“Follow The Leader”

Posted: February 21, 2013 in Bible Study, Christian Life, Dispensations, Joshua

     Even though the great leader Moses was dead (Joshua 1:1), God wasn’t and isn’t dead.   With the presence of the Lord, the law of the LORD, and the leadership of Joshua, the Israelites should have been successful wherever they went.  But history proves otherwise.  For the Jews, the worst (Jeremiah 30:7) and then the best is yet to come to the believers (Zechariah 12, 14). 

     “Leaders don’t lead forever, even godly leaders like Moses. There comes a time in every ministry when God calls for a new beginning with a new generation and new leadership.”   – Warren Wiersbe

     Death – Why Does It Happen? (Joshua 1:1) “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23).  We’ve all sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).  Even the great man Moses died prematurely because he violated a clear command of the Lord (Numbers 20:7-13; Deuteronomy 32:48-52; 34:7).  We too can hasten our death by committing a “sin unto death” (1 John 5:16).  Do you know what it is?  Although death is a general rule, there is an exception to it (Hebrews 9:27; 1 Corinthians 15:51).  Do you know when it will take place?  Are you prepared for it?

     Leaders – Who Needs Them? (Joshua 1:1) Throughout human history there have been good and bad leaders.  “When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; But when the wicked man rules, the people groan” (Proverbs 29:2).  There is only one man, the God-man, the Lord Jesus Christ who will be able to rule with absolute righteousness toward all His subjects.  One day (perhaps sooner than most people think) He will return to this earth to rule as the “King of kings and Lord of lords” (Revelation 19:16).  Do you know what must happen before He does this?  Will you reign with Him (2 Timothy 2:12)? 

     Land – Who Owns It? (Joshua 1:2)  Perhaps the most contested piece of real estate on earth is found on the eastern side of the Mediterranean Sea.  Jews, Muslims, and some Christians claim that it belongs to them.  But what do the Scriptures teach?  God made an everlasting, one sided covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and their descendants (Genesis 15:18-21).  Although the Jews have been expelled from the land on several occasions because of their disobedience (Deuteronomy 28), the believing Jews must eventually get all of it from the River in Egypt to the Euphrates River.  This, we believe, will happen during Christ’s millennial reign on this earth (Isaiah 2:4, 9:7; 35:1ff; Daniel 2:44, 45; Revelation 20:1-7). 

     Encouragement – Who Needs It? (Joshua 1:6, 7)  After Moses died General Joshua, no doubt, was filled with a lot of fear and trepidation. He needed to hear God reassuring him that He would continue to be with him as He had been with Moses.  Being a leader can be very lonely.  God’s Word, whether given orally as it was to Joshua or in written promises in the Bible, can/should be a source of great encouragement to every Christian.  Believers should assemble together regularly to stimulate each other to love and good works (Hebrews 10:24, 25).  If you’re a Christian, are you doing this?  The early, persecuted Christians asked God for boldness to proclaim the Gospel that included the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ (Acts 4:29).  Some believers, like Barnabas (Acts 4:36) are very good at encouraging others (1 Corinthians 12:8).  

     Meditation – What Do You Think About? (Joshua 1:8).  Human beings think, but not all people think correctly or as God does (Isaiah 55:8, 9).  Upon what do you think during your discretionary time?  Some people get involved in the wrong kind of meditation and allow demons to control their minds, perhaps without their even knowing about it (1 Timothy 4:1; 2 Corinthians 2:11).  Some people even attempt to communicate with the spirit world as King Saul did (1 Samuel 28:7).  Although the devil and demons know much more then we do, they aren’t omniscient like God is.  They can convey some limited and accurate information to people through someone who is yielded to them.  The devil and demons know and can quote the Scriptures well (Matthew 4:1-11).  They know that judgment day is coming to them but they don’t know exactly when that will happen (Matthew 8:29). True Christians will be involved in judging fallen angels (1 Corinthians 6:3).  Need some good things to think about?  Try these things (Philippians 4:8).

     Following Orders – Who Needs To Do This? (Joshua 1:10).  Any form of government is better than anarchy.  Although some false teachers suggest that Christians don’t need or aren’t under any sort of rules, the Scriptures teach otherwise.  Each country has its set of rules to govern its people.  They must be obeyed unless God’s rules supersede them (Acts 5:29).  Christians have “House Rules” too.  Those who try to live according to the rules of another house or time period will encounter problems with the Lord.  Do you know which rules are to be applied to believers today:  The Mosaic Law, Grace Principles, or Kingdom principles?  If you need help, ask for one of our FREE “Dispensational Charts.”

     Rest – How Can One Get Some? (Joshua 1:13).  Thankfully, the God who made man out of the dust of the ground also wants him to have a day of rest.  Most people take more than one day a week.  The Jews, living under the Mosaic Law, had to observe Saturday as a day of rest.  Those who violated it were to be stoned as was one man who picked up sticks on the Sabbath (Numbers 15:32ff).  Those who traveled more than a Sabbath’s days journey on Saturday violated the Law too (Acts 1:12).  That’s less than a mile.  Today, Christians aren’t under the Mosaic Law as their rule for living but are governed by Grace principles.  Do you know where they are found?  As the body needs periodic rest for it to be rejuvenated (Mark 6:31), so do the soul (Matthew 11:28, 29) and spirit (Romans 12:2; Ephesians 4:23).  Are you getting any of it?

     Promises And Vows – What Precautions Should Be Taken? (Joshua 1:16).  Many entrepreneurs are self motivated and enthusiastic about making money and getting ahead in life.  They have a lot of self confidence that pushes them on to bigger, better, and more expensive toys.  Some words of caution are in order.  Jesus said, “Without me you can do nothing” (John 15:4).  James, the Lord’s half brother reminds us that our lives are like a vapor that appears for a little while and then is gone (James 4:14).  He tells us to use the words “Deo Volente” on a regular basis.  Do you know what that means?

     Faith – What Should We Pass On?  Each generation of believers must pass on to the next generation the truth about God and how they can be saved (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4) and grow spiritually (2 Peter 3:18).  Forgetting God leads to dire consequences (Romans 1:18-32; 6:23; Revelation 21:8).  Remembering and obeying God will bring true success and lasting rewards to Christians (1 Corinthians 3:1-15).  Let us be strong in the Lord and victorious over the devil and his solicitations to sin (Ephesians 6:10-17).  As believers who will overcome, let us be of good courage “because [God] who is in us is greater than [the devil] who is in the world” (1 John 4:4).   

     Until He Returns – What Should Christians Do?  “…be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58). 

     Questions?  If you have questions or comments, call us at 805-238-3549 or visit our web site at www.kelseypeach.com.  Our web logs “Blogs” are usually a summary of our talks on Sundays that sometimes can be heard on the Internet.

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