Do you Remember?
Bishop M.L. Maughmer, Jr.
Scriptures Joshua 4
Focus Scripture Joshua 4:6 & 7 “That this may be a sign among you, that when your children ask their fathers in time to come, saying, What mean ye by these stones? Then ye shall answer them, That the waters of Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD; when it passed over Jordan, the waters of Jordan were cut off: and these stones shall be for a memorial unto the children of Israel for ever”.
OPENING:- My wife has a great ability to remember, sometimes it is too good because she remembers everything and I find myself in trouble because I don’t remember something and she does. She often says “remember you said you would take me shopping or you remember you promised to play me a game of scrabble this weekend”.
Just this week she didn’t have to be to work one day until 9:00, so instead of waking her up at 6:20 I was to call her at 7:30 to make sure she was up. Well at 7:45 I get a text from her that says “I’m awake and thanks for the call love you ” I had forgotten to call her to make sure she was up.
Sometimes I forget things. I will forget someone’s name. I will forget to do something I was supposed to do. I may forget certain dates. I may forget an appointment or a bill, but ONE thing I can never forget is Jesus and what He has done for me. That’s why the song said “Jesus I’ll never forget what you done for me…”
Let me say you may forget a lot of things, but never forget what Jesus has done for you.
Today we will be partaking in the Lord’s Supper (Communion). Communion is done in remembrance of Jesus Christ and what He has done for us. We remember His life, His Sacrifice, His Death, His Resurrection, His Promises, and we worship Him in Communion. Communion is one of two ordinances that Christ has given to the church to do – Baptism is the other. Communion is 2 dimensional or 2 directional in that it is vertical – communion with God and horizontal communion with mankind (our fellow church members). Communion must be understood as a gift from God, as a fruit of God's initiative carried out in our worship service.
Communion expresses the new regenerated relationship between man and God that has been established in Christ by way of the Cross and is communicated through the Lord’s Supper.
Communion is a valuable part of the corporate worship expression. Sure, you can do it alone, but so much is missed out on when it’s not done as a corporate body of believers.
Unfortunately, in many cases communion has become a tired and predictable ritual instead of a vibrant expression of life in Christ. Whether this is because a heart isn’t prepared, we have forgotten what it represents, or the person leading has lost their own wonder at the mystery of Christ’s act on our behalf, it is a sad situation.
When communion becomes a ritual without meaning, we miss out on the opportunity to celebrate together the amazing expression of God’s love for us.
We miss remembering that Christ died in our place for our sin.
We forget about the foreshadowing of the great feast that is to come for all who have trusted in Christ’s sufficiency.
TEXT:- Joshua 4:- versus 1-3 - Men commanded to get stones from the river verses 4-7 - Purpose of the stones explained verses 8,9 - Two memorials of stone verses 10,11 - The crossing completed verses 12-14 - The men of the 2½ tribes lead the people into the land verses 15-18 - The priests leave the river verses 19-24 - The memorial stones set up in Gilgal.
BACKGROUND:- When all the people had crossed the Jordan safely God spoke to Joshua with instructions about the memorials they were to make. Joshua then told each of the twelve men to carry his stone on his shoulder and cross to the west side of the river ahead of the priests with the ark. The water remained held back so long as the priests and the ark stayed in the river, so the men had to get the stones and carry them to land before the priests left the river. The stones would be a memorial sign to future generations to remember the crossing of the river. When future generations asked about the stones, the people would explain how the waters of the river were cut off so the ark (and the people) were enabled to cross over on dry ground. The stones would be a memorial to the people forever that God had held back the river. How could one make a pile of stones in the middle of a river? It would again normally be difficult or impossible in that day. But it was easy while the river was dried up.
God wants people to remember His great acts, and He has often authorized memorials whereby we can remember them. People tend to forget what God has done, if they are not reminded. Especially God’s miracles were done to convince the people to believe in God. Future generations would not see the miracle, but the stones would remind them and would remind the parents to teach the children. We too need to remember to teach our children about God’s great works of the past.
Memorials in the Old Testament often consisted of stones or piles of stones. Exodus 20;
Genesis 31:43-53; Joshua 24:25-27; 1 Samuel 7:11,12. The 10 Commands were written on stones as a memorial to God’s law. They were not the whole law, nor even necessarily the most important laws. They were a visible memorial to remind people of the law. God’s memorials today under the New Testament include the Lord’s supper, which is a memorial feast reminding us of Jesus’ death. Also the Bible is a written book reminding us, not just of God’s law, but of His great miracles. We cannot see miracles today, even as Israel could not continue to see the Jordan dried up. But we have the memorial of them in the Bible John 20:30,31.
We should all take special measures to remember our mercies. David said it like this in Psalm 103:2 “Bless the Lord O my soul and forget not all his benefits”.
It is our duty to tell others as well, as to remember for ourselves, the mercies of god. These stones were a declaration of God's dealings to all who subsequently should pass by that way.
The stones would bring back to remembrance what God has done.
Today you have been given stones that have the word remember on it. The word REMEMBER means to recall to the mind by an act or effort of memory; think of again: have in or be able to bring to one's mind an awareness of someone or something that one has seen, known, or experienced in the past.
Here is the charge keep this stone in your pocket or pocket book and every time you see the stone Remember what God has done for you.
Do you remember when you were bound and on your way to hell but one day you called upon the name of the Lord and He delivered you.
Do you remember when you thought you were about to lose your mind and God stepped in and turned your situation around.
Do you remember when you were looking down the barrel of the gun and the man said I’m going to blow your brains out and God stepped in and cause the gun not to fire.
Do you remember when you were going to get into the car but missed your ride and everyone else was killed.
Do you remember when the doctor said terminal but God said not so.
Do you remember when the enemy tried to take your life but God said live.
Do you remember when you were about to give up but God showed up in time a worked it out.
Do you remember when you tried to take your life and God saved your life.
The song says Jesus I’ll never forget what you done for me – that’s remembering.
Do you remember when it seemed like everything was you but God gave you the victory.
One song writer said it like this “When I think of the goodness of Jesus and all He’s done for me my soul cries out hallelujah praise God for saving me”.
David said “O magnify the Lord with me and let us exalt His name together this poor man cried and the Lord delivered him from ALL his troubles”.
When I look back over my life and I remember where He brought from I have to give Him praise.
When I remember how I could have been sleeping in the grave but God.
When I remember how I could be locked up in prison but God.
When I remember how He brought me out.
When I remember how He made a way out of no way.
When I remember all that He has done for me I just have to praise Him.
Bless the Lord O my soul and all that is within me bless His HOLY name.
Do you remember.
Do You Remember the time when……….. Think about it then just begin to give God praise because if it had not been for the Lord.
Bishop M.L. Maughmer, Jr.