The God of the Jordan
by Drawing Near to God

Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the
Lord will bring you today.” Exodus 14:13
Joshua told the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things
among you.” Joshua 3:5
The Israelites went through the sea on dry ground. Exodus 14:29
The whole nation had completed the crossing on dry ground. Joshua 3:17
As you’re working through this week’s passage, do you find yourself thinking, ‘This sounds
familiar. Haven’t we heard this before?’
God’s people, led by one courageous leader, promised new freedom, staring down an
impassable body of water. God, miraculously making a way for his people to cross, on DRY
GROUND. Haven’t we heard this before?
If you’re getting flashbacks to Exodus 14, when the Israelites crossed the Red Sea, it’s because
you’re supposed to! But why are we supposed to? Why all the parallels?
They speak to the nature, and character of God. A God who sustains, and provides for his people.
Elohim God, the God of all creation overcomes impossible odds, because nothing is impossible
for him.
After 40 years in the wilderness, this new generation of Israelites had heard their elders recount
their miraculous delivery from captivity through the Red Sea. The Lord of all the earth parted
those waters. And he would do it again. That’s the point. The Israelites are about to make a
new, dangerous crossing, into a land with dangerous enemies. They needed to be reminded in
the midst of scary and impossible things, even hopeful, and joyful things, that God remained
with them. He was, and would remain present, able, and unchanged.
The living God is present with his people. Joshua chapter three is 17 verses long. The Ark of
the Covenant, of the Ark of the Lord, is mentioned 14 times in those seventeen verses. No
other noun is mentioned more, not Joshua, not the Jordan River, not the city of Jericho. The
Ark of the Lord, is main character this week. In the Old Testament, God’s presence was
confined to a certain place. The Ark of the covenant was one place where God dwelled on
earth. So when you read about the Ark of the Covenant, or the Ark of the Lord, think, ‘that’s
where God is. That’s God’s presence.’
The living God is present with his people, in Joshua this week’s passage. Focus on him this
week. Not on the Jordan River, and not on all the “-ites,” the enemies on the other side. Focus
on Him, focus on staying in His presence, and not on the scary things looming on the horizon.
We’re purified and set apart in his presence. We can hear his instruction in his presence. And
we see miraculous breakthrough in his presence.




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