August 7 – Crossing the Jordan – II

“And the priests that bare the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firm on dry ground in the midst of Jordan, and all the Israelites passed over on dry ground, until all the people were passed clean over Jordan.” Joshua 3:17

NOW is the time to use your resources, time, and talents for the kingdom of God. Look at more keys to help you in crossing the Jordan into God’s wonderful promises. (Continued from yesterday!)

5)  REWARDS FOLLOW REQUIREMENTS. In Joshua 3:5, the people were told to “sanctify” themselves. God wants clean vessels. Do what YOU know to do (REPENT), and God will do MIRACLES.

6)  GOD’S WORD: A COMMAND, NOT A REQUEST. Read Joshua 3:3,8. You are in battle. …this is war. Receive God’s Word and obey it.

7)  STAND STILL UNTIL GOD SAYS TO MOVE. (See Joshua 3:8.) Satan capitalizes on your impatience and restlessness. Be ever learning patient obedience.

8)  MEET GOD IN THE MIDDLE OF THE JORDAN. (See Joshua 3:11.) God placed the Jordan between the wilderness and the Promised Land. You will recognize His sovereignty in the middle of your battle.

Today is the day for you to take that step into the Jordan and watch God part the waters to provide a path of promise on dry ground.

PRAY: “Precious Father, how much You care about what happens to me! You do not want me to get my feet wet in the swirling floodwaters of my Jordan, even. Thank You! Amen.”

Advertisements

August 6 – Crossing the Jordan – I

“And Joshua said unto the people, sanctify yourselves: for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.” Joshua 3:5

The Jordan River represents anything that stands between you and God’s promises…anything between your problems and His answers. Examine some keys to help you cross the Jordans in your life:

1)  YOU WILL POSSESS WHAT YOU CONFESS.  The spies’ report of the first trip into the Promised Land was faithless and evil. (See Numbers 13:32.) Now they faced the same giants, the same walls, the same insurmountable circumstances, but this time their confession was correct. (See Joshua 2:24.)

2)  YIELD TO GOD’S TIMING. It is perfect and unhurried. The Israelites were at the water’s edge for three days. (See Joshua 3:2.) Your wilderness experience will last as long as it takes YOU (not the circumstances) to change.

3)  LOCK IN ON JESUS. Follow His manifested presence. The ark (Spirit) is now positioned for everyone to see and follow for himself. (See Joshua 3:3.)

4)  GOD’S WAYS ARE NOT YOUR WAYS. “…for ye have not passed this way heretofore.” (Joshua 3:4b) Do not look for a man-made bridge or to rebuild Noah’s ark. God has a NEW WAY to bring deliverance!

PRAY: “Father, I will accept new methods and things you want to do in my life today. Thank You for making a way through the wilderness.* Amen.”

*Isaiah 43:19 (paraphrased)

August 5 – Spiritual Battlefields

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.” I Peter 5:8

The Gulf War of 1991 appeared to be a classic struggle between GOOD and EVIL. America’s success was attributed to good strategy on the battlefield. YOU need to know some things for success on today’s spiritual battlefields as well.

1)  No time for euphoria. The enemy is real. The Church cannot sleep during crises. (Matthew 13:25)

2)  Count the cost. War is costly, both in dollars and in lives. Spiritually, as well, you must risk losing all. “…whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.” (Luke 9:24b)

3)  The best defense is good offense. There comes a time when you can make no progress over your problem dealing with it in a strictly defensive way. You need to then ATTACK, INVADE, OCCUPY. Evil triumphs when good men do nothing!

4)  Check your guidance systems. The devil wants you to be guided by feelings and emotions, not by God.

5)  Verify the enemy target. “…we wrestle not against flesh and blood…” (Ephesians 6:12a) Identify your SPIRITUAL enemy.

6)  Beware of terrorists’ attacks. Watch the battlefront and watch that back door!

PRAY: “0 Lord, I am so grateful Your Word promises that ‘the God of peace shall bruise Satan under (my) feet shortly.’* Help me to reclaim any lost ground.  In Jesus’ Name, amen.”

*Romans 16:20a

August 4 – The Valley of Jezreel

“And the children of Joseph said, The hill is not enough for us: and all the Canaanites that dwell in the land of the valley [of Jezreel] have chariots of iron….” Joshua 17:16a

The mountain was not enough for the tribe of Joseph; they wanted to possess the valley as well, but they knew they would have to fight the enemy to get it. God’s people all over the world too must have a hunger for MORE of His kingdom in their lives…and be willing to fight to possess it. The Jesus Movement of the 1960’s drew in 3.5 million souls. The battle was on, and the revival fires were burning.

Joshua-type leaders are needed to help people overcome the obstacles of the enemy, leave the mountain, and take the valley by FORCE. “…since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.” (Luke 16:16)  Matthew 11:12 says, “…the violent take it by FORCE!”

There is a call to BATTLE today like Gideon gave over the Valley of Jezreel in Judges 6:33-34. Prepare for and receive the warring Spirit of the Lord. Refuse to tolerate the altars of idols. Be obedient to God. Make sacrificial offerings. Then go and rally the troops for VICTORY in your life!

PRAY: “Most merciful Father, how I thank You that ‘the gates of hell shall not prevail against [Your church].’* Grant me victory in the valley and fill me afresh today. I ask in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

 

August 3 – God’s Method of Testing

“The Lord examines the righteous, but the wicked and those who love violence his soul hates.” Psalm 11:5 (NIV)

I Peter 1:7 talks about the “trial of your faith,” and Paul talked about suffering “the loss of all things…that I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings…” in Philippians 3:8-10. (Emphasis supplied.) Therein lies the reason for testings – MATURITY – not so God can determine your level of commitment… rather, so you can. How does He test you?

1)  By leading you into a DIFFICULT WAY. Jesus was led into the wilderness…God’s training ground.

2)  By putting CHOICES before you. Your choices reveal your true inner motives and desires.

3)  By proposing HARD TASKS…the feeding of five thousand or other seemingly impossible tasks.a

4)  By permitting you to SUFFER. Paul and Silas were beaten, chained, imprisoned…and PASSED!

5)  By permitting TEMPTATION. Remember that God allows the devil’s tempting as part of your exam.

6)  By demanding GREAT SACRIFICES. Abraham was put to the most stringent test…to give up what he held most dear…AND PASSED.

PRAY: “Father, help me pass the tests. I know You have promised they will be limited and under Your control,* and I know You will walk alongside me through them all. Amen.”

*1 Corinthians 10:13 and Hebrews 13:5 (paraphrased)

August 2 – Blessed Assurance

Jesus is mine! Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine! Heir of salvation, purchase of God, born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.” Of what are you being assured? Read John 14:1-31.

1) A relationship with God (Verse 1)
2) A heavenly home (Verse 2)
3) Christ’s return (Verse 3)
4) The Way of life (Verse 6)
5) Christ’s miracle works (Verse 11)
6) Answered prayer (Verse 14)
7) The Holy Spirit, Your Comforter (Verse 16)
8) God’s commandments (Verse 21)
9) Spiritual knowledge (Verse 26)
10) Christ’s peace (Verse 27)
11) Prophecy fulfilled (Verse 29)
12) Christ’s life and love of the Father (Verse 31)

Therefore, “Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.” (Hebrews 10:22)

PRAY: “Faithful Father, I declare that ‘the Lord shall be [my] confidence and shall keep [my] foot from being taken.’* My assurance is in You. Amen.”
*Proverbs 3:26

August 1 – Brokenness

“The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit who can bear?” Proverbs 18:14

The health of your spirit may determine the health of your entire being. A wounded spirit can actually cause physical illness. On the other hand, a healthy, joyful spirit can be like good medicine and healing. Proverbs 17:22 says, “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth up the bones.”

God is interested in your spirit for it is there where you have fellowship with Him. This world is full of disappointment and sorrow, and often your spirit is challenged; but God draws close to your side when your spirit is hurting or broken. Psalms 51:7 reads, “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, 0 God, thou wilt not despise.”

The arrogant spirit of this world grieves the Spirit of God through desire for self-control and self-sufficiency. The “world” does not understand the power of true brokenness, because it does not understand the power of God. God will often use YOUR brokenness to help OTHERS who are hurting.

You always carry around in your body the “dying of Jesus” so that the “life of Jesus” also may be revealed in your body. (See II Corinthians 4:10.)

PRAY: “Father, I yield myself to You today, to receive Your strength and Your healing. Let Your Spirit increase in me as I stay broken before You. I pray in Jesus’ Name, amen.”