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14 Mar 2020 Joshua (Program #7)

Joshua (Program #7) – The Destruction of Jericho

Remember the story of Jericho, for 6 days the children of Israel bearing the ark borne by the priests marched around the fortified city of Jericho.  No doubt as the inhabitants watched from the top of the city wall and sure wondered at the strange behavior of these occupying force.

And then on the 7th day after the priests blew the trumpet and the people shouted and they came about when the people heard the sound of the trumpets that “the people shouted with a great shout, and the wall fell down flat. And the people went up into the city, each straight ahead, and they captured the city.  And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city with the edge of the sword: both men and women, young and old, and oxen and sheep and donkeys. And Joshua said to the two men who had spied out the land, Go to the house of the harlot, and bring out from there the woman and all that belongs to her, as you swore to her. And the young men who had been spies went and brought out Rahab and her father and her mother and her brothers and all that belonged to her; all her family they brought out and set outside the camp of Israel. And they burned the city with fire and all that was in it;” more…

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14 Mar 2020 Mark (Program #31)

Mark (Program #31) – The Preparation of the Slave-Savior for His Redemptive Service (4)&(5)

In the Old Testament the selection and preparation of the passover lamb was of great importance. Exodus tells us that after selecting the top lamb from the flock, the one without any blemish or imperfection still that lamb would undergo a vigorous inspection during the 4 days prior to been offered up on the day of passover.

As New Testament believers we know that Jesus fulfills the type of the passover lamb, the real Lamb of God, Who is offered up on the day of passover for our sins.  But do we realize in the 4 days prior to His been crucified, He too was examined, tested and inspected by both the religious leaders as well as the leaders of the worldly government. In every way this wonderful one past the testing and was uniquely qualify to be the real Lamb of God.

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13 Mar 2020 Mark (Program #30)

Mark (Program #30) – The Preparation of the Slave-Savior for His Redemptive Service (3) & (4)

The Lord Jesus enter into Jerusalem exactly six days prior to His crucifixion. During the first two of these days He was welcomed by the crowd who honored Him and exalted Him really for the first time in His earthly ministry.

The next four days were time of testing and examination by both the religious and the political leaders. These two groups who were natural enemies became united in their desire to defeat the Slave-Savior who had now won the hearts of the people. Various factions of these two groups plotted using the out most of their human cunning and reasoning to trap Him. But each attempt merely afforded the Lord another opportunity to display His marvelous wisdom confounding them on the one hand and inciting them on the other hand to do what they needed to so that He could do what He must do; and that is to be offer up a sacrifice at the hand of these very same leaders, a worldly religion and politics.

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13 Mar 2020 Joshua (Program #6)

Joshua (Program #6) – Taking Possession of the Good Land

Listen to the Lord’s word to Joshua, in Joshua chapter 1, “Moses My servant is dead; now then arise, and cross over this Jordan, you and all this people, into the land which I am giving to them, to the children of Israel. Every place on which the sole of your foot treads I have given to you, as I promised Moses…Be strong and take courage, for you will cause this people to inherit the land which I swore to their fathers to give to them.

This was the Lord’s strong word to Joshua, the one God had chosen to replace Moses and lead the children of Israel, not just into the land but also to possess it, to occupy it, labor on it and gain their full sustenance from it.  Actually if our eyes are opened today, we can realize that God is speaking a similar word to us, as His New Testament people, for He had placed Christ before us and has prepared everything that we might enter into Him and to posses Him, as the children of Israel were to possess the good land.

Listen now to Paul’s word in the New Testament Philippians chapter 3:8 “But moreover I also count all things to be loss on account of the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, on account of whom I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as refuse that I may gain Christ.”

The children of Israel were about to gain the good land and we are exhorted by Paul to gain Christ. A real interesting parallel.

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12 Mar 2020 Joshua (Program #5)

Joshua (Program #5) – The Preparation Before the Attack

The children of Israel were preparing to enter into the good land to do battle with the kings that occupied the land that God had given them to occupy and possess. Prior to their engaging these enemies, Jehovah performed a miracle quite similar to one that He had performed for their fathers, a generation before when they escaped Egypt.  He once again held back the waters allowing them to cross. Only this time not the waters of the Red Sea but the waters of the Jordan River. News of this miracle reached the kings within the land and it caused them no small amount of fear for they realized that God was among the children of Israel once more. Yet the preparation of Israel was still not complete. As we consider the preparation of Israel in Joshua chapter 5, an interesting chapter.

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12 Mar 2020 Mark (Program #29)

Mark (Program #29) – The Preparation of the Slave-Savior for His Redemptive Service (3)

During the period of His gospel service, the Lord Jesus was traveling from Galilee first north toward Caesarea Philippi and Mount Hermon.  Then returning south all the way to Jerusalem. With Him on this long journey which took roughly three years were a small number of faithful disciples particularly Peter, James and John were with the Lord step by step.  And thorough out this period they witness first hand all the items, including the miracles, the teachings, the healing and His dealing with the religious opposers.

As those who desire to know Him and to know His word richly today, we need to realize that this long journey and all these events were not random. From the beginning the Lord’s intention was to arrive at Jerusalem, the religious, cultural and governmental capital.  For it must be in Jerusalem during the specific month and even on the appointed day that He would be offered up as the Lamb of God to accomplish His all redeeming and all-inclusive death.  But we also need to realize that all the preceding event were part of the Lord’s preparation and in addition for the real preparation of His disciples not just to be witnesses but to be those who would pass through His death and enter into the reality of His resurrection.

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11 Mar 2020 Mark (Program #28)

Mark (Program #28) – The Preparation of the Slave-Savior for His Redemptive Service (1) & (2)

At the end of a nearly three years long journey with His disciples the Lord Jesus at the end of His gospel ministry makes a triumphal entry into Jerusalem.  Just six days before the time of His sacrificial death on the cross the Lord Jesus surprises His disciples confounds His opposers and thoroughly captivated the hearts of the people of the great city of Jerusalem.

During these final days, Jesus was finished performing the miracles, the great teachings, the casting out of demons even the healing and the cleansing of lepers. For now He is totally focus on the preparation necessary for His death, His burial, His resurrection and ultimately His ascension.  Mark chapter 11 gives us a marvelous account of these six days of preparation.

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11 Mar 2020 Joshua (Program #4)

Joshua (Program #4) – Crossing the River Jordan

On two occasions in the history of the children of Israel God caused waters to be held back so that Israel can pass over.  The first time of course was their crossing of the Red Sea providing them an escape or an exodus out of the land of Egypt. All Bible scholars agreed that this miracle is actually a type of our own baptism affecting our own escape from the corrupt world, that is under God’s condemnation and judgment.

The second time such a miracle occurred was when the children of Israel were crossing the Jordan river, this time providing them an entrance into the good land, the land of Canaan. The interpretation on this point is not so clearly understood. Many believed that this crossing refers to the believers passage through physical death and their entrance into heaven. But as we will see today such an interpretation misses the real significance of the crossing of the river Jordan

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10 Mar 2020 Mark (Program #27)

Mark (Program #27) – The Move of the Slave-Savior’s Gospel Service (16) & (17)

The second half of Mark chapter 10 brings us to the city of Jericho. The Lord Jesus has arrived at this place very near Jerusalem, near the end of the long journey He had taken with His disciples. Jesus knew that the time of His appointed death on the cross to be the real Lamb of God was only days away and He would not be kept from that hour.

Twice before on this journey on the way to Jerusalem the Lord had spoken to His disciples of approaching rejection and death in Jerusalem. But the disciples never seem to hear the words. And so here the Lord mentions it again for the third time. But still the disciples had neither ears to hear nor eyes to see as these verses in Mark 10 so clearly illustrate. Beginning at verse 32-37:

Now they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus led the way before them. And they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. And He took the twelve aside again and began to tell them the things that were about to happen to Him:  Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered to the chief priests and to the scribes. And they will condemn Him to death and deliver Him to the Gentiles, And they will mock Him and spit at Him and scourge Him, and they will kill Him. And after three days He will rise. And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to Him, saying to Him, Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask You.  And He said to them, What do you want Me to do for you?  And they said to Him, Grant to us to sit, one on Your right and one on Your left, in Your glory.

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10 Mar 2020 Joshua (Program #3)

Joshua (Program #3) – Spying Out the Land

The books of history in the Old Testament like Joshua are rich with stories but if we view them in light of the entire divine revelation, we see them far more than just great and inspiring stories. We see God in the move of His economy in Christ, working in, with and through His chosen people to possess Christ, to gain Christ and even to spread Christ.

Joshua chapter 2 is one of these portions in the Bible where it’s easy to be caught up in the marvelous story, the story of a harlot Rehab and two spies but it is also a chapter rich in revelation of God’s move on earth. Yes, the story of Rehab, the gentile harlot who exercised faith to join herself to God’s move and to His people and eventually had a honored place in the genealogy of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.

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