Monday, July 2, 2012

Steps of Faith

Joshua 3 tells the story of Israel, under Joshua's leadership, crossing the Jordan River. The way was not made for them until the first feet were placed into the water: a memorable picture of trusting God literally one step at a time.

An earlier generation had experienced the dramatic parting of the Red Sea, the most famous redemptive miracle of the Old Testament. But now there was a new generation, and they were under new leadership as the mantle had passed from Moses to Joshua. Crossing the Jordan gave this young generation their own story, and fresh courage. The Red Sea would remain, until the cross of Jesus Christ, the representative portrait of redemption. But the new generation had their own mini-portrait.

Some application:

God gives each of us stories of redemption - as individuals, families, and churches. Stories of God providing for us, guiding us, and delivering us - from ourselves, our sin, our past, our false gods. These deliverances should serve as a thread, leading us back to the cross where we see the greatest and ultimate redemption. Apart from the cross, where Jesus secured our forgiveness and reconciliation to the Father, there could be no "Wow, God is really with us!" moments today.

Also, we should keep moving forward in our faith. God did not call us to a salvation that sits in history and in our memories. The great realities of the cross should fuel us today (meaning, in the next few minutes and hours). The living and true God is with us and for us! In Paul's words, "He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not with him graciously give us all things?" (Romans 8:32)

So if God is with us in such as way... we have nothing to fear, and much territory still to claim.