They Took The First Step

At the end of their journey, Israel faced another challenge: The Jordan River. They were almost home, so close, but yet so far. Joshua commanded the people to be ready to receive the miracle the Lord was going to perform among them. Sanctify yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you (Joshua 3:5). Israel needed to separate themselves from all that was pagan and evil for a holy purpose. At the Lord’s command, Joshua told the priests who bore the ark of the covenant, saying, when you come to the brink of the water of the Jordan, you shall stand still in the Jordan (vs 8). And when those who bore the ark had come to the Jordan and the feet of the priests bearing the ark were in the brink of the water- for the Jordan overflows all its bans throughout the time of harvest then the waters which came down from above stood and rose up in a heap far off, at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan; and those flowing down toward the Sea of the Arabah, the salt [Dead] Sea, were wholly cut off. And the people passed over opposite Jericho. And while all Israel passed over on dry ground, the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firm on dry ground in the midst of the Jordan, until all the nation finished passing over the Jordan (Joshua 3:15-17).

The Levites priests took the first step and the Lord accomplished His purpose for the nation of Israel. They crossed over the Jordan to receive the promise given to their father Abraham. Naaman, the Commander of the army of the king of Syria suffered with leprosy. After hearing of a prophet in Israel who could heal him, he went to see him. Told to bathe in the Jordan River, although he rebelled against the prophet’s command, he took the first step and Naaman became clean. The step we must take that will lead to our success, is not always visible and easy to understand. Many times it requires faith, for it is faith that compels us to obedience. Naaman was upset and angry that Elisha had sent him to bathe in the dirty Jordan River. But there was no other way or river where he was to be made clean. He finally took the first step and the results sparkled when he acknowledged YAHWEH the only true God.

YAHSHUA told the blind man, Go, wash in the Pool of Siloam- which means Sent. So he went and washed, and came back seeing (Jn. 9:7). This blind man was sent to a specific place of great significance. We find it in Isaiah 8:6: Because the people have refused and despised the waters of Shiloam [Siloam, the only perennial fountain of Jerusalem, and symbolic of God’s protection, and sustaining power] that go gently and rejoice in and with Rezin and Remaliah’s son. The fountain symbolizes the power of God, which Israel had rejected. The blind man’s eyes were covered with saliva and clay, which YAHSHUA had made into a special kind of mud and spread it over the blind man’s eyes. YAHSHUA’S DNA was on that saliva with power to heal. All that the blind man had to do was to wash in the pool of Siloam, waters from the waters of Siloam, “the perennial fountain of Jerusalem, symbolic of God’s protection and sustaining power,” which Israel had rejected. He took the first step and came back seeing. He not only was physically healed, but also spiritually, too. When YAHSHUA met him the second time, He introduced Himself as the Son of Man or the Son of God. The blind man accepted Him and called out, Lord, I believe! (in You) and he worshiped YAHSHUA (Jn. 9:35-38). What a beautiful expression of surrender!

As YAHSHUA was going into one village, He was met by ten lepers, who stood at a distance (according to the law) and they raised their voiced and called, YAHSHUA, Master, take pity and have mercy on us! When He saw them, He said to them, go and show yourselves to the priests. And as they went, they were cured and made clean. Then one of them, upon seeing that he was cure, turned back, recognizing and thanking and praising God with a loud voice: and he fell prostrate at YAHSHUA’s feet thanking Him, and he was a Samaritan… and He said to him, Get up and go on your way. Your faith has restored you to health (Luke 17:11-16, 19). These ten lepers suffering from a skin infectious disease, lived alienated from society, according to the law (Lev. 14:2-32). They were the scum of the world, rejected by all, as a means of protection. Imagine, living a life where society denies you the privilege of living a normal life, ready to stone you upon seeing you in their midst. It bruises the emotional side of one, psychologically, damaging him for life. These ten lepers were brave to have come out to see YAHSHUA, even from the distance. YAHSHUA did not say, You are healed, but “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” The Bible says, “As they went, they were healed.” None of them questioned, or doubted the command, but they took the first step to their healing and something beautiful happened: they were healed! However, only one experienced the complete healing – physical and spiritual, when he turned back to thank YAHSHUA for His gift of healing. The other nine left the presence of YAHSHUA, not forgiven and prone to the disease. Only one was sealed with God’s protection, for having recognized YAHSHUA through his worship of him. He left his weight of sin at the feet of the One Who could forgive and save him. In the Bible, leprosy is a symbol of sin. Those men carried this symbol and maybe, their condition was the result of it, and maybe not. However, the Samaritan who came back to thank YAHSHUA, received a double blessing.

The Bible tells us that we all have sinned and are separated from the glory of God. The leprosy of sin has alienated us from Him and without returning to receive our spiritual healing, we will be separated for ever in hell, just like those who suffer from leprosy are separated from society and their families. It will be a terrible thing to be found in hell after death, when YAHSHUA’S gift of salvation and healing is available to you in this life. Many more lepers could have been healed, but only those who came to YAHSHUA received their healing. You might think that your sin is beyond forgiving and healing, but let me tell you that YAHSHUA’S blood is more powerful than any sin you commit. Get up from your life of leprosy and go to Gethsemane. Be a witness reading through the pages of the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, then travel to Calvary, hear the extent of YAHSHUA’S suffering, My God, My God, why have you forsaken Me? Let His blood cleanse you from all your iniquities. Repent and be saved. Take the first step today. And if you are a Christian in need of physical healing, your first step is to deal with the root of your situation, for diseases are results of sin in one way or another. The first step is imperative if you want to see changes in your life. “By His stripes we are healed!” No exception.

THINK ABOUT IT!

Author: Jacinta da Cruz Rodgers

I have been committed to teaching the truth of the Word of God beginning with Trans World Radio on Bonaire, N.A and Swaziland, Africa (1969-1980), then through churches in the United States in both English and Portuguese and then through ministry in Israel (2005-2006). This ministry continues through local Bible studies and outreach to the world via the internet. I have written a book about my life from that of an orphan in Brazil to missionary in 5 countries. You can find out more on the "Book" page of our blog site.

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