Into the Promised Land
Read: Joshua 3:1-17
The Israelites crossing the Jordan River communicates a major truth: God always keeps his promises. It took quite awhile for this promise to come to fruition, in fact, none of the adults that initially received the promise saw it fulfilled. This then tells us of another truth about the promises of God: God works on a larger scale and timeline than we do. God is infinitely patient in working out his promises and his timeline is often different than ours. So this leads us to another truth: our participation in the promises of God is largely reliant on our trust and faith in God and his promises. The people of Israel did not trust God to follow through with his promise to being them fully into the promise land even though it seemed impossible. These promises and the faith and trust they require is the bedrock of the covenant relationship that we have with God and are the only way that the covenant can continue properly.
In this passage we see, in a way, the re-covenanting of God with the people of Israel by leading them through the waters of the Jordan just as he had decades prior with the Red Sea. A new people, a people of covenant, trust and faith were going to emerge on the other side of the waters of the Jordan as they set foot in the promised land. In the same way God continues to call his people, the church, have faith and trust in his promises even if it seems insurmountable. To the world our faith and trust may seem blind, foolish, and incomprehensible but the Lord has shown time and time again through our history that he follows through.
- What’s one thing that stood out to you in this passage?
- Like the people of Israel, what do we allow to come between us and the promises of God?
- How can we come to terms with the fact that God’s promise works on a larger scale and different timeline with which we tend to operate?
- When can you remember God fulfilling a promise in your life? How long did it take?
- How can we daily live in reliance on the promises of God even if they are taking longer than we hoped?
- What promises of God do you rely on?