Battle Strategies

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Battle Strategies
Text: Joshua 5:1-11
Occasion: General
Audience: Adults
Theological Tradition: General
Topic: Circumcision, Covenant
Author: D. Mackey


God is in charge/His ways are not our ways/Always be on God’s side,

How to Get There

Israel miraculously just crossed the Jordan River. By the river stopping, God just proved He was more powerful than any local god. (fertility gods, in control of the local waters)

The local inhabitants are terrified of Israel, so what’s the logical thing to do? Attack! But what does the Lord tell Joshua? Circumcise the men. That puts the army out of commission for perhaps three days or more. Then they go celebrate the Passover. Why?

  1. Remember God’s ways aren’t our ways. Period
  2. What does Passover remember? The deliverance of these people’s ancestors’ from slavery in Egypt, plus the beginning of their journey to the Promised Land. And now they were here!
  3. Circumcism. What does that stand for? Read Genesis 17:1-14. Circumcism is a sing of God’s covenant that He will protect Abraham and his descendants and give them the Promised Land. Circumcism is a sign that Abraham’s descendants have accepted their part of the covenant.

What happened here is not the Israelites calling for God to be on their side, but rather a declaration that they are not on God’s side.

Are you on God’s side?

Things to Watch For

This passage must be placed into its' context for it to make any sense. Why were they being circumcised? What came before and after? The people must know this or the message is weakened.

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