Jentezen Franklin - The Walls Will Fall
I want you to turn with me in your Bibles to the book of Joshua, chapter 6. Joshua chapter 6. And you can just open it there, and you can kind of follow along. I'm not going to take time to read the whole story, but this story is found in the first few verses, and I'm going to preach out of the book of Joshua this morning. But I'm preaching today about, "The walls will fall as we fast and pray". Get ready, we've got seven more days of this fast, and prayer season. And I want you to get your faith up this morning, get your joy up this morning, to get ready for the walls to fall. Just like the Israelites walked around the walls of Jericho for seven days, it was a simple instruction, "Just march and do what I tell you to do". God says, "That same power of obedience", we're going to walk around the walls in our life. God only knows what's behind that wall: the thing that you have dreamed for, the thing that you have prayed for, the thing that God has promised you is behind that wall. For them it was the Promised Land. For you it is the promises of what God deep in your spirit, even on this fast has whispered to you. "I can save. I can deliver. I can bring dreams to pass. I can connect. I can raise up. I can heal. I can deliver".
The walls that won't move, we're going to on this final seven days, and if you miss the whole two weeks, you happen to be lucky and out of town, and you didn't hear anything, and you've been out of church for two weeks, you're not safe. You came to the wrong service, because by the time I get through, you're going to join us for the next seven days on this fast. We're on a Daniel fast: no meat, no bread, and no sugar. Now, if you eat some fruit or something, and we're not legalistic about it, it's the sacrifice. "Well, what's the big deal about that"? Obviously, you have not tried it. Obviously. The enemy has tried his best to block and keep you out of your Promised Land. He's whispered lies to you, "It'll never happen. You'll never get free. What's the point of trying? It doesn't work. This is too late. That situation is hopeless". But the Lord is saying today that through prayer and through fasting, for the next seven days, whatever walls the enemy has put up in your life, those walls are going to fall in the name of Jesus.
Listen now carefully, no more... I'm going to be bold and preach it like I want to preach it. No more will the enemy hinder your blessing. You're about to see what's on the other side of this pain that you've been through. And it's going to bring you joy unspeakable, and full of glory. It's time for change. And somebody needs to shout, "The walls are coming down in this new year". I believe that with all of my heart. When we fast and pray, we are acknowledging that we need spiritual help. When we fast and pray, we are humbling ourself before God. We are exercising our faith. We are saying, "Faith without works is dead". And just like they heard from God, and he said "Do it", we have heard from God and, he said "Fast and pray, and watch me bring the walls down".
There are various reasons to fast. You may be in a health issue, or you may in a be in the middle of a crisis, that's a time to fast. The Bible talks about in Ezra 8, when you need safety, protection, and direction, they proclaim "The fast for a safe journey for us, and for our children" and God granted them their request. There's a time to fast when you need to give a fast as an act of repentance. What does that mean? First Samuel 7:6, "On that day they fasted", Israel, "And confessed, 'we have sinned'". If you've done something, if you've messed up, we mess up, if you've got some sin that has latched on to you, fast these seven days, and say "God, I'm fasting, and I'm confessing. And I have sinned. Set me free. I want to be free again". These seven days that wall that has kept you back from God's best can fall flat, and you can you can be free this time next Sunday completely. Starting a ministry, Acts 14:23, before they started the ministry, Paul and Barnabas fasted.
And then lastly: victory is a purpose to fast. Ii Chronicles 20, Jehoshaphat was outnumbered, and he called a fast, and the Bible said, when they fasted, God said, "The battle is not yours, it's mine. I'm going to bring the victory". The next seven days we're going on a Jericho fast, and we're going to see the walls fall. This is your opportunity for change. If you want something you've never had, you got to try to do something you've never done, and you can do this. You'll come out about seven pounds lighter if you jump in right now. No bread, no meat, vegetables, fruit, some protein, eat some nuts, and some pecans, and whatever else you want, it all gets old after a while, just munch, and get through it. Hallelujah.
Seven days marching, crunching, marching, crunching. I've done about all you can do with squash and vegetables. I've done about all you can do with collard greens, and green beans, and butter beans. I'm bean to death, I feel like they felt out in the wilderness, "Manna, manna, manna, manna". I want some meat, but as we do this fast the next seven days, we are demonstrating by our action, "I believe in a supernatural God. I believe. I don't just talk, I believe that no wall can defy the God that I serve, and they're going to fall, because this kind comes but by fasting and prayer". As you march around those walls these next seven days spiritually, walls of shame, walls of regret, walls of confusion and depression, walls of generational curses are gonna fall. Walls of hurt and offense and unforgiveness, they're going to fall. Walls of rejection, and separation, and addiction, and fear, they're going to fall. God is going to send some suddenlies. God's going to do it so quick. It's going to astound you. It's going to blow your mind.
Deuteronomy 20 and verse 4, "For the Lord your God is the one who goes with you to fight against your enemies to give", I love this word, "To give you the victory". It's time not to go into the last week weary, and sad, and dragging. It's time to realize: the Lord is about to grant us some magnificent victories in our future, if we will believe and go after what God said go after. I believe it. Are you ready to march for your family for seven days? Are you ready to march for your future the next seven days? Do you believe that he has a plan for your future? The enemy builds walls, it starts with one brick, and he adds another brick, and another brick. The bricks have names, the brick of doubt, the brick of fear, the brick of negative thinking, generational curses, hate, unforgiveness, oppression, depression, addictions. And he says, "There's no way out. There's no way to be free". Enslaving sin is one of those bricks. But boy, when you get serious with God, and you focus your faith on seven days of fasting and prayer, and jump in on this fast, and join us, I believe that the walls will fall.
Joshua chapter 6, it runs parallel. This story runs parallel with fasting and prayer for the last seven days of this fast. I want to give you some quick lessons from Joshua's story, and the Israelite story, and what God is saying to us for the next seven days. Number one: God gave Joshua a simple instruction. He said, "Get out there and march around the walls of Jericho one time for six days, and on the seventh day march seven times". And Joshua could have said, "This is crazy. This is stupid. I'll just go get a battering realm, and I can knock the door down, why in the world would I do that? That makes no sense. That fasting and prayer stuff, I don't believe in that, I don't believe in miracles", and that is your problem. We try to fix our problems our way. We think that what we think and what we do is all that matters, we take things in our own hands. But instead of following God's simple formula, God's simple prescription for a miracle, he gives a plan, he gives an instruction. And one of God's instructions, "If you want to see the walls fall, it's fast and pray for seven days". Keep going, keep fasting, keep believing.
And then the second thing, after he gave him a simple, and some of you say, "That's too simple, that won't work". If we'll do what the Bible says, God will back it up. The second thing that God said in Joshua chapter 5, "He came near", the Bible said, "Jericho, and he saw a man with a sword in his hand, and he fell at his feet, and he began to worship". And suddenly when he looked up, even though before he was seeing the massive walls as they would be higher than the ceiling of this building, history records, and they were much, probably twice that length, and instead of seeing those walls, he saw someone who said, "I am the captain of the armies of angels that are in heaven. I am the commander. I am the one who commands the armies of heaven". And instead of seeing that wall, listen carefully, in that moment he got his focus off of the walls, and he got his focus on that angel, that we know was really Jesus. And theologians will tell you that.
He looked up and he saw Jesus. You got to get your eyes off the wall for the next seven days, and get down and begin to worship God, and march, and obey the simple instructions of getting your eyes off that problem that is so big, those walls that are so high, and so thick, and get them on Jesus. Fix your eyes on the commander of the armies of heaven. I will look unto the hills from which cometh my help. My help is the Lord, and the Lord is bigger than that wall. And suddenly the wall goes out of focus, and he begins to focus on Jesus. When you fast and pray, the focus comes off the problem, and it comes on the one who said, "I'm the Lord, and I will lead you, and I will guide you, and I will honor you, and I will raise you, and I will cause your heart to be healed. I will make a way for you. I will bless you. You focus on that one, not on the walls". Fasting makes you do that. Prayer makes you do that.
And then in Joshua 5:15 he said, "Take your shoes off, Joshua, you're on holy ground". Now, listen to me carefully, this is going to happen to hundreds and thousands of you at this campus, at all of our campuses. And those of you online who are listening, as you fast this last seven days, when he said, "Take your shoes off", what does that mean? That represents the past. Take the past off. "Why do you say it represents the past"? Let me prove it. Deuteronomy 29 and verse 5, God said, "For 40 years I led you in the wilderness, and your clothes did not wear out", watch this, "Nor did your sandals wear out on your feet". But they had traffic through the wilderness, the dust of everywhere they had been. For 40 years they were wearing the same shoes, and God said, "I'm not taking you into the same place you've been walking in. You're crossing over into the Promised Land. And I need you to take your shoes off, let go of the past".
The Lord's about to take you into your Promised Land, and you can't bring the old. You've got to get rid of the old. Take off for your shoes. Get rid of it. Get rid of it. Ephesians 6:15 tells us that shoes mean something else, he said, "Have your feet shoved with the preparation", or the readiness, "Of the gospel shoes". Represent readiness, and here's what I'm trying to get you to see: so many times we're so ready to go out and get the job done, we're so ready to just, you know, get our shoes on and go go make it happen in ourselves. But when you fast, and when you pray, God's saying, "Take your shoes off and be still, and know that I am God. Take your shoes off. I don't want you to run out into the battle. I don't want you to handle this your way. I want you to spend some time with me. All I need, Joshua, for victory, the next seven days is for you to get your, listen to my simple instruction, believe it and do it. And then get the focus off the wall, and get it on me, and listen, take your shoes off, be still, and know that I am God".
And then, he said something powerful to Joshua earlier in that book, in Joshua chapter 1:6, he said three times "Be strong and courageous, for I am with you". Be strong and courageous. And then he said, "Meditate on the word day and night". So what do we do in the next seven days? We are taking special time, and we're putting it into this book, we're reading it. You ought to read a different book of the Bible, try to read it every day. Try to read a book of the Bible every day, and I know what you'll do? You'll gravitate to the real short ones, but I'll take the short ones, take the short ones, don't get the 40 chapter ones, don't do that. Just get one book of the Bible, Timothy is always a good one, it's got little chapters Timothy, James, Jude only has one chapter, you could read, but boy they're powerful. If you read them, and read a book of the Bible, I'll tell you what I'm going to do, I'm going to read, I did this last time, I read the book, I read a different book that every day, and the Book of Acts particularly tore me up last year. I remember reading the Book of Acts, and Romans another day, and it just was so powerful. I can't wait to do that this week.
So what are you doing? He said, "Meditate in the word". Throw it back up, he said, "Meditate in the word day and night", and then, "That you be careful to do what's written", and then, these are biblical words, "You will be prosperous and successful". I do not apologize for those two words. It's not by chance, if you meditate in the word day and night, you will be prosperous, you will be successful, if you keep this word and you live it. God will raise you up from the ashes. God will supply all your needs according to his riches and glory. God invented meditation, and he said, "Meditate in my word day and night", saturate yourself in it. Don't let the counterfeit religions act like they're deep in meditation, for they ever heard a meditation. God said, "Meditate on this". Wake up with the word, go to bed with the word, play the word in your car, listen to it in music, listen to it on tape, listen to it on whatever you got iPods or internet or whatever, get the word the flowing in you, meditate on the Word of God. And God says, "If you do it, you will be strong. If you do it, you will be courageous. If you'll do it, you will be prosperous. If you do it, you will be successful".
"When I don't believe in that stuff". Well, that's why you're sitting in a church that's debt free. Every one of you, by the way, at every campus except for coming, and we hadn't bought that yet, because we're gonna buy it real cheap. Basically waiting on them to halfway give it to me. Hallelujah. But the building you're setting in, we've been doing this 30 years, and I learned a long time ago: you cannot fast and pray... I don't do it for that, but it's just a side benefit. That's why the Bible said said, "Bless the Lord, o my soul, and forget not all his benefits". Also I gave this up, I gave that up, but you forgot about the benefits. When you come to the Lord, he says, "I will bless you going in, and bless you coming out. I'll make you the head and not the tail. You will lend and and not borrow". You're sitting in a debt-free seat, and a debt-free church. Every one of you at every campus. Somebody shout, and say, "I just believe I'm going to be prosperous. I just believe God can pay off my house. I just believe God can pay off my car. I just believe I can have more than enough money to send my kids to any college God wants them to go to".
"Well, that's not spiritual", then lose your job this weekend, watch, "Oh, God". I can't stand religious people. You get real spiritual when you're in a financial crisis. Never make fun or belittle people, who believe God to supply all their needs. I started with nothing, but this book, and I meditated in it, and everything God has done for his glory. I want to say: you can prosper and be successful no matter where you start. Somebody give him a shout and I'll stop! Single mother, you can prosper and be successful! Former drug addict, former jailbird in the prison, doesn't look like you'll ever be a provider, you meditate in that book right there, open it up while you're behind bars, and what's God begin to open doors, no man can stop. Say, "I will be bold". You're pitiful. I said say, "I will be bold. I will be courageous. I will prosper, and I will be successful to the glory of God". Take a praise break and really praise him! Glory! Glory!
This is not a theory and hope so for me. I know he loves to bless his people press down, shaken together, running over. Shall men give unto your bosom. Boy, that's getting wild, I'm really getting cranked up now. Need to conserve my energy, running low on beans, amen. Hallelujah. You don't have to live in fear, you don't have to live like a little worm, you don't have to go around, "Oh, God, if I could just get by". Where in the Bible does it say he's a get by God? Where in the Bible does it say, "Just don't believe for anything, just develop a theology, 'i just don't like that God wants me prosperous and successful'". Okay, we'll go with your doctrine for a second, we'll give you 30 seconds, "God wants you broke, tore up from the floor up, unsuccessful, he gets a lot of glory out of your own success, in deep poverty". I don't believe that. The gospel elevates everything it touches! Hallelujah!
Follow God's simple instruction, fix your eyes on the commander of the armies of heaven, "Take off your shoes, be still and know that I'm God, worship me, spend some time with me, meditate in my word day and night. You'll be strong, courageous, prosperous, and successful". But here's a big one. He said, "Joshua, send two spies to Jericho, ahead of the march, and there's going to be a prostitute by the name of Rahab, and because she's going to help you, and hide your spies when the king finds out they're there and try to kill them, I want you to save her and her whole house. I mean all they did was walk around walls for seven days. Seven days of doing something physical as a demonstration of their faith in what God told them. And Rahab, her whole family tree was affected.
When they came to the city, her family was broken, her family was known as she was a prostitute, that was known, but when the story ends, the only house that's standing is Rahab's house on a portion of the wall, and she had all her family in it under a red scarlet cord, that was blowing in the wind. That red cord represented the bloodline of her family. Now, listen to me carefully: because Rahab appears in the bloodline of Jesus Christ, I couldn't believe this, but I preached a sermon many years ago, and I have they do transcripts in my sermons, and a lot of times I'll ask for them, and they can get them in a minute on the computer, and I can read and remember things that I might have forgotten. And I had preached on this subject before, and I called the sermon, I was young and dumb, I was not wise and old like I am now, but but I preached on Rahab the prostitute. And you know what I titled the sermon? "The happy hooker".
I guess, I cannot believe that, but that was the name of my sermon. About swallowing my tongue, but it's a good title, because she became the mother of a child named Boaz. She met her husband, and became the mother of Boaz. And Boaz married Ruth, and Ruth and Boaz had a baby named Obed, and Obed had a son named Jesse, and Jesse had a son named David. And Jesus was the descendant of David's bloodline. What I'm trying to say to you is Joshua had no idea that his actions for the next seven days would affect entire generations, and the entire world, and put him in Matthew chapter 1 in the bloodline of Jesus Christ.
The fast you're on right now will affect future generations for years to come. The fast you're on right now will affect significantly the entire world. And the reason that I feel the joy jumping inside of my soul is because we started doing this 30 years ago, and I started making those kinds of comments that sounded grandiose, but the truth is: if you will fast, and you will pray early in the beginning of the year, you can touch the world, you can go into places you will never get by trying to do it in the natural. They would have never in the natural got behind that wall that was set up by the enemy. It took the supernatural. God is used... How many of you are fasting right now? Let me see your hand, throw your hand up, this is not to be seen a man, it's just the power of a corporate fast. Throw it up and hold it up just one minute. I speak this over you: God is using your fast for something very powerful, that will affect the lives of many future generations in your own family. There will be an effect of future generations in my family, because I'm fasting right now.
"Well, I just don't know if God could bless me". If he could bless the happy hooker, he can bless you. God had mercy on her, you don't know why? Because she was sincere. She was sincere. And you can't fast without being sincere. You might do it in, and I'm going to try this out, but by about the third day it gets real sincere. God is not holding your past against you, he didn't hold the past against Rahab. He said, "Okay, if you're gonna fly the red cord, and be part of my bloodline, I'm going to cancel generational curses off of you, and your children, and your children's generation, and I'm gonna put blessings on future generations all the way down to Jesus coming out of her bloodline". Oh, I don't know who I'm preaching to, but every dad, every mom, every wanna be dad or mom ought to shout, "Future generations are being affected by these next seven days". They were redeemed, and blessed, and honored.
Here's another one, I'm almost done. The next thing God told him, he said, "Now, listen while they're marching for the first six days, tell them to be quiet and not speak a word. Keep silent. The next seven days keep silent, quit complaining, quit talking about the wall, quit talking about this and that, quick be negative, quit speaking defeat, quit speaking that old thing I'm married to, quit speaking that. Just obey the simple instructions, shut up, zip you lip". Maybe you need to shut down social media, would that be something just shut up, get offline. Just shut up and say, "I'm giving God the next seven days". Stop blaming others, stop complaining, hold your tongue. I give you permission right now, that if anybody starts speaking negative things around you, and your family, and they're sitting near you, and if they're not a believer, you better not try. But if they're in here, and they're hearing this sermon, I give you permission to interrupt them mid-service and say, "Pastor Franklin said zip it, zip it, zip it, zip it. That it's not life you're speaking, that's not victory you're speaking".
Ask God the Holy Spirit to make you so sensitive, that he could interrupt you mid-sentence. Should you be speaking anything about a person that you're believing for on the other side of that wall? And it may blow up this week, but you stand right there and have the confession of your mouth. Fix your eyes on Jesus, and have the confession of your mouth. The Bible says Proverbs 29:11, "A fool gives full vent to his spirit", they just let it flow, "But a wise man quietly holds back and keeps quiet". Psalms 141:3, "Set a guard over my mouth, keep watch over the door of my lips". God told Joshua, "Order your army to speak not a word. All I want the enemy to hear from you is the sound of marching for the next seven days". We used to sing a song, "If I hold my peace, let the Lord fight my battle. If I sing and shout..." I'll sing it for you, "If I hold my peace, let the Lord fight the battle. If I sing and shout, have faith and never doubt. It shall be mine. Victory shall be mine".
"Seven days, seven times, then take seven trumpets", you think God's trying to tell you something? He's saying, what if he had stopped on the third day, fifth day, fourth day? God said, "If I say seven, I mean seven". Seven days, seven priests, seven trumpets, seventh day, after seven times of marching on that day, seven rounds, then blow the trumpet, and the blowing of the trumpet is the wind going through that instrument, and you're God's instrument, and the wind of the Holy Spirit is ready to refill us all, and God's plan will bring the victory, and the walls will fall. Is your marriage in trouble? Come on and join us for seven days! Mark 10:9, "What God has joined together, let no man put asunder". Hebrews 13:4, "Let marriage be held in honor among all men". Ephesians 5:33, "Husbands love your wives as you love yourselves, and wives see that you respect your husbands". God says: I can restore that ring on your hand as you march. I can help you, I can deliver you.
Fast and pray. Take bold action the next seven days. Tonight, at five o'clock we're having a women's prayer meeting, and me and Charisse are going to head it up, and some other women. I'll be the only man invited, and we're going to pray like Rachel's army, and God's going to fill this room with his presence, and his promise, and his power.
And here's what I want to say in closing: last seven days, stay in good spirits these last seven days, choose the joy of the Lord. Let there be joy and gladness, God's going to give you beauty for ashes, so act like it. Receive the breath of fresh air from the Holy Spirit this week. Fasting takes your prayers to a whole another level. Fasting moves mountains, and fasting tears down walls. This is your shot. This is your chance. And when the trumpet blows on the seventh day, God told God's people to shout, for the Lord has given you the city. He's given you the family, he's given you what's on the other side of the pain, it's there, and the walls must fall. You believe it today? How many of you sense this is going to be a powerful week?
As we meditate, everybody raise your hands up, just stand up on your feet right where you are. Raise your hands toward heaven. Some of you didn't think about fasting when you came in, if you go for the exit, that means you're bailing out on me, but God's called you to this fast. And if you jump in now, he'll treat you like you fasted the whole 21-days. And if you've been fasting for two weeks, that doesn't bother you. It really doesn't, you want everybody to get in on this. And there's Bible for that, by the way, in Matthew chapter 20. He paid the same amount to the person who worked for three hours, that he paid to the person who worked the ninth hour, and the person who worked nine hours got mad, because he got paid the same as a guy who worked three hours. But he said, "That's how I do it".
Are you ready? Are you ready for seven days? Let's finish strong, let's finish with joy. And this is what I feel. I really feel this thing about future generations. I really feel this thing, I can't back down, I feel this thing about prosper and be successful. There's nothing wrong with that. And I'm so glad to know that there's a God who's okay with that. As long as I'm meditating on his word, putting him first in my life, as a matter of fact he takes the lid off.
Are you ready? Are you ready to march and see the walls fall? I want every person who will, I can't make anybody do this, but I feel it, I want every person who will to come with your family, if you have any, as close in as you can get, and stand in this holy ground deal down here, and all the way up the aisles. Maybe your marriage, maybe your family, but come representing your family, because God told Joshua: entire generations will be affected. So if you you come for your family, I know they may not all be here, but you come for your family. Don't speak anything about your family or family members this week, except the word of the Lord. And if they tick you off, if somebody does something or says something, close your mouth and let the Lord fight. "Be still and know that I am God". God's about to do a mighty work in families, marriages, children, children's children.
Lift your hands high all over this room, and begin to raise your voice toward God for just a moment. Before you ask, would you begin to praise him already? Would you do it verbally? Would you lift your voice, and would you begin to say, "God, I believe what that man's preaching, because it's right out of the book. And God, I believe this year is the year to be bold and courageous, this is the year to prosper and be successful, this is the year to see entire generations of my family, the generational curse, it shall pray this year in Jesus name". Now, raise your hands and receive it. The bloodline of your family is being purified and cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ. Fly the red cord over your household, fly it over your marriage, fly it over your children, and your children's children. Now, open your mouth and begin to proclaim victory! Begin to proclaim victory, in the name of Jesus!