Joshua : A Good Finisher

8th July 2012 – Sermon by Rev. Prabhu

Joshua, a good finisher

Joshua 24

 Introduction

How we begin is important and how we finish is equally important.
Joshua’s farewell speech reminds us that we need to finish well

Israel had a limping experience all along. They appear to be giving up half way through.                                                                                                                  
Joshua’s last words were very strong and he wants his people to get serious about the Lord.
He was the first one to lead the way

I.  Joshua made the right choice (14-15)

 A good finisher has to make a right choice.
 Life is full of choices

We cannot serve the Lord and serve the world at the same time.   Matt 6:24 & Lk 16:13

A spiritual man always makes the choice based on facts not on feelings.

He narrates from the past the facts with experience.

–          You saw with your own eyes what I did to the Egyptians. Then you lived in the desert for a long time. 24:7

–          They fought against you, but I gave them into your hands. 24:8

–          So I gave you a land on which you did not toil and cities you did not build; and you live in them and eat from vineyards and olive groves that you did not plant.’ Josh 24:13

–          God blessed them v10

Joshua told the people that they had to choose between Yahweh and the gods of Egypt.
Elijah in Mt Carmel called Israel to choose between God and Baal. I kings 18

“But as for me”.

II. Joshua’s choice reflects his life time commitment. (15-24)

 “My house hold will” – An unconditional commitment – of his family

The people thought about all the things Yahweh had done for them, so they decided to follow Him.

An affirmation from the people, “we too”.

–          Joshua wanted a commitment from Israelites too (16 -20)

–          There was a verbal affirmation from the people (16-18)

–          Joshua wanted total Commitment from the people

–          As a leader he wanted his people to remain faithful till the end.         

People’s positive response (21-22)

–          They have to show in action – to renounce other gods. V23

–          Joshua demanded action more than words (23-24)

–          Joshua told the people to throw away foreign gods.

–          A commitment requires more than words, there must be actions.

A mission accomplished

They were their own witnesses of their commitment V 22

It was a covenantal response for which they were their own witnesses
III. Joshua erected a monument for Witness? (25-27)

 Monuments are not just for memories

–          God’s leading – And Joshua set up at Gilgal the twelve stones they had taken out of the Jordan. – Joshua 4:20-24

–          God’s discipline – Over Achan they heaped up a large pile of rocks, which remains to this day. Joshua 7 :26  Therefore that place has been called the Valley of Achor ever since.

–          God’s witness for commitment. Then he took a large stone and set it up there under the oak near the holy place of the Lord. Josh 24;26

 

They all speak of the faithfulness of God.

Stones will speak if we don’t remain faithful

 IV. Joshua was a movement Joshua 24:29-31

 He completed his task given to him Joshua 23:4

He died well       V 29 & 30     

He was an influence when he was alive.

He was also an influence after he died. V31

God has fulfilled all that he promised to Joshua (Joshua 21:45)

Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to the house of Israel failed; everyone was fulfilled.

Conclusion

 It was battle all along for Joshua.

He clung on to God and endured the battle with an unfaltering perseverance.

The Lord lifted him up.  Joshua 4:14, 6:27

The Lord listened to him Joshua 10:14           

His name was not there in the heroes of faith list, but was hidden there. Heb 11:30