Closing the Door
Mighty God, I know what a great and powerful God You are and I praise and worship You now.
Read Joshua 4:10-24
 Now the priests who carried the ark remained standing in the middle of the Jordan until everything the LORD had commanded Joshua was done by the people, just as Moses had directed Joshua. The people hurried over,  and as soon as all of them had crossed, the ark of the LORD and the priests came to the other side while the people watched.  The men of Reuben, Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh crossed over, ready for battle, in front of the Israelites, as Moses had directed them.  About forty thousand armed for battle crossed over before the LORD to the plains of Jericho for war.  That day the LORD exalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel; and they stood in awe of him all the days of his life, just as they had stood in awe of Moses.  Then the LORD said to Joshua,  “Command the priests carrying the ark of the covenant law to come up out of the Jordan.”  So Joshua commanded the priests, “Come up out of the Jordan.”  And the priests came up out of the river carrying the ark of the covenant of the LORD. No sooner had they set their feet on the dry ground than the waters of the Jordan returned to their place and ran at flood stage as before.  On the tenth day of the first month the people went up from the Jordan and camped at Gilgal on the eastern border of Jericho.  And Joshua set up at Gilgal the twelve stones they had taken out of the Jordan.  He said to the Israelites, “In the future when your descendants ask their parents, ‘What do these stones mean?’  tell them, ‘Israel crossed the Jordan on dry ground.’  For the LORD your God dried up the Jordan before you until you had crossed over. The LORD your God did to the Jordan what he had done to the Red Sea when he dried it up before us until we had crossed over.  He did this so that all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the LORD is powerful and so that you might always fear the LORD your God.” Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhy did God say he dried up the Jordan for them?
The past is echoed in the present. Just as in the past when the Lord had parted the Red Sea to allow his people to flee from slavery in Egypt, he once more parts the waters so that his people can cross over on dry ground. There is a difference, however. The crossing of the Red Sea was all about escape, exit and exodus. The crossing of the Jordan is about making an entrance. The people pass over, the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh among them, and they line up on the plains of Jericho ready for war. Joshua, once again, is affirmed as their leader. All is now ready for the invasion to begin, and God concludes the entry process by closing the door behind them as the waters of the Jordan return to their proper place. Much remains to be done, but God’s people are now finally in the land he promised them. Their entry is complete. Now, a new chapter in their journey will begin.
Give thanks for Christ’s work on the cross. Pray for you and your church to enter into the fullness of it all.
Lord, You have done great things for me and I am thankful. May I grow in faith and courage as I remember them.