Summary: Sermon 7 in the series. Alliterated expositions of Joshua. The spies have returned with a great report. The Lord will help them to take the land. The enemies’ hearts melt within them.
Trust and Obey!
Crossing the Jordan
CBC Joshua Series #7
• The spies have returned with a great report.
• The Lord will help them to take the land.
• The enemies’ hearts melt within them.
• There are times when what is right and what is possible seem to be miles apart.
• During those times, we need a word from God.
• But when God commands, and his people follow in faith, we also receive a WORK from God.
• So it is in our text today.
• NOTE: Salvation just gets you out of Egypt, but leaves you in the wilderness. You will have to fight for your Canaan experience.
• At the Red Sea, the enemy was defeated before their eyes.
• But now, they will have to fight their enemies.
• At the Red Sea, they entered the wilderness. Now, the enter the land of milk and honey.
I. The Move to Jordan (1)
1 And Joshua rose early in the morning; and they removed from Shittim, and came to Jordan, he and all the children of Israel, and lodged there before they passed over.
A. The Obedience of Joshua
• Immediately, the very next morning after the spies come in at night, Joshua moves.
• This is a journey of about 10 miles.
• And at this point, Joshua has no clue what God will do to remove the obstacle!
• Yet he does NOT ask for more time to wait on the Jordan to subside.
B. The Obedience of the People
• They do not know where they are going.
• They do not know how they will cross.
• They simply follow their leader.
QUOTE: Unbelief says, let’s go back where it is safe. Faith says let’s go forward where God is working.
II. The Messages (2-13)
A. From the Officers (2-4)
1. Follow the Ark (2,3)
2 And it came to pass after three days, that the officers went through the host; 3 And they commanded the people, saying, When ye see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and the priests the Levites bearing it, then ye shall remove from your place, and go after it.
• Remove from your place = From your assigned tribal position.
2. Maintain Your Distance (4)
4 Yet there shall be a space between you and it, about two thousand cubits by measure: come not near unto it, that ye may know the way by which ye must go: for ye have not passed this way heretofore.
• 2,000 cubits = 3,000 feet. (I.e., about ½ mile).
• There are two reasons here.
• First, they were not to hinder the other from seeing the ark move.
• How sad that some in the church will hinder others from seeing the Lord.
• Some are always “agin it.” And so they hinder others.
• Second, There is the principle of holiness.
• David learned this as he carelessly allowed men to move the ark.
• There are people and places and things that are sacred to our God!
• They are told to be careful for they have not passed this way before.
• Of course they have not. No one has crossed Jordan.
• This is not what the text means.
• Previously, God’s children followed the pillar of cloud and the pillar of fire.
• Now, they will follow the ark!
• Watch your step, children of Israel.
B. From Joshua (5,6)
1. To the People (5)
5 And Joshua said unto the people, Sanctify yourselves: for to morrow the LORD will do wonders among you.
• Before God can do for us what we need, we must be what He needs us to be!
• This is a holy GOD, so you be holy.
• This is an holy ARK, so you be holy.
• This is a holy MISSION, so you be holy.
• “Be ye holy, for I am holy.”
• So they are not asked to prepare their swords, but to prepare themselves.
• God will do “wonders.” This is the OT word for miracles.
2. To the Priests (6)
a. The Order (6a)
6a And Joshua spake unto the priests, saying, Take up the ark of the covenant, and pass over before the people.
The leadership is having to step out on faith.
b. The Obedience
6b And they took up the ark of the covenant, and went before the people.
• Please note that the committee gets together and discusses what the leader wants to do! NO! They follow.
• At this point, they have no idea how God will deliver.
• But leaders must take the cue from their leader, then take the lead!