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Twelve Stones From Jordan
TITLE: Twelve Stones From Jordan
TEXT: Joshua 4:19-24
A.) Joshua 4:19-24
1. God’s people, under the leadership of Joshua, have just entered the land promised to their forefathers.
2. Under the Lord’s instruction, Joshua establishes a “memorial” with twelve stones from Jordan.
B.) Memorials are for the purpose of reminding us of certain events; they serve as valuable lessons to succeeding generations.
C.) Later when those who saw the stones would ask, “What do these stones mean?”
1. In asking, an important question will have been raised
2. In answering, some valuable lessons will be taught
D.) What might have been some of the possible answers that were given?
I. THESE STONES MEANT THAT GOD IS A GOD OF PROVIDENCE
A.) He cares for His people.
B.) He provides for His people.
C.) God made provisions for His people in the past:
1. Joseph to prepare the grain to preserve the Hebrew nation…
2. Moses rose up to be God’s deliverer…
3. Manna & quail provided in the wilderness…
4. A law to live by…
5. Protection from their enemies…
6. It served as a reminder of God’s grace and provision.
D.) God continues to provide for His people under the Christian dispensation
1. Romans 8:28 “For we know that all things work together for the good unto those that love the Lord, and which were called according to His purpose.”
2. Romans 8:32-33 “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies.”
3. 1 Peter 2:9 “For ye are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for His own possession…”
E.) God’s providence is abundant today!
II. THESE STONES MEANT THAT EACH GENERATION MUST BE TAUGHT GOD’S WORD
A.) Joshua 4:21-22 And he spake unto the children of Israel, saying, When your children shall ask their fathers in time to come, saying, What do these stones mean? Then ye shall let your children know, saying, Israel came over this Jordan on dry land.
1. Some things should not be forgotten.
2. Some things should always be remembered!
B.) Deuteronomy 6:1-9
1. Moses charged the people to teach their children and grandchildren
2. And that which is taught is to be taught the way God wants it taught — Obedience consists of doing God’s will – nothing more and nothing less!
3. Deuteronomy 12:32 Whatever I command you, you shall be careful to do; you shall not add to nor take away from it.
C.) The obligation to teach our youth is enjoined on us today:
1. Ephesians 6:4, Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
2. Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
3. If we do not teach our children, then the world will — but:
a.) The world will teach them wrong things
b.) The world will not teach them about eternal things
D.) One untaught generation could very well take the church into apostasy:
1. Acts 20:29-31 I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to admonish every one with tears.
2. 1 Timothy 1:3 As I urged you when I was going to Macedonia, remain at Ephesus so that you may charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine,
3. Revelation 2:4 But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.
E.) These stones mean that each generation must be taught God’s Word.
III. THESE STONES MEANT THAT CONVICTION SURPASSES CONVIENENCE
A.) The Lord desired His people to remember Him.
1. God wanted their allegiance and service out of the conviction of their hearts – Deut. 5:28-29.
2. To keep themselves away from the gods of the land!
B.) The child of God today is faced with a similar dilemma:
1. False doctrine is a huge problem in our day!
2. It is easy to worship a god of convenience instead of worshipping in truth out of conviction.
C.) 2 Corinthians 6:14, 17-18 Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? …Therefore come out from among them, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.”
1. We must not mix with unbelievers in any compromising relationships.
2. We cannot enter into any relationship with an unbeliever that would cause us to be guilty of sin.
4. Romans 1:32 “who, knowing the ordinance of God, that they that practise such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but also consent with them that practise them.”
D.) These stones mean that we must serve God out of conviction rather than out of convenience
IV. THESE STONES MEANT THAT GOD’S PEOPLE MUST PREPARE
A.) There was no need for a memorial if this was the end.
1. Israel had a glorious past…
a.) They have been delivered from bondage
b.) They had been cared for time and time again (manna, quail, water, guidance, etc.)
2. They also had a future…
a.) Joshua 4:21
b.) “In the time to come” is future.
3. They needed to prepare each generation to tell the world about their God. If they didn’t who would?
B.) Let us consider the Lord’s church:
1. The church has a glorious past…
a.) Its prophecies made in the Old Testament
b.) Its establishment
c.) It growth throughout Acts
d.) It survived persecution and the Dark Ages
e.) The fact that it still exists at all is a credit to the mighty providence of God
2. Colossians 1:23 if so be that ye continue in the faith, grounded and stedfast, and not moved away from the hope of the gospel which ye heard, which was preached in all creation under heaven; whereof I Paul was made a minister.
a.) Who will tell the world if we don’t?
b.) Isaiah 6:8 And I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then I said, Here am I; send me.
3. We must continue the work the Lord has assigned to the church:
a.) We cannot rest on our laurels…
b.) We must constantly carry and defend the banner of truth.
4. Truly we have a past, but we also have a future:
a.) There is a new generation yet unborn that shall depend upon what we are now — today!
b.) What a glorious past … What a glorious future
C.) These stones meant that while we have a past, we also have a future to prepare!
A.) What do these stones mean? They are a memorial for God’s people:
1. They meant that God is a God of Providence
2. They meant that each succeeding generation must be taught about God
3. They meant that conviction is more important than convenience
4. They meant that God’s people not only had a past, but they also had a future