Joshua 3 & 4

Transitions! No one, if honest, really likes transitions. Even the ones that we know are necessary. We don’t like them because we get comfortable in a routine and we would prefer that routine not change. It is interesting as I write this devotion that I and the church are in a transition. (I’m assuming most of you know that and what is interesting is that this devotion was on the schedule well before we knew a transition was coming.). Because of the coming transition some may be a little nervous. Some of our church members may be concerned that they will not like the next pastor or concerned that the future is uncertain. In Joshua 3 & 4 the people of Israel are in the midst of their transition. Moses has stepped aside as the leader and Joshua has taken over. Will the people like him? Will he do a good job? What will the future hold under his leadership? God answers those questions as the people get ready to cross the Jordan River. Listen first what God says to Joshua…

Joshua 3:7 The Lord said to Joshua, “Today I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that, as I was with Moses, so I will be with you.

God first reassures Joshua. He tells Joshua that He will exalt him so that the people would know that God was with them. This promise is followed by God parting the waters of the Jordan River so that the people could cross on dry land. Sound familiar? It should because what is happening is the same God is at work. The leader may have changed but God had not. In fact, after we see the people cross over Jordan this is what we read…

Joshua 4:14 On that day the Lord exalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel, and they stood in awe of him just as they had stood in awe of Moses, all the days of his life.

The people discovered that day that just because a transition occurs does not mean that God is finished or that God has changed. He is the same and may work in different people at different times, but his plan is always accomplished. In fact, if we are not careful we can be guilty of putting too much emphasis on Moses or Joshua or any earthly leader when the true focus should be on God. We see this truth in the very last verse of chapter 4. In that verse, we are clearly reminded that there was a reason for all that happened. Yes, God exalted Joshua in what happened at the Jordan, but Joshua’s exaltation was not the main goal. The main goal of all that happened was…

Joshua 4:24 so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, that you may fear the Lord your God forever.

Keeping this in mind, let’s move forward believing that in our times of transitions that God is still at work so that we focus on Him and recognize his mighty hand at work. God has not changed and God is not done working. So, as long as we look to him, we can still see God do great things.

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