Spiritual Director · April 23, 2017

Devote #19

And the walls came tumbling down

Have you ever wondered why God tells us all the things written in the Bible? I mean, are we just supposed to read the accounts of the Israelites as history and that’s it? Or could there be more to it than that? Do the accounts we read of great victories over the enemy hold directions for us to follow that will unlock the prison doors that keep us bound. Let me see if I can explain.

Joshua and all the Israelites have crossed the Jordan River and they are now in a position to attack Jericho and capture it, just like God told them. However, there’s a problem. This city of Jericho is surrounded by a huge wall. The town gates are bolted shut. As a matter of fact we’re told the king of Jericho made a decree that no one could come in and no one could leave. Jericho is on lockdown. This place is seemingly impenetrable.

But God gave Joshua a strategy. Walk around the city wall for six days. The order went like this: some soldiers… then the priest carrying the Ark of the Covenant (the presence of God), then the rest of the soldiers, which might have been around 100,000.

Now here’s the kicker. These were their marching orders…

“Don’t shout the battle cry or yell or even talk until the day I tell you to.” —Joshua 6:8

They did that for six days. Then on the seventh day they marched around the city the way they had done the previous six days, only on the seventh day they marched around the city seven times. The seventh time on the seventh day, when the priests blew their trumpets all the soldiers were to shout. The Bible tells us…

“… the soldiers shouted as loud as they could. The walls of Jericho fell flat.” —Joshua 6:20

There you have it – God’s strategy for bringing down the enemy’s strongholds. You see, most often we see what we’re facing and we’re defeated before we even start. We figure there’s no way to overcome. The walls are impenetrable. Or we attack head on, wasting all kinds of time, energy and resources.

But God has a strategy for us. We can overcome the enemy. We can bring down the walls that keep us jailed. We can take back what is rightfully ours as a child of the King. We weren’t meant for failure here. We weren’t meant to be overcome, but to be overcomers.

Here’s my word of encouragement for you today

I don’t know what wall is keeping you from your destination, but why not walk around it for the next six days. Don’t say a word. Then on the seventh day, walk around it seven times and yell to the highest heavens and watch your wall come crumbling down. Let me tell you again… When the enemy gets in your face and tells you to quit, get your faith on and get in his face and tell him, “I didn’t come here today to lose.”

Help me bring the walls down. In Jesus name I ask this, Amen.

—Rev. Dr. MM Marxhausen

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Mark was Spiritual Director for VdC from 2016 to 2019. He's written many of the devotions, especially the Devote and Affirm series, found on this website.