Do you remember the scene from Indiana Jones: The Last Crusade where Harrison Ford is standing on the edge of the cliff, trying to decide what to do? His guidebook that his father gave him, tells of taking a step of faith. So Indy believes, and is willing to step out and trust that he will get across. When he takes the first step, he realizes that there is a bridge that was hidden from his vantage point. He must walk straight across the bridge, because it is narrow, and reach the other side.
As I was studying and preparing to preach last week on courage from Joshua 1:1-9, I was continually reminded about this scene from the movie. So I showed the clip at the end of my message to wrap things up and I titled my sermon “Taking a Step of Faith”
Looking at Joshua, we see that
- We need to believe in the promises of God (vs 3) Joshua had to believe in the promises that God had given Moses. Just like Indy had to trust his guidebook, we are given a guidebook for life. Do we truly believe in it? Enough to take a step of faith into the unknown.
- We need to sense God’s presence and power (vs 5) God told Joshua that he would never leave him or forsake him, that God would be with him. Indy had to take a deep breath and collect himself and believe. Do we slow down enough to breathe in God’s presence and realize the power that we have living inside us?
- We need to live strong and courageous lives (vss 6,7, & 9) Whenever God repeats himself 3 times in 4 verses, I think we need to pay attention. Be Strong and courageous. Joshua was going into a land of giants, to take possession of land that they did not want to give up. Do you see why he was told to be courageous? Indy is the embodiment of strength and courage.
- We need to step out on faith and follow God There comes a point and time where we have the knowledge, we have been given the command, and the choice is in front of us. Do we trust the promises and take that step, or do we retreat into the safety and security of the past. Joshua had to take that step to cross the Jordan and enter the promised land. Indy had to put his fears aside and step, even he though he didn’t know how it would turn out.
- Finally, we need to walk straight in life (vs 7) God told Joshua to walk straight ahead, to not look to the right or the left and become distracted and off track. To be strong and courageous requires us to follow a narrow path in life and ignore distractions and traps set along the way. After Indy took that step, he had to walk straight because the bridge was narrow. He had a mission, a purpose, and he had to stay straight and not veer off course.
Remember that there is a fine line between living a life of purpose and adventure and living a life of missed opportunity.
When faced with opportunities, decisions, and God’s calling, will we take that step of faith, and step into the unknown?