From Sunday School days, and later, on reading the account of the overthrow of Jericho, my mind pictured the Israelites having to scramble over a huge pile of rubble to enter the city. It had seemed possible that the vibrations of the seven day stomping of marching troops, had so weakened the walls of the city that when the army gave the great shout, those walls simply collapsed in a heap of rubble.
In more recent years, whilst on a guided tour of Israel and being shown where those walls collapsed, that image was transformed. We saw where considerable excavation of a section of the wall had taken place, and a deep trench revealed that the wall had not collapsed as a heap of rubble, but what was exposed was intact, it had simply sunk into the ground! The top of the wall had become level with the ground as it would have been at the time!
God`s instruction to Joshua was, "When you hear the priests sound a long blast on the trumpets, make all the people give a loud shout; then the wall of the city will collapse (i.e. "In its place") and the people will go up, every man straight in".
What God had said to Joshua took on a fresh significance as the evidence was there to be examined. This meant that as far as the army was concerned, the defences were down, and they had no difficulty getting in to deal with the city as God had instructed them. It also meant that the house on the wall where Rahab and her family were gathered would be at ground level so the troops could release them without difficulty!
Observing what had been exposed through excavation brought home the truth of how our God carefully puts details in order for His children. This is how He carefully has the details of our lives in order so long as we are prepared to listen to what He says and obey His instructions.
Joshua and his troops could have gone to endless trouble building siege ramps in order to penetrate the city, and lost many soldiers in the process. But by listening to what God had instructed, and doing what He had said, the whole exercise was made so much easier.
For ourselves, The simple lesson is this; to keep in touch with God so that we hear what He is trying to tell us, then follow those instructions in detail and not do things from our own ideas. It is a matter of putting into practice the words of Proverbs 3 : 5 – 6.
Prayer: Father God, thank you that when I follow the ways of Your instructions, what might appear to be insurmountable obstacles become easy to overcome. Please help me to carefully listen when You instruct me, and then willingly obey You, I ask in Jesus` Name. Amen.
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