A new commander,just had his assignment terminated and General Joshua was appointed to lead the anticipating solders thirsty of victory. The whole document were handed to him, charges and counsel flooded the ceremony. The battles was going to be fierce and many lands, mountains and kingdom were to be overcome and their strange warriors were not going to give a cheap contest, they are very set to terminate the vision and keep the anticipating pilgrims perpetually in the wilderness.
The Reubenites, the Gleadites and half tribe of Manasseh had gathered, they were ready for a battle in order to secure the lands as promised for possession of the pilgrims. General Joshua consulted his experience, he knew those kings were battle ready and he laced a formidable and reliable strategy for the breakthrough and conquest. One of such strategy was that he sent two wise spies to Jericho.
Jericho was the first battle tasking land, to conquer and victory was going to be a great opportunity if conquered, but the gate was sealed and the walls (fence was thick and guided). The spies went and came back successfully, the dread was much on the Jericho citizens and leaders. Still “How” to conquer was a big riddle General Joshua was to solve. Between Jericho the first land of this exploit was a scaring Jordan, which was at the peak season. However, the Lord gave the password to cross, and the4y did safely. But Jericho was secured and shut up by battle ready soldiers
General Joshua must have racked his brain, pondered his thought and brought from the archive of his experience some strategies: Some are dusty, some cracking and some still new. He must have been weaving those various strategies to conform to his imagined means of conquering the Jericho. but God was not going to work that way.
“ And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho that he lift his eyes and looked and behold a man stood opposite him with his sword drawn in His hand and Joshua went to Him and said to him “ are you for us or for our adversaries”
So he said “ no, but as commander of the army of the Lord I have now come and Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshipped and said to him what does my Lord say to his servant then the commander of the Lord’s army said to Joshua “ take your sandal of your foot for the place where you stand is holy and Joshua did so“
On two occasions in the Bible was this type of instruction given and to two people to the General Joshua predecessor and now to Joshua.
At the eve of breakthrough, God often visit, at that moment, He always come to take the charge for there are some battles in life which human swiftness and smartness cannot win. There are sure lands, mountains and kingdom your common and schemed strategies will fail to conquer. To Moses and Joshua, when they were both to confront pharaoh and Jericho they were instructed to loose off there shoes.
The power of the meaning of this instruction is hidden in the function of this part of our dressing the shoe! But most importantly, it is a means of protection. By training, experience and exposure and background, there are types of shoes we may be very used to and they are well admired code of dressing or had congealed into our principles and culture. These must have formed the primary basis of sourcing, storing and processing information. I guess they are protective in nature as well as add to our mode of living, relating with other people and probably determine our choices. These shoes, we desire to put on when challenges, responsibilities and problems announce their arrival.
Our shoes are protective principles learned, practiced or adopted. We quickly bring them out and pick which of them fit the situations most. I am very sure that Joshua had a battle shoes on. There are many shoes for many occasions. The engineers and factory workers put on their safety shoes. Likewise, the farmer may have their jungle shoes.
Joshua must have consulted methods and principles but the commander of the host, told him “off you shoe.” General Joshua I’ll take the command henceforth!”
Ponder on these. If we’d had opportunity to ask General Joshua what his strategies were, you would have seen great plans with which he was going to confront these strange warriors and I’m very sure there was no way, the supposed foolish skirting of Jericho once every day for six days and on the seventh day, seven times would have been absent in his plans or imagination .it really sounds foolish that is why General Joshua must “off his shoes” Because it is only God that knows “How” to use the supposed foolishness to accomplish great things.
Friend, we have to drop some principles and practice at the border of breakthrough. I believe experience is important, but it is limited and God’s guidance we not fail. The moment you are confronted with strange warriors, your shoes need no longer be on your foot, let God better fightn for. At such moment, you need not give God suggestion, just submit to his blessed will. Your sword must slay or cut at his command. You cannot be the commander when God came visiting. General Joshua did off his shoe and bowed there after, and heeded the leading that led to victory without questioning it. God knows “How” to get strange warriors that confront you, confused and trapped; but you cannot stimulate those strategies, if you have not off your shoes and submit to his blessed will. After then, we are most sure to win the greatest of all battle.
The shepherd of life may come at the border of breakthrough and tell our pastors and church leader to drop their staff and off their shoes, and just do what I say and tell your congregation to do what you heard me say. All theological principles and ethics will have to be laid off, if such congregation must have the anticipated breakthrough and breaking forth.
That’s if our common sense, experience and personal principles and church councils will not kick against this, and by such attitude the wonders of God had been banished in many gatherings!