Day 088: Who Are You Mentoring? (Joshua 22-24)

“Israel served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua and had known all the work that the Lord did for Israel.” Joshua 24:31

We come to the end of Joshua with some grim foreshadowing of what is to come. In chapter 24, Joshua lays out the challenge to the people: choose whom you will serve. And all the people say, “We’ll serve the Lord.” (15-18)

Then Joshua dies, and verse 31 says that the people continued to serve the Lord “all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua.” 

But how many were those days? Based on what we are about to read in Judges, they didn’t last long. And I have to wonder: did Joshua mentor anyone the way Moses mentored him? The first time we hear about Joshua is all the way back in Exodus 17:8-9. He is called Moses’ assistant in Exodus 24:13. He is with Moses on the mountain when Moses receives the Commandments from God (Ex. 32:17). And when Moses speaks to God in the Tent of Meeting, Joshua, “a young man”  stays in the tent even when Moses goes back to the camp (Exodus 33:11).

But if Joshua invested in anyone from the next generation to that extent, we don’t read about it in Scripture. And so while the elders were able to keep Israel on track, we will see in Judges that when that generation dies, Israel goes off the rails in a big way.

Joshua did not pour into someone the way he himself was poured into.

The lesson for me here, both as a middle aged man and as a pastor, is to develop the next generation of disciples. I can look at my church and be content that all the leadership positions are filled. A full choir, no vacancies on any committees, all volunteer teams up and running. A healthy turnout at midweek prayer meeting. Good attendance on Sunday morning.

The problem is, with a few exceptions, they are all people my age or older. What happens when our generation dies out? What happens to the next generation when they grow up and their parents are no longer “making” them go to church?

Where is the next generation of leaders? On our worship team? In our volunteer base? What am I doing to invest? If I can’t point to anyone from the next generation that I am pouring into, then I fear I am making the same mistake as Joshua. And that the church will have the same results as Israel in Judges.

Day 086: Take Possession of What’s Promised (Joshua 16-18)

“So Joshua said to the people of Israel, “How long will you put off going in to take possession of the land, which the Lord, the God of your fathers, has given you?” Joshua 18:3 

If you’ve ever bought a new car, at what point is the car yours? Is it when you sign your name on the dotted line? Is it sixty months later, when you’ve made the last payment? You could make a case for either of those. But most people would say that at that magical moment when the dealer hands you the keys, shakes your hand, and congratulates you on the purchase, you feel like the car is yours. Or if not then, certainly the point at which you get behind the wheel, start it up, and drive away. You hear that giddy voice in your head, This is mine.

Imagine signing all the papers and making all the payments, but never driving the car away from the lot. You would own the car, but you wouldn’t have the car. The car is yours, but you haven’t taken possession of it. And there’s a difference.

In Joshua 18, we find that there are still seven tribes that have not received their inheritance, even though, according to verse 1, “the land lay subdued before them.” Apparently, they had gotten comfortable living as nomads in the lands of Ephraim, Manasseh, and Judah. Sort of like a thirty-something who still lives in his parents’ basement.

So God rebukes the people through Joshua: I’ve given you this land. How long before you step into it? How long before you take possession?

There are a lot of things in my spiritual life that have been promised to me, but I don’t fully live into them. Romans 8:15 tells me that I’ve received the spirit of adoption as a son by which I can call out,  “Abba! Father!” I have received the right to call the creator of the universe “Daddy” (that’s basically what ‘Abba’ means in Aramaic).  But have I taken possession of this right? Or am I still hesitant to bother God with requests that seem too trivial for Him?

Or how about this one: I have the mind of Christ (1 Cor. 2:16). That means that I have access to the wisest decision maker, the most discerning counselor, the greatest philosopher that has ever been. But how often do I agonize and hand-wring and sweat over decisions I have to make? I may have it, but have I taken possession?

There are so many things we are promised as children of God! The peace of God (Philippians 4:7)! Abundant life (John 10:10)! Salvation. Power. Comfort. This article from Got Questions lists many, many more of God’s promises to His children, but even then they are only scratching the surface. Paul sums it up in his first letter to the Corinthians:

21 So let no one boast in men. For all things are yours, 22 whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or the present or the future—all are yours, 23 and you are Christ's, and Christ is God's.

Beloved, it is time for us as believers to step into the Promised Land! Take possession of the promises.

Day 085: Caleb’s Different Spirit (Joshua 12-15)

“I am still as strong today as I was in the day that Moses sent me; my strength now is as my strength was then, for war and for going and coming. So now give me this hill country of which the Lord spoke on that day, for you heard on that day how the Anakim were there, with great fortified cities. It may be that the Lord will be with me, and I shall drive them out just as the Lord said.” Joshua 14:11-12 ESV

This is one of my favorite scenes in the book of Joshua. Caleb and Joshua are the two oldest people in Israel. They are the last men standing from the generation that came out of Egypt. And Caleb, 85 years old, is still spoiling for a fight!

At the time in his life when most men are comparing brochures for gated retirement communities with golf cart paths, Caleb points to where giants still live and  says, “I want this.”

Caleb is a great mix of “I can do” and “only God can.” He is confident of his own strength, but cognizant of the fact that his success is totally dependent upon God’s good pleasure.

Remember God’s description of Caleb back in Numbers 14:24. God told Moses that Caleb would live to see the promised land, “because he has a different spirit and has followed me fully.”

This morning, I am thankful for the senior adults in my life that have “a different spirit.” The church I pastor is still young enough that many of the pioneers that built the church are still around. There are men and women that can point to the drywall they hung, the tile they grouted, the bathrooms they plumbed. Many of them are as strong now as they were then.  And many of them are still ready for the next fight.

They are the ones that encourage the next generation to believe God’s promises. Because there are still giants in the land and hills to be taken.

Oh, how we need your different spirit!

Day 079: Does God Really Delight in the Destruction of His People? (Deuteronomy 28-29)

““All these curses shall come upon you and pursue you and overtake you till you are destroyed, because you did not obey the voice of the Lord your God, to keep his commandments and his statutes that he commanded you. They shall be a sign and a wonder against you and your offspring forever. Because you did not serve the Lord your God with joyfulness and gladness of heart, because of the abundance of all things,” (Deuteronomy 28:45-47 ESV)

I struggle with chapter 28 because it is a threat to my systematic theology. It’s a challenge to my core conviction that every word of the Bible agrees with every other word of the Bible. Here’s what I mean: Deuteronomy 28:63 says,

63 And as the Lord took delight in doing you good and multiplying you, so the Lord will take delight in bringing ruin upon you and destroying you. And you shall be plucked off the land that you are entering to take possession of it. 

The issue is that twice in Ezekiel, God says he does not take pleasure in the death of the Israelites:

For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord GOD; so turn, and live.” (Ezekiel 18:32)
Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways, for why will you die, O house of Israel? (Ezekiel 33:11)

So which is it? God delights in the destruction of rebellious Israel, or God takes no pleasure in the death of anyone?

The NIV Quest Study Bible (online) gives us one possible way to reconcile this. It suggests that, “punishment does not please God in the sense of making him feel good. Rather it pleases him that justice is done.”

Which makes me feel a little better, I guess. But it sounds a little like “God-splaining” (which is like man-splaining, where a guy tries to rationalize and justify something that he shouldn’t have said, only its on God’s behalf).

I hear Tara-Leigh say that verse 63 is typical covenant language that doesn’t reflect the character of God. But if it doesn’t reflect the character of God, then why is it in the Bible? Unlike the book of Job, where anything that seems contrary to God’s character can be written off as coming from a human being that doesn’t speak the truth about God (Job 42:7), we don’t get an easy out in Deuteronomy 28, because these words are coming from God himself, through Moses.

But if I struggle with seeing God’s character in this chapter, I don’t struggle at all with seeing human nature. Because for whatever reason, we are wired to respond to the fear of bad things more than the promise of good things. In the 68 verses of chapter 28, only 14 of them are about the blessings of obedience, compared to 54 dealing with the curses of disobedience. Nearly four times as many!

There’s a reason “judgment house” presentations at churches are so popular at Halloween. There’s a reason why the only sermon most people know from Jonathan Edwards is “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.” Human nature tells us that fear motivates. A recruit in boot camp is trained for battle by a drill sergeant, not by Mister Rogers. Many preachers spend more time on graphic depictions of hell than glorious depictions of heaven.

So while the whole of Scripture is God saying to us, “This is who I am,” Scripture also says to us, “This is who you are.” It is a horrifying thing to turn away from God. The truth of Deuteronomy 28 is that I need constant reminders of the consequences of rejecting God. Because I am a sinful, fallen, forgetful, broken, rebellious child, and sometimes that’s what it takes.

Day 075: Adventures in Twisting God’s Word (Deuteronomy 14-16)

16 But if he says to you, ‘I will not go out from you,’ because he loves you and your household, since he is well-off with you, 17 then you shall take an awl, and put it through his ear into the door, and he shall be your slave forever. (Dt. 15:16-17)

In the Eighties and early Nineties, guys wearing one earring was a thing. It showed you were living on the edge. You were a rebel. It was cool. And all the guys on MTV had one.

It was important, though, that you pierced the correct ear. “Left is right; right is wrong” was the way to tell the world that, while you were going out of your way to imitate Duran Duran, you still liked girls.

So, of course, I wanted to get my left ear pierced. But I was also a seminary student and a part time youth minister, which meant that looking like one of the guys in Duran Duran wasn’t going to be a good reason to get an earring.

So I spiritualized it. I found this verse in Deuteronomy, which describes the process for an indentured servant binding himself to his master’s household. I said, “This will show that I’m so devoted to the Lord that I want to be His servant forever!”

I strengthened my argument even further when I found Psalm 40:6, which, in the 1984 version of the NIV, read,

Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but my ears you have pierced ; burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not require. Then I said, "Here I am, I have come-- it is written about me in the scroll. I desire to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart."

(Note: the 1984 NIV was an outlier in translating this “My ears you have pierced.” Every other English translation understood David’s intention to be that God had opened his ears to understand God’s Word, not pierced them. When the NIV was revised in 2001, it changed Psalm 40:6 to bring it more in line with the consensus of biblical scholarship, so that now, it reads, “Sacrifice and offering you did not desire—but my ears you have opened.”)

The earring lasted, oh, about a year. And for what it’s worth, not a single person ever came up to me and said, “Wow– you’ve got an earring. I can tell you really love the Lord!” Not even once.

Mercifully, the earring went away before I met my wife’s father for the first time, which turned out to be my one moment of exercising good judgment of the whole episode.

I’m thankful that my wife (girlfriend at the time) didn’t break up with me. I’m thankful that the church didn’t fire me. I’m thankful that God loves me, no matter how much I misuse His Word.

And I’m thankful that, thirty years later, I’ve maybe learned a little more about not taking God’s word out of context or cherry-picking verses to justify what I want to do. Lord knows, we all have an amazing capacity to twist God’s Word for our own ends. Just in today’s passage alone, I could excuse binge drinking with Deuteronomy 14:26 (“Look– the Bible says I can spend my money on strong drink!”); ignoring the poor (“Deuteronomy 15:11 says there will always be poor people in the land, so there’s nothing we can do about it!”); and even slavery, with the same passage I used to justify my earring.

God will use God’s Word to accomplish God’s purposes. We don’t use God’s Word to justify our purposes.

And I’m sure there’s a verse for that, somewhere.

Day 074: Understanding the Pharisees—a Little (Deuteronomy 11-13)

13 “If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder, 2 and the sign or wonder that he tells you comes to pass, and if he says, ‘Let us go after other gods,’ which you have not known, ‘and let us serve them,’ 3 you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams. (Dt. 13:1-3)

There are two tests in Deuteronomy for a false prophet. The second one is in Deuteronomy 18:22, which we will get to in a couple of days. It’s the easy one:

22 when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him. 

A prophet says something will happen; it doesn’t. Therefore he’s not from God. Problem solved.

But the first test, the one we get to today, is a little harder. A prophet speaks, and it does come true. And his words are accompanied with signs and wonders that amaze the people. HOWEVER, if the so-called prophet follows this up by enticing the people to go after other gods, then he also is a false prophet, even if what he said comes to pass.

Deuteronomy 13:3 goes on to say that God could allow this in order to test the people, to know whether they loved the Lord with all their hearts and souls.

This gives us a rare opportunity to understand the Pharisees’ mindset in the New Testament, at least a little. I’ve sometimes wondered how the Pharisees could still reject Jesus, even when He performed so many miracles in front of them. But in their minds, Jesus was leading the people away from Yahweh, and therefore the Pharisees were justified in putting Him to death. You really see this in the healing of the paralytic at the pool of Bethesda in John 5. Even after healing a man who had been paralyzed for thirty-eight years,

18 This was why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God. (John 5:18)

Of course, Jesus wasn’t enticing the people to go after other gods, and if the Pharisees were really studying the Scriptures, instead of fixating on all the man-made traditions they had developed to ensure people kept the law, they would have known this. This is why Jesus will say to them a few verses later in this same passage,

39 You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, 40 yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life. (John 5:39-40)

So there’s a reason Deuteronomy insists that we write God’s words on our hearts. Why we talk about them when we lie down and when we rise up. Why we inscribe them on our doorposts and bind them to our hands and tie them to our foreheads (See Day 072: Taking God at His Word). God’s word is really the only thing that will help us discern whether a prophet is speaking truth. It can’t be merely external: “He performed a miracle! His prophecy came true! He must be from God!” No. You have to internalize God’s Word. You have to know it so well that when a leader says something that contradicts it, alarm bells will go off immediately, regardless of how flashy or inspiring or motivational that leader is.

Beloved, know God’s Word! Pragmatism is a false idol. A thing will never be true just because it “works.” But a Biblical teaching will always work because it is true.

Day 072: Taking God at His Word: The Mezuzah (Deuteronomy 5-7)

4 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. (Deuteronomy 6:4-9)

When my mother in law came back from Israel, she brought me a mezuzah, the box Tara-Leigh was talking about today. I have it nailed to the doorpost of my office. When you go to Israel, you’ll see them on the doorpost of every building. Even in our hotel, there was one mounted at the entrance to every hotel room.

Mezuzahs differ widely in style, but most mezuzahs have the Hebrew characters shin, daleth, and yodh, or at least the shin (ש)These are the consonants in the name Shaddai, or God Almighty (Remember that character shin. In the next few months, Tara Leigh is going to talk about something regarding that character and the topography of the city of Jerusalem that will blow you away!!)

I saw this everywhere we went in Israel: religious Jews would touch the Shin of the mezuzah as they entered a building, then touch their fingers to their lips and speak a prayer of thanks.

You’ll also notice that it is mounted at an angle on the doorpost. I promise that this isn’t because I don’t know how to use a level. The tradition in Israel is to mount the mezuzah so the blessing will pour into the room. I’ve been told that a traditional gift for a Jewish couple who is expecting is a nursery mezuzah that they mount on the doorpost of their baby room.

Inside is a rolled up scroll of the Shema itself. These are the prayers from Dt. 6 and other passages which religious Jews pray in the morning and evening. I bought this scroll in the Jewish quarter of the old city in Jerusalem. It is on lamb skin parchment and blessed as kosher.

The regulations and requirements of what makes a mezuzah scroll kosher are incredibly complex. You can read about them in this article, The Laws of a Kosher Mezuzah, if you want to take a deep dive. But just to give you a frame of reference, this relatively short article contains fifty two citations of Torah law, detailing everything from how high to place the mezuzah on your doorpost to how much of a margin to leave on the scroll.

I love ritual and tradition. I love how careful religious Jews are to adhere to the letter of the Law. At the same time, I am very aware of how ritual and tradition can replace genuine devotion. For all of us, it is a wonderful thing to cover our walls with Scripture. But for all the commandments of the Shema concerning writing the law on your doorposts and binding it on your hand and your forehead, the most crucial place for God’s command is right there in Deuteronomy 6:6:

6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 

Day 071: Adjusting to God’s Timeline ( Deuteronomy 3-4)

“I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that you will soon utterly perish from the land that you are going over the Jordan to possess. You will not live long in it, but will be utterly destroyed.”
‭‭Deuteronomy‬ ‭4:26‬ ‭ESV‬‬

In Deuteronomy 4:26, God promises the children of Israel that they wouldn’t live long in the land if they went after false gods. And yet, the Israelites lived in the land for another eight hundred years. Solomon built the Temple 480 years after the Jews left Egypt (1 Kings 6:1) and died around 930 BC. About two hundred years later (722 BC) the Assyrians conquered the northern kingdom of Israel and scattered the people. The southern kingdom of Judah held out for another 130 years before also falling to the Babylonians in 586 BC.

Eight hundred years seems like a long time for us in America, who mark our founding a bare 530 years ago, when Columbus “discovered” “America” (Those double air quotes are for you, indigenous peoples!).

But on God’s timeline, that’s the blink of an eye.

Now consider this: if by God’s standard 800 years is “not long” to dwell in the land, then how does that change our perspective of the seventy years of exile? We know that in 586 BC, the Jews in Jerusalem were exiled to Babylon. But in 538, King Cyrus issued his decree that the Jews could return home. We have this recorded at the end of 2 Chronicles, and at the beginning of Ezra.

For us, 70 years is a lifetime. But for God, it’s the timeout you would give to a toddler.

We were created for eternity. We were meant to see all things from God’s perspective and to live on God’s timeline. Unfortunately, sin has so distorted our horizons that we think God is slow to keep his promises. Remember 2 Peter 3:

“But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”
‭‭2 Peter‬ ‭3:8-9‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Let’s practice living on God’s timeline now. Realize that the Israelites really didn’t live too long in the land before God judged them for their idolatry. But if that’s true, then the 70 years of exile was minuscule. Our God is so slow to anger, and so quick to forgive!

I am so thankful that even when I am bent on destruction, God bends toward restoration. God will allow us to come to the brink of utter ruin. But if we are His, He will not let us tumble into its abyss. Like the prodigal son in the pigpen (Luke 15), we can come to the absolute utter end of ourselves, and find God is only just beginning His work on us. When we are undone, God is not done!

Day 069: Shelter, Savior, Sacrifice (Numbers 35)

“And the congregation shall rescue the manslayer from the hand of the avenger of blood, and the congregation shall restore him to his city of refuge to which he had fled, and he shall live in it until the death of the high priest who was anointed with the holy oil.”
‭‭Numbers‬ ‭35:25‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“For he must remain in his city of refuge until the death of the high priest, but after the death of the high priest the manslayer may return to the land of his possession.”
‭‭Numbers‬ ‭35‬:‭28‬ ‭ESV‬‬

For the most part, what I thought I understood about Numbers 35 had more to do with church history and Disney cartoons than with the Bible. Let me explain.

Throughout the Middle Ages, even as late as the seventeenth century in England, robbers, thieves, and murderers could flee to the cathedral, grab hold of the ring on the door, and invoke the law of sanctuary, which would protect them from mob justice. Today, you can visit the museum at Durham cathedral, where, over the course of nearly 500 years, over 300 criminals found refuge.

Then, there’s Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Quasimodo swinging down from the roof of the Cathedral, then rescuing Esmerelda from being burned at the stake, then landing back on the parapet and screaming SANCTUARY! SANCTUARY! as he held her unconscious body aloft before the cheering crowd.

Given my fear of heights, I wondered if Esmerelda would have been better off on the ground.

I am thankful for Tara Leigh Cobble’s Bible Recap podcast, because it wasn’t until she explained the detail about the death of the high priest that I really understood what a beautiful passage this is.

You see, death—any death, even an accidental one—had to be paid for. Verse 33 goes on to say, “blood pollutes the land, and no atonement can be made for the land for the blood that is shed in it, except by the blood of the one who shed it.” But when the high priest died, his death paid the debt. Not just for one person in one city of refuge, but for every person who had shed innocent blood throughout Israel.

Numbers 35 is the first time in Scripture the word “refuge” is used. But it definitely is not the last. In 2 Samuel 22, David wrote, “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge, my savior; you save me from violence. I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies.” (v. 2-4)

“Refuge” is a frequent word in Psalms (46 times), Proverbs (7 times) and the prophets (14 times). It became a dominant metaphor for God’s loving protection for His children.

Curiously, “refuge” is used once in the New Testament, by the author of Hebrews:

we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.”

Hebrews 6:17-20

The author of Hebrews talks about two unchangeable things, and they are both in this passage:

  • Jesus is the shelter to which we flee for refuge. Through Christ, we have strong encouragement to hold fast to the anchor of our soul.
  • Jesus is the high priest who enters into the inner place behind the curtain, to make atonement for our sin.

Do you see it? Jesus is our Shelter and our Savior!

Our refuge and our Redeemer.

Our protection from sin and our propitiation for sin.

Our shield and our sacrifice.


Day 068: Divine Desalination (Numbers 33-34)

Date Palms near the Dead Sea. The kibbutz communities around the Dead Sea are bringing the desert to life!
“your south side shall be from the wilderness of Zin alongside Edom, and your southern border shall run from the end of the Salt Sea on the east.”
‭‭Numbers‬ ‭34:3‬ ‭ESV‬‬

On the Bible Recap podcast, Tara-Leigh talks about the deadness of the Dead Sea— how salty it is, how lifeless it is. I was there this time last year, and everything she says about it is true. Including, by the way, how much fun it is to float in it. I wrote another blog post about that. You can Check it out here

But Tara-Leigh also talks about the prophecy of Ezekiel 47, that one day the Dead Sea will be made fresh. Here’s what Ezekiel wrote:

“And he said to me, “This water flows toward the eastern region and goes down into the Arabah, and enters the sea; when the water flows into the sea, the water will become fresh. And wherever the river goes, every living creature that swarms will live, and there will be very many fish. For this water goes there, that the waters of the sea may become fresh; so everything will live where the river goes. Fishermen will stand beside the sea. From Engedi to Eneglaim it will be a place for the spreading of nets. Its fish will be of very many kinds, like the fish of the Great Sea.”
‭‭Ezekiel‬ ‭47:8-10‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I get hung up on this prophecy because of how physically impossible it is. The Dead Sea is the lowest spot on earth—1,385 feet below sea level. And that’s why it’s dead. Everything flows into it, but nothing flows out of it. Nothing can. It’s the law of gravity. When water finds the lowest point, it will pool there. It will stagnate. It will die.

For the Dead Sea to live, the topography of the very earth would have to change. The Great Rift Valley would have to be raised. Mountains would have to be made into valleys.

To which God, through the prophet Isaiah, says, “No problem”:

“Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.””
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭40:4-5‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“But, God,” I protest. “You would have to remake the entire world for that to happen.”

To which God, through the Apostle John says, “Yep.”

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more.”
‭‭Revelation‬ ‭21:1‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“But God,” says I, with my tiny little faith, “That is just a lot to believe. You’re going to rearrange mountains?”

To which Jesus says, “That’s the plan.”

“And Jesus answered them, “Have faith in God. Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him.”
‭‭Mark‬ ‭11:22-23‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I serve a God who raises the dead. Who spoke stars into existence. Who upholds the Universe by the word of His power. In light of that, this Dead Sea desalination project is nothing!

If a valley can be lifted up, imagine what God can do with a crushed spirit.

If the Dead Sea can come to life, just think what God could do with your marriage.

If mountains will be made low, just imagine how God will humble the proud who oppose him.

If God can change the surface of the earth to make life spring up where no life was before, is there anything He can’t do in my life? In yours?

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