I open my Bible to Joshua Chapter 3, and I already have goosebumps. I see a beautiful picture of Christ as Joshua embarks on His mission.
The Hebrew name Yehoshu (Joshua) is an alternative name for Yeshua (Jesus). And God says to Joshua, “Today I will begin to exalt you in the eyes of all Israel, so they may know that I am with you as I was with Moses.” And where does this mission begin? At the Jordan River, the very same place that Jesus started His ministry when He was baptized in the river by John. The very same place that God the Father declared Jesus as His Son.
As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:16-17, NIV)
And like Christ, Joshua chooses 12 men.
But there’s more to this chapter than a picture of Christ. There’s one of me, and there’s one of you too as Joshua instructs the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.”
While their consecration more than likely involved preparation and ceremonial cleansing, our consecration is a response to God’s grace. It’s a decision we make to leave sin behind as we’re led by the Spirit. It’s a choice we make daily to follow Christ at all costs.
Charles Spurgeon refers to this consecration as “The Before Principle.” He writes, “
The need for holiness, purity, and separation comes before the blessings of tomorrow, not the other way around. We often believe that if God will bless then we’ll get our lives right. God says that holiness precedes honor. Cleanliness comes before usefulness. Penance before power.
The promise that God would work miraculously tomorrow was contingent on the people’s willingness to consecrate themselves today.
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Tilling the Soil
Read Joshua Chapter 3. It’s so good! See what speaks to you in this chapter. Do you see any similarities to Jesus? To our walk of salvation?
Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God. (2 Corinthians 7:1, NIV)
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Darlene Schacht and her husband Michael live in Manitoba Canada where the summers are beautiful and the winters are cold. Together they’ve come to learn that relationships aren’t always easy, but that marriage, the way God intended it to be, is a treasure worth fighting for.
She began her publishing journey about twelve years ago when she pioneered one of the first online magazines for Christian women, known at the time as “Christian Women Online Magazine.” After three years, Darlene left CWO to blog as a solo author at Time-Warp Wife Ministries.
It was also during this transition that she worked alongside actress Candace Cameron Bure to write the NYT Best-Selling book, Reshaping it All: Motivation for Spiritual and Physical Fitness. Reshaping it All was the winner of both the 2011 USA Best Book Awards and the 2012 Christian Reading Retailers Choice Awards.
Author of more than 15 books, Darlene continues to write and to minister to her readers through her blog at TimeWarpWife.com.
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You are loved by an almighty God,
The Time-Warp Wife