HERE OR HEREAFTER???


spiritual-blog-promises

Joshua 1:1-9 – “Now it came about after the death of Moses the servant of the LORD, that the LORD spoke to Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ servant, saying, 2 “Moses My servant is dead; now therefore arise, cross this Jordan, you and all this people, to the land which I am giving to them, to the sons of Israel. 3 ” Every place on which the sole of your foot treads, I have given it to you, just as I spoke to Moses. 4 ” From the wilderness and this Lebanon, even as far as the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and as far as the Great Sea toward the setting of the sun will be your territory. 5 ” No man will be able to stand before you all the days of your life. Just as I have been with Moses, I will be with you; I will not fail you or forsake you. 6 ” Be strong and courageous, for you shall give this people possession of the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. 7 “Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go. 8 ” This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success. 9 “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”   NASU

 

Not to belabor the topic but “Vision is Vital” in our walk, work, and warfare.  Israel had the Vision of their Promised Land deeply embedded in their hearts and minds having heard it day after day for 40 years.  Every day they were reminded of the Promise and that Vision kept them plodding along, lap after lap around that mountain.  Vision kept them from totally staying off course and becoming lost in the wilderness.  Too many, get lost in the wilderness of life because of a lack of vision.

For any of us to ‘stay the course’ and fulfill the purpose(s) of God for our lives it is imperative that we have and maintain VISION.  The Bible warns that ‘without vision, we perish’ and could find ourselves reaching the end of our earthly journey without having fulfilled the vision.  We not only must have VISION but we must also learn to PULL DOWN STRONGHOLDS including wrong concepts about God’s Purpose and Kingdom.  My title question should inspire curiosity and what I am going to advance may be outside the box of your thinking.  I only ask that you hear the conclusion of the whole matter before rendering a judgment.

I believe that even a cursory reading of the Gospels will make it extremely clear that Jesus taught the Kingdom of God as a present reality. The New Testament, in my view, clearly teaches that believers can expect and enjoy both Present and Eternal Victory in Christ Jesus.  Many seem to be waiting for victory in heaven and view life on earth as a drudgery to endure.  Jesus and Paul both taught that we, believers, have authority and power in spirit realm in our fight against the forces of darkness.  [Mark 16 and Luke 10].  In 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 the apostle Paul identifies our spiritual weapons, their function, purpose, and power.  In Ephesians 6 we find a detail of our spiritual armor.  I would challenge you to consider that NONE OF IT is for heaven it is ALL for here and now.  You won’t need spiritual weapons in heaven!

The question that should be asked is, “Can we have the Promised Land or the Place of Promise here or do we have to wait for it in heaven?”  That leads to another question, “Is Canaan a type of heaven?”  This is vitally important to what I desire to present.  Paul informs us in 1 Corinthians 10 that what happened in natural Israel was for our example and was recorded to instruct us.  1 Corinthians 15:46 teaches us that it is ‘first the natural then the spiritual.’  Therefore, what God did in the Old Testament in natural Israel is a picture of what He wants to do in the Last Days in His Church or His Body on Earth.  He gave us a natural picture to reveal to us a spiritual reality.  He brought them out of bondage to bring them into victory.  He gave them the Promised Land but to enjoy it they had to dispossess the occupants and then possess and occupy the Place of Promise.

The picture of the Promised Land is exciting and encouraging when applied to Heaven in the sweet by and by but if you can somehow apply it to the here and now it becomes doubly exciting or should.   I have only laid a foundation of what I hope to challenge you with so I will pause here with a question and then address it in the next devotional.  “Can we Possess the Land or Promise and Walk Victoriously BEFORE Heaven?”  Muse on that until tomorrow but don’t toss me aside just yet.

God, bless you richly as you enjoy the victories of this day in Him!

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