TEXT: “And Joshua said to the people, Sanctify yourselves; for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you” (Josh. 3:5).
INTRODUCTION: The key to victory is “Sanctify yourselves.”
We have the promise, “The Lord will do wonders.”
I. Consider the setting.
A. For forty years Israel had the “pillar of fire” by night and the “pillar of cloud” by day.
B. Now they are to follow the “ark of the covenant” across the Jordan River (see Josh. 3:15–17). But they have the promise, “Hereby you shall know that the living God is among you” (Josh. 3:10).
II. Consider the command: “Sanctify yourselves.”
A. They were to cleanse and purify themselves. “Come out … and be separate” (2 Cor. 6:17). This was within their ability. They could and must put away uncleanness.
B. They were to dedicate themselves to God’s purpose and instructions.
p 33 III. Consider the promise: “Tomorrow the Lord will work wonders among you.”
A. God could not work through unsanctified hearts.
B. The Lord will ask them to do things that would paralyze with fear unsanctified hearts. He commanded the priests to step into the waters of an overflowing river. And wonders did follow.
C. A few days later God commanded them to march around Jericho. Unsanctified hearts would have laughed at God’s commands, promises, and methods. But wonders did follow.
D. There were dangers and perils ahead for unsanctified hearts. We need only think of Achan (read Josh. 7).
“Sanctify yourselves.” This is also spoken to us.
“The Lord will work wonders among you.” This promise is also to us.
2 Chronicles 7:14 issues the same call to God’s children.
2 Corinthians 6:14–7:1, likewise sounds the command and the promises.
Hallock, E. F. (1975). More Sermon Starters (pp. 32–33). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House.