TODAY’S READING: JOSHUA 1-5
The commission of Joshua; the covenant with Rahab; crossing the Jordan river into the promised land; the memorial of the twelve stones; the circumcision of God's people at Gilgal.
HIGHLIGHTS & INSIGHTS:
The Book of Joshua is the story of how Israel crosses the Jordan River and claims the inheritance that God had given them. It took fighting many battles and defeating many enemies in order to actually possess this land. Once again, as only God could, He is painting another incredible picture of the Christian life through His record of Israel’s history. Keep in mind as we see God develop these pictures, that Canaan is not a picture of heaven, because we do not have to battle to gain our home in heaven (it is a gift - Eph. 2:8-9). Canaan represents the inheritance that God has for each of us. We have been called to possess our vessel in sanctification and honor (I Thess. 4:4) in order to live the victorious Christian life. For this to happen, we must battle the flesh (Gal. 5:17, II Cor. 10:4-5) and let our Joshua, the Lord Jesus Christ, lead us to victory in every battle, and against every enemy!
The Book of Joshua begins with the ending of a life..."Moses my servant is dead” (Josh. 1:2). Moses was the lawgiver, and the law could not give life or defeat sin. Moses brought them to the edge, but Joshua (Jesus) must take them in and give them the victory! Verse 2 continues with..."now therefore arise". We must die to ourselves and our self-righteousness (Phil. 3:4-9) and let God raise us up to walk in newness of life every day!
Chapter 2 deals with the Jewish men who were sent to spy out Jericho, and their subsequent covenant with Rahab the harlot. Rahab just happens to be a picture of the spiritual history of every believer in Jesus Christ:
1. She was a sinner – Joshua 2:1 states plainly that she was a harlot
2. She was under condemnation (John 3:18) – The city had already been
declared condemned by God. The city would be destroyed whether or
not the people "felt" condemned or not, just like the world
3. She heard the Word of God (Josh. 2:8-11) – It was a message of
judgment. Note that she calls God "The Lord" in her conversation.
4. She believed the Word – Faith comes by hearing the Word of God
(Rom. 10:17). Hebrews 11:31 states that Rahab was saved by faith.
She obviously had assurance from the Word when she says, "I KNOW
that the Lord hath given to you the land" (Josh. 2:9).
5. She sought to win others (Josh. 2:12-13) – When a person trusts
Christ, their first desire is to share Him with others, especially
their own family (Mark 5:18-20).
6. She was delivered from judgment (Josh. 6:22-25) – We, too, have
been rescued from God's coming judgment upon this world
(I Thess. 4:13-18, II Thess. 1:7-9).
7. She went to a wedding – In Matthew 1:5 we find that Rahab married
into the royal lineage of the Nation of Israel. Therefore, the
Messiah came through her family. How gracious is our God to take
a harlot and make her the mother of the royal family through which
Messiah came! We, too, have a wedding and a marriage feast to
look forward to (see Rev. 19:7-9, 17-19) because of God’s
In chapters 3 and 4, Israel follows Joshua and the Ark of the Covenant across the river Jordan. Note in Joshua 3:16 that the water that flowed down from the city of Adam stood up and was stopped by the Ark. The effects of Adam's sin (Rom. 5:12, 17), which flowed from Adam down to us, is stopped by Jesus Christ when we cross over the Jordan and possess our vessel (I Thess 4:4).
In chapter 5, all Jewish males were circumcised. It was a mark of ownership (Gen. 17:1-14) to give external evidence of an internal truth (Deut. 10:16). Circumcision is the cutting away of the flesh that reveals the source of life. If the flesh isn't cut away in our lives, we will not reproduce spiritual life!
CHRIST IS REVEALED:
Through JOSHUA – Joshua 1
Note: His very name means "savior". He is the one who leads us to the promised land.
As RAHAB'S SCARLET THREAD – Joshua 2:18; a type of the blood of Christ which brings about deliverance from judgment, and safety from death.
As CAPTAIN OF THE HOST – Joshua 5:14-15 (Heb. 2:10)