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 have I now come.’ Joshua 5:13-14
This was a decisive turning point in Joshua’s life and ministry. It is marked by the word “now”, indicating that things had changed. Joshua had taken the people in faith past the point of no return, and when this had happened, the Lord appeared to him, to show him that things were to be of a different order. Joshua was to experience a power and a victory over the coming years through God’s good pleasure resting on His people. The victory was to be so complete because the Commander of the Lord’s army was now personally in the vanguard of His people. In truth it was because the people had taken their place behind Him, not because He had joined them. This is clear from the Commander’s answer, that it was the people who had taken God’s side, and not God who was on the people’s side. This profound change is within our reach, if we will take our place clearly in the will and purpose of God and burn our bridges, going beyond the point of no return. This is not merely our personal victory, this is our participation in His victory, for purposes and plans that have a greater meaning than any of the smaller things that preoccupy us. In the fog of war, the key is to obey the orders that come down from HQ, believing that things that may make little sense to the footsoldier will one day become clear. We give our lives to Him and for Him, not for self-interest but for the greater glory of God.
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