Joshua 5 records the encounter that Joshua the Israelite leader has with a man with a drawn sword. When Joshua lifted up his eyes and saw this man, he went to this man and asked, “Are you for us or are you against us (on the side of our adversaries)?” The response he received was “Nay, but as the captain of the host (army) of the LORD have I come”. Joshua spiritually recognizes that this was Jesus he had seen and falls down to the ground and worships him. Can we be sure that this was Jesus? Other parts of the Bible can help us come to that conclusion. When man tried to worship an angelic being, sent by God, the angelic being immediately stopped that person from worshipping anyone other than God and cautioned that man worships no one else, other than God (Revelation 19:10). This helps us recognize that the man that Joshua envisioned was not just an angel sent by God. 1 Timothy 2:5 refers to Jesus the one mediator between God and men as “the man Christ Jesus” and whom Joshua saw was “the man” Christ Jesus. Furthermore, just as Joshua saw the man with a drawn sword, Revelation 19:11-15 portrays, Jesus as the rider on a white horse, from whose mouth a sharp sword proceeds (Revelation 19:15), whom the armies of heaven followed (Revelation 19:14).
Points to ponder:
Shaitan/Shaytan from which we get the word, “satan” means the “opposer” or “adversary”. He has been at war with God since the time of is rebellion (Ezekiel 28) and the fall of man (Genesis 3:15). Jesus is the commander and chief of the armies of the LORD. He is The Captain. Are you part of his army or are you on the adversary’s side? And if we are part of Jesus’ army, is our response as that of Joshua, “What saith my Lord unto his servant?” (Joshua 5:14).
Joshua 5:13-15 (KJV)
13 And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries?
14 And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the Lord am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my Lord unto his servant?
15 And the captain of the Lord’s host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so.
Revelation 19:11-16 (KJV)
11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.
12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.
14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.
15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
16 And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, King Of Kings, And Lord Of Lords.