When Israel was delivered from Egypt the people stood safely back while God dried the path they would use (Exodus 14:21). Now, 40 years later, another water obstacle, a flooded river, and God requires the people to step into the water before He takes any action.
Joshua 3:13 NLT
“The priests will carry the Ark of the Lord,… As soon as their feet touch the water, the flow of water will be cut off upstream, and the river will stand up like a wall.”
At salvation – which Israel’s deliverance from Egypt is a picture of – nothing is required of us. We cry out to God. He does a miracle. We stand amazed as He sets us free and we cross over to begin walking in a new land, a new life.
Entering the Promised Land – the fulness of God’s peace, joy, provision, etc – is another matter. That requires we step out of our comfort zone, that we obey the Lord even if it seems foolish or impossible. “Walk into a cold, muddy, raging river …. then I will do a miracle for you.”
“But what if nothing happens? It will cost me to do that – it’ll ruin my shoes, I will look foolish. Maybe I should just do what ‘normal’ people do and build a bridge or wait till the season of flooding is over and cross when things are easier, less risky.”
Here are the formulas. No risk = no faith. No faith = no pleasure or honor to God because “without faith it is impossible to please God.” The greatest adventure of your life awaits you at the edge of your comfort zone.
But also remember faith is not stepping into a raging river when He is saying build a bridge. Faith is listening to God and obeying what you believe He is saying (and you will seldom be 100% sure or, again, there is no faith involved). Listen + faith + obey = pleasure to God and Promised Land blessings for us.
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
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