In Joshua the 3rd chapter, we read of God leading the children of Israel across the flooded Jordan river to the land He had promised them. Joshua commanded the people, saying, When ye see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, and the priest and the Levites bearing it, then ye shall remove from your place and follow it, that ye may know the way, by which ye must go; for ye have not passed this way before. And Joshua said unto the people. Sanctify yourselves; for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you. When the people did exactly as they were told, they all passed over the mighty Jordan river on dry ground. The Lord, God Almighty, did indeed do wonders that day.
When God chose Moses (Exodus) to lead his people out of their Egyptian bondage, did He tell them it would be an easy trek of a day or two, then they could simply waltz into a land flowing with milk and honey, unopposed? No, the way was a difficult one, fraught with many dangers and hardships, though be it, many of these things were brought on by the people themselves. God always has a plan for his people, but they must heed and follow his instructions precisely. Those who refused to render allegiance to His plan, wandered 40 years in the wilderness, and died without ever seeing the reward of the promised land.
Some may ask, “what does this story from the old testament have to do with us today?” Well it has everything to do with us today. Things that were written in the old testament were written for our learning, so we might have a better understanding of the nature and character of our God, giving us patience, comfort, and hope in our lives (Rom. 15:4) We serve the same God today that the Israelites served in the days of Moses. “For I am the Lord, I change not” (Mal. 3:6) “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever” (Heb. 13:8).
We see that God has not changed, but some things, as foretold in the old testament, have changed. Jesus Christ came to this earth to fulfill the old law, die on the cross of Calvary, shedding His precious blood to atone for the sins of all mankind. The Lord made a new covenant with mankind, known as the New Testament. We are no longer commanded to follow the ark of the covenant, but we are commanded to hear the words of Jesus and follow Him (Luke 9:35-Matt.10:38) Since no living human has ever walked this earthly path before, it is impossible to know the way without following His New Testament. For Jesus tells us, “I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man comes to the Father, but by me” (John 14:6) God made plans for his people, even before the foundation of the world, He had a plan. (Eph. 1:4).The Lord has not promised us an easy life following Him, but He has promised to never leave us or forsake us (Heb 13:5). We have all heard it said, “no one gets out of this world alive.” For a fact, we must all one day cross that great Jordan of death. We can either follow Jesus, who will never forsake us, crossing fearlessly on solid ground to the promised land of heaven, or we can face those muddy waters of death alone, with no guide and be swept away to a realm of darkest torment, there to spend eternity, because we chose to ignore His simple plan.
We must set ourselves apart from this world to be assured God will do wonders for us when we must face that great river of death. Yes God has shown us His gracious plan to sanctify and make us His special people, set apart, and saved by Him. According to His plan, we must hear His word (Rom. 10:17), we must believe His word (Mark 16:16), we must repent and change our direction in life (Luke 13:3), we must confess Jesus as God’s Son before men (Matt. 10:32), we must be baptized into Christ for the remission of our sins (Acts 2:38, Gal. 3:27 ), we must strive daily to live Godly until death (II Peter 1:4-11, Rev. 2:10) If we would one day hope to cross over to that promised land, we must faithfully follow, God’s absolute and perfect plan.
We invite all who would to come together with us each Sunday morning at Kedron on the Coopertown Road, Russellville, Ky. to worship God in spirit and in truth. We neither add to God’s word or take from it. Bible study at 10:00 and Worship at 11:00.