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BIBLE READING (JOSHUA 3:7-11, 13-17)

15 Aug

THE ARK OF THE LORD IS ABOUT TO CROSS THE JORDAN AT YOUR HEAD.

The Lord said to Joshua, “This very day I will begin to make you a great man in the eyes of all Israel, to let them be sure that I am going to be with you even as I was with Moses. As for you, give this order to the priests carrying the ark of the covenant: ‘When you have reached the brink of the waters of the Jordan, you are to stand still in the Jordan itself.'”

Then Joshua said to the Israelites, “Come closer and hear the words of the Lord your God.” Joshua said, “By this you shall know that a living God is with you and without a doubt will expel the Canaanite. Look, the ark of the Lord, the Lord of the whole earth, is about to cross the Jordan at your head. As soon as the priests with the ark of the Lord, the Lord of the whole earth, have set their feet in the waters of the Jordan, the upper waters of the Jordan flowing down will be stopped in their course and stand still in one mass.”

Accordingly, when the people struck camp to cross the Jordan, the priests carried the ark of the covenant in front of the people. As soon as the bearers of the ark reached the Jordan and the feet of the priests who carried it touched the waters (the Jordan overflows the whole length of its banks throughout the harvest season) the upper waters stood still and made one heap over a wide space – from Adam to the fortress of Zarethan – while those flowing down to the Sea of the Arabah, that is, the Salt Sea, stopped running altogether. The people crossed opposite Jericho. The priests who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood still on dry ground in mid-Jordan, and all Israel continued to cross dry-shod till the whole nation had finished its crossing of the river.

V. The word of the Lord.
R. Thanks be to God.

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