Month 2:03, Week 1:2 (Shanee/Matzah), Year:Day 5936:032 AM|
Jericho III (Shleshi/Bikkurim)
Gregorian Calendar: Monday 23 April 2012
The Third Day of Jericho
Why You Need to Keep Going
Continued from Part 9
As we today contemplate the third day of the siege of Jericho I find myself wondering what the men of Israel were thinking as they marched around the city for the third time. This monstrous city loomed high above them, heavily fortified and with a reputation of invincibility. True, earthquakes in the past had done considerable damage but it was rebuilt again to its former glory each time.
Today symbolically represents the first harvest of emunah (faith), the barley harvest, and corresponds to the third day of creation when grass, herb and tree were planted by the Almighty (Gen.1:9-13), confirming a vision I saw two nights ago of a stony place and everywhere tufts of lushious green grass were appearing. It was on the third day that the people were commanded to sanctify themselves at Mt.Sinai (Ex.19:10-14).
The obstacles that confornt us often seem unsurmountable. Indeed, an objective survey reveals quite quickly and in stark plainness the impossibility of overcoming this obstacle in mere human strength alone. Our only hope, then, becomes divine intervention. But is what we desire Heaven's will? And if we are convinced that is is, in what manner and by what strategem - if any - are we to overcome? The Israelites, flushed with success at the Red Sea (Yam Suf) and having only a short time before withnessed another miraculous parting - this time of the Jordan River - must have thought that anything was possible. Indeed, some of the more zealous wanted to engage in a conventional military assault on Jericho at once!
Such is the natural impulse of the flesh, ever ready to rush ahead in reckless endeavour, filled with more passion than sense. It is for this reason that Yahweh appoints experienced and spiritual leaders to govern the less spiritually mature. Joshua the son of Nun was such a man and, having witnessed more than the second generation of wanderers out of Egypt and having walked with Moses the man of Elohim (God), was in perfect alignement with El Elyon (the Most High) and equally perfectly positioned to do what was right.
Leaders are given to us to restrain our basal impulses - however at times well intentioned - and to chastise those who think they can do what others cannot by stepping beyond the hedge of protection and into lawlessness. The siege of Jericho was tightly regimented, everyone marching in their proper place, lips sealed, cohenim (priests) and the Ark leading, and shofars blaring in declaration of war. But what a long declaration! Like a foe running up and taunting the enemy into battle and then melting into the night, so the Israelites came back again and again doing exactly the same thing. Or were they?
Outwardly, yes, it was the same on this third day as on the previous two. But inwardly, in the realm of the invisible, new processes were at work that were barely perceived by the marchers, if at all. Once a seed is planted, processes are unleashed in clockwork sequence that result, if cared for, in a fully grown tree. And so it is with man who, having decided to trust Messiah and let Him work on his lev (heart), undergoes changes within he barely comprehends. He must do little more than remain in his original resolution to seek Messiah and then lights begin to turn on within that point him to new choices and responses.
We are now on the third day of the cycle and the second day of Chag haMatzah or the Feast of Unleavaned Bread, but this third day is also Yom haBikkurim or the Day of Firstfruits. This is a day of the number '3' and 3 is the number of divine perfection, having all the necessary deimensions of substance. It is a day of comings-together, of synthesis. It is the day of the Resurrection and the day of New Birth. It is a New Beginning. By remaining in emunah (faith) this long, the Divine has accomplished an amazing work in the one willing to submit - his mental horizons expand, his lev (heart) swells in a sudden blossoming, and he is propelled like a newly launched rocket into new and unknown heights.
Many make the fundamental mistake of believing that this is also the 'end' of what is required of man when in truth it is but a new beginning. Yahweh could have commanded a three day march around Jericho and then called upon the people to shout the fourth day. But had He done so, their emunah (faith) would not have been strong enough to sustain them, for they were yet immature and imperfect in the emunah (faith) that was required of them for the task. Rome was not built in a day and Jericho was not knocked down in three days either.
Something was born in those Israelite breasts on this third day - a new confidence, a new hope, an emboldened emunah (faith). And in the days to come, more new things would happen within them until they came to a ripeness of emunah (faith).
As a cohen (priest) of my own family and of those who have sought shelter under my spiritual covering as a leader, I am here to blow the shofar to proclaim the destruction of a number of obstacles in my own life, in the life of my family, in the life of the ministry entrusted to me, and together with other leaders seeking the end-time Sukkot annointing for their own people. The enemy has, in any case, already declared war and had initiated some skirmishes, taking captive a number of stragglers. Like David after the disaster at Ziklag when the Amalekites raided his camp and took captive all the women and children, and his men were on the verge of killing him because of the grief of their losses, so it is time to recapture what was stolen from us and is rightfully ours by going on the offensive as David did under revelation from Abiathar the Cohen Gadol (High Priest). David recovered his two wives, Achinoam and Abigail, and the wives and children of all his men and brought them home without loss because he obediently carried out the instructions of Yahweh his Elohim to the letter (1 Sam.30).
The third day is the day of action following heavenly mandates. So this day I, like I hope you, am claiming all that Yahweh has given to me, both that which has been stolen and that which is not yet come, and am going in pursuit spiritually. I, like I hope you too, am marching around my Jerichos, remembering that the booty of Jericho is consecrated to Yahweh and reminding everyone that we are not to follow in the sin of Aachan. There is yet another endowment to follow on the fourth day, which is why we cannot step out yet, and that I shall be talking about tomorrow.
If you have been struggling and not yet experienced any breakthroughs, then take courage. Keep walking in emunah (faith) just as the Israelites did on the third day and on the following days leading up to the seventh, trusting that everything will work out for you and to Yahweh's glory!
Continued in Part 11