Challenge of Change

24th November 2013


1.    Introduction

·        Change is always uncomfortable – we prefer the comfort zone, place of safety.

·        Change is essential to keep us moving in what God is doing.

·        Change is an opportunity to grow deeper in faith and experience more of God.

·        E.g. Mark 4:35 “Let us cross over to the other side” => vision of harvest of opportunity.

·        E.g. Joshua – Time of change – of harvest.


2.    Focus on God – not in People and Circumstances.

·        Josh 1:1-2  “Moses my servant is dead – now therefore arise”.

·        People were focused on grief, loss, disappointment about unexpected change.

·        Grieving is appropriate to recognize loss.

·        Gods directive: Let go past – focus on God and His purposes – unchanging.

·        Change is uncomfortable – turn focus to Jesus to hear Him afresh.
Heb 13:5 “I will never leave you or forsake you”.


3.    Expect Gods Grace to Overcome Challenges

·        Josh 3:14-17 “The waters that came down from upstream stood still”.

·        This time of harvest was the worst possible time to cross the Jordon.

·        The river had swollen over its banks, lions came out and attacked people.

·        Natural circumstances seemed impossible – Gods word – Go forward (Jer 49:19)

·        So they went forward – God moved on their behalf – heaven came to earth

·        Don’t focus on the swollen river, the lions, the difficulty – expect God.
Heb 4:15 “Come boldly to throne of grace” – affirm mercy and grace to help.


4.    Walk in New Covenant Love.

·        Josh 5:2-8 “Circumcise the sons of Israel again the second time”.

·        Circumcision was the outward evidence of the old covenant.

·        Our circumcision is one of the heart by the spirit (Rom 2:29)

·        Process is painful, vulnerable – process of repentance and faith.

·        We are called to walk in New Covenant Love…
Jn 13:35 “By this will men know you are my disciples if you have love one another”.

·        E.g. Lk 9:51-56 “Shall we call down fire from heaven?”

·        Jesus rejected by Samaritans – acted badly towards Him.

·        Could have been a blessing but they rejected Him, refused Him access.

·        Issue was personal opinion – temple issue Jn 4:20, 24

·        Disciples reaction: Shall we call down fire from heaven? – judgment as Elijah did.  They operated out of OT thinking => judgment, disapproval, rejection.
v55 “You don’t know what spirit you are!”

·        Pride, anger, personal revenge, covered with zeal and justified in their minds.

·        Spirit of Christ is loving spirit!

v56 “Come to save not destroy”
Matt 5:44 “Love your enemies, bless those who curse you.”

·        We can call fire of judgment from heaven by how we speak to people
- criticize, judge, speak evil of others.
e.g. (i)  People
choose to leave – don’t judge, speak evil of them, pray and bless
        (ii) People choose to stay- don’t judge, speak evil of them, pray and bless

·        “Don’t know what spirit you are of” – pride, bitterness, hate, anger

·        When we attack believers with words we attack Christ the head (Act 9:4)
Eph 4:29-5:2 “Walk in love – don’t grieve Holy Spirit”


5.    Expect Fresh Encounter and Revelation.

·         Josh 5:13-6:2  “He lifted His eyes and looked and behold a Man stood”

·         Expect fresh encounter and experiences with Jesus.

·         Jesus did not take sides – he is the Head and expects all to submit

·         People tend to focus on who is right and who is wrong?
                                           are you for us or against us?

·         Jesus is Head and Commander – He directs people.

·         When Joshua yielded – he received fresh revelation – vision of victory.

·         Our best days are ahead
Jer 29:11 “I know the thoughts I think towards you, thoughts of peace not evil, to give you a future and a hope”.