Harry Brownlee - Joshua - Elizabeth, Colorado Convention - 2000

In the first chapter of the book of Joshua we read these words, "Moses, My servant is dead."  All the servants I knew in my earliest youth, some 60 years ago, are gone.  But there have been replacements.  Coming back to Colorado, after 21 wonderful years here when Ed Cornock was here, how thankful I am that God has raised up elders, saints, and servants, and He has worked gloriously. 

 

I thought of what that 16th verse says, "And they answered Joshua, saying, 'All that thou commandest us, we will do, and whithersoever thou sendest us, we will go.  According as we hearkened unto Moses in all things, so will we hearken unto thee: only the Lord thy God be with thee, as He was with Moses.'" But it was conditional, "only the Lord thy God be with thee."  Wonderful thing when we see Godly men being replaced and as He was with those elders who were dead, how thankful we are to see the same qualities, strong in the strength of gentleness, they continue to guide the church in this our day.  

 

Something else has touched my heart.  In chapter 5:13-14, "And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and the Captain of the Lord of hosts said unto Joshua, ‘Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy,’ and Joshua did so." I am so thankful for leaders among us....I know who they are by their feet, by where they go, and where they don't go.   People will respect us and believe in us, only when they see steps taken. Our feet will tell others far more than our lips can or will.....I hope we all recognize who the leader is among us, our leader who paid our debt ....His name is Jesus.  The only thing that you and I can be is faithful, humble followers and only by that can we become safe leaders. There is an awesome power in "GENTLENESS."  "Strong in the strength of gentleness, of meekness, faith, and love, I take Thy hand in weakness and press on t'ward things above."  

 

In the 6th chapter it tells us about the walls of Jericho coming down.  Our God took that city, and He did it miraculously.  He didn't do it with cannons or battering rams of any kind.  He just asked His people to walk around the city once every day for seven days. I hope that we clearly understand THIS IS A WALKING RELIGION.  CHURCHIANITY IS A TALKING RELIGION. Many in the world today can quote scripture but that isn't the answer....it wasn't what they said but what they did that brought victory that day.  

 

Every day they were to walk around the city once, and on the seventh day they were to walk around the city seven times.  I like what Andrew Abernethy told us years ago, "This way of God was never planned for lazy people."  They had to get up early in the morning to make that walk around the city, seven times that day. You can imagine what the inhabitants of the city were saying, "What are those crazy people doing now?"  Are we really willing to follow the Lamb?  That is the only way there can be victory.  There were seven priests that went before them with the Ark, and with seven trumpets of ram’s horns.  These were rams that had died, they had been sacrificed.  This is a living church only because there is a dying ministry.  The church will never go any farther than the Lord's servants go.  The people understood the language of the trumpet that day, and hopefully we understand the language of the trumpet today. There were seven trumpets....seven is a symbol of completion.

 
There are only seven colors in the rainbow and the arc is the blending together of those colors.  There are seven days in the week and our life is made up of those seven days.  Seven is a symbol of completion.  In the beginning, God created the world in six days and on the seventh He rested. His creation was complete.  I am so thankful that Jesus said on the cross, "It is finished." He was referring to salvation.  I never will be able to reach my full ideal, but it helps me to realize that salvation is a gift. We are not saved by any of our doing, but only by what He has done.  By grace are ye saved, not of yourselves, it is the gift of God.  If we have earned it, it is not a gift. It is believing that brings salvation.  We are not saved because we are walking in this way but we are walking in this way because we are saved. If we believe, then there is no other way to walk in.  Jesus didn't say, "I am a way," but He said, "I am the way."  

 

In Exodus, when the death angel passed through the land, what saved those people?  It was the blood.  The blood on the outside door posts of the house. Had they not walked in their home, had they not been in the house, the blood would have meant nothing to them. It says, "If we believe... then there is action.... then it determines where we will go and where we will not go." The children of Israel walked out of Egypt.  It doesn't take brains to walk. It doesn't take money to walk.  It doesn't take education to walk.  It just takes willingness.  When there is willingness, we will follow the Lamb. People looking on will take notice.  There is a couple who walked past their neighbors every Sunday morning to go to the little meeting. Finally this neighbor asked them where they were walking every Sunday....it was his salvation.  He mentioned it wasn't so much what those people said, although they did give their testimony, but it was their walking that triggered his questions and that man and his wife are in the faith today.  Follow the Lamb and victory will be the results.  

 

I am so thankful for the sound of the trumpet in our day.  I am so thankful it is a complete message.  We don't need more than the Bible, we need more of the Bible.  We don't need any tracts, we don't need any literature, all we need is the Bible for our guide...but I am so thankful we are complete in Him.  Seven trumpets, the symbol of completeness.  I am so thankful for this ministry, it is a walking ministry, a walking brethren, and the sound of their feet on the road of life is the sweetest sound to me today. I would like to mention that verse in Numbers 10:2, "The Lord spake unto Moses, saying, ' Make thee two trumpets of silver; of a whole piece shalt thou make them: that thou mayest use them for the calling of the assembly, and for the journeying of the camps.'"  I am so glad that it mentions two trumpets.  God has said that the truth is to be established at the mouth of at least two witnesses.  Fortunate is the child who is born to parents who are both serving the Lord.  There is something tragic about one parent believing one thing and the other parent believing something else.  It only works confusion in the minds and hearts of the little ones. I am so thankful these trumpets were to be made of silver.  Silver in the Bible is the symbol of redemption.  I am also glad that when those trumpets were sounded in my youth, (the two servants of God) there was no question about them being redeemed. The boards in the Tabernacle all stood upright (Exodus 26:15) and under every board were sockets of silver.  The silver sockets kept them from decay and helped them to stay upright. May God help us to stand upright in this house that God has sat us in.  I am so thankful that after God redeems us He gives us the Holy Spirit to teach us.  

 

We were in an elder’s home visiting with a young man and he asked us, "Do you mind if I smoke?"  I said to him, "I don't mind, because smoke doesn't bother me, but this is not my home so you had better ask the man of the house." There was a little sign in the home that said, "No smoking here," and that young man, even though he was not born again, he sensed there was something in that home, the Holy Spirit was there and he didn't smoke. I hope that as we leave this convention we will seek His guidance.  Not of a couple of workers telling us where to go and where we can't go, what we can do, and what we can't do, but the gentle Holy Spirit leading us into all truth and into all righteousness.  

 

The trumpets were used for the calling of God's people.  I am so thankful that I ever heard the call of the trumpets, but even beyond that, that my mother's dad heard the call of two trumpets long, long, before I was ever born.  I went to see my little sister bury her only son.  I was in the home that morning, everything that could be done was done for him.  I remember standing by his bed and I sensed something came into that room and then realized he was gone. My sister and her husband came as though they had wings on their shoes.  I can see her now as she knelt by his bed and took her son's hand in hers, and through her tears and through her sorrow, I heard her tell him how thankful she was for those two servants of God who crossed the ocean, who crossed the continent, to come to our town, making it possible for her nineteen-year-old son to step onto the shores of a saved eternity.  How thankful you and I should be for the silver trumpets that were sounded and hopefully they echo in your heart continually day after day, and year after year.  Not alone for your sakes, but for the sake of your children who someday are going to be called from time into eternity.  

 

In Judges 6, we read about a young man named Gideon who was threshing out a little wheat by the winepress.  He was hiding by the winepress.  The angel of the Lord appeared unto him and said, "The Lord is with thee, thou mighty man of valor."  What was mighty about that?  Do you know who the mightiest people are in the world today?  They are those who quietly and secretly thresh out a little wheat for bread for Sunday morning and Wednesday evening.  In one sense, they don't bring a loaf, they don't bring a lot of dough, they just bring a little wheat.  Just a thought, just an expression of appreciation, just a word of purpose, something that comes from the heart of God.  

 

Judges 7:2, "The people that are with thee are too many." If these people all go to battle and win they will take the credit.  He began to sort them out and said, "All the fearful and afraid, let him return."  There is no place for the coward in this truth of God.  Fear will immobilize anyone.  The roar of the lion strikes fear into the hearts of its prey.  There is no danger in the roar.  In that moment the prey is immobilized and that lion goes in for the kill. We think of our young people out in the world.  It may not be a loud roar, it may be a very gentle appeal urging you to go places, urging you to do things, but may we have the courage to stand for truth.  Twenty-two thousand returned because of fear.  Ten thousand were left and the Lord said, "There are still too many.  Bring them down to the water and I will test them there." There were those that day drinking water to their fill, they bowed down upon their knees to drink water.  Nothing wrong in that, but there were three hundred men who lapped water like a dog.  It was those three hundred men that God said He would use to bring victory to His people.   Friends there is nothing wrong with our young men and women marrying, that's a wholesome thing.  But thank God for the little handful that deny the cry of their own nature, the cry of their own thirst, and they don't seek to satisfy themselves.  God said, "I will use these three hundred men to bring victory to all the thousands of My people." 

 

You remember the story of the these three hundred men scattered around the camp, in their left hand they had a pitcher, and in the pitcher they had a lamp.  In their right hand they had a trumpet. Gideon told them, “You watch me and what I do you do.”  Isn't it wonderful that we have someone whom we can watch.  That One who sacrificed so much for us. Gideon first of all broke the pitcher.  I hope that we all really believe that the sacrifice of God is a broken spirit.  I hope that I am just as willing to listen to my younger brothers as I am to my older brothers on this side of the platform.  Young servants walk with God, they have communion with God.  It pays to listen.  A Baptist preacher’s wife said to me some years ago, “I marvel at your ministry.  My husband went to a seminary for six years, and he is a very good preacher."  But she said, “You men, every year you have a new, private instructor.  It is no wonder you have the ministry you do.” When I realize how little I know, I want to seek more of His help and more of His guidance. Only when the pitcher was broken did the light shine through.  Only when we are broken, our wills broken and there is submission, can the light of this wonderful ministry and church shine through so that others can see it. They lifted the trumpets to their lips and they had a glorious message of victory for all in the camp that day.  How thankful I am for the trumpets today.  I like that verse in I Corinthians 14:8, "For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound who shall prepare himself to the battle."  Friends, I hope there is a certainty, a definitiveness about what we believe, what we do, where we go. I was touched by the little girl’s testimony this morning that she failed to hold the line, failed to uphold the standard, and her little heart was smitten.  It touched my heart that her little heart was smitten.  It is wonderful to be that sensitive to God and His will.  We want the world to see that there is no uncertainty about what we believe or where we go.  

 

In Ezekiel 33:7, "I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore thou shalt hear the word at My mouth, and warn them from Me." If the watchman doesn't blow the trumpet and sound the alarm, the Lord said in verse 8, "His blood will I require at thine hand."  It took a lot of courage for our brother to say what he did last night, to just tell it like it is, the warning of immorality that was sounded from the platform last night. The world is full of it, everybody is doing it, what is wrong with that.  God will judge the world, not by what everybody is doing, but by that Man whom He hath ordained.  I hope you as parents are faithful in sounding the warning. Your children will know what is right. My parents were very ordinary, but they were my parents. There were places that I couldn't go, but sometimes I did and I wasn't very happy after I went. But mother and dad didn't go. The warning was very clear; I knew what they believed and I knew where they stood.  Friends, I hope there is a clear sound going out from your life and mine, an unmistakable sound, there is no question as to what we really believe. Judges 7:21, "And they stood every man in his place."  I hope that we have found our place and that we have the grace to fill our place; you parents and we as workers just quietly standing in our place.  We don't want to get out of our place because of the danger of taking someone else's place. Because they all stood in their place when the trumpet was sounded, victory was the result.  How thankful I am today for the trumpet that has been sounded.  

 

I love that verse in Revelation 1:10 where John said, "I heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet."  You know the results.  John said, "I turned." We are so thankful for this same turning in our lives when we first heard, and that there is a continual turning as we journey on toward the future. The two trumpets were for the calling of the whole assembly.  One trumpet sounding is for the royalty.  "Ye are a chosen generation a royal people, a royal priesthood."  Royalty has privileges that commoners never had.  But commoners can go where royalty would never think of going.  Royalty brings wonderful privilege but awesome responsibility.  

 

Many of you are too young to remember but a man gave up his throne in our day because he wanted to marry the wrong girl.  He wanted to marry a commoner. I hope you all understand that the call of one trumpet wasn't just for anyone. The call of the one trumpet was for those that were really born again. The blood-bought royal children of God.  Do you know why you are part of the family you are, because you have your father's blood, your mother's blood. And you know why you are part of the family of God, it is blood that makes us the children of God. The sons and daughters of the King. The precious blood of His Son.  

 

Revelation  4:1, "After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in Heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me."  The trumpet is still being sounded.  What I enjoyed about these verses is the thought of the "rainbow round about the throne."  I am so glad that when one day I stand at the tribunal of God, I am not going to stand there clothed with my self-made rags, I will stand hidden in the color of the rainbow.  We remember the promise of God after the flood, He would never again destroy the world in the waters of the flood and He sealed that promise with the rainbow in the heavens.  I am so thankful that when I stand before the tribunal of God, I will stand there clothed in the glorious colors of the bow, the promise of Salvation.  

 

Last of all, I would like to mention those verses in I Corinthians 15:51-52, "Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump; for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed." It says that "all will be changed." The change comes very, very gradually. Our human nature has to be changed. A glorious day for me when this change comes in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump. The trumpet shall sound and the dead shall be raised incorruptible and we shall be changed.  Do you know why we understand each other?  Because we are all humans.  Do you know why God's children understand each other?  Because we have been born again; we have been changed; however, the old man is still with us, the struggle and battle go on every day of our lives.  I struggle with the old nature, with selfishness, with pride, and all the rest of it. Friends, just imagine this day when it comes.  It won't be all the people to rise to meet the Lord, but only those born again, the royalty.  There is only one trump that will sound when He comes again and when the trump is sounded, the dead in Christ shall rise first.  This corruptible must put on incorruptible and this mortal must put on immortality. It shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, "Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is they sting? O grave, where is thy victory?" The sting of death is sin.  We all understand that the sting of death is sin. We are afraid of the bee or wasp because of the stinger.  But take the stinger out of the wasp or out of the bee and there is nothing to fear. What is it about death that we fear?  The sting of death is sin.  But we are so thankful that God has made provision for sin.  "In my hand no price I bring, only to Thy cross, I cling, Thou must save and Thou alone."  Friends, I say again, Jesus is the only one that can save, thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. The reason we have had so many drop-outs in these last days is because some people have come to the fellowship, but they didn't come to Jesus.  If you and I have come to Christ, hell doesn't have enough devils to separate us from Him. God has given us the victory today in His Son.