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February 27, 2019

Please read today’s Scriptures and use the comment section on this page to share your insights from today’s reading. You can also just mention a verse that impacted you or post a question!

Read (and Hear) the Bible in One Year
Christian Standard Bible for 2019

Text: Deuteronomy 1-2
Audio: Deuteronomy 1-2

You can use the audio Bible as a guide to help “set the pace” as you read along.

Joshua 4 (ESV)

When all the nation had finished passing over the Jordan, the Lord said to Joshua, “Take twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man, and command them, saying, ‘Take twelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place where the priests’ feet stood firmly, and bring them over with you and lay them down in the place where you lodge tonight.’” Then Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe. And Joshua said to them, “Pass on before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of the Jordan, and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, that this may be a sign among you. When your children ask in time to come, ‘What do those stones mean to you?’ then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever.”

And the people of Israel did just as Joshua commanded and took up twelve stones out of the midst of the Jordan, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, just as the Lord told Joshua. And they carried them over with them to the place where they lodged and laid them down there. And Joshua set up twelve stones in the midst of the Jordan, in the place where the feet of the priests bearing the ark of the covenant had stood; and they are there to this day.10 For the priests bearing the ark stood in the midst of the Jordan until everything was finished that the Lord commanded Joshua to tell the people, according to all that Moses had commanded Joshua.

The people passed over in haste. 11 And when all the people had finished passing over, the ark of the Lord and the priests passed over before the people. 12 The sons of Reuben and the sons of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh passed over armed before the people of Israel, as Moses had told them. 13 About 40,000 ready for war passed over before the Lord for battle, to the plains of Jericho. 14 On that day the Lord exalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel, and they stood in awe of him just as they had stood in awe of Moses, all the days of his life.

15 And the Lord said to Joshua, 16 “Command the priests bearing the ark of the testimony to come up out of the Jordan.” 17 So Joshua commanded the priests, “Come up out of the Jordan.” 18 And when the priests bearing the ark of the covenant of the Lord came up from the midst of the Jordan, and the soles of the priests’ feet were lifted up on dry ground, the waters of the Jordan returned to their place and overflowed all its banks, as before.

19 The people came up out of the Jordan on the tenth day of the first month, and they encamped at Gilgal on the east border of Jericho. 20 And those twelve stones, which they took out of the Jordan, Joshua set up at Gilgal. 21 And he said to the people of Israel, “When your children ask their fathers in times to come, ‘What do these stones mean?’ 22 then you shall let your children know, ‘Israel passed over this Jordan on dry ground.’ 23 For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, which he dried up for us until we passed over, 24 so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, that you may fear the Lord your God forever.”

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Next: Joshua 5

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This Post Has 4 Comments
  1. The Mighty Hand of the Lord

    Most people today believe everything we see has either always existed or it came to be through natural circumstances and evolution. Since you can't get something from nothing, something (or Someone) has to have always existed and created everything we see. Even if you believe in evolution, that doesn't solve the problem of where everything started. 

    Because people do not want to be accountable to a Creator, it's easy to believe there is no God. As such, people live as the god of their lives without any care (or belief) of a coming judgment before a holy God. If everything is left to chance, then we live and we die. In this belief system, there are no moral absolutes and as such, no need for God or the Bible. 

    Our public school systems and most universities have become a breeding ground of atheistic, anti-God, anti-Christian, anti-creationism and anti-Conservative views while indoctrinating students with liberal thoughts, ideologies, and agendas. There not only is no opposing views fairly represented in these environments but any opposition to this "group think" is met with public shaming, ridicule and even violence.

    All this in the name of "separation of Church and State" which was never meant to keep the Church out of the government but the government out of the Church.

    When the people of Israel crossed the Jordan to inherit the land that God gave them, the Lord told Joshua to command twelve men from the people from each tribe to gather stones where the waters of the Jordan were cut off. 

    Joshua 4:6-7 says, "When your children ask in time to come, ‘What do those stones mean to you?’ 7 then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever."

    Joshua 4:21-22 says, "When your children ask their fathers in times to come, ‘What do these stones mean?’ 22 then you shall let your children know, ‘Israel passed over this Jordan on dry ground.’ 23 For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, which he dried up for us until we passed over."

    Beyond the children, the Lord also wanted all the people of the earth to know that the hand of the Lord is mighty and so they would fear the Lord their God forever (Joshua 4:24). 

    As followers of Christ, we should want the world to know that the hand of God is mighty so they would fear the Lord as God. 

    As followers of Christ, we don't need to force our views on others but we should speak up for what the Bible says about creation, life, morality and also the coming judgment. 

    If people die in their trespasses and sins, they will be judged according to their sins and spend eternity separated from God in hell. Only those who have put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and have been born again will avoid the wrath of God on judgment day. 

    These Scriptural truths are like the stones mentioned in Joshua 4. 

    Do we want the next generation of our families to know what God's Word says? 

    Do we want the whole earth to know the mighty hand of God and to fear the Lord as God?

    In a culture that is not interested in God or the Bible, we need to go against the waves of cultural depravity and strong currents of unbelief and stand on the solid rock of Christ as we embrace people with God's love while refusing to compromise God's truth. 

  2. I have a friend from the "old days;" we've been friends for 31 years, and we dated for several years. 

    My friend is suffering from loneliness, depression, anger, hatred and despair, and I'm having a very difficult time convincing him to give God another try. He says he hates God and blames Him for all of the terrible things that have happened in his life. 

    For awhile now, not wanting him to feel pressure or become angry with me for talking to him about God, Jesus, and the freedom of salvation, I've refrained from suggesting he actively seek God. I don't want to lose my connection with him; I want him to see my Christianity in my actions.

    I sent him a Valentine this year, I reach out to him on a daily basis so that he knows he has a friend in me, and I've been suggesting doing things together that are just good, clean fun. 

    I know that my friend could have the peace and joy that I have from a relationship with God if he just would allow a crack in the wall he has up, so a little light could shine through. 

    It hurts to see him suffer, and I want so desperately to help him, but I can't get through. 

    I think I'm going to write him a letter and remind him that I will never give up on him. 

    Please pray that I say what God wants me to, and please pray for my friend. 

    1. Brynne, I’m praying for your friend, and also for you, that you would have the courage to point him to the cross not just in action but with words  for the salvation and redemption he needs. 

      “For ‘everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’

      “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!’” Romans 10:13-15

      God has given you to your friend! 

       

       

  3. “For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, which he dried up for us until we passed over, so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, that you may fear the Lord your God forever.”

    I just posted on a friend’s Facebook wall about the fear of God, and then popped over here to read Joshua 4. 

    Here’s a portion of what I shared there: 

    “I’m also reminded that ‘The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.’ Where there is no fear of God, there *is* no wisdom. Only folly leading to a hardened heart and a seared conscience,  in danger of being turned over to one’s sin and unbelief. 

    “The God we are redeemed by is the *terrifying* God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob — the very God many hate and reject, and boldly, as we are seeing. But *He* is the God who ‘so loved the world’ that He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to redeem and save us (John 3:16) from *His wrath*. Those who reject God, then, also reject Christ and cannot obey Him…and ‘the wrath of God remains’ on them. (John 3:36) 

    “‘It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.’ (Hebrews 10:31)

    “Many have created a god they find more…palatable. But their god will not save them when they stand before the holy God who has the ‘authority to cast into hell.’ (Luke 12:5)

    “We are living in a day and age where we — the church — must intentionally teach, preach and exhort one another to repentance, obedience and holiness, which are clearly taught in Scripture as ‘bearing fruit in keeping with repentance.’

    Holiness always begins in our hearts…consecrated hearts, redeemed by God and given over to Him. And it shows itself to the world in the way we live…consecrated lives, redeemed by God and given over to Him. No longer out of fear of His wrath, but out of love for Him. He has saved us from His wrath and poured out mercy and grace. He calls us His beloved children. ‘Perfect love casts out fear.’

    “I could go on and on, there is so much to say. Instead I’m praying for many, including myself. ❤️“ 

    I’m now struggling with whether what I shared on her wall needs to be shared (in substance, not word for word) on the wall she was referring to, the wall of a mutual friend who has publicly pronounced her unbelief after many years serving in Christian ministry. But that wall is also filled with equally bold people who also reject God and use the words “bigot,” “hate speech,” etc. when Christians post on a specific hot button topic I typically stay away from in public forums. I wonder, then, if this is what Jesus meant when He said, “Do not give dogs what is holy, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, lest they trample them underfoot and turn to attack you.” Matthew 7:6

    Please pray for me, that I would not shrink back in fear of man, but would be given wisdom and discernment…and courage. 

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