Joshua 3:3 When ye see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and the priests the Levites bearing it, then ye shall remove from your place, and go after it.
The children of Israel were preparing themselves to go into the promised land. Joshua had commanded the spies to see the land and they brought back a good report: God had already gone before to prepare the way. As a reader of this wonderful passage, we can see that, in the mind of God, the time was now – the situation was ideal, the hearts of the people ready and all things prepared for the occupation of the promised land. Has the Lord prepared the way for you? How do we know when we need to move? There may be many conﬂicting voices and instructions from various sides. In this passage, as we see how the Israelites followed the Lord, we need to do the same:
We need to identify the time of the moving of the presence of God
“when ye see the Ark of the covenant of the Lord…”
The ark of the covenant is where the presence of God dwelt. When two or three are gathered in Christʼs name, He is there with them. When there is genuine praise toward God, He inhabits the praises of His people. More than anything, He dwells in our hearts by faith. When God moves, we are to follow. When His presence impresses our hearts to read the Bible, we need to see that is from the Lord. When His Word tells us to pray, we must realise that it is from His Spirit. When He convicts us of our sinful tendencies and when His presence brings up the transgressions in our attitudes, we must identify the moving of God. Many do not perceive the moving of God, because many have their eyes ﬁxed on this world. Their vision has been diverted to the cares and deceitfulness of this world. To follow the Lord, we need to see the Lord moving. They also need see the moving of the servants of the Lord, in their work, in their instruction and in their pleading within their hearts, acknowledging that it is from God. How do we know this? When the word of Godʼs servants increases a thirst towards the things of God, bringing honour and glory to Him, it is from God.
We need to move when God moves
“When ye see … then ye shall remove.”
When God stirs our hearts to move, we need to leave our comforts and the place where we dwell. We are to practice the principle of removal – the emptying of the place where we are from. We are to move when God impresses our hearts to move. We are go with no delay because when we do, the heart hardens, the will weakens, and our strength reduced. The time of action for the Lord is now. The day of salvation is now. Today is the Lordʼs day: tomorrow is always the Devilʼs tactic to make us lose our blessings from God. We need to move when God moves.
We need to go after the Lord
When the Lord moves, we are to follow Him wholly, not someone or something else. We are to follow the Lord, in all His ways and in all His words. We are to love the Lord Jesus with all our hearts and, as a result of that love, move toward Him and encamp around Him to learn from Him.
Are we following the Lord? Is the ark of the covenant moving past us? Are we following Him? Have we removed from our place and going after God? Christian, is the Lord asking you to do His will? Is He asking you to leave the pleasures of this world and the ambitions of this world to do His will and His only? If so, follow Him and He will lead and guide you. When the task is done, He will reward you. Follow the Lord.
Evangelist-Pastor Johnny Tan
Ambassador Baptist Church