READ: Joshua 3:1-4:24
- Seventeen times ark, ark of the covenant, or ark of the covenant of the Lord is used in just these two chapters. That’s over half of all the occurrences of that language in the book of Joshua. It’s almost half as many as the nearly forty references in the entire Torah (Pentateuch; first five books of the Bible). The ark is the symbol of God’s presence. When the ark was placed in the Tabernacle, for example, the symbolic light/smoke, sat upon the ark.
- The repeated references to the ark is Scripture’s way of calling attention to the fact that God was present with Israel. God was with the Israelites in their journey. He was leading the way, providing dry land upon which to cross, and would lead them in their conquest of the land. They needed that reassurance. These were, after all, the succeeding generation from those who died in the wilderness for their faithlessness.
- Experiencing, and then communicating, God’s presence is a challenge. It’s one thing to live in the shadow of God’s wings and to walk in the confidence of His presence, but quite another to communicate that to a new generation. Yet that is the most important aspect of our faith that we can share. Each new generation should be introduced to God’s presence in a way that provides deep confidence. That’s a gift only those who have experienced God’s presence can give.
- Describe an experience of God’s presence.
- Why do you suppose it’s so significant for people to have confidence in God’s presence?
- How do you help others when they don’t feel they’ve shared an experience of God’s presence?
Thank God for His presence in your life. Pray that you are able to share His presence with others. Ask Him to continue making Himself known to you.