Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | January 18, 2015

“Crossing the Jordan”: “I go to prepare a place for you”

Today’s devotion comes from Joshua Chapter 3 which covers the preparation for Israel crossing the Jordan, the ark of the covenant leading the way, and the people of Israel following and crossing the Jordan.

I quote only the following verses.

“1 Then Joshua rose early in the morning; and he and all the sons of Israel set out from Shittim and came to the Jordan, and they lodged there before they crossed.  2 At the end of three days the officers went through the midst of the camp;  3 and they commanded the people, saying, “When you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God with the Levitical priests carrying it, then you shall set out from your place and go after it.  4 However, there shall be between you and it a distance of about 2,000 cubits by measure.  Do not come near it, that you may know the way by which you shall go, for you have not passed this way before.”

5 Then Joshua said to the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.”  6 And Joshua spoke to the priests, saying, “Take up the ark of the covenant and cross over ahead of the people.”  So they took up the ark of the covenant and went ahead of the people.  …

14 So when the people set out from their tents to cross the Jordan with the priests carrying the ark of the covenant before the people, 15 and when those who carried the ark came into the Jordan, and the feet of the priests carrying the ark were dipped in the edge of the water (for the Jordan overflows all its banks all the days of harvest), 16 the waters which were flowing down from above stood and rose up in one heap, a great distance away at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan; and those which were flowing down toward the sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, were completely cut off.  So the people crossed opposite Jericho.  17 And the priests who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firm on dry ground in the middle of the Jordan while all Israel crossed on dry ground, until all the nation had finished crossing the Jordan.”  Joshua Chapter 3:  Verses 1-6 and 14-17.

———————-

“Crossing the Jordan” is an expression of going through death to get to heaven (the Promised Land).  But, we do not go alone.

First, today’s Scripture reminds us that, like the ark of the covenant went first, God goes before us.  “Do not let your heart be troubled;  believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many dwelling places;  if it were not so, I would have told you;  for I go to prepare a place for you.  If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.”  John 14:1-3.

“But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep.  For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead.  For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.  But each in his own order:  Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming, then comes the end, when He hands over the kingdom to the God and Father, when He has abolished all rule and all authority and power.  For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet.  The last enemy that will be abolished is death.”  1 Corinthians 15:20-26.

Second, today’s Scripture reminds us that, like “all Israel crossed on dry land”, “all” of God’s elect will safely “cross the Jordan”, so to speak, and arrive in heaven.  Not one will be lost.  This is “Preservation of the Saints”, the “P” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation.

“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me;  and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish;  and no one will snatch them out of My hand.  My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all;  and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.  I and the Father are one.”  John 10:27-30.

“While I was with them, I was keeping them in Your name which You have given Me;  and I guarded them and not one of them perished but the son of perdition, so that the Scripture would be fulfilled.”  John 17:12.

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.  For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;  and these whom He predestined, He also called;  and these whom He called, He also justified;  and these whom He justified, He also glorified.”  Romans 8:28-30.

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