Joshua's Great Deeds
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11. Joshua's Great Deeds

The Lord's Miracle

SupermanWe all want to do great deeds for God and to be useful and helpful instruments of God's love. Joshua 3 tells of Joshua's great deeds, the story of one man who succeeded because God was with him. He is the SUPERMAN of the Old Testament. A man of action, he is aggressive and powerful. Let us look at this one individual and see how he became so successful.

Jordan River

Jordan RiverAny successful work of God needs a miraculous touch. The people of Israel had been camped at the banks of the Jordan River for three days. Then Joshua said in Joshua 3.5, "Purify yourselves because tomorrow the Lord will perform miracles among you." Note that the soldiers needed to be purified as we do when we embark on a piece of work for God. For Joshua, this entailed the river Jordan being stopped and the people being able to cross on dry ground. When the army left the camp to cross the Jordan, the priests went ahead of them carrying the Covenant Box. As soon as the priests stepped into the river, the waters stopped flowing and piled up, far upstream at Adam, the city beside Zarethan. The flow downstream to the Dead Sea was completely cut off, and the people were able to cross over near Jericho. Joshua 3.15-16 explains precisely how this miracle happened, "Now the Jordan is at flood stage all during harvest. Yet as soon as the priests who carried the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water's edge, the water from upstream stopped flowing. It piled up in a heap a great distance away, at a town called Adam in the vicinity of Zarethan, while the water flowing down to the Sea of the Arabah (that is, the Dead Sea) was completely cut off. So the people crossed over opposite Jericho." The miracle was that the river stopped flowing at the precise moment needed. God's timing was and is impeccable!✞

Joshua's Faith Miracle

Stream BedThe Lord God enabled Joshua's faith miracle to encourage the people and support their faith. Joshua's faith miracle was that the River Jordan stopped exactly when, where and how it did to allow the people of Israel to cross. The river Jordan had stopped flowing previously on other occasions. On December 8th, 1267 AD, an Arab historian recorded that the Jordan River was dry for sixteen hours at a place called Adam because the current undercut the bank and the landslide that followed dammed the flow. In 1927, the river was again dry for twenty-one hours due to the same phenomena. God is still working miracles like Joshua's in people's lives. Some may scoff and say it is coincidental or good luck, but Christians know the difference. Christians can recognize a miracle from God, but to act on it they need vision.

Leader's Vision

Hands on BarsDale Carnegie (1888-1955) was a famous author, lecturer, and developer of several famous courses on self-improvement. He wrote, "How to Stop Worrying and Start Living." One of his famous quotes from this book was, "Two men looked out of prison bars; The one saw mud; the other stars." Joshua and the people of Israel faced new challenges and followed what would become Dale Carnegie's approach in Joshua 3.4. The Lord God had told him, "You have never been this way before." Joshua could have drawn back from fear of the unknown but he didn't because of his faith in God's miracle. He had determination. So had President John F. Kennedy (1917-1963) who said, "Some men see things and say 'Why?' I see things and say `Why not!'" Joshua's faith miracle and his vision encouraged the people to see the stars and not the prison bars. We are encouraged to venture out for God in faith in the same way too!✞

"Joshua's Great Deeds"
by Ron Meacock © 1982-2019

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