09 Renewed Covenant

Bill Serjak

This is a message from pastor and teacher Bill Serjak from the Joshua series “New Beginnings”

Renewed Covenant
Joshua 8:28-35

To say that Joshua had been discouraged after the Israelite defeat at Ai would be a major understatement. He led the people of God and at Ai many of them lost their lives in a battle that Joshua didn’t think would amount to much. The defeat was the result of sin. Achan and his family had disobeyed God and followed his own lust. God had told them not to take any spoils from the conquered people and Achan desired some of the goods and took them for himself. The people had disobeyed God, were defeated, and Joshua was disheartened and discouraged. He fell on his face before God and no longer felt worthy to lead.
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08 Consecrate Yourselves

Bill Serjak

This is a message from pastor and teacher Bill Serjak from the Joshua series “New Beginnings”

Consecrate Yourselves
Joshua 7:1-26

A difficult thing about preaching through books of the Bible is that I have to preach on what is next. I can’t skip over parts or leave out parts that are especially difficult. That forces me to preach on the hard things and gives a fuller picture of the God who is revealed in the Bible. One way of creating our own idea of God is to build up a god in our mind and then pick out passages in the Bible that support our idea of that god and leave out the passages that don’t. That allows us to make up our idea of a god and give the illusion of that idea’s being supported by the Bible. Doing that, really makes us god and that’s where we always like to be.
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07 The Battle Plan

Bill Serjak

This is a message from pastor and teacher Bill Serjak from the Joshua series “New Beginnings”

The Battle Plan
Joshua 6:1-27

This is the very beginning of the Jews conquering the Promised Land and the way they are doing it doesn’t make sense to us. We are not accustomed to seeing things conquered the way they set about doing it. The first thing Joshua did was to obey what God him and had the whole army circumcised. During the days following the circumcision, a small enemy army could have killed all their soldiers. They had been a people wandering in the wilderness without direction and not really even a nation. They had forgotten what God had told them to do as His people. They first had to establish themselves as followers of God’s ways and the first thing they needed to do was to be circumcised and establish themselves as God’s people. Christians need to do the same thing. We are God’s people and should do things God’s way, which will always be different from the way the world does things. Many times, we wander in the wilderness, following every wind of doctrine of the current trends of the world. We take on the ways of the wilderness in which we wander. Christians need to establish ourselves as different, even if it makes us vulnerable to the world. The Jews did just that.
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06 Following the Lord

Bill Serjak

This is a message from pastor and teacher Bill Serjak from the Joshua series “New Beginnings”

Following the Lord
Joshua 5:1-15

The Jews had been wandering in the wilderness for forty years and now the Promised Land was just across the Jordan River. God backed up the water of the river and they crossed on dry land. They were ready to begin the battles to conquer the land, but the first thing they did was to circumcise the whole army. Militarily, that did not make much sense because it made their whole army totally vulnerable for several days. However, they did not put their trust in their military strength; they put their trust in God and God required that each Jew be circumcised. To put themselves in right order with God, they needed to be circumcised.
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05 Remember!

Bill Serjak

This is a message from pastor and teacher Bill Serjak from the Joshua series “New Beginnings”

Remember!
Joshua 4:1-24

The story in this text is so powerful that I almost hate to make comments on it, but I will. I’d like to start with the last verse that says, “He did this so that all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the Lord is powerful and so that you might always fear the Lord your God.” This story is to be told so the nations of the world would know that the power of God is with the Jews and so the Jews would fear the Lord. God’s people are always supposed to have a fear of the Lord. However, I think that fear is practically gone today. We are more prone to worship idols and even try to turn God into an idol. Idols are helpful because we can make them in the way we choose and have them do our bidding. We may tell the idol to bless our crops and the idol may require certain sacrifices from us, but we are the ones who determine what he should do. We don’t have to do the idol’s bidding; he is supposed to do ours. That conveniently leaves us with being the real god. We like that position. We don’t have to fear the idol because we control him.
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04 The Ark of the Lord

Bill Serjak

This is a message from pastor and teacher Bill Serjak from the Joshua series “New Beginnings”

The Ark of the Lord
Joshua 3:1-17

The events in this chapter began when Moses led the Jews out of slavery in Egypt. God parted the waters of the Red Sea so they could leave Egypt on dry land. Then, God closed in the waters and drowned the Egyptian army that pursued them. The Jews then wandered in the wilderness for forty years. They did not wander that long because they got lost. The Jews who came out of Egypt were so tied to that land and perhaps even to their slavery that they were constantly grumbling against Moses and God. However, in these early chapters of Joshua, God tells Joshua what to do and Joshua tells the people. This was a new group of Jews who began the conquest of the Promised Land. When they hear what they are to do, they don’t grumble but set out doing it. God solved the grumbling problem by just waiting forty years until the all grumblers had died off. That may have been a drastic measure. If the Jews who wandered had begun to have faith, they could have gone into the Promised Land, but they never did. The old had to die so new leadership who would trust God would come.
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03 A Fearsome People

Bill Serjak

This is a message from pastor and teacher Bill Serjak from the Joshua series “New Beginnings”

A Fearsome People
Joshua 2:1-24

Did you ever wonder why God told Joshua to send the spies into Jericho? Their information would not be needed because God would miraculously make the walls of Jericho fall down and the city would be defeated by God’s direct power. They didn’t even have a battle plan that new information would help. The only reason I can guess for sending the spies was so the Jews would know about Rahab. Rahab had become different from the others in the city who worshiped Molech, the god of infant sacrifice. Molech was a horrible god and his idea of good and evil had become the standard for the people of the land. That evil was so deeply ingrained in the people that God had order them destroyed so their evil would not be passed on to the Jews and others in the land. However, Rahab had come to believe in God and told the spies, “. . .the LORD your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below.” When Rahab came to believe that about God, the Lord sent spies from the Jews to find her and rescue her from the coming destruction.
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02 We’re In This Together

Bill Serjak

This is a message from pastor and teacher Bill Serjak from the Joshua series “New Beginnings”

We’re In This Together
Joshua 1:10-18

Last week, I mentioned the adage that the Old Testament is The Picture Book for Baby Believers. As we study this section of Joshua, we need to look at the pictures and see what they show us about God’s character and how He works with His people. As we look at God’s people, they are on the east side of the Jordan River and must first cross the river to conquer the land they have been promised. At this time, Joshua told the officers to get ready because in three days they would cross the Jordan and begin the conquest of the land. It is interesting to note that they don’t appear to have any idea as to how they would cross this fairly large river. They don’t have any boats and the river is too deep to ford. There we’re any bridges anywhere in this area. Yet, they were making plans to cross the river in three days. They were making preparations to do what did not seem possible. I suppose God told Joshua what He was going to do but we don’t know that He had before they made preparations. The Hebrew leaders had to operate completely on faith without knowing how they would accomplish what they were supposed to do. They didn’t even have a battle plan as to how they would conquer the land if they ever did cross the river.
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01 Introduction to Joshua… Be Strong and Courageous

Bill Serjak

This is a message from pastor and teacher Bill Serjak from the Joshua series “New Beginnings”

Be Strong and Courageous
Joshua 1:1-9

God did not give the people of Israel a land that was there for the taking. He gave them a land to conquer. God promised them the land and said that He would lead them through Joshua, but they had hard and dangerous work to do to conquer the land. They needed to be totally involved in God’s plan. At this point, they were at the edge of the Jordan River and ready to enter the Promised Land. God told the people not only to conquer the land, but to slay all the inhabitants. In the twenty-first century, it is hard for us to swallow that God would require the Jews to slay all the inhabitants. More