Then the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firm … in the midst of the Jordan; …, until all the people had crossed completely over the Jordan. Josh. 3:17
So Jesus stood still …. Luke 18:40
Our emphasis has been on how you can cross over the hurdles before you. The spiritually sensitive will admit that there is an ongoing significant work that God wants to accomplish on everyone, with none left behind. There is a Jericho ahead of you. He wants to get everyone there for His next operation. The world knows about you, but you haven’t seen anything yet. Where God is taking you is a place where through you He will create more awareness of Himself. A place where He will publish the victory of Christ vividly by what He is set to do in your life. He would not want to see anyone left behind in this corporate plan.
It has been pointed out that the key to crossing over life’s hurdles is in seeing the move of Christ or the direction of God’s word and presence. So, drawing from the typology of the Ark of covenant which prefigured Christ, it is important to be mindful of what ministers carry. The priest bearing the Ark provided the direction for the people to follow. In the text, it is clear that the priests bearing the ark set out before Joshua and his people, while the they crossed over opposite Jericho. In the New Testament, the Ark of the Covenant himself moves and around because of the people; whenever they see him, they have their needs met to move on to their next phase in life.
Significant for this administration of the word is that the priests who bore the ark stood firm until all the people had crossed completely just as the Reality Himself stood still to ensure that the disadvantaged was not left behind. CHRIST IS SET OUT CLEARLY BEFORE THE PEOPLE. He is the word and the presence of God. Every time we preach Him, what we are doing is bring Him, the creative, living, and the manifest word into people’s lives.
It is dangerous and wasteful to practise form or religion. 2 Tim. 3:1-5 portrayed what will characterise the last days. It shall be perilous times when there will be people having a form of godliness while denying the power thereof. The ministry of the word is not a form or ritual; neither the hearing of the word. Every attentive and careful hearing of the word should lead to seeing the operations of God and moving in response to the revelation and the prophetic instruction of the word (Phil. 4:9) so as to cross over to the next camp; victory; and possessions ahead.
HE ENSURES THAT EVERYONE CROSSES OVER INTO THE NEXT PHASE. As it was with them at Jordan, so it must be with us today. To cross cannot be by might nor by power, it must be by the operation of the Lord. The next phase is not necessarily according to human preference. For the Israelites, it was to cross over Jordan; For the multitude around Jesus, it was for their needs to be met in diverse ways. They could see him; they all followed him. They did because they knew that in following him they will have their needs met. For Bartimeus, it was to receive his sight.
EVERYONE MAY NOT BE SET TO CROSS OVER. The challenge is not the lack of desire to cross over, it is the inability to see. 2 Cor. 4:4; Matt. 13:14-15; the operation of satan – 2 Cor. 4:4; also known as ignorance – Luk. 18:35ff. Bartimeus represented others who are not set to cross, but will be glad to cross. FOR SUCH PEOPLE, THE ARK STANDS STILL. The Ark stands firm for everybody to cross over opposite Jericho. For them in Joshua days, the Ark of the Covenant stood firm, Josh. 3:17; For them during the life of Jesus on earth, He stood still – Luk. 18:40; for no one should be left behind. Is there anyone who suspects that there is a move going on but could not plug into it? Is there anyone who is not sure of what the spirit of the Lord is doing? The Lord is set to push you to the place of fragrance. 2 Cor. 2:14-17. He stands still for your sake, for He seeks to lead you in the triumph of Christ and to diffuse through you the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.
I CHALLENGE YOU TO ENSURE YOU DO NOT LET HIM PASS YOU BY: by clarifying what you are hearing; asking for the Lord’s help; resisting every force or element that seeks to quieten you; intensifying your desire to see as you cannot afford to be left behind as everyone crosses over to Jericho. God has sent this word to ensure that you will cross over to the other side.