Our enemies fall one by one. The promise of God are fulfilled in Him. Our battles belong to Him and we are never forgotten or forsaken. Joshua 1, 12
Speaker(s): John Love
11:00 AM on 4/3/2022
P. Love –
Thank you, Lord. Good morning everyone. It’s good to be here, amen! I look over here to my left and see my good
friend, Chris Reagan. Chris, stand up for a moment. Stand right up. That’s Chris. Some of you
know him. If you don’t know him, Chris and I do something extraordinary for our age every
Monday night. We play ice hockey. And we need your prayers. Every time one of us hits the ice
and we fall down or we get knocked down, I know that this is the case with me. I look at Chris
and I think, dear God, will he get back up? I know he looks at me and he thinks, is he dead? Will
he get back up? We keep getting back up by the grace of God. We covet your prayers. P. Duane
George plays with us, too. I think the gentlemen who puts the whole league together, I think he
put us on the same team. I think he knows we’re all from the same church. They call us the
Greater Grace team. Keep us in our prayers. Falling is something we’ve gotten very good at as
believers, but we’ve also gotten very good at getting back up again. Amen! Keep us in your
Would you turn in your Bibles with me to Joshua 1. Let’s pray (Prayer). Joshua 1, I’m just going to
look at a few verses in this first chapter and just kind of highlight them with you. Vs. 2. Notice
these words, “which I will give to them.” Vs. 3. “that I have given to you.” Vs. 5-6, 13, 15. Notice
how many times that word appears just in the first chapter of Joshua alone. God making this
promise and then reiterating it again and again and again. I will give it to you. I will give it to
you. I have given you my word. I swear I will give it to you. These are promises we need to be
reminded of often in our own live, because the parallel to the book of Joshua in the New
Testament is the book of Ephesians. For us, we don’t battle against the Amorites and the
Hittites and the Jebusites and the “Cellulites.” We’re not battling against those groups! We
battle against principalities and powers. Spiritual resistance is what we are up against.
And that spiritual resistance it comes against us because the devil and his forces they do not
want us to inherit the promises of God.
For the children of Israel, the enemies did not want them to possess that land. But for us, our enemies do not want us to inherit the promises of God. Could you imagine if we inherited all of God’s promises? All of God’s blessings? What
would that look like in our lives? It would be blessing. It would be worship. It would be praise all
the time. So, the devil is working overtime to make sure that we do not by faith enter into the
promises of God. He knows if we do, we will have something that God has promised us, this
perpetual rest. Rest.
And rest is something we know we need and something that is alluding us as a nation. We hear
about it all the time. There is more insomnia in our culture today than ever before. I can’t even
imagine how many billions and billions and billions of dollars are being spent to help people get
sleep but it alludes them. I can’t even imagine how many believers are robbed of the rest that
God has promised to them, keeping them from really entering into that rest.
P. Schaller has said recently in our last few services and every time I hear it, I’m actually
encouraged when I hear it. He quotes that hymn. It goes like this, “prone to wander, Lord I feel
it.” “Prone to leave the God I love.” Let me ask you a question? Do you feel that like the hymn
writer wrote? Every time I hear that, that’s me. P. Mark just read from Isaiah 53 and it’s a stark
contrast between what we do, and what is it we do. Well, he read it. All we like sheep go astray.
Everyone of us turn to our own way. That’s us. That’s a perfect illustration of who we are.
But then the next verse is a beautiful example of who God is. What does it say?
The Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. Our role – what is it? Wandering. We are prone to wander. I
like the way one preacher said it. He said if you do not see yourself as the greatest sinner that
has ever lived, you don’t know yourself. What a good statement that is. It’s so easy. We could –
this morning it would be so easy to look to our left, look to our right and say well, they are
definitely greater sinners than I am, right? How easy that would be, right? That relative
righteousness. Sometimes we say, Lord, I know I’m bad. I know I’m a mess, but I thank you that
I am not like these others who are clearly a greater mess than I am. There’s something about
us. That’s the pride that dwells deep within our hearts.
So, to understand this whole idea of how prone we are to wander and then to feel it. I feel it
sometimes. I can be in the middle of worshiping God and praising his name and there’s
actually some wandering at the same time happening in my soul. We know it. We felt it. We
sense it. I am so grateful this morning that as God gave these promises to the children of Israel,
he gives so many similar promises to each one of us. He reminds us as he did with the children
of Israel and I love that he keeps reiterating over and over and over again, I’m giving you this
land. Not only that, but his promise which is I’m going to fight for you. I love that in Exodus 14 when
the children of Israel come to the brink of the Red Sea, and they think they have been
They believe that Egypt is now in the rear view mirror, and they just move on with
God and then Pharaoh hardens his heart. He starts to pursue them. They have no way out. They
are trapped by mountains on the left and mountains on the right and a Red Sea in front of them
and Pharaoh’s hard charging army coming after them. They begin to panic. They begin to look
to Moses. What are we going to do?
Moses hears from God and God says tell the children of Israel to go forward, and tell them this:
they will not need to fight for them. I will fight this battle for them. Don’t we need to hear that
all the time in our lives. God says to you and I the ones that he loves, the ones that he has
redeemed, the ones that he shed his blood for, the ones he has given all his promises to, the
ones he has made his bride, the Body of Christ; he says it over and over again. What? I will fight
for you. It makes you wonder. It makes us wonder. Lord, you told us to be outfitted with all the
armor in Ephesians 6. And that’s true. And the children of Israel, did they or did they not have to
engage in battle with many of the inhabitants of the land? It’s true.
But undergirding their battles and their willingness to cooperate with God so he can give them the land is the fact that
God stands ready to fight for us. Sometimes we forget this because even though we might quote it and say the battle is the Lord’s, we find ourselves in the midst of the battle and we say
the battle is mine and I have to somehow fight my way through this. Even the Apostle Paul said
it in 2 Timothy 4. He said, I fought a good fight. But what is the good fight for you and I? Is it not
simply that we fight to remain dependent on God even in the midst of our battles. That’s the
fight. To fight off the tendency to depend on ourselves and to lean more thoroughly and
completely upon God, his promises, the power of his Spirit and the power of his blood.
I have to tell you this story. I shared it with our teenagers quite some time ago. It’s the story of
this thirteen year old boy. His name was Nadin Khoury.
I think that’s how you pronounce it. He’s five feet 2 inches tall and weighed a hundred pounds soaking wet. He lived outside of Philadelphia, the city of Philadelphia. He was bullied. One day his attackers who were
teenagers, much older than him, much bigger. In fact, there were seven of them. What they did
for thirty minutes one day, they hit him. They kicked him. And they beat him. Now, it wasn’t
bad enough that he and his mother had already escaped from war-torn Liberia. They found
their way to this Philadelphia neighborhood. And now, on this January day, they dragged this
young boy through the snow. They stuffed him into a tree that was kind of branched out like
this. They stuck him in the middle of the tree. They suspended him after that on a seven-foot
rod iron fence.
He survived the attack. But they filmed it. The kids did. The bullies did. They put it on You Tube.
They landed in jail. This story was picked up by a nationally televised broadcast. Then they had
this young man in the studio and they told his story. They actually showed the video. And this
young boy Nadin, he watched it. Tears came streaming down his eyes. And he simply said this,
next time it could be someone even smaller than me. And as he had these tears streaming
down his eyes, next thing you know – it was wonderful – three huge guys walked out from
behind the curtain, all members of the Philadelphia Eagles, the football team. They all came
out. They gathered around this young man. One of them was the all pro wide receiver, DeSean
Jackson and then a couple of huge linemen. They basically sat down with him and said, listen.
We will be here for you. Here is our cell phones.
Here’s our numbers. Anytime anybody wants to bother you, you call us. And you should have seen his little face light up just looking up at these guys and thinking, yeah. Are you guys really my friends? Yeah, we’re really your friends
and we’re here for you. Anytime you need us, you just call us. From that day on, they were just
a phone call away from being his personal body guards. That is awesome. Who wouldn’t want
that kind of protection?
We have it in Christ. We have that kind of protection. And he’s not a phone call away. He’s a cry
away. All we have to do is say, Lord, I’m in these deep weeds and I’m over my head. We could
even say with that it’s all my doing. I need to be rescued. I need to be delivered. I don’t think I
can win this battle. He says, I’m here for you. I’ll fight that battle for you. That’s what Joshua
was saying here in this first chapter. That’s what Heb. 13 says. I’ll turn over there and read it.
It’s a passage I think all of us are familiar with in a good sense. It starts out by saying and God gives us this promise, “I will never leave you, no never, no never, no never, no never” – five
times in the original language. Do you think God was trying to get a message across to us? That
no matter what happens in our world, no matter what unfolds in your world personally, God’s
promise is that I’m never going to leave us, never going to forsake you. And then vs. 6. I like
Because think about it. Think about it this way. What is it that men can do to us? What can they
do to us? Can they lie about us? Sure, they can. Can they injure us? Yes, they could. Can they
abuse us? Yes. Can they terrorize us? Yes. Can they bully us like they did with this young boy?
Yes. But what does God say? I’m your helper. That word is a fascinating word because it means
to run with a shout. It’s almost as if every time we find ourselves in trouble, every time we find
ourselves in a battle that is clearly against us and we are no match for, it’s like Christ comes
running with a shout and on his way he says, I’m coming. I’ll get to you. I’ll deliver you. I’ll
rescue you. You are not in this by yourself. You can trust me. Fight off the tendency to allow
fear to strike your soul and fill your heart.
Just keep believing. Just keep looking to me. Just keep remembering what I promised you and know that all of those promises are yea and amen. What does that do for us? It changes everything because we know that God is strong. Because God is strong, we will find ourselves strong in his grace in 2 Timothy 2:1. Since God is able and we
know he is. Everywhere in the Scripture, we keep reading about how able God is. Because he is
able, what does he say to you and I? You will be able as well. Because he has no limits, I know
this sounds almost outrageous to say but you can say it. We have no limits. I think everyone of
us would agree there is no limit to what God can accomplish in our lives. There is no limit to
how many prayers God can answer. There is no limit to how many mercies can show up every
day in our lives. There’s no limit to the amount of grace that God promises to pour out to be
sufficient in everyone of our lives. I love it.
God said the same thing in the Old Testament to Israel. He said I will fight your battle. He said
that in 2 Chronicles 32:8. Jehoshaphat, when they looked at their enemies, so great, so
overwhelming. I love this comforting promise which comes from God which was simply to say
to the children of Israel as they all assembled and got ready for war and I know that that sounds
so strange. God said take all the necessary preparations. Prepare yourself for battle but once
the battle begins, know this. I will fight for you. I will fight for you. You say, what is the
preparation for the battle? Fill your heart with faith. Saturate your mind with the promises of
God. Draw near to God in the best way that you possibly can.
Sometimes in our lives, we know that this is a reality. Psalm 34:19 happens. What does Psalm 34:19
say? It says many are the afflictions of the righteous. But listen to the next part. But the Lord
delivers us out of them all. What a beautiful promise. Have you noticed that as a believer?
When I think back to my unregenerated, unsaved life, did I have some afflictions? I think so. But
since I’ve been saved, I’ve had more afflictions than you can count, right? Doesn’t that seem to
be the case? Isn’t that the promise from God? Many. Sometimes the unrighteous, the unbelieving world look at our lives and say I don’t know if I want to be a Christian. Those people
are always in trouble. Their always crying out to their God. Their always behind the eight ball.
They’re always having difficulty.
Yes, it’s true but I would rather have difficulty and know that
God will deliver me from all of them, than to be in a world without him and not have any
deliverance. I would rather have many afflictions and I’m not asking for them, Lord. I’m just
making a positive declaration here in the congregation. God fights for you. God fights for me.
How does he do it? I think he does it in so many different ways. He does it with his angels, right? He allows us to
walk into the camp of Israel as David did, and basically said David, you’ve heard about Goliath.
You know how big he is. You know how much his armor weighs. You know how long and how
great his spear is. But I’m going to deliver that giant into your hands. And God did that. So, it’s
God saying in so many different ways, too. Not only am I going to fight your spiritual battles, I’m
ready to fight for your health.
I’m ready to fight for your family. I’m ready to fight so you can
maintain your faith. I’m ready to fight to make sure you are restored when you stumble, when
you fall, because we know something and we heard it recently in one of P. Schaller’s messages.
Yes, the righteous fall how many times in a day? Seven and that number represents the number
of perfection. When you and I fall, we know we perfectly fall! Right? We’re not thinking my life
is perfect. Our testimony is my life is a perfect mess, but I have a Savior. I have a King. I have a
God who fights for me. I have a God who promises that he’s coming and he’s running and he’s
reminding me I am on my way. You will not go through this by yourself and I will make sure that
I will show up at the right time and the right moment. Think about it. He is fighting for you. He
stands up for you.
It was mentioned earlier. I think P. Gary mentioned about the woman caught in the act of
adultery, right? Her accusers drag her before Jesus. I’m convinced they didn’t so much care
about her as much as they wanted to trap Jesus and somehow find him contradicting the law of
Moses. That was the test. She was just the bait. He was the one they wanted to catch. But they
didn’t realize that anybody who is dragged into the presence of Jesus, this is what they didn’t
know. Anybody dragged into the presence of Jesus, he stands ready to stand up for them.
Because that’s exactly what he did. For a time, he was writing something in the ground. What
was he writing? I don’t know. No one knows. Everybody speculates.
I think he was writing what a bunch of losers! Or Reuben, I know what you did last night! Jacob,
I know where you went the other—who knows what he’s writing. The fact of the matter is they
pressed him. they said listen. She’s guilty. Will you not agree with us that she should be stoned
to death? That’s what the Bible says that Jesus stood up. I get the strange feeling that he stood
up between her and her accusers essentially saying this: you want to get to her? You got to go
through me. He does the same thing for all of us. Remember. You’ve been redeemed by the
precious blood of Jesus. If God did not hold back or spare his Son for you and he didn’t. He gave
him up freely. How shall he not freely with him give us all things? That’s how God fights for us.
He fights for our restoration when we stumble, when we fall. He stands up for us. Never sleeps.
Amen! He never takes a break. Psalm 121:3-8. I want you to do this. Turn in your Bible and it’s
important you do that. Sometimes we say, no. I won’t turn in my Bible. I’ll wait to see it on the
screen. It’s much easier. It’s much simpler.
Turn there. Joshua 12. Toward the end of this great invasion, the children of Israel taking the land
that God promised to give them. The narrator in the story of Joshua, he did something
fascinating. Look at vs. 7. Now, notice vs. 9. Notice what the narrator in the book of Joshua is
doing. He is going to list every single king that they defeated. Look at how it is stated. Vs. 9-10.
And on and on it goes. It's almost like God is saying, do you want to see the final score? I’ll tell
you what it is. Thirty one to nothing!
Thirty one to nothing! I think these names of these kings
are listed in here because God wants you and I to add to that list. In other words, in our lives,
we say we’re not battling any of these kings. But we are battling other tyrants. We are battling
other things in our lives that want to control us, want to dictate to us how we live our lives.
We can include in our own lists, pornography, one. Insecurity, one. Fear, one. Selfishness, one.
Bitterness, one. Anger, one. Whatever it is that tries to keep you in bondage, whatever wants to
keep you living in fear. God says write their names down. Make a list. Because when it’s all said
and done, the score is going to be so lopsided you are not even going to believe it. Thirty one to
nothing. I love it. Each line with the word “one” beside it. Imagine what our list could look like. I
know today you might be thinking but it’s not like that. I don’t have that victory yet. It’s simply
because you haven’t received it because God says he’s going to give it to you. He’s not telling us
you’re going to need to fight for it. You’re going to need to sum up all your resources so you are
able to overcome. No, he’s saying the same thing he said to Joshua and the children of Israel.
I’m going to give it to you.
He’s going to do that for all of us. Life is like taking on all of these enemies. The enemies that
would try to keep us from entering into the promises that God has for us. Just in the same
fashion that God drove out those enemies, so he plans to drive out the enemies in our own
lives. So that we would be able to have our own score card, and we would be able to write
down our enemies who they were. And then write that little word beside it, “one.” Defeated.
How? Because God said I’ll fight for you. It doesn’t matter what it is.
Some could say, but I was abused as a child. Well, God says you will be stable as an adult. Well, I
was tempted with drugs. But now look at you today. You’re sober. You’re steady and you have
a sound mind. I don’t think I can continue on this path. God says, you know what? You just stay
the course and you keep looking to me, and you trust my strength and not yours, my ability, not
yours. My power, not yours. I will see to it that your list looks like the same kind of list that
Joshua had. Every single one of the kings. Even Ai. When they suffered that set back, God said
that’s just a momentary set back. We’re going to go back and we’re going to face Ai and that too will be behind us. One victory after another. The score wasn’t 25 to 6. It wasn’t 30 to 1.
It was 31 to nothing. Why? Because God fights for us. He always has and he always will.
You say, how can I be sure he will fight for us? I’ll tell you how. He paid too high a price to
redeem your life. He’s not about to let you go. He’s not about to let another king come into
your soul and dominate who you are. Our score card is going to look just like Joshua’s score
card. As the Apostle Paul said it, nay, in all these things we’re not just conquerors. We are more
than conquerors. Amen? Amen. Would you pray with me.
Please enjoy these sermon notes from the messages preached at Greater Grace Church in Baltimore. These notes are provided to aid in your study and understanding of the Word. Note that these notes do not represent complete, word-for-word transcriptions. Also, they may contain omissions as well as some errors in spelling and structure, etc., as we attempt to provide them as soon as possible. Our hope is that these notes serve as a way to help you search and connect with messages on related subjects and passages. Thank you for your interest in the ministry of Greater Grace.