Crystallization-Study of Joshua, Judges, and Ruth
The Need for God’s People to Seek
the Lord’s Direction and Have the Lord’s Presence
to Display His Victory for the Building Up
of His Body and the Spreading of His Kingdom
OPENING WORD OF THE PROPHESYING MEETING
Reading the verses in each day.
Reading the main points in the outlines.
Pray-reading the verses:
Exo. 33:14 And He said, My presence shall go with you, and I will give you rest.
Josh. 9:14 And the men…did not ask for the counsel of Jehovah.
Matt. 1:5 And Salmon begot Boaz of Rahab, and Boaz begot Obed of Ruth…
Word of Appetizer
Why was Israel defeated at Ai after the destruction of Jericho?
The report of the spies to Joshua concerning Ai indicates that Israel had set God aside; instead of asking God what they should do against Ai, they forgot God and cared only for themselves; at that time they were not one with God but acted on their own, without seeking the Lord’s direction and without having the Lord’s presence; Israel was separated from God because of their sin; the secret of Israel’s defeat at Ai was that they had lost God’s presence and were no longer one with God; after this defeat Joshua learned the lesson of staying with the Lord before the Ark.
In order for us to fully gain and possess Christ as the all-inclusive land for God’s building, we must learn to be kept, to be ruled, to be governed, and to be guided by the direct, firsthand presence of the Lord; if we have the Lord’s presence, we have wisdom, insight, foresight, and the inner knowledge concerning things; the Lord’s presence is everything to us.
Concluding Word of the Prophesying Meeting
The Revelation of the Truth
When the two spies came to Jericho, Rahab (who was both a harlot and a Canaanite) contacted them and was willing to receive them, hide them, and deliver them by acts that issued out of her faith ; she believed in the God of Israel and declared, “Jehovah your God, He is God in heaven above and upon earth beneath”.
After the destruction of Jericho, Israel was defeated at Ai; at Jericho, according to God’s economy, Joshua sent out spies, not for fighting but to gain Rahab; but at Ai, because Israel had lost the presence of the Lord, Joshua sent out spies for fighting.
After Israel dealt with their sin, the sin of Achan , they were victorious over Ai , but then there is a record of how the children of Israel were deceived by the Gibeonites.
The Experience of Life
Whenever we put on a garment that does not match our actual condition, we are in the principle of Babylon; “It is not how man sees that matters; for man looks on the outward appearance, but Jehovah looks on the heart”; if we treasure up God’s word in our heart and allow Christ to make His home in our heart (Eph. 3:16-17), He will become the good treasure of our heart, and out of the abundance of our heart we can dispense Him as this wonderful, good treasure into others.
Practice and Application
We, the people of God, should always be one with our God, who is not only among us but also in us, making us men with God—God-men; as God-men, we should practice being one with the Lord, walking with Him, living with Him, and having our entire being with Him; this is the way to walk as a Christian, to fight as a child of God, and to build up the Body of Christ.
We need to bring every matter to the Lord and to consider, examine, and determine things before Him and in fellowship with Him; we need to learn that, as the Lord’s wife, we should co-live with Him, always relying on Him and being one with Him all the time.
PROPHESYING TOPICS—TWELVE TOPICS PER WEEK
T1: Joshua’s real purpose in sending out the spies was to find Rahab (Josh. 2:1, 8-11, 18).
(Please explain with verses that Rahab, by her acts out of her faith showed that she believed in the God of Israel.)
T2: The principles governing our association with Christ (Matt. 1:5).
(What are the principles governing our association with Christ?)
T1: Because Israel had lost the presence of the Lord, Joshua sent out spies for fighting (Josh. 7:2).
(Why is that in the destruction of Jericho, no fighting was needed; but at Ai the fighting was needed?)
T2: It is a very serious matter for God no longer to be with us (Josh. 7:12b).
(Please explain that whatever we do should not be by ourselves; we should not act, behave, or do things by ourselves but with God.)
T1: “My presence shall go with you, and I will give you rest” (Exo. 33:14-15; Matt. 1:23).
(Please explain with your own experiences that God’s being with us is everything.)
T2: We must be fearful of receiving anything from the Lord yet losing His presence (Josh. 7:12b; 2 Tim. 4:22).
(Please explain what a strength, what a power, is in the direct presence of the Lord! )
T1: A Babylonian garment seduced Achan to commit sin (Josh. 7:21).
(Please explain that anything that is Babylonian gives Satan the ground to defeat the people of God.)
T2: The principle of Babylon, therefore, is hypocrisy (Acts 5:1-4).
(Please explain that here is a real danger to God’s children— pretending to be spiritual.)
T1: The children of Israel were like a wife who forgot her husband (Josh. 9:14; 2 Cor. 11:2).
(Why were the children of Israel deceived by the Gibeonites?)
T2: The male of this universal couple is God Himself, and the female is God’s redeemed people as a corporate being (Isa. 54:5; Hosea. 2:19).
(Please explain that the Bible is the record of a romance, in the most pure and holy sense, of a universal couple.)
T1: As the Lord’s wife, we should be one with Him all the time (Hosea 2:19).
(Please explain that the real married life is when the wife is co-living with her husband, always one with him).
T2: A normal Christian life is a life of fellowship (Phil. 4:6-7).
(Please explain that from the day of our salvation…we should no longer be independent.)