Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Resisting The Temptation To Wander

“So it was, when the people set out from their camp to cross over the Jordan, with the priests bearing the ark of the covenant before the people, and as those who bore the ark came to the Jordan, and the feet of the priests who bore the ark dipped in the edge of the water (for the Jordan overflows all its banks during the whole time of harvest), that the waters which came down from upstream stood still, and rose in a heap very far away at Adam, the city that is beside Zaretan. So the waters that went down into the Sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, failed, and were cut off; and the people crossed over opposite Jericho.  Then the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firm on dry ground in the midst of the Jordan; and all Israel crossed over on dry ground, until all the people had crossed completely over the Jordan..” —Joshua 3:14-17

40 years earlier the nation of Israel stood at the Jordan. But lacked the faith to cross into the land that the Lord had given them – and because of their lack of faith, they wandered until that generation had passed. 40 years later and the same nation faced the same challenges. The people who inhabited the land were the same.  But now, the river was at flood stage – an impossible barrier. For men yes. No one could pass through the waters. The difference – the Lord went before them. Trusting God they acted by faith. The river stopped and like the sea when Israel left Egypt – they crossed on dry land. Great story. So what has that got to do with us? Our circumstances are different but our need for faith is not.  God leads us to places that require faith to move ahead -  to be obedient to His call. The first time Israel went ahead of God. The second time God went ahead of Israel. The difference is where the people put God – was He first and last? Our lives are filled with opportunities to trust God and not ourselves or our culture or the things of this world. How we respond is dependent upon where we have put God in our lives.

Most if not all of my devotions address faith – faith is at the center of our new life in Christ. Understanding the spiritual context of day to day living is essential to maintaining a proper perspective and a right attitude toward this life that we live.

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9

Our strength comes from God not our determination, our will, or our effort. Courage is taking action even when you are afraid – personally fearful but spiritually confident. We face circumstances every day that are impossible for us. We are tempted to “not cross the river” but to stay where it is safe – even it means disobedience.  When God is not first – when He is not in the lead – then, more than likely, we will stay on the safe side. It is a temptation – a struggle that every Christian faces.  We all know when we have sent God to the back – to wait for us to call on Him when we need something – when our plans don’t work out like we were convinced they would. Living with a divided heart condemns us to a life of wandering from one spiritual failure to another.  That is not the life we have been born-again to live out – called to – destined for.

This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. – Joshua 1:8

Spiritual success is hinged upon embracing God’s Word and then obeying it. Uncompromising surrender to its truth.  Resisting the attempts to water down the truth so a culture bound for hell can tolerate it and not choke on the conviction that will surely come when confronted with unchanging truth. Sinners love the darkness and hate the light. There seems to be a great movement in this country to silence people who don’t agree with the prevailing world view. Ignoring the truth does not make it any less true.  This is not about politics it is about the conflict between that natural and the supernatural.  Don’t be satisfied with wandering aimlessly in the desert of life. Comfortable with the idea that you can get by with a small faith and a silent witness. You have a great calling from a great God!

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” – Galatians 2:20

Does that describe you? It should! Let your light Shine Bright my friend and give God the place and glory He is due.

By Faith Alone By His Grace Alone And For His Glory Alone


No comments: