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April 27, 2024: Haftorah - Joshua 3 & 4

This week's Haftorah reading is from Joshua 3 & 4. Join Dr. Jeffery Myers as he clearly defines the differences between trusting in YESHUA, accepting His gift of salvation, with living a life of obedience to ADONAI. The same was true in the days of Joshua, where he had to prepare the people for the new reality of life, after entering into the Promised Land, and the changes involved. A shift took place from one paradigm to another - the same is true for us today, when we leave a life of sin to follow YESHUA!

Follow along in the AUDIO PODCAST, by clicking on the play button below, and reading along with the notes, as you listen to today's Haftorah Portion:

Joshua chapter 3 - Jordan River Crossing - HAFTORAH

Lion of Judah Speaks: Haftorah – Joshua 3 & 4:

In our western society, we are obsessed with the search for “self”.  Our obsession to “find ourselves” has birthed a whole set of counterfeit values; we worship fame, success, materialism, and celebrity.  We want to “live for success” as we “look out for ourselves”. 

However, the kehillah is in almost as much trouble as our culture and society, for we have bought into the same value system; fame, success, materialism, and celebrity.  We are enticed by the leading churches and leading Christians wanting to emulate the best-known, most famous preachers who have the biggest sanctuaries and largest followers.  Preoccupation with these values has also perverted our message…” We give the people what they want.”  This heresy is at the root of the most dangerous message today; the what’s–in-it–for-me gospel.


The” victorious Christian life” has become man’s victorious life, not Elohim’s.  Elohim helps those who help themselves gospel of our culture; it is heresy.  The question is, “Where do we find an authentic intimate love relationship with Elohim without all the glitter and carnality?  Where do we find authentic discipleship?  Our major goal in life is to know and experience Elohim.  We have to know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His suffering!  We press on daily toward the goal of the prize of the upward call of Yah in Yeshua Ha Mashiach.  Do we really want to know Him?  Do we want to understand Who He is and His purpose for our lives?  Do we want to understand how He sees our circumstances and station in life?  Do we humbly yield to Him the desires of our lives?


Let’s look closely at Joshua 3-5, the first words of this narrative, “And Joshua rose up early in the morning…”. are quite inspirational.  To rise up early to start a task in Hebrew society is to display great zeal to be obedient to Elohim.  It means you desire to get the earliest possible start on carrying out whatever assignment or work Adonai is doing through you.  It’s like a merit badge, a character trait, and a sign of being faithful that is being ascribed to Joshua. The Israelites were being led to the Promised Land.  They have arrived next to the Jordan River.  At this new encampment, after being there for 3 days, Joshua’s officers went throughout the congregation giving people instructions on just how it would be that they would cross over the Jordan.


Joshua was preparing, the people were prepared and the spies were sent to Jericho to survey the land.  The instructions were given on how to proceed and follow the Ark of the Covenant.  Joshua 3 tells us that the NEXT day the tribes got into battle order and began to cross over the Jordan.  What we have is an 8-day period from the time Joshua gives the order to move across the Jordan until it actually happens. 


Numbers have great meaning in the bible.  They act like a guide to help us understand heavenly context on earth.  What does the number 8 represent in Scripture?  Atonement and redemption!  Crossing the Jordan into their inheritance was a milestone of Israel’s redemption.  This crossing moved Israel into their inheritance and 8 is the Biblical number for redemption.  This action of “crossing-over” has always played a major role in Israel’s redemptive history.  Abraham, death angel, just to name a few.  In fact, the term crossing-over was memorialized into the very identity of the Hebrews.  Crossing-over would become the requisite for all who desired to join the people of Elohim.


One of the greatest stories of crossing-over is Moshe leading the people through the Red Sea; this act took them out of Egypt and into the Wilderness.  The crossing-over the Jordan officially takes Israel out of the Wilderness and into the Promised Land.  Halleluyah!

As we continue in Joshua 3, we arrive at the bank of the Jordan River where the same critical instructions about crossing-over is administered.  The Ark of the Covenant would lead the way and the people were to keep their eyes on the Ark and also maintain a half of a mile distance from it.  Its holiness must be kept!  The movement of the Ark would be Israel’s signal to move.  Remember up until now, when the glory-fire moved they moved but now there is a shift, a change.  We have a major transition!  No more glory-fire to lead the way; that era ends on the east bank of the river.  Instead, the Ark would represent Elohim’s Presence and so it would lead the army of Israel from now on, and it would lead from the front as the glory-fire as the ONLY source of divine direction.  How unsettling to awaken to a new paradigm which is why Joshua’s officers took the time to explain the NEW reality.


What is Elohim telling us?  Joshua 3:5 says, “sanctify yourselves; for tomorrow Adonai will do wonders among you.  And Joshua spake unto the priests, saying, “Take up the Ark of the Covenant, and pass over before the people.”  The concept of extreme sanctity of the Ark was now applied to the people.  The people were to sanctify themselves.  Sanctify means to be made holy; and why was Israel to be sanctified?  Because Adonai has said, “You must be holy for I am holy.”


Believers, we don’t pay attention to this command and it is harmful to our relationship with Adonai.  While on one level we have been sanctified by our faith in Yeshua, this level was spiritual.  Elohim declared Israel was holy, so they are holy.  Yet, on another level this kind of sanctity was also demanded, a sort of physical sanctity.  This kind is reflected by obedience to Elohim’s commands, and a mimicking of His attributes in our lives as followers.  This means that the spiritual sanctity given by Elohim’s grace ought to lead to physical sanctity if the individual truly loves Adonai!  This principle has never changed and is spoken of over and over as central theme of the Brit Hadasha.  Trust in Yeshua has NOT replaced obedience to Adonai.  We have so watered down the message and have become a powerless body.  The doctrine of grace has NOT replaced obedience, this replacement is at the heart of the problem.


So let me state this, the Law and Yeshua’s sacrifice are both acts of Elohim’s grace.  The Law is grace, it reveals heavenly truth; and that truth tells us what pleases and displeases Elohim, and how to live a redeemed life.  Yeshua is grace because He permanently atones for us, cleanses us and brings us into the Father’s Presence.  We are NOT saved by grace of the Law, and conversely, we are NOT living a redeemed life simple because we have decided to trust Yeshua.  Being redeemed and living redeemed are two entirely different things.  Thereby, the grace of the Law and the grace of Yeshua are for two different aspects of redemption.  Yeshua gives us salvation, and the commands of Elohim show us the way to righteous living, righteous behavior, as a redeemed person ought to live.  Israel was NOT redeemed by the Law; first they were redeemed by Elohim’s grace, then they were given the Law.  We are NOT redeemed by the Law; first we are redeemed by His blood via faith, then we are given the Law.


As we celebrate Pesach be reminded:  The Law is NOT for the world; the Law is only for the redeemed!  The blood had to be applied to the doorpost before the angel crossed over.  We can’t carry out the Law properly unless we have the Ruach guiding us because proper Torah observance DEPENDS on trusting Elohim; otherwise, we’d be attempting by our own strength and our own sinful state to accomplish holy things.


Elohim, in a supernatural divine act, redeemed and sanctified Israel on a spiritual level upon their rescue from Egypt.  But, on a physical level Israel had obligations; they were NOW required to follow Elohim’s action with one of their own sanctified behaviors!  The same is true for us today, isn’t it?


Shabbat Shalom Mishpocha,


Join us every Wednesday at 7 pm for Bible study and every Saturday at 11 am for Sabbath service at:


Lion of Judah Ministries

612 North Main St

Blackstone, VA.      

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I pray you are having a great Pesach and that your celebrations are filled with joy and His grace and power.  As we begin to count the Omer we look forward to the next Feast of Shavuot.   But in the meantime, Chag Pesach Sameach and we will see you at the altar!


Shalom Aleichem



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