The Jericho Experience Part 1 – Introduction
The children of Israel were on their way to the Promised Land, the land that flows with milk and honey. They had seen the many miracles that God did in order to set them free from Egypt, the land of slavery. They had witnessed how God made a way in midst of the red sea. They had seen the great and mighty things God has done for them in the desert. For forty years they feasted on manna, the bread baked from heaven’s oven. After forty years their clothes had not worn out, their sandals had no holes, in fact, their clothes stretched and grew with them as they grew older over the forty years. At this point they had just crossed the river Jordan on dry land. Therefore, there was no doubt in their minds that God had led them thus far.
In spite of the great and mighty things that God had done for them in the past, they found themselves facing a new challenge, the city of Jericho. The city of Jericho was a highly fortified city. The high walls of the city made it impenetrable. The city had enough supply of water and food to last a long time. The inhabitants of the city, whilst they had heard of the great and mighty things that the God of the Israelites had done, they were confident that they will be able to withstand any attack that would come from the Israelites.
On the side of children of Israel, they too should have been worried about this great and fortified city. You’ll remember that majority of spies who were sent earlier were so terrified of the people of the city that they gave a report that the people of the city are like giants and that they felt like grasshoppers. So, apart from the imposing walls, the people inside were said to be intimidating. Therefore, when the children of Israel were facing the Jericho, even though they remembered the great things God had down in the past, they approached Jericho with much trepidations. The coming of a Special Envoy from Heaven, “the Commander of the Lord’s Army”, attest to their concerns and trepidations about Jericho.
I would like to suggest that in our life here on earth, our journey to the “Promised Land”, we will all have to face the city of Jericho. The city of Jericho is a challenge that is diverse from anything we have experienced before. A problem that is so big, so fortified, so scary, that it looks invincible. A challenge that challenges everything that we are, what we have done, what we have, and sometimes what we believe. That is your Jericho experience. If you have not faced Jericho in your life, just continue living, keep moving forward, as soon as you cross the river Jordan, Jericho will be waiting for you.
- To some it will be a Jericho of health, even though you pray every day, and have tried your best to live right, to eat right, exercised regularly and go for regular check-ups, yet you end up with cancer that is discovered after it has spread such that there is not much that could be done. That’s your Jericho experience.
- To some it is a Jericho of marriage, after you have live right, married right, and have done your best love your spouse, to be faithful and supportive, to be there for him/her in sickness and health, but your spouse ends up in an affair and refuses to end it. At the end you find out that he/she has infected you with HIV. That’s your Jericho experience.
- To some it is a Jericho of financial challenges, after you been faithful to God, returning your tithe and offerings every month, and taking care of the needy around you, yet you still end up losing your job, your business, or your contract. Now, every third call that you get is from the bank or debt collectors, they have repossessed your car/s, and your house is about to go any time. That’s your Jericho experience.
- Your Jericho can come in many forms, it might be children whom you have tried to raise the right way, but in turn they have become the source of pain or are terrorising you. It might be your siblings who have decided to gang up against you, a boss who has made it his/her to harass you and nothing you do is good enough. It might be church members, in-laws, “friends”, who gossip, backbite you and accuse you of some of the worst things. It can be demonic or satanic attacks on your life.
Our Jericho experiences might differ from one person to another, but we’ll all have our Jericho experiences. In the coming weeks we’ll be trying to understand Jericho, and share some thoughts from the Bible on how to deal with your Jericho.
May God bless you and keep you strong and courageous!