Just as Joshua 3:1-4 describes the Israelites preparing to cross the Jordan River to Jerusalem and their inheritance of the promised land, we must prepare ourselves today to follow the Lord and cross over into new territory.
Early in the morning Joshua and all the Israelites set out from Shittim and went to the Jordan, where they camped before crossing over. After three days, the officers went throughout the camp, giving orders to the people: “When you see the Ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, and the priests, who are carrying it, you are to move out from your positions and follow it. Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before. But keep a distance of about a thousand yards between you and the ark; do not go near it. Joshua told the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.”
Joshua told the Israelites that, because they had never been that way before, they had to keep their eyes on the Lord by following the Ark. He also told them that they had to consecrate themselves. Today, the Lord is telling us, through prophets that He is raising up, that we must keep our eyes on Him and consecrate ourselves.
The Lord has told many of His children, to whom He has given the gift of prophecy, that He is wants to take us to a new level of spiritual awareness and power and to lead His Church in a new direction. But we’re not listening! We live at a time in history in which we have been given the unique opportunity to participate in the final harvest but so many have already turned their backs on their responsibility.
Because Satan has provided them with worldly alternatives to God, they are content. And many of these content “Salvation in the bank” Christians are deliberately ignoring the Lord’s call to advance to higher spiritual ground. Others are wallowing so deep in worldliness that they can’t even hear the Lord talking to them. Just like the Israelites, if we’re going to make it across the river, we must listen to the Lord’s voice and what it is that He is telling us to do. He is telling us to consecrate ourselves and conform to His holiness. That means giving up our worldliness! It’s not OK! Along with your salvation you received the power to overcome sin and poor choices. Start using it! The Lord is asking us for total commitment. It’s simple folks. Those who will not conform will not be transformed.
I believe that consecration or sanctification is an ongoing process, not an event. It takes time, and there isn’t much left! A behavior that I see as one of the main obstacles to Christians moving forward in the sanctification process is their failure to forgive themselves. Even though the Lord has forgiven them of their sin, they continue to dwell upon it. They keep rehashing past failures and eventually convince themselves that they’re not worthy of doing the Lord’s work. This is from Satan! Consider John 8, especially verses 10-11. Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” “No one, sir,” she said. “Then neither do I condemn you, ” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”
If Jesus had been operating under our faulty human perceptions and standards He would have told the adulteress how lucky she was that He was going to let her go. He would have taken the opportunity to enumerate all the times she had sinned and how unworthy she was of being set free from her condition. Our Lord Jesus Christ operates on a different level. If we are truly trying to be like Him, we should as well. Similarly, when He sat with Peter, as described in John chapter 21:15-17, even though Jesus could have told him how hurt He was because Peter had denied Him three times He simply asked “Do you love me?”
Christians, we are forgiven! Accept it, get used to it and move on! And those who deliberately refuse to follow the instructions the Lord is giving to them through the prophets of this age will pay a price. The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob has drawn a line in the sand. This is not a time to be complacent or disobedient to the Lord. He is clearly and consistently telling us to get the sin out of our lives. He is telling us to consecrate our children, our possessions and our very lives. He is reminding us that we are ALL priests. As someone once said, “The opportunity of a lifetime must be seized during the lifetime of the opportunity.” The time is now!