Joshua's Choice (Joshua 15)
PRINCIPLES OF GOOD DECISION MAKING
Text: Joshua 24:15
Place Preached - (Faithway Baptist College of Canada)
Date Preached - (10/27/03)
Historical Context of Passage – Joshua’s Last Words
A time of rest for Israel (from her enemies – days of conquest behind them). God has given them the land.
During times of prosperity people tend to forget the Lord. That had happened in Israel.
Now Joshua, before he dies, presses the issue with Israel. He presents to them a choice, it is the hour of decision, they must make some fresh determinations.
APPLICATION – Often directed to the family – rightly so! Yet, there is also an abundance of other application including my topic for this morning.
That is principles of good & godly decision making.
You have choices to make – you made a decision to come to this college. You have many important decisions ahead of you.
Here are some principles that affect your choices (not so much everyday decisions, but the great determinations of your life).
I. The Purpose of the Individual
“As For Me...”
God begins with the individual.
I may not know what others will choose, and I cannot choose for them, but as for me...Well...
I do have a choice!!
I can’t do much about others, but I can do something about me!!
A. Separates Us
Joshua was willing to stand alone, if need be.
Proverbs 18:1 Through desire a man, having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom.
B. Strengthens Us
Daniel 1:8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat...
I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something; and what I can do, that I ought to do; and what I ought to do, by the grace of God I shall do. EDWARD EVERETT HALE
II. The Power of Influence
“And My House...”
My house, my family, those closest to me.
Those upon whom I have direct influence. – This is all about Leadership
Do I make those around me better? What is my influence upon them?
Romans 14:7-8 For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself.
8 For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord's.
A. Leadership is Earned
Leadership by example
“As for Me” come first – “We will serve” follows.
B. Leadership is Elevated
God exalts, and lifts up godly, spiritual Leadership
Psalms 75:6-7 For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south.
7 But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another.
C. Leadership is Enduring
One generation to the next.
Joshua had the next generation in view when he said “My House”.
Joshua 24:3131And Israel served the LORD all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders that overlived Joshua, and which had known all the works of the LORD, that he had done for Israel.
III. The Possibilities of Initiative
It is implied that We can and we will - this is something that can be done, the question is will we.
Joshua said we will and they did.
A. Obstacles can be overcome.
The obstacle for Joshua was the idolatry of the people.
We can all stand around looking at the mountain, but someone has to take the initiative if that is to be overcome.
Someone who is not resigned to the “status quo” just the way things are, or everybody else is.
It may seem insurmountable, but once an attempt to overcome it is in motion – the ball is rolling – and some momemntum is built up, it is amazing what can be overcome.
B. Others will take up the “Dream”
Notice the progression from “As for ME” to “WE will”
The congregation of Israel caught on as well. READ vs.16-22
ILLUS: Planters & Waterers
1 Corinthians 3:6 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
IV. The Pursuit of the Infinite
“...Serve the Lord.”
We have only one life – it can only be sold out effectively to one thing. – Let it be serving the Lord.
That’s the only thing of eternal, lasting value.
Philippians 3:13-14 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,
14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Colossians 3:1-2 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.
2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
A. A Selfless Decision
Service is all about others.
B. A Sacrificial Dedication
Romans 12:1-21I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.2And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
It will cost me something, but it is not unreasonable.
C. A Single Devotion
Undivided in focus. This one thing I do.
Ye cannot serve God & Mammon.