Joshua was called to lead God’s people in battle. Not a sound was heard except the tromping of the Israelites’ sandaled feet and the blowing of the priests’ horns. For six days, the people marched around the city in a procession that, from a human perspective, made no sense. Fight a battle without using proper weapons?
Despite the unusual orders, on the seventh day, the people gave a mighty shout, the walls came tumbling down and the victory was gained. As absurd as the plan sounded, the people obeyed, and God wrought a mighty victory.
Joshua Chamberlain was called to lead the Union troops of the 20th Maine Regiment in the battle of Gettysburg. There were loud bursts amid the clashes, horrific gunfire, and raucous shouting as the Confederate forces sought to ascend and capture Little Round Top. Joshua had his orders: hold the line at all costs. If the 20th Maine did not hold the line, the Confederate soldiers would surround the entire Army of the Potomac, and the Union forces would be slaughtered.
The battle was fierce, and the soldiers under Joshua Chamberlain’s command were being decimated. He, too, had been injured, but he kept up the fight after his horse was shot out from under him. The Union soldiers had run out of ammunition as they waited for the advancing enemy. The Confederate soldiers approached the hill in what appeared would be the final charge.
Joshua Chamberlain commanded his forces to do what, from a human perspective, made no sense. Outnumbered almost three to one, virtually out of ammunition, with the enemy surging towards them, he had his regiment fix their bayonets. The command was then given to climb over the wall, run straight into enemy fire, and attack the vast forces of the enemy.
Despite the unusual orders, the Union soldiers charged towards the enemy with a mighty shout, the bayonets gleaming in the midday sun. The Confederate forces fled in confusion and terror. As with the Biblical account, the victory was gained through the leadership of Joshua, the faithfulness of the soldiers, and the working of God.
The cry goes out in this our day: where are you, Joshua? Where are the men and women who will, despite seemingly overwhelming odds and scarce resources, go forward in faith to claim victories for the kingdom of God? There are vast territories yet to be conquered. Mountains need surmounting — and they will be — by people of faith and vision.
The unreached people of the world need to hear the gospel. The Holy Spirit is calling you to put aside your small ideas of life and accept the vision that God has for you. God is calling you to arise and gain victories for Him. Answer the call and fear not. The Lord, thy God, is with you!