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SF534 - WHAT DO THESE STONES MEAN (Joshua 4 1-10)

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Joshua 4:1-10; 19-24

INTRODUCTION

Forty years of aimless wandering were about to come to an end

The people of Israel stood on the bank of the Jordan River.  The Jordan separated the past from the future.

Ø      The slavery of Egypt from the success of Canaan

Ø      The defeat of the wilderness from the victory of God’s promise

Ø      The poverty of the desert from the plenty of the promised land

The Jordan represented both comfort and challenge!

It was the time of the Spring floods.  (Joshua 3:15)

Ø      Snow melts of Mt. Hermon and the river can become 90-100 wide and 12 feet deep

Ø      Rapid currents that were known to carry many to a watery death.

God instructs His people to construct a memorial

Because he knows we tend to forget

He knows the question will come...What do these stones mean?


In a sense we have just crossed our Jordan.

Today we stand at the edge of a new era in the life of our congregation.

Today we need to lay down some memorial stones.

Ø      The stone of the supremacy of God in all things.  (Colossians 1:18)

Ø      The stone of the inerrancy of Scripture.  (2 Timothy 3:16)

Ø      The stone of salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.  (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Ø      The stone of missions and evangelism.  (Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15; Acts 1:8)

Ø      The stone of the priority of preaching.  (Romans 10:13-17)

Ø      The stone of genuine worship.  (John 4:23)

Ø      The stone of expanded ministry to our community.  (Acts 1:8a)

Ø      Why are these stones important?


1A.      They Remind Us Of A Past That Comforts Us – A Memorial (4:1-7)

1B.      Remember our past with God (4:7, 23)

Remember God’s salvation

Ø      The evidence of a past experience is a present relationship

1 John 5:13 (NKJ) “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.”

Remember God’s provision

James 1:17 “Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above...”

2B.      Renew our passion for God

A passion to know God

Psalm 42:1 “As the deer pants for the water brooks, So my soul pants for You, O God.”

A passion to serve God

Philippians 1:21 (NKJ) “For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”

Philippians 3:12-14 (NKJ) “Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me.  Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

2A.      They Represent A Purpose That Compels Us – A Mandate

1B.      A mandate to pass on the truth (4:6)

To our children

Deuteronomy 6:7 (NKJ) “You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.”

To our community

Deuteronomy 31:12 (NKJ) “Gather the people together, men and women and little ones, and the stranger who is within your gates, that they may hear and that they may learn to fear the LORD your God and carefully observe all the words of this law”

2B.      A mandate to proclaim the truth (4:24)

Mark 16:15 (NKJ) “And He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.’”

Mark 1:14 (NKJ) “… Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.’”


3B.      A mandate to protect the truth

We must refuse to compromise the gospel.

2 Timothy 4:3-5 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths.  But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.”

We must refuse to commercialize the gospel.

Acts 8:18-21 “Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was bestowed through the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money, saying, ‘Give this authority to me as well, so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.’  But Peter said to him, ‘May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money!  You have no part or portion in this matter, for your heart is not right before God.’”

We must refuse to complicate the gospel.

Acts 15:10 “Now therefore why do you put God to the test by placing upon the neck of the disciples a yoke which neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear?  But we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they also are.”

1 Corinthians 16:13 “Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong”

3A.      They Require That We Face A Future That Will Challenge Us – A Marker

Gilgal was halfway between Jordan and Jericho.  Between God’s deliverance and God’s challenge!

1B.      We must remain faithful to the Word of God

Psalm 119:105 (NKJ) “Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.”

Psalm 119:11 (NKJ) “Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You!”

2 Timothy 3:15-16 (NKJ) “and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.  All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness”

2B.      We must refuse to falter in the work of God

We must refuse to leave - remain steadfast

Luke 9:62 “But Jesus said to him, "No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God”

3B.      We must rely fully on the Son of God

Acts 4:12 (NKJ) “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

John 14:6 (NKJ) “Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.’”

APPLICATION

What do these stones mean?

These stones call us to repent of our sins.

Acts 26:20 “… repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.”

These stones call us to place our faith in Christ.

Acts 16:31 “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved…”

These stones call us to give ourselves completely to Christ!

Romans 12:1 (NKJ) “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.”

These stones call us to walk by faith.

2 Corinthians 5:7 (NKJ) “For we walk by faith, not by sight.”


INTRODUCTION

Today we need to lay down some memorial stones.

Ø       The stone of the supremacy of God in all things.  (Colossians 1:18)

Ø       The stone of the inerrancy of Scripture.  (2 Timothy 3:16)

Ø       The stone of salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.  (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Ø       The stone of missions and evangelism.  (Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15; Acts 1:8)

Ø       The stone of the priority of preaching.  (Romans 10:13-17)

Ø       The stone of genuine worship.  (John 4:23)

Ø       The stone of expanded ministry to our community.  (Acts 1:8a)

1A.       They Remind Us Of A __________________ That Comforts Us – A Memorial (4:1-7)

1B.       Remember our past with God (4:7, 23)

Remember God’s ________________ (1 John 5:13)

Remember God’s provision (James 1:17)

2B.       Renew our _______________________ for God

A passion to know God (Psalm 42:1)

A passion to serve God (Philippians 1:21; 3:12-14)

2A.       They Represent A Purpose That Compels Us – A Mandate

1B.       A mandate to _____________ on the truth (4:6)

To our children (Deuteronomy 6:7)

To our community (Deuteronomy 31:12)


2B.       A mandate to ______________ the truth (Joshua 4:24; Mark 16:15; Mark 1:14)

3B.       A mandate to ____________________ the truth

We must refuse to __________________ the gospel.  (2 Timothy 4:3-5)

We must refuse to commercialize the gospel.  (Acts 8:18-21)

We must refuse to complicate the gospel.  (Acts 15:10; 1 Corinthians 16:13)

3A.       They Require That We Face A Future That Will Challenge Us – A Marker

1B.       We must remain ________ to the Word of God (Psalm 119:105; Psalm 119:11; 2 Timothy 3:15-16)

2B.       We must refuse to falter in the work of God

We must refuse to leave - remain steadfast (Luke 9:62)

3B.       We must rely fully on the Son of God (Acts 4:12; John 14:6)

APPLICATION

These stones call us to repent of our sins.  (Acts 26:20)

These stones call us to place our faith in Christ.  (Acts 16:31)

These stones call us to give ourselves completely to Christ!  (Romans 12:1)

These stones call us to walk by faith.  (2 Corinthians 5:7)

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