Oct. 25, 2017

Prepare For Change

Joshua 5 - New International Version

1 Now when all the Amorite kings west of the Jordan and all the Canaanite kings along the coast heard how the Lord had dried up the Jordan before the Israelites until theyhad crossed over, their hearts melted in fear and they no longer had the courage to face the Israelites.

When the Lord is with you, there is no need to fear no matter what is facing you or what is in front of you. Whether they verbalize it or not, the people around you will recognize the Power and Presence of God working on your behalf. His Presence in our lives has more impact than we could ever accomplish without Him.

At that time the Lord said to Joshua, “Make flint knives and circumcise the Israelites again.” So Joshua made flint knives and circumcised the Israelites at Gibeath Haaraloth.

Now this is why he did so: All those who came out of Egypt—all the men of military age—died in the wilderness on the way after leaving Egypt. All the people that came out had been circumcised, but all the people born in the wilderness during the journey from Egypt had not. The Israelites had moved about in the wilderness forty years until all the men who were of military age when they left Egypt had died, since they had not obeyed the Lord. For the Lord had sworn to them that they would not see the land he had solemnly promised their ancestors to give us, a land flowing with milk and honey. So he raised up their sons in their place, and these were the ones Joshua circumcised. They were still uncircumcised because they had not been circumcised on the way. And after the whole nation had been circumcised, they remained where they were in camp until they were healed.

Then the Lord said to Joshua, “Today I have rolled away the reproach of Egypt from you.” So the place has been called Gilgalto this day.

Gilgal means a wheel or rolling. 'Rolling' some things away or out of your life or spirit may be a less traumatizing process than 'snatching' them away. While snatching may be quick...like pulling a bandage off of a healing wound...that is not always the best process. A snatch doesn't give a person time to adjust to change. Rolling away something that is not wanted or neeeded is a softer, more tolerable process. It also brings to mind the idea of using a tacky substance to remove ALL of the debris that may be sticking to an object. 'Snatching' may leave a few small particles that seem insignificant at the time but will cause problems later.

This may not be the original intended implication but the meaning of Gilgal could also refer to moving forward or advancement in a way that required active participation. A wheel is most effective when it is engaged with something else. A transportation vehicle (car, bike, train, etc.) only moves forward in the way that it is designed to do when the wheel is in direct contact with the surface on which it is to travel. The Israelites were to directly influence the new land by functioning in the ways that God had instructed them. Their victories would be influenced by their obedience.

Physically, the symbolic process of circumcision was painful and required time and rest to facilitate healing. The circumcision was an act of agreement. God kept His promise to bring the Israelites into a new and prosperous land. Even good or positive changes often require a period of physical and mental adjustment. So the term 'rolling' suggests there was an internal period of adjustment and the surgery required a time of physical rest and limited activity.

In this present age, people sometimes don't recognize the "Rest of the Lord". He knows when we need a time of reduced activity. We often feel a void when this happens and we try to fill that void. It is wise and advantageous to recognize the Lord's Rest  and relax in it.

Most generally the Lord will facilitate the removal of some things before the application of other things. In order for a topical ointment or medication to be most effective, the infected or wounded area must first be cleansed of impurities. The same is true spiritually and mentally. In order to adopt a new concept, the old one must be eradicated. Both ideas cannot successfully inhabit the same vessel. A person who vacillates between two opinions is what the Bible describes as 'double-minded'. That person should not have any expectation of receiving more from the Lord in that area.

James 1:5-8

5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

7 For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.

8 A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

Prepare for change. Be wise in not resisting the modifications the Lord is urging you to make. He will never harm you. Whatever He wants to do in your life will bless you and honor Him. Trust Him and flow with His plan for your life.