Vinyls, Eight-tracks, Cassettes, CDs, Ipods

We are continuing the theme from two recent blogs (learning lessons from Joshua 3).  We know that the people of Israel are on a journey with God.  We’ve said to move forward with God, they need to “leave Shittim” (an actual place in the Ancient Near East).  Basically they need to leave some old things behind in order to take up some NEW things. 

We’ve also said that the people were expected to “purify” or “consecrate” themselves before the journey.   Being purified is also important for us.  Thankfully, this act has been completed for us through our “stand-in” Jesus.  He took our broken humanity into himself.   He took that to the cross and put it to death in his body.  Then, in his resurrection, he created out of us a NEW HUMANITY.  This new humanity IS purified and consecrated by Divine grace.  We are now accepted / adopted into the life of the triune God because we are IN CHRIST.

With all that a spiritual reality, the people of Israel find themselves in a place not unlike where we currently reside.  We live in a place of transition.

Look at how this looked for the Israelites.  There had been a change of leadership.  Moses had left and God had appointed a NEW leader named Joshua.
The location of their lives was about to changes – the times, places, and approaches were all about to change.  They had been wanderers, but now would become warriors. They had gathered their food from place to place–now they would have land and gardens.   Everything was changing as they went to a new place to face a new challenge.

There would be resistance.  There would be conflict.  There would be that pull back to the familiar.  There would be that push back even against God.  Yet despite all of that, God was taking them on a journey and God would not be thwarted.

In Joshua 3:13 we read that the priests were instructed by Joshua to carry the ark to the water’s edge.  Joshua told the people that when their soles of the priests feet touched the waters of the Jordan River, the waters would part and the people would cross.

Can’t you just see it?  As soon as Joshua gave these instructions, dozens of hands flew in the air. 

“Rev. Joshua, sir!  That’s not how Dr. Moses did things when he was our pastor!”
“When Dr. Moses was pastor, he waved his stick in the air and the waters parted!”

“Why do we have to get out feet wet?  We’ve never had to get our feet wet before!”

“Rev. Joshua, I just want you to know:  ‘We’ve never done it that way before!”

In my packrat collection of things I should have thrown out a long time ago, I have several neat items.  I have a vinyl record, an eight track tape, a cassette tape, and a music CD. 

Each of these items is used to communicate the beauty of music.  The important thing is that each accomplishes its task during a different time using different technology.  The music can be the same but the means or methods are different.

Now, even the CD is out of date.  Music can be downloaded from the internet onto phones or MP3 players that hold thousands of songs at a time and can be programmed to play them in whatever order is desired.  The world is constantly changing.

Going someplace new requires doing things differently. 

Okay, so we are consecrated by the Holy Spirit.  We have left our “Shittim” behind.  We are entering a new time, a new place, to take meet the needs of a new generation of people.  

What needs to change about you as we move through undeniable times of transition?

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