DANGER: KEEP OUT: FLOODING! If this event happened nowadays, surely some government agency would post a danger sign. It was Springtime, and, as we read in the prior verse, " the Jordan overflows all his banks through all the time until harvest." So, every year, from Spring through Autumn, the Jordan River was at flood stage. Despite this, God gave specific instructions on what to do at the river; he also gave His promise that He would be there... just as He had been with Moses...
|the Jordan River|
God gave specific instructions that the priests carrying the ark of the covenant go first and stand in the water. The preists, Joshua, and the people obeyed. ( Oh, boy, there's that obedience thing again! Are you beginning to notice a trend here?) The waters parted when the priests' feet hit the water. It actually piled up in "heaps". (Gives new meaning to the term, "standing water", doesn't it?) The priests then took the ark to the center of the DRY riverbed, and all the Israelites followed, successfully crossing the Jordan River.
Now, we're not talking about a couple dozen people here... The army was forty thousand men, fully dressed for battle. Add to that women and children, the priests and Levites, and any foreigners who had elected to join the Israelites.... a very low estimate of the people crossing the river would be 100,000. This was no small pathway! No small miracle!
Once all the people had crossed the riverbed, the priests with the ark came out. Then the water returned and ran at flood stage as it had before the crossing. Only God could make that journey possible. All He asked for was faith and obedience.
The Israelites had been trapped in terrible slavery and oppression in Egypt. Although their situation was of their own doing, God, with His amazing love and mercy, provided them a way of escape. Are you experiencing an "Egypt" of your own today? People are slaves to schedules, the media, substances, possessions, emotions... Do you recognize the slavery in your life? God can make your journey out of "Egypt" possible. He will tell you how. Be willing to listen. And obey.
And, if needed, be prepared to get your feet wet.
|priests carrying the ark, as the water parts...|