You Have Not Passed This Way Before

Written by: Tony Silveira | Posted on: | Category:

Torah = Means “The shooting of an arrow”. Right after we have the book of Joshua.

Joshua 3 (ESV) 1 Then Joshua rose early in the morning and they set out from Shittim. And they came to the Jordan, he and all the people of Israel, and lodged there before they passed over. 2 At the end of three days the officers went through the camp 3 and commanded the people, “As soon as you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God being carried by the Levitical priests, then you shall set out from your place and follow it.

The Presence of GodThe Ark of the Covenant is a picture of God (The Presence of God).

When God begins to move follow Him. You are not called to observe what God is doing but to follow Him

Joshua 3 (ESV) 4 Yet there shall be a distance between you and it, about 2,000 cubits in length. Do not come near it, in order that you may know the way you shall go, for you have not passed this way before.” 5 Then Joshua said to the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.” 6 And Joshua said to the priests, “Take up the ark of the covenant and pass on before the people.” So they took up the ark of the covenant and went before the people.

The Bible deals a lot with the problem of individualism. God gathered His people and prepared them to enter the Promised Land and He said “You have not passed this way before”.

During World War II there was a Battalion of Engineers called CEB that built bridges and ensured that supplies and communications arrived to the frontlines. Their motto was: “The difficult we will do immediately, the impossible will take us a while longer”. When we see the beginning of the book of Joshua we also encounter a group of people facing a difficult situation. The book of Joshua starts by showing how they crossed from the wilderness into the promised land. It was about time. The shortest route from Egypt would take them 11 days but they wandered around for forty years.

The crossing of the Jordan symbolizes going from one level of knowing God to another level of knowing God.

2 Peter 3:18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

God wants to take you to a whole new level. Your best days are still ahead of you.

The mighty Jordan river had almost 3 Km in that point and it was impossible to pass it with 2 million people.

God called us to claim our rich inheritance.

Deuteronomy 6:23 And he brought us out from there, that he might bring us in and give us the land that he swore to give to our fathers.

God brought us out to bring us in! God brought you out in order to bring you in. Being saved is like a fire insurance contract. God has better things ahead for you.

Charles Stanley said “If God only wanted to save you in order to bring you to heaven he would do better in killing you when you got saved”. Salvation is not all that is involved in the Christian life. Salvation is just the beginning of your journey.

Joshua 13:1 Now Joshua was old and advanced in years, and the Lord said to him, “You are old and advanced in years, and there remains yet very much land to possess.

There are still great days ahead!

All starts with a pursuit, God pursued me and brought me out of sin (Egypt) in order to bring me in (Promised Land). God took his people through the wilderness and you may still be on your way to the place that God has prepared for you. In the desert God nourished them with Manna, did amazing wonders and took care of his people.

The Ark of the Covenant was ahead of them

The Ark moved ahead of them and it represents the Presence of God. There were three items inside the ark.

  1. Aran’s budding rod – Numbers 17:1-9 Power over all complaints. When you get to uncharted waters people complain and rebel against the leadership.
  2. A pot of Manna – God’s provision
  3. The broken Law – The Bible (His commandments)

God went ahead of themThe question was “how are we going to get across this river”? The crossing was 3 km wide. The leaders had to put their feet in the water. The Bible says that the river rolled up to the city of Adam.

Joshua 3 (ESV) 4 Yet there shall be a distance between you and it, about 2,000 cubits in length. Do not come near it, in order that you may know the way you shall go, for you have not passed this way before.” 5 Then Joshua said to the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.” 6 And Joshua said to the priests, “Take up the ark of the covenant and pass on before the people.” So they took up the ark of the covenant and went before the people.

They had to stay behind about 1KM and this talks about the sacredness of the Ark and the Holiness of God.

Satan has too many of God’s people in a comfort zone, in a holding mode. God wanted all of them to see the miracle. The distance was essential so that the larges possible number would see God moving. God didn’t want them to move just following the one ahead of them but He wanted them to move because His Presence is moving. They should move because they see God’s moving. Do you move because someone is telling you to move or do you move because you see God’s moving? There is a difference between following God and following others.

John 4:39 Many Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me all that I ever did.” 40 So when the Samaritans came to him, they asked him to stay with them, and he stayed there two days. 41 And many more believed because of his word. 42 They said to the woman, “It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is indeed the Savior of the world.”

We can follow God out of a second-hand experience but God wants you to follow Him because you know that He is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the World.

Too many people Jesus is an unknown presence and they follow Him because others are following but it’s time for you to follow God on your own.

Unfamiliar Path

You have not passed this way before. Except Joshua and Caleb every adult died. What did they die off? Unbelief!

Most people will never know the power and presence of Christ and many that even believed have never experimented the power of God before. You have not passed this way before. New beliefs, new grace, new faith, new anointing.

2 Corinthians 3:18 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

God wants to take you from Glory to Glory! You cannot come the way you are so God tells them “sanctify yourself”. Are you desperate for more of God? To Sanctify yourself you need to wash away your sin.

Exodus 19: 10 the Lord said to Moses, “Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments 11 and be ready for the third day. For on the third day the Lord will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people.

Before they received the 10 Commandments the people had to prepare and sanctify themselves.