For clarification, here are the parallels that led up to this point.
While in bondage, Israel's deliverance came through the miracle working power of God and through the blood of the lamb that covered them, which enabled them to leave Egypt behind. This reflects the work of Christ in our lives. When we trust in the Lamb’s (Jesus's) provision, we are free to set a course to follow His leading. We turn our backs on the slavery of sin and begin walking in agreement with the Word, much like the Hebrews got in line behind Moses, the symbol of the forthcoming Law. Like freed slaves, we submit to the work on Calvary through repentance and turn from sin to begin the journey toward the greater promise.
1 Corinthians 10: 1-3 explains that the cloud and the Red Sea were types of baptism for this people. Once the “called out ones” crossed through the waters, then, they approached the new land, the place of promise. Sadly, their unbelief thwarted their ability to receive the fulfillment of God’s covenant, and many of them were destroyed without experiencing what they’d come out of Egypt to receive.
For those who believed, however, this inheritance remained. This is much like receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, the promise of the Father (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:3-5; Acts 2: 38-39, Ephesians 1:1-14). Our promise of the Spirit, like the promise to Abraham’s earthly descendants, is received through faith. Though available to whosoever will, (Deuteronomy 14:29; Leviticus 25:6; Revelation 22:17; Acts 2:39), only believers receive the promise (Romans 4; Galatians 3: 14).
This brings us to the crossing.
While some tribes claimed territory on the wilderness side of the Jordan, they all crossed the river. No tribe was left out of the Promise Land experience. The crossing signified embracing the fulness of the faith covenant.
When we cross into the realm of Promise, a new dimension opens up in the Spirit. Rather than entering Heaven and a place of perfect rest, this place of promise, though it includes rest and flourishing and abundant blessing, comes with war. After all, the promised Holy Spirit is power (Luke 24:49; John 1:12; Acts 1:8; Romans 15:13), and power is unnecessary for sitting and sipping tea. The Promise Land of the Spirit is a place of fulfilling, of habitation--and of victory. It is a dimension of Kingdom advancement through conquest (1 Corinthians 9:26; 1Timothy 6:12; 2Timothy 4:7; Hebrews 10:32; 2 Corinthians 10:3-4; 1 Timothy 1:18; 2 Timothy 2:4; 1Peter 2:11…) “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places,” (Ephesians 6:12).
This is critical to consider because often we behave like the blessing of the Spirit is merely an experience given to serve US. What's in it for us? What can we name and claim? We can act like this precious gift is something to boast about as if it has been earned. "Well, I have the Spirit," one says condescendingly with the emphasis on "I" and a curl of the lip. Most commonly, though, we are apathetic Promise receivers, failing to activate the power the Spirit gives us for Kingdom expansion. We can hunker down on a small land plot when the vast array of mountains, valleys, cities, and plains lie before us. The Promise beckons us to explore greater possibilities and seize grander opportunities. It challenges us to step into the unknown to discover certain revelation. It prompts us to worship and pray and speak the Living Word until situations change, or until we are changed in them. It urges us to conquer.
Although we receive the Promise as a gift, we must use the authority it provides to overturn the works of the enemy in the world. This power is given to us to witness and to wage war against the adversary who boasts of his dominion. We are empowered to be giant slayers and to be victory dancers through Jesus. Like Joshua discovered during his encounter with the captain of the Lord’s host, we are equipped for the battle when we get on the Lord’s side, (Joshua 5: 13-15). We, too can say, “Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place,” (2 Corinthians 2: 14). “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us,” (Romans 8:37). We can stand, victorious over trouble and temptation, but we can also lay claim to land yet unchartered, strongholds in the grip of Satan. “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world,” (1 John 4:4). Our warring is not through fleshly strength; it is God’s deposit of power within us that brings the victory. “Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts,” (Zechariah 4:6). “O sing unto the Lord a new song; for he hath done marvellous things: his right hand, and his holy arm, hath gotten him the victory,” (Psalm 98:1).
Oh, what spoils of war are ours to gain as we collect what the enemy had that was ours all along and receive what God has apportioned to those who trust in Him.
If we fight the good fight as did Paul, the next river we can cross will not be muddy Jordan; rather it will be “a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb,” (Revelation 22:1). In Heaven’s Promise Land, we will lay down our swords and pick up our crowns, which we, like the twenty-four elders, will likely cast at Jesus’ feet because we will know that it is He that has conquered. “But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ,” (1 Corinthians 15:57). What celebration we will enjoy with the One who fought with us and for us. What fellowship with the One who empowered us with His Promise! “He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son,” (Revelation 21:7). Then, we will rest, but for now, we choose war.
Tip/Tidbit: The Promise is the unfolding of God’s faithfulness to His Word. Trust Him today to receive what He said is yours. As you respond to what He declares, He will give you more victories to win and more blessings to enjoy.