

Joshua 23 and 24

We now come to the end of the book of Joshua and the end of our series, "Living Life To The Max". We have covered a lot of ground. For the material to be helpful we must apply it in our lives in the future. This is a timely message as it comes at the end of one year and the beginning of another.

Many are wondering what will happen this next year. That is impossible to know. But we can commit ourselves to marching on through our commitments to the Lord this next year.

As we come to the end of the series and the end of the book Joshua, we see the events leading up to the end of his life. He calls the leaders together in chapter 23. He calls the people together in chapter 24. Today I want to talk about us marching on in victory always seeking to live life to the max. What does it take?

I. Leaders That Are Submitted To The Lord

It is not by coincidence he calls the leaders together first. They are the ones who will set the tone for the rest of the people. "Everything rises and falls on leadership." We are all leaders in our own ways. Think of your role as a leader. It may be as a family leader. It may be as a church leader. (That involves any area of service.) It may be a community or business leader. It may be as a student who influences younger students. We all have roles as leaders. We are responsible not only for our own lives but also for the lives of those the Lord gives to us to lead.

II. Lessons That Are Secure Through The Lord

God gives to us a promise. 23:4-5. God talks about rest and He talks about battles to be fought. This is how our victory works in the Lord. Our victory was gained when Christ died on the cross. When we accept His forgiveness and His salvation, the victory is ours. But there are still pockets of resistance that must be dealt with in each of our lives. God promises to us victory as we continue to follow His plan.

A. There Is A Prescription For Victory, Joshua 23: 6-16
1. Satisfaction Vs. 6

Satisfaction found in a commitment to God's word. The key to victory is to continue to practice God's word.

2. Separation Vs. 7

We are to avoid allowing the world to penetrate us as we penetrate the world. Worldliness is a subtle thing. It comes on us so slowly we don't know it has us until we are in bondage to it.

3. Submission Vs. 8

The word cleave is the same word as used in Genesis when God speaks of the relationship of a husband and wife. The word means to be glued together. Half-heartedness is the major destroyer of one's walk with God.

4. Sincerity. V. 23:11.

True love is the golden thread that holds the fabric together. If you truly love the Lord, it is not hard to submit to the Lord. If you truly love the Lord, it is difficult to stray from the Lord. When we violate the love of the Lord it is going to hurt. "God isn't going to allow us to sin successfully," says Charles Spurgeon. Sin will make the Christian miserable.

III. Love That Is Steadfast In The Lord

In chapter 24 Joshua gathers the people together and reminds them of some things. Vs. 1-13. Joshua walks them through their history. It is good for us to look back over the past. This is a good time of the year to do that. Where did we succeed? Where did we fail? What did we learn we can take into a new year? Beginning in verse 14 he talks to them about their responsibility.

A. We Are To Serve The Lord

15 times this phrase is used. We were saved to serve the Lord. We ask too often what the Lord is going to do for us rather than what we can do for Him. I shared with a group of folks recently that the way a church can become a part of the community again is to ask what can we do to help. The Lord inspires service in His name.

B. We Are To Choose The Lord Vs. 15

This is true in salvation. It is true everyday. It is true individually. It is true for the family. We are in a battle for the family. It is a battle that requires wisdom, perseverance, and commitment.

C. We Are To Be Serious About Our Promises To The Lord Vs. 16,27

It is one thing to make a promise. It is something else to live up to our promises. God takes our promises very seriously. We must as well.