Faithlife Sermons

How To Be Successful In Life

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I heard about a young lawyer who was called in from the big city to represent a large railroadcompany that was being sued by a farmer. It seems that the farmer’s prize cow was missing from a field through which the railroad passed, and the farmer was suing for the value of the cow. Before the case was to be tried, the lawyer cornered the farmer and convinced him to settle out of court for half of what he originally wanted. The farmer signed the necessary papers and then accepted the check. The young lawyer could not resist gloating a bit about his success. He said to the farmer, "You know, I couldn’t have won this case if it had gone to trial. The engineer was asleep and the fireman was in the caboose when the train passed through your farm that morning. I didn’t have a single witness to put on the stand!" With a wry smile, the old farmer replied, "Well, I tell you young feller, I was a little worried about winning that case myself because that cow came home this morning."
Success…what does it take to be successful? In Joshua 1:8 we’re told what it takes…read…
Joshua 1:8 NASB95
“This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success.
Do you want to be successful in life? We’re told here that there is 1 way to be successful in this world = it involves the Word of God. And there are 2 specific things you need to do if you want to be successful in life…1st thing you need to do: you need to…

1. FEED ON GOD’S WORD.

- Told here This Book of the Law = God’s Word shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night.
- This indicates by the time Joshua was appointed the new leader of God’s people…there was a clear Book of the Law = the Word of God – a book (writing) that could be turned to, studied and followed.
- He was actually instructed to do 2 things regarding God’s Word: 1) It was to stay on his lips 2) It was to stay in his mind.
- The STAY ON YOUR LIPS = meant he was to talk about it – talk about God’s Word – it was to permeate his conversations – this meant he was to be guided by God’s Word – too many today are guided by the world...its ways…pop culture…TV…movies…Hollywood and sports heroes – and their conversations are permeated by so much of the junk in our society -
- Want to be successful in life = must learn to be guided by God’s Word – and let it guide how you talk and what you talk about – talk about the things of God!
- The STAY IN YOUR MIND = meant meditate on it, think on it – the Hebrew word translated here meditate literally means “mutter” – when someone continually mutters God’s Word, he is constantly thinking about it – and then God’s Word can do its transforming work Paul speaks of in Rom. 12:2 : 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
Romans 12:2 NASB95
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
- And as Paul says in Phil. 4:8 : “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.”
Philippians 4:8 NASB95
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.
- Joshua was commanded to be strong and courageous – and that would come from letting God’s Word permeate him – and meditating on it - This was the counsel Moses had given to all the people in Deut. 11:1-9.
- Pastor/author Warren Wiersbe often told pastors and seminary students at conferences: "If you don't talk to your Bible, your Bible isn't likely to talk to you!"
- So have a set time every day to read the Bible – and DON’T RUSH through it – meditate on it, mutter it,
TS – The 2nd thing you need to do: You need to…

2. FOLLOW GOD’S WORD

- You need to be careful to OBEY it – and obey it completely!
- Not picking and choosing what you like or don’t like, what you will follow or won’t follow!
- This is one of the great problems I see in the church today (lives of Christians): this picking and choosing what I’m willing to follow and what I’m not!
- Must understand: God’s 10 Commandments aren’t God’s 10 Suggestions! They are God’s Commandments! And all the precepts and teachings throughout the Bible aren’t God’s suggestions! They are His divine guidance and direction for how to live life and be blessed!
- All the way through the Book of Deuteronomy, Moses laid it out to the people as he prepared them to enter the Promised Land: you obey all these commandments (follow them) = life will be good, you will be blessed; if you don’t obey and follow them, look out - you will not be blessed!
- It’s really that simple!
- And let me ask you this: How can you expect to be truly successful in this life if you aren’t willing to OBEY God and His Word?
- It’s like a couple who lives together before marriage? How can they expect God to bless their marriage when they haven’t done it His way?
- God as given you His Word? 1) To guide you 2) To instruct you.
- To help you through life – guide you - it is your instruction manual! It is your resource (reference) book!
- And He wants (expects) you to obey His Word!
- God told Joshua to be careful to do according to all that is written in it. What was God saying? Joshua make sure you follow what My Word teaches and tells you to do!
- And note the wonderful reason for following God’s Word: “…for then you will make your way prosperous, and you will have success.”
- You see, when you are careful to observe God’s Word, you will experience God’s blessings in your life. But when you don’t, you will miss out and actually experience a lot of hardships and junk in your life!
- Paul says in Philippians 4:9 : 9 The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
Philippians 4:9 NASB95
The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.
Conclusion
You want to prosper and be successful in life? Be blessed?It’s really pretty simple: Feed on God’s Word and Follow God’s Word!
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