The Walk of Faith

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is Joshua 3:9-17.  Let’s go!

Joshua 3:9-14 (NIV) 
9  Joshua said to the Israelites, “Come here and listen to the words of the LORD your God. 
10  This is how you will know that the living God is among you and that he will certainly drive out before you the Canaanites, Hittites, Hivites, Perizzites, Girgashites, Amorites and Jebusites. 
11  See, the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth will go into the Jordan ahead of you. 
12  Now then, choose twelve men from the tribes of Israel, one from each tribe. 
13  And as soon as the priests who carry the ark of the LORD–the Lord of all the earth–set foot in the Jordan, its waters flowing downstream will be cut off and stand up in a heap.” 
14  So when the people broke camp to cross the Jordan, the priests carrying the ark of the covenant went ahead of them.

On verses 9-14:  The priests carrying the ark of the covenant go ahead of the people to lead the way through the Jordan River.  What can we learn from this?  A good leader will not tell his or her people to do what he himself is unwilling to do.  The best leaders lead not just with their words but also with their example.  

When You’re Not Sure Which Way to Go

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is Joshua 3:1-8.  Let’s go!

Joshua 3:1-4a (NIV) 
1  Early in the morning Joshua and all the Israelites set out from Shittim and went to the Jordan, where they camped before crossing over. 
2  After three days the officers went throughout the camp, 
3  giving orders to the people: “When you see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and the priests, who are Levites, carrying it, you are to move out from your positions and follow it. 
4  Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before.

On verses 1-4a:  Here Joshua and the Israelites are preparing to cross the Jordan River on their way to Canaan, also known as the promised land.  Joshua orders his officers, who in turn order the people to move out and follow two things: (1) the ark of the covenant, which was an ornate, gold-plated box that symbolized the presence of God; and (2) and the priests carrying that ark.  That way they knew which way to go (v4).

Your Scarlet Cord + When Making Big Decisions

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is Joshua 2:14-24.  Let’s go!

Joshua 2:14-21 (NIV) 
14  “Our lives for your lives!” the men assured her. “If you don’t tell what we are doing, we will treat you kindly and faithfully when the LORD gives us the land.” 
15  So she let them down by a rope through the window, for the house she lived in was part of the city wall. 
16  Now she had said to them, “Go to the hills so the pursuers will not find you. Hide yourselves there three days until they return, and then go on your way.” ……

On verses 14-21:  So that the Israelite army would know which house to spare, the Israelite spies tell Rahab to tie a scarlet cord to her window.  That way when the Israelites were attacking the city of Jericho, they would see the scarlet cord in Rahab’s window and know to leave that house alone.

This reminds me of an earlier incident in Exodus 12, where Moses instructs each Israelite family to take the blood of a lamb and put the blood on the doorframe of their house.  That way, when God was going through the land, He would see the blood of the lamb, pass over that house and spare the family inside.

Is it Okay to Lie?

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is Joshua 2:1-13.  Let’s go!

Joshua 2:1a (NIV) 
1  Then Joshua son of Nun secretly sent two spies from Shittim. “Go, look over the land,” he said, “especially Jericho.”…

On verse 1: Before commanding his troops to enter the land they are planning to conquer, Joshua first sends two spies to look over the land. 

What can we learn from this?  Before making a big decision, do your due diligence first.  Whether it’s a relationship, a financial decision, a job opportunity, or something else that will involve a major investment of your time, heart, energy and resources, look before you leap.  Know what you’re getting into before getting into it.

Joshua 2:1b-7 (NIV)
1…So they went and entered the house of a prostitute named Rahab and stayed there. 
2  The king of Jericho was told, “Look! Some of the Israelites have come here tonight to spy out the land.” 
3  So the king of Jericho sent this message to Rahab: “Bring out the men who came to you and entered your house, because they have come to spy out the whole land.” 

What a Great Team Looks Like

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is Joshua 1:10-18.  Let’s go!

Joshua 1:10-15 (NIV) 
10  So Joshua ordered the officers of the people: 
11  “Go through the camp and tell the people, ‘Get your supplies ready. Three days from now you will cross the Jordan here to go in and take possession of the land the LORD your God is giving you for your own.'” 
12  But to the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh, Joshua said, 
13  “Remember the command that Moses the servant of the LORD gave you: ‘The LORD your God is giving you rest and has granted you this land.’ ……

On verses 10-15:  Joshua is leading the Israelites toward Canaan, also known as the promised land.  To get there, Joshua and the Israelites would need to go west and cross the Jordan River.  However, the tribes of Reuben and Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh, though they were part of the Israelites, had an agreement with Moses, Joshua’s predecessor, that instead of settling in the promised land west of the Jordan River, they could settle in the land just east of the Jordan.  Joshua respects and upholds this agreement, telling the tribes of Reuben and Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh that their wives, children and livestock may stay in the land just east of the Jordan, but that the men from Reuben, Gad and Manasseh must still cross the Jordan River with the rest of the Israelites and help the rest of the Israelites fight and take over the promised land. 

The Key to Finding Courage

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is Joshua 1:1-9.  Let’s go!

Joshua 1:1-5 (NIV) 
1  After the death of Moses the servant of the LORD, the LORD said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: 
2  “Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them–to the Israelites. 
3  I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses. 
4  Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates–all the Hittite country–to the Great Sea on the west. 
5  No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.

On verses 1-5:  The book of Joshua begins with God giving Joshua the charge to get ready to cross the Jordan with his people into the land of Canaan. God gives Joshua an encouraging vision of what the future would be for him and his nation (v3-4).  God also gives Joshua His promise that He will always be with Joshua (v5) and will give Joshua success (v3).

A Luke at Jesus (Finale)

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is Luke 24:44-53. Let’s go!

Luke 24:44-48 (NIV) 
44  He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.” 
45  Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 
46  He told them, “This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 
47  and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 
48  You are witnesses of these things.

On verses 44-48: Here Jesus once again affirms to his disciples that the Old Testament (“the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms”) speak about him.  In verses 46-47 Jesus is providing his summary of the message of the Old Testament, that “the Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem”. The disciples not only got to read about Jesus in their Old Testament scriptures. Even more they got to see Jesus and what is written about him actually unfold in real life – “You are witnesses of these things” (v48).

Jesus Is Risen!

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is Luke 24:30-43. Let’s go!

Luke 24:30-35 (NIV) 
30  When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them.
31  Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight.
32  They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”
33  They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together
34  and saying, “It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon.”
35  Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread.

On verses 30-35: These two disciples recognized it was Jesus not when he was teaching Scripture but rather when they saw Jesus breaking bread and giving thanks (v30-31, 35). I believe there is a lesson for us as followers of Jesus: we help people see who Jesus is not just by teaching the Scriptures, but by the way we do life and give thanks.

Becoming More Aware of Jesus’ Presence

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is Luke 24:13-29. Let’s go!

Luke 24:13-16 (NIV) 
13  Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. 
14  They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. 
15  As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; 
16  but they were kept from recognizing him.

On verses 13-16: How many times have we been in conversations with others, failing to recognize that Jesus is present, listening and watching? Remember what Jesus says, “Where two or three are gathered in my name, there I am in their midst.” (Matthew 18:20) Whenever we’re having conversations with one another, may we speak and act knowing that Jesus is in our midst..

The Greatest Miracle of All Time

Hi GAMErs,

Tday’s passage is Luke 24:1-12. Let’s go!

Luke 24:1-12 (NIV) 
1  On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. 
2  They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 
3  but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. ……

Which is the greatest miracle of all? Many Christians would point to the resurrection of Jesus after his death on the cross. The crucifixion-resurrection event is, after all, the basis for our salvation. But why would we consider the death and resurrection of Jesus so great an event? After all, others have died and risen again. Lazarus, Jairus’ daughter, Eutychus. Why is the resurrection of Jesus a greater event than the raising of Lazarus from the dead?

Make no mistake, Jesus’ resurrection is a greater event than the raising of Lazarus. Lazarus eventually died again, but Jesus rose to eternal life and glory. When Lazarus rose, a great deal changed for him, but little changed for the world. But when Jesus rose, everything changed.

What was so different about Jesus’ resurrection? The key lies in who died and rose. In the case of Lazarus, a human died and rose again to continue a mortal life. But in the case of Jesus, someone much more than a human died and rose again. Jesus was human, but not just a human. He was both God and human — God in the flesh, God incarnate, both divine and human.