To every son of God longing for and hastening the coming of the day of the Lord, the events of the hour are not without significance. The annals of human history are testament of the God who, through various dealings, propels every generation toward its ultimate and divine destiny.
Today the world finds itself in a foot-race. A race it neither anticipated nor is prepared for. A race that has consumed its strength and resources. We witness a world helpless to meet the challenge that lays before it. This virus has humbled nations. It has exposed their frailty. Their pride and self-confidence have been shaken. Their fortified walls and high towers have failed. Fear, uncertainty, and stress loom over many. The Lord has drawn back His right hand reminding this generation that the man who is worn out in a foot-race should not strive to contend against horses.
In light of all that we see and hear, there is now a groan unlike any that has been heard in our lifetime. A groan that grows louder by the day. This groan is a profound expression of despair and deep yearning triggered by the experience of our common calamity. The Spirit reminds us that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now (Rom. 8:22).
This groan is not for better systems, better governments, better politicians, better institutions, better science, better technologies, or better public health experts. It is a travail for the freedom of God’s salvation from this bondage of our corruption. This is a collective sigh for the coming of God’s kingdom to liberate us from the limitation and futility of our humanity.
But we too, who have been apprehended of God to sonship, have long been groaning in eagerness for the Christ to come forth as the mighty conqueror. In the quiet places, in the deserts, in isolation, in the Spirit, in the fortress of our Father, in this the Day of the Lord, God has been ministering to us, preparing us, and laying the burden of His Kingdom in our hearts.
In our opening verse, the advancement of the Kingdom is depicted by horses and the floodplains of the Jordan. Horses signify the swift power and overcoming might of the kingdom of God. They are symbols of the coming dominion of Christ over man’s fleshly ways in the day of the Lord. Their mention in the book of Revelation is a prophetic picture of the armies of the Lord of hosts wagging battle against all the corruption of the world and religious Babylon.
Thus, horses epitomize the judgment that shall be visited upon man’s fleshly ways by His saints. For the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints, to execute judgment (Jud. 14).
The Lord is now preparing this overcoming company who follow Him “upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean” (Rev. 19:14). Joel testifies that they are a people great and strong, the like of whom has never been. In their advancement fire (divine cleansing) devours before them, the earth (soulish realm) quakes, the sun and moon (religious luminaries and orders) grow dark. Their appearance is “like the appearance of horses; and like swift steeds, so they run” (Joe. 2:4).
These are a people which advance His righteous judgment on the earth and make way for the day the Lord. When will these thing begin to be? When a people begin to blow the trumpet in Zion. When they begin to sound an alarm to those who have ears to hear the word of the Lord that they too may join this cavalry that advances the Kingdom of God.
This foot-race that has wearied the world is a stern reminder to every listening ear that there is a coming Kingdom whose power the world cannot withstand. The earth shall yet be shaken by the Lord. It shall yet taste the fire of His zeal. The Lord shall do a quick work upon the earth cutting it short in righteousness (Rom. 9:28). Thus, today’s footmen herald tomorrow’s horses.
This pandemic is a judgment of God’s left hand. But judgment does not bring about redemption. It only breaks rebellion. It destroys the stubborn resistance of man’s defiant heart preparing it for repentance. For before the tongue confesses, the knee must bow. Then shall we witness how much greater and glorious the dealings of the right hand shall be. Together they shall work for His good, for all nations shall turn to Him in brokenness and be gathered unto Him as one man.
Today’s judgment testifies of tomorrow’s harvest. The global footprint of the pandemic is an affirmation of the coming ingathering of all nations. None shall escape. “For all nations shall come and worship before You, For Your judgments have been manifested” (Rev. 15:4).
This coming harvest is relayed by the latter clause in our verse – the floodplain of Jordan. The “floodplain” speaks to the murky waters of the river overflowing its banks. It was common for the Jordan to flood during the time of harvest (see Josh. 3:15).
The Jordan is a picture of a difficult but necessary path to freedom. It was the final step in the journey of the children of Israel before entering the Promised Land. Jordan means “to go down, descend, decline”. Even today the river is know for having the lowest elevation of any river in the world.
The Jordan represents death – the putting off of the soulish life of the Adamic man. Its flooding is the expansion of its reach across the land thus devastating entire cities and all that dwell there.
But despite their destruction, floods offer a number of long-term benefits including fertile soils and richer agricultural harvests. Likewise, the flooding Jordan signifies a spiritual process by which the Lord, who sits upon the flood, prepares the soil of man’s heart making it fertile that it may bring forth divine life. Hence, Jesus likened the coming of the Son of man to the flood that came and took away all the works of the flesh (Mat. 24:39).
Today the Lord puts a question to the world: how will you do in the floodplain of the Jordan? How will you contend with the dealings of the Lord that shall bring an end to all flesh and carnality?
Dear beloved, in an hour where the world is gripped with despair the Lord calls us to prepare ourselves, to arise to sound the trumpets in Zion that herald the coming of His mighty horses. With willing hearts let us head down to the Jordan as Jesus did to descend to its depth that we may come forth as the sons of God prepared to make a way for creation’s liberty.