Friday, 1 April 2011

What Took You So Long?

Observations on Joshua 1-3

God promises to establish Joshua as long as he meditates on the law and is strong and courageous. Those are the only prerequisites. His primary support is not his strategy, back up plan or wise council, but the Word of God and the good courage that comes from trusting the one who inspired it. Not much has changed. (Acts 4:29)

Did you notice that whilst the Israelites cowered back in fear, refusing to take the land that God had promised them, (Num.14:3-4) it turns out that the Canaanites were in absolute dread of their arrival and had been for the last 40 years (Josh.2:10-11). They must have wondered what was taking them so long!

The spies promise to spare Rahab and her family when they take the city. She will tie a scarlet ribbon in the window. Feels a little bit like another Passover, only this time, it's not the Angel (of Death) passing through the city slaying the firstborn, it's the Israelites and they will devote the whole city to destruction but pass over this one house.

Passing through water is symbolic of death. When they came out of Egypt, the people passed through the waters of the Red Sea - symbolic of death to their old way of life in Egypt and raised to new life in Christ. As they enter in to the promised land of their inheritance, they go through water again - through the Jordan River. So too, having been raised to new life in Christ, all those who love Jesus will pass through the waters of death again and receive the One they have been waiting for and live with Him forever in the world that he will renew.

No comments: