Posted by: springsinthedesert | March 4, 2010

Now Is The Time To Give Back What You Have Received

‘The LORD your God is giving you rest and has granted you this land.’ Your wives, your children and your livestock may stay in the land that Moses gave you east of the Jordan, but all your fighting men, fully armed, must cross over ahead of your brothers. You are to help your brothers until the LORD gives them rest, as he has done for you, and until they too have taken possession of the land that the LORD your God is giving them. After that, you may go back and occupy your own land, which Moses the servant of the LORD gave you east of the Jordan toward the sunrise.”

       Joshua 1:13-15

Let me go into the context of the above verse before going into the devotion. Joshua and the people of Israel are on the other side of Jordan. Moses had passed away and they had been mourning for several days. God spoke to Joshua and strengthened him for the task ahead. The people of Israel is about to possess their inheritance on the other side of Jordan.( Joshua 1:10-11). But to the people of Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh, God spoke through Joshua that their inheritance is on this side of Jordan and He has given them rest there. So they need not continue the journey and cross the river to possess their inheritance. Their journey in the wilderness to inherit the promised land has come to an end…they have finally reached the land which God had planned for them. Now, the remaining tribes of Israel has to cross Jordan and possess their inheritance just like the two and a half tribes of Israelites.

I love the way God spoke to the two and a half tribes of Israel. He said that their family and livestock can remain in the east side of Jordan where God gave them rest while the fighting men should cross over Jordan with other Israelites and help the people until they take possession of their inheritance. Once they do that, these fighting men can go back and occupy their own land and join their family on other side of Jordan.

What can we understand from that? God expected the two and a half tribes of Israel to help out the rest of the people until they inherited the promised land. When I read that, I was wondering, how the people would have felt listening to this. They have finally reached their promise. Even before enjoying what they received, God is asking them to continue the journey, for helping out others. All these years they have been wandering in the desert, but now when they got a chance to settle and enjoy their family, He is asking them to leave their family on the east side and cross the Jordan to fight for the others. But they did not think about all that, they obeyed God just as He had asked them to do.

How about us? What is our attitude when we finally receive the promise that God has planned for us? Since the wait was too long and the impossibilities for attaining the promise was severe, do you think that we will have the attitude of helping out others who are yet to receive their promise, even before enjoying ours? In this long journey to receive the promised land, God has taught us patience, faith, peace and so many other virtues which God wants us to share with others. He wants us to support our brethren who goes through the same journey. God made you and me strong and fit in this battle against life’s trials so that we will be a helping hand for others who are weak. They need our strength and support to cross the Jordan of difficulties and finally take hold of their possession. When our brethren are in need on the other side, are we enjoying what God had given us on this side of Jordan?

Did you notice that verse, You are to help your brothers until the LORD gives them rest, as he has done for you. Your brethren has helped you when you were in need. They had fought with you in your battles. They had fasted and prayed for you. They have carried your burdens as though it was theirs..and now when you finally received what you were striving for, did you, by any chance forget them? Now its your chance to give back what you have received. IF you have received prayers and fasting from others for your problems, do that in return for them. Dont be complacent and think that they are strong by themselves and they do not need your help. A person is weak when he is alone facing the struggles, whether he say that publically or not. You never know how much it will strengthen him if you tell him, “I’m praying for you”.

If you look at the two and a half tribes of Israelites, you can see that they did not think any of their issues as a hindrance in helping others. They were ready to help out others even before enjoying what God gave them. Leaving their wives, children and livestock on the other side of Jordan, which is of course a new land, was difficult for them….yet they did not consider that as an excuse for not helping the rest of the Israelites. They wanted to experience the restful state so badly after travelling these forty years in the wilderness. They wanted to enjoy cultivating in the land after eating manna for several years….they wanted to settle in their new inheritance and make it their own…Without considering all these desires, they took the courage to leave their family and take the extra effort to cross Jordan and fight the battles for others.

Today, let us look back and see what we have received from God and others. Now is the time to give back what we have recieved Let us help our that they will also receive their promise. We may not be good at preaching and thereby encouraging someone, but take sometime to pray with them, share their burden, tell them that you will fast for their problems. You may have to cross the Jordan and fight for their battles…but remember you and me recieved our inheritance and promise, because they were with us…fighting our battles and sharing our burdens. Now, it is our turn.

In His Service,

Rani John



  1. The Spirit is at it again…our post are almost identical again today. I love what the Lord is doing…in you and through you. I am here for you and I know you are there for me…and yes…for all the people out there who have not yet received their inheritance but are looking up in hope.



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