New Frontier

4036993 – surrounded by desert, palm trees and lush vegetation abounds in the spring feed city of jericho, israel.

The Israelites had journeyed through the Judean desert forty years. They crossed the Red Sea on dry ground (Exodus 14). They complained about no water and no food. Even though God heard their cries and provided for them, they rebelled against Him, the One who rescued them from slavery in Egypt.

They crossed the Jordan River at flood stage on dry ground (Joshua 3) and came to the city of Jericho, a well fortified city. Its stone walls were 13 feet high. Its guard tower was 28 feet tall (John F. Guilmartin). The wall was wide enough at the top for chariots to travel over. Palm, balsam and fruit trees grew in this natural hot house, which was/is the lowest place on earth, more than 800 feet below sea level.

God said He would give the Israelites victory over Jericho with these instructions: The men of war were to march around the city every day for six days. On the seventh day they were to march around the city seven times. Then they were to give a loud shout. These people did not complain. They did not hesitate to do as God told them. They carried out His plan, and when they shouted, the walls of Jericho fell down. The Israelite army defeated Jericho.


What trouble do you face today? Have you complained and rebelled against God? Are you ready to surrender your will into God’s plan? Children might get bullied at school. Know that you are the apple of God’s eye. Adults might be tempted to cheat on tax returns in order to avoid a higher tax bill. Even in hard times, it is better to be honest. The world has many challenges and temptations. As followers of God, we are to be set apart to do good, to shine God’s light into the darkness, to show love and compassion instead of hate or anxiety.


Lord God, help us to remember stories in the Bible how you went before your people to avert defeat. Help us to rise above temptation to do the right things, to live for you and to bring you glory. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Look Up

Ark Encounter is a Christian evangelical and fundamentalist theme park that opened in Grant County, Kentucky on July 7, 2016.[2][3] The centerpiece of the park is a full-scale model of Noah’s Ark as described in the Genesis flood narrative of the Bible. It is 510 feet (155 m) long, 85 feet (26 m) wide, and 51 feet (16 m) high. It is one of only three full-size Noah’s Ark replicas and derivatives in the world, and the largest of the three.

A close look at the reproduction of Noah’s Ark above does not show any windows. The only window was at the top to let light in. After all the animals and Noah’s family entered the ark, God closed the door. The rains came down and covered the valleys and mountains on earth. Noah’s family heard the screams of those who rejected God, but they could not see them. No rain had ever come on the earth, so when Noah started his project, people laughed at him. It took 120 years to finish the ark. Can you imagine the ridicule and the persecution he received? Yet, he stayed faithful (Genesis 6-8).

Rain fell on the earth for forty days and forty nights. The ark rocked in the water. Do you think the eight people inside wondered what was going on? Did they wonder if they would get out alive? Do you think they wanted to look out? They had to trust God and encourage each other.


We live in troubling times, and it is tempting for me to look at the circumstances and become discouraged, something I have to repent for nearly every day. Yet, God continues to shine His light into our dark world. He said, “I am the light of the world, Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life,” (John 8:12). Like Noah, you and I can look up into the light and trust God to carry us through suffering, anxieties or problems. Will you do that today? Be encouraged, nothing is impossible for God.


Heavenly Father, intervene into the chaos and division in our world. Help us to remember to look up to you and trust you to help us in times of trouble. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Streams of Living Water

En Gedi

En Gedi is an oasis in the desert near the Dead Sea and Jericho. The Bible refers to the waterfalls and springs as “Living Water.” The ancient village of En Gedi produced Frankincense from the balsam trees. It was used for perfume and healing ointment. David found refuge near the cool waterfalls when he ran from King Saul who was out to kill him.

Jesus referred to Himself as Living Water when He talked to the Woman at the well in John, chapter 4. He said, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you Living Water.” Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:10-13).


Jesus is The Living Water, a refuge, The Great Physician and healer of my spiritual and physical infirmities. At first the Woman at the Well didn’t understand that Jesus was telling her about Himself, but when she did understand, she went into the town of Sychar and told the people there about Jesus. Because she did, they came to see Him for themselves and they, too, believed. Someone today needs to know Jesus. Will you tell them?


Thank you, Lord, for places of refreshment, refuge and healing. Thank you most of all for Jesus who works in all these ways to give us abundant life. Teach us to be more like Him. In Jesus’ name, Amen.