Nebo set the stage
God’s people don’t go into the wilderness to stay, they go into the wilderness to see the unseen—to touch “Holy Ground.” We may enter the wilderness in retreat, to escape, for testing, or because we are afraid; but, we return from the wilderness changed, with a new calling, a mission.
It was during the wilderness when God shaped His people. He tested them, humbled them, and shaped their heart. They came out of the wilderness stoked for invasion. It was time to be in their new home, time to experience the promise God made to Abraham.
Moses lead the people through the wilderness and God gave him bionic eyes to see beyond what we saw on Mount Nebo…he saw all the way to the Mediterranean Sea. He saw the future.
Joshua’s first encounter inside the promised land was a surprise:
“When Joshua was near the town of Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with sword in hand. Joshua went up to him and demanded, “Are you friend or foe?” “Neither one,” he replied. “I am the commander of the Lord’s army.”
At this, Joshua fell with his face to the ground in reverence. “I am at your command,” Joshua said. “What do you want your servant to do?” The commander of the Lord’s army replied, “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did as he was told.
Joshua 5:13-15 NLT
This is Holy Ground. God is here.
We experienced the mountain tops of Qumran and Masada and gathered fresh understanding about life shaped by wilderness. Both the Zealots at Qumran and Essenes at Masada retreated to the wilderness to stay. The Zealots retreated to Masada in defiance of a devastating Roman invasion. While, the Essenes retreated to Qumran to keep their sect pure and holy.
Even when people in the wilderness loose their way, God makes something good out of their wandering. Right?
Elisha and Elijah passed through Jericho and crossed the Jordan to the wilderness, where God took Elijah to heaven. When Elisha returned from the wilderness, he carried a double portion of power from God.
Some nine hundred years later, a hairy prophet named John the Baptist would come out of the wilderness above Jericho, calling his countrymen to “repent and be baptized” and announcing that “the kingdom is at hand.”
After Jesus’ baptism in the Jordan, He spent 40 days in the wilderness. It was preparation for His “Holy Ground” mission: God, is here and he is calling your name. Don’t let anything come between you and the Holy God.
Tonight when we took off our shoes, we were standing on Holy Ground. Our eyes are open and our ears are tuned. This trip is a game changer.
Category: Holy Ground