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July 24, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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This past weekend, Pastor Chris Baselice of our Plantation campus shared a powerful word from Joshua 2. In this message, we discovered how God used an unlikely hero named Rahab, and how He wants to use you, no matter who you are or what you’ve done, to take ground and change the world.
Watch the video below to see a few highlights from the teaching and share it with your friends via social media. To watch the message in its entirety, click here.
Taking Ground Requires Sending Out (Joshua 2:1): Just as God had Joshua send two spies into Jericho, we're being sent out and commissioned to go into the land and take ground. But unlike with Jericho, we’re not being sent as spies, but as ambassadors—messengers of the gospel. If we don’t take up this call, how will our neighbors, family members, friends, coworkers, and classmates know and believe? God has placed us where we are so we may share the good news where we are. This is what getting in the story is all about . . . it means realizing and accomplishing the call God has placed on our lives in this season.
Taking Ground Requires Seeing Through Eyes of Faith (Joshua 2:2–7): Walking in one’s calling will require faith and courage. You see, Rahab and her whole family could have been killed had she been discovered by the men of Jericho to be harboring the Israelite spies. She demonstrated immense courage in the face of danger because she had faith in God. She, a Gentile and harlot, heard the stories of the might and power of God just like the rest of Jericho, but she saw more than that . . . she also saw the mercy and compassion of the Lord. So she put her trust and faith in Him, believing the Lord would save her. So she helped the spies escape the city and safely return to the Israelite camp.
We need to look at our city through a godly lens . . . the same eyes through which the two spies saw Jericho, the same eyes through which God saw Rahab. When we do that, we won’t see a hopeless, insurmountable, lost cause; we’ll see a city ripe for revival and ready to be transformed by the gospel.
Taking Ground Happens When People Get in the Story (Joshua 2:8–11): Rahab came to have faith in the reality of God because of the stories she had heard about God’s people—stories of deliverance, victory, and transformation. Similarly, the world is not interested in what we believe, but in how we behave. The testimony of a changed life, the evidence of Christ in us.
You have a story . . . a story God can use to change the lives of the people around you the way He used Rahab to save her family. While you may think your story isn’t interesting enough or powerful enough to change anyone, if your story has Jesus in it, it has power!
Taking Ground Is Not About Land (Joshua 2:2–24): Did God need to send spies into the land to scout it out? No. He could have just told Joshua and the people exactly what to do. He could have told them to march around the walls of Jericho without having sent anyone into the land. But here’s the thing . . . it wasn’t about the land.
When the two spies came back, just like the 12 spies from the first scouting mission into the Promised Land during the time of Moses, they brought back fruit. But this time it was a different kind of fruit: a changed life. So, what was the real importance of this mission? Was it a city to be conquered or a soul to be saved?
Taking ground is not about property, it’s about people; it’s not about land, it's about lives. This entire espionage trip turns out to be for the benefit of one woman, a woman that God would bring into His story of redemption, who would be an ancestor of David and eventually Jesus! And if you notice, every time Rahab is mentioned in the New Testament, she is referred to as Rahab the harlot. Why? So you would know that no one is beyond the reach of God’s grace, no one is useless in the hands of God.
Quote to Remember: God is not ashamed of sinners.—Chris Baselice
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION
As you think about this weekend’s teaching, here are a few questions to reflect on and consider on your own, with your family, or in your group.
1. Where is God sending you?
2. Why does taking ground require courage?
3. What does it mean to look at a situation through eyes of faith?
4. Can you think of someone whose story impacted your life? What made their story powerful?
5. When was the last time you shared your story with someone?
6. God sent the spies into Jericho for the benefit of one sinner. Can you think of a story in your life where God used others or a circumstance to specifically benefit you and build up your faith?
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Join us this Wednesday as we continue discussing the themes we explored this past weekend, taking a deeper look into unlikely people God has used in amazing ways, both then and now!
Then on the weekend, Pastor Doug will share an update of Vision 2023 as we explore Joshua 3 and 4, the crossing of the Jordan, and the amazing work God did among the Israelites.
Danny Saavedra has served on the staff of Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.