Safety Of The Ark
Reread Joshua Chapter 3
Jos 3:2 ……….“When you see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and the priests, who are Levites, carrying it, you are to move out from your positions and follow it. 4 Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before. But keep a distance of about a thousand yards between you and the ark; do not go near it.” 5Joshua told the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you.” 6 Joshua said to the priests, “Take up the ark of the covenant and pass on ahead of the people.” So they took it up and went ahead of them. 7 And the LORD said to Joshua, “Today I will begin to exalt you in the eyes of all Israel, so they may know that I am with you as I was with Moses. 8 Tell the priests who carry the ark of the covenant: ‘When you reach the edge of the Jordan’s waters, go and stand in the river.’ ” 9 Joshua said to the Israelites, “Come here and listen to the words of the LORD your God. 10 This is how you will know that the living God is among you and that He will certainly drive out before you the Canaanites, Hittites, Hivites, Perizzites, Girgashites, Amorites and Jebusites. 11 See, the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth will go into the Jordan ahead of you.
Today we are going to explore more ideas about the Ark of the Covenant which have good application for us today. In this passage of scripture, the Hebrews were about to cross the Jordan River and begin occupying the Promised Land. There were specific instructions about how to carry out God’s plan.
Jos 3:15 Now the Jordan is at flood stage all during harvest. Yet as soon as the priests who carried the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge, 16 the water from upstream stopped flowing. It piled up in a heap a great distance away, at a town called Adam in the vicinity of Zarethan, while the water flowing down to the Sea of the Arabah (the Salt Sea ) was completely cut off. So the people crossed over opposite Jericho.
- The priests were to carry the Ark and stand in the water. The waters did not immediately recede as we have often believed. The waters stopped quite a ways upstream, which caused a delay in drying up the Jordan where they had camped. It took a while for the Israelites to see the results of God’s work in their behalf. Our “waters” will not always part at the first moment when we express our faith. Sometimes waiting and perseverance will be required of us. Meanwhile, we must continue to “stand in the waters” as long as necessary.
- The Israelites were instructed to follow the Ark of the Covenant (verse 2). Just as they were to follow the Ark, we are also required to follow the “Ark” living within us. If we fail to submit to His leadership, our journey will take us to places which are detrimental to our spiritual well-being.
- The Israelites were told that they have “never been that way before (verse 4).” They were venturing into unknown territory. We SSA men and women are also entering into unknown territory – a territory which does not include same-sex lusts and actions. We don’t have a clue how we will be able to manage our lives without our old familiar ways. Nevertheless, we are instructed to trust our “Ark” and be willing to venture into the unknown and not look back. That is exactly what we must do.
- Joshua commanded the people to “come here and hear the words of the Lord (verse 9).” There is only one place for us to go in order to hear the truth – it is our Ark. We will not find the truth anywhere but where our Lord is speaking. His word and only His word can reveal what we need to know in order to live correctly. The “reinterpretation” of God’s word is folly – far removed from our Ark.
Hopefully, we will remind ourselves daily, many times each day that God is our Ark. We are to follow Him without reservation and stay near Him at all times.
Prayer: Thank You for Your covenant protection and guidance. Teach us to wait, follow, and stay near You. That is the only road worth traveling.