by Clarence E. Macartney

This content is part of a series.

The Greatest Questions of the Bible and of Life
How Wilt Thou Do in the Swelling of Jordan? (15 of 18)
Clarence E. Macartney
Jeremiah 12:5

Since the first river went out of Eden to water the
earth, never has there been such a river as the river
Jordan. Born in the snows of Hermon not far from
Caesarea Philippi, it flows southward and enters the
Sea of Galilee, 682 feet beneath the level of the sea.
Issuing forth from the Sea of Galilee, it follows a
winding, tortuous course, as if striving and
struggling to avoid its fate where it enters the
waters of the Dead Sea, 1,292 feet below sea level.

Without a parallel in its flow and destiny, the river
Jordan, although one of the shortest rivers in the
world, little more than two hundred miles in length,
is the most historic of all rivers. Standing on its
banks, the great memories of the Jordan come back to
you. The crossing of the Jordan by Joshua and the
people of Israel, when the priests carried the ark of
the covenant into the river, and the waters of the
river stood up in a wall to the north and flowed away
to the south, and the people passed over dry shod. The
day when the soldiers of Jephthah held up the fleeing
Ephraimites at the fords of the river and put them to
the sword when they could not pronounce the difficult
word "shibboleth." The day when David crossed the
river on a ferry, leaving the body of his beloved
Absalom lying under the stone pile in the wood of
Ephraim. The day when Naaman, the leper, washed seven
times in the Jordan and was cured of his leprosy. The
day when John baptized Jesus in the river and then saw
the Holy Spirit descend upon Him. The sacred history
of the Jordan and the crossing of it by the children
of Israel on their way out of Egypt to the land of
Canaan made the Jordan from the earliest Christian age
a proverb or symbol of the immortal soul of man
crossing the river of death at the end of life into
the kingdo ...

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