I recently taught/preached a series of Lessons/ Sermons on a paragraph in Ephesians, the material about our wearing “the whole armour of God.”
Today’s Text from Joshua also blends so well into Paul’s advice there, Ephesians 6:10-18.
Joshua is about to lead the Jews into battle. Their first encounter, the formidable city of Jericho! A little army taking on a huge metropolis!
But just prior (only a few days) to the engagement, Joshua 5:13-15 tells us of an event. An (I believe) Old Testament, pre-incarnate Appearance of our Lord Jesus Christ!
“And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a MAN over against him with his SWORD drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries? And he said, Nay; but as CAPTAIN OF THE HOST OF THE LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my LORD unto his servant? And the CAPTAIN OF THE LORD’S HOST said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so.”
What a “militant” setting!
Jesus (the Prince of Peace) also being the CAPTIAN OF THE LORD’S ARMY! (Yes, “host” literally means “army” or “armies!)
And what an “encouraging” scene too, for Joshua! Soon to lead Israel into battle, primarily armed with the promises of God!
Yes, this is God, no doubt. God the Son … due to the fact that He accepts worship from a human being. No mere angel would have ever done that!
I’m wondering today …
When WE face trials and hardships and spiritual conflicts … can we claim His Presence? That of This Great Captain?
Hebrews 13:5 … “He (Jesus) hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”
Matthew 28:20 … “And, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” Jesus being the Speaker!
2nd Corinthians 10:4 … “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds.” Wow!
Ephesians 6:14-17 … “Having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”
Did you notice? Truth, Righteousness, the Gospel of Peace, Faith, Salvation, and the Word of God … this is simply a way of restating JESUS, JESUS, JESUS!
Yes, He is with us.
Yes, He is still Captain.
Yes, there is victory in Him!
No wonder Paul avers … “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” Philippians 4:13
— Dr. Mike Bagwell
For those of you who want to study more … compile a list of all the times Jesus appeared in the Old Testament, long before his Virgin Birth at Bethlehem!