Your Obedience - God's Glory

Joshua is one of my favorite people from the Bible. I love the description of his faith and obedience, and I am always encouraged by the blessings God gave him for his follow-through.

And the LORD said unto Joshua, See, I have given into thine hand Jericho, and the king thereof, and the mighty men of valour. And ye shall compass the city, all ye men of war, and go round about the city once. Thus shalt thou do six days. And seven priests shall bear before the ark seven trumpets of rams' horns: and the seventh day ye shall compass the city seven times, and the priests shall blow with the trumpets. And it shall come to pass, that when they make a long blast with the ram's horn, and when ye hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the wall of the city shall fall down flat, and the people shall ascend up every man straight before him. Joshua 6:2-5

Now, I am not a mighty man of valor, but I can just imagine the very human thought Joshua must have had at this point. "Walk in circles for six days, then seven more times on the seventh day. Blow the horns and let out a shout ... seriously?"  

Step back from Joshua's life for a moment and think about your own. If you're anything like me, the Lord's guidance doesn't always make sense. Love people who don't love me back? Keep going when everyone else has quit? Do something that the world may think is foolish? Seriously?  

Joshua's situation was no different than ours - it was just in a different setting. God had already given them the city, so now they just had to obedient to His direction.  

And Joshua the son of Nun called the priests, and said unto them, Take up the ark of the covenant, and let seven priests bear seven trumpets of rams' horns before the ark of the LORD. And he said unto the people, Pass on, and compass the city, and let him that is armed pass on before the ark of the LORD. Joshua 6:6-7  

There is no hint of hesitation between verses five and six. We don't know if Joshua was confused or alarmed by the words of the Lord, but what we do know is that he immediately obeyed them. He obeyed them without making a deal with God, trying to talk his way out of it or make himself not look so silly in the process. 

Have you ever tried to compromise with God? Is there hesitation in your follow-through? Is it easier to question and procrastinate than actually comply with the will of the Lord? Joshua didn't think so.  

And it came to pass, when Joshua had spoken unto the people, that the seven priests bearing the seven trumpets of rams' horns passed on before the LORD, and blew with the trumpets: and the ark of the covenant of the LORD followed them. And the armed men went before the priests that blew with the trumpets, and the rereward came after the ark, the priests going on, and blowing with the trumpets. Joshua 6:8-9 

And it must have been a convincing presentation of God's Word to the people as well. We don't read about any questioning or complaining among the people, either, when they learn about God's plan for the week. It says here that when Joshua finished speaking, the priests obeyed. Then the armed men obeyed. The blowing of trumpets and passing by of the people came just as God had spoken - with pure obedience.  

And it came to pass at the seventh time, when the priests blew with the trumpets, Joshua said unto the people, Shout; for the LORD hath given you the city. Joshua 6:16  

Can you imagine that seventh day? A week of walking in circles and suddenly you know it's time. Joshua ordered the shout and it came without question. But it wasn't because Joshua gave the command. It wasn't because the people were ready for this to be over with. And it certainly wasn't because they were looking forward to the bloodshed of the people inside those walls.  

God had given His people this city. He had given them an instruction. They were following through to give Him all the honor and the glory for the victory of the day. Instead of laughing and changing the plan to fit their pretty little picture, they simply obeyed.  

So the people shouted when the priests blew with the trumpets: and it came to pass, when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city. Joshua 6:20  

The outcome of obedience is always the same - whether it's in the accounts from the Bible or the memories of our own walk with Him. God is faithful and just to do what He says He's going to do. When we carry out His commands - with the right heart attitude - we can stand amazed as He tears down walls, gives us the city and makes a week's worth of walking in circles more than worth it.  

So the LORD was with Joshua; and his fame was noised throughout all the country. Joshua 6:27  

Whose fame do you really think was travelling throughout the land? Sure, Joshua's name was probably on the lips of everyone who knew the story of what happened in Jericho that day. So it goes when something spectacular happens. But more importantly, the wonderful works of God were going out as well. People everywhere were hearing about how God had used His people to cause something wonderful to happen.  

Your obedience brings glory to God.

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